So far, I have ONLY hunted public land. Wait, I did hunt some antelope in Wyoming on private land. Wyoming is checkerboarded with private land so I paid $50 for a “trespass” fee. That was only once though. I live in Kalifornia and the county I live in is 97% public land (BLM, USFS, LAWP). The tags are hard to draw but the archery D-6 tag you can get every year but you DO have to do your research. This area has almost NO roads so you have to backpack hunt and be prepared to pack your deer out of steep terrain. Hence, not many hunters. Not too many people want to backpack hunt 4-7 days at 7500-10000 feet. It’s hard enough that I don’t think I’m going to be able to hunt it much past 50 years in age.
I’ve been to Colorado for elk (cow and bull) and there are some gems there too. But, I got my elk at over 12,000 feet and miles from a road. THAT was tough. I had a partner or it would have been excrutiating.
“Hunt it, kill it, grill it!”