Home Forums Campfire Forum Early Elk Seasons

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    • paleoman
      Member
      Post count: 918

      I know some of you get started in August, and recently someone posted about the Ca. “early” blscktail season being open I believe. As an easterner this all seems so crazy early, in the sense that it’s so warm if not downright hot over most of the country. Is it tolerably cooler up high in the mts at that time of the year? Have these seasons been traditionally opened that early or is it a matter that the early, early season pressure is so low it’s determined no harm is done? I know the Natives hunted all year, I guess I’d be strange to them hunting only the cooler seasons maybe?

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Archery seasons in Idaho for deer, bear and elk start at the end of Aug. Deer/elk archery go through the end of Sept (and then general seasons open after that) and bear season goes until the end of Oct. (any weapon).

      To be honest, I don’t spend much time in Sept. specifically chasing deer (though I’ll certainly take one if it walks by) – my focus is on elk, and increasingly, bear. And yeah, it can be warm here in Sept, even at high altitude, but as soon as the nights start to cool off, the elk will start rutting, and then it’s ‘game on.’

      Another upsiade to bowhunting in Sept. is that animals are usually never going to be far from a water source.

      Then again, we can get a week in Sept. that looks like this (as we did last year):

    • David Petersen
      Member
      Post count: 2749

      Scott– Colorado’s seasons closely parallel those of ID. I grew up in Okie with a rifle deer season that opened Thanksgiving weekend and archery in early Oct. So I too have a distinct association between hunting and fall hardwood colors and temps. So far as “practicality,” for those to whom “success” is all that matters, you can’t get a better month for elk in the Rockies than Sept. because they’re rutting and vocalizing (until the idiots with fake bugles glued to their faces show up and shut ’em down, often the first day of the season). And Sept. in elk country often goes from 80s early month to heavy frosts every night the last few days … and with a month’s season you can choose your weather. But it’s just too early imo. Hot days, bugs, serious problems with meat preservation if you’re a serious backcountry hunter, etc. Mule deer don’t rut until several weeks later and are still in velvet for archery season, yet deer and elk archery run together, so archery deer season in the Rockies really sucks, again imo. I don’t hunt bear but if I did I’d prefer early Oct. when other seasons are closed and bears are fat and fixing to den thus the best meat and pelts. So, my advice if you’re considering a western mountain hunt for deer is to hit timberline where the big bucks are in Sept., and for elk come late. But these days timing is generally trumped by location. If you’re hunting with “good” road and ATV trail access, you’re far better off spending the money to take the wife to Hawaii. Or go alone. 😛

    • wahoo
      Member
      Post count: 413

      as said above here in Idaho it can be hot, hot, hot and it can come with a fire season which means zone can be closed. It also comes with some early snows – the last week of Sept I was hunting in 5 to 8″ of the white stuff. I like hunting elk early before they are herded up. There can be lots of atvs and the combo deer and elk suck because I too focus on elk in Sept. One cool thing about archery which I don’t believe was mentioned is grouse season and I love hunting chickens with my bow

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      wahoo wrote:

      One cool thing about archery which I don’t believe was mentioned is grouse season and I love hunting chickens with my bow

      Good point. That’s generally the only meat I bring home anyway…8)

    • Etter1
      Post count: 831

      Ga archery for deer and bear opens about sept 10 and it is hot! South carolina deer opens in mid august and it must be really hot!

    • Stephen Graf
      Moderator
      Post count: 2361

      Smithhammer wrote: [quote=wahoo]

      One cool thing about archery which I don’t believe was mentioned is grouse season and I love hunting chickens with my bow

      Good point. That’s generally the only meat I bring home anyway…8)

      My thinking exactly! I will be in colorado in the middle of september “hunting” elk. I looked at the small game options and it looks like nothing else whatsoever is open at that time. 😥

    • wahoo
      Member
      Post count: 413

      we were talking how hot it is and last night it went down to 45 degrees (feels good ) up to 85 today

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Same here – I got out for a hike this morning, and at 7am I had to keep moving at a pretty brisk pace to keep warm for the first hour or so. Love it.

    • Ptaylor
      Member
      Post count: 573

      Hey Fellas,

      Archery season opened here on Saturday. Good thing is I can hunt on the coast. Which means the weather could be foggy, windy, and in the 50’s. Makes for colder weather than inland for sure. As Mark Twain said, “The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in California.”

      I’m not quite sure, but I think part of the reason the seasons are early here is because when the snows starts the deer move down, and often end up on private land in the valley bottoms. Old timers tell me about when it would rain/snow all rifle season and the deer would be migrating out of the high country. But now it doesn’t rain until the season is over so the deer are harder to get to. I think part of having the seasons earlier is so folks could get into and enjoy the backcountry as well.

      Anyway, I enjoy the early season. Its a great excuse to go out and watch some animals and maybe even try and sneak up on one. Then you can put together some late hunts in another state and hunt almost half the year!

    • RalphRalph
      Moderator
      Post count: 2544

      As Mark Twain said, “The coldest winter I ever spent was summer in California.”

      Coldest winter I ever spent was Jan./Feb. @ MCRD, Marine Corps boot camp. Brrr.

      It’s cool that some bureaucracy may actually be thinking about the outdoor active populace.

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