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Old 09-10-2018, 10:22 AM   #1
MatthewStatum
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Default HELP Public Vs Guided Elk Hunt

I'm looking to take my first Elk hunt in 2020 and would like to get your opinions on the best route to take. I found a Guided hunt in Wyoming that i liked, i met the outfitter at the Houston TTHA Extravaganza. I planned on taking one guided hunt to get my bearings (I have no experience calling or hunting Elk in any form) and the next hunt try my luck on public land.

What would y'all suggest? For a first timer with limited experience. Stick with the guided hunt for my first go around or try my luck with public land (which is the ultimate goal)?

Note: i'm not picky on what i kill, if i take the guided hunt i'm gonna kill a bull but the ultimate goal for me is the meat, so having to kill a trophy isn't a factor for me. I would be satisfied with a good cow.
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Old 09-10-2018, 10:40 AM   #2
WItoTX
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Originally Posted by MatthewStatum View Post
I'm looking to take my first Elk hunt in 2020 and would like to get your opinions on the best route to take. I found a Guided hunt in Wyoming that i liked, i met the outfitter at the Houston TTHA Extravaganza. I planned on taking one guided hunt to get my bearings (I have no experience calling or hunting Elk in any form) and the next hunt try my luck on public land.

What would y'all suggest? For a first timer with limited experience. Stick with the guided hunt for my first go around or try my luck with public land (which is the ultimate goal)?

Note: i'm not picky on what i kill, if i take the guided hunt i'm gonna kill a bull but the ultimate goal for me is the meat, so having to kill a trophy isn't a factor for me. I would be satisfied with a good cow.
Public land self guided. There is just too much information out there to not do it that way for what you are looking for. If you wanted a big bull, I would say do guided.

The sooner you get hunting, the better. Every year you don't hunt, you get worse. So consider 2018 if you have the time, otherwise 2019.
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Old 09-10-2018, 10:54 AM   #3
diamond10x
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I have never been on a guided or outfitted hunt minus waterfowl, but I’m not opposed to it as I’m sure one day I will eventually go on a few guided or outfitted hunts for big game.

I think first you have to decide whether you’re gonna try it archery or rifle. From there then like you said, all you’re worried about is the meat. Getting a cow is much easier than tracking down and getting a bull on the ground. For me in my case I cannot see paying a guide or outfitter for an elk hunt for myself, as I’ve grown up in a family elk hunting public/private land access DIY western hunting for several generations. If I didn’t have that knowledge and was just getting into it I might consider the guided outfitted option as a good learning experience for my first time. I think it all comes down to your preference and level of comfort with price tag or money spent whichever route you decide.

I myself love DIY public land hunting because I get just as much excitement and enjoyment from all of the time spent in researching, planning, scouting, and logistics that goes into a successful DIY public hunt, and when successful the payoff is more rewarding than anything to me. This route can be very overwhelming for a first timer if you’re not ready for it as far as the amount of time and research it takes.

I think you can probably answer your own question by really deciding what you want out of the trip/hunt and what your measure of success will be, such as an elk down and in the freezer, learning how to hunt them even without getting a kill, just hunting somewhere new and getting a new experience, etc.
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Old 09-10-2018, 11:23 AM   #4
Terry
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If you are new to elk hunting, have not lived where elk roam, guided hunt for the first time seems sensible. Get a head start on the learning curve
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Old 09-10-2018, 11:25 AM   #5
thebomb6_99
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Guide the 1st time out unless you can go on a public hunt with folks who have been successful
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Old 09-10-2018, 12:10 PM   #6
MatthewStatum
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I plan on bow hunting, but for the first hunt rifle isn't out of the question.

Also, going with the public hunt and saving thousands compared to the guided trip is also a plus.

Last edited by MatthewStatum; 09-10-2018 at 12:12 PM. Reason: adding an item
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Old 09-10-2018, 12:37 PM   #7
Killer
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Go with someone who has been on public land trip or go by yourself on guided private land trip. DYI will cost less but you will have better chance for success on GPLT.
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Old 09-10-2018, 12:53 PM   #8
scottr325
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I'd say if your going with someone with experience to help go diy public land this was my 4th year and its a big learning curve and can be very frustrating and have you questioning your tactics, after 3 days of not seeing any this year and not getting a shot the first 3years my hunting buddy and I were already talking about getting a guided hunt next year but moved and found elk and finally got a small bull. DIY is great and fun but I wish I had done a guided hunt 4 years ago when I started, I believe i would have probably not been so far behind the knowledge curve had I done that. But if one is a issue I wouldn't wait to save up for a guided hunt either, its fairly inexpensive to do a DIY hunt.
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:00 PM   #9
JLivi1224
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diamond10x View Post
I have never been on a guided or outfitted hunt minus waterfowl, but Iím not opposed to it as Iím sure one day I will eventually go on a few guided or outfitted hunts for big game.

I think first you have to decide whether youíre gonna try it archery or rifle. From there then like you said, all youíre worried about is the meat. Getting a cow is much easier than tracking down and getting a bull on the ground. For me in my case I cannot see paying a guide or outfitter for an elk hunt for myself, as Iíve grown up in a family elk hunting public/private land access DIY western hunting for several generations. If I didnít have that knowledge and was just getting into it I might consider the guided outfitted option as a good learning experience for my first time. I think it all comes down to your preference and level of comfort with price tag or money spent whichever route you decide.

I myself love DIY public land hunting because I get just as much excitement and enjoyment from all of the time spent in researching, planning, scouting, and logistics that goes into a successful DIY public hunt, and when successful the payoff is more rewarding than anything to me. This route can be very overwhelming for a first timer if youíre not ready for it as far as the amount of time and research it takes.

I think you can probably answer your own question by really deciding what you want out of the trip/hunt and what your measure of success will be, such as an elk down and in the freezer, learning how to hunt them even without getting a kill, just hunting somewhere new and getting a new experience, etc.

Sounds like you should just take diamond with you
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Old 09-10-2018, 01:20 PM   #10
Blank
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I am 26 for 40 here in Idaho (half cows), 2 for 4 in WY on any bulls, and 1 for 3 in AZ on big bulls. Take my answer and info for what it is worth.

Hunting DIY is fun and the harder you can work the luckier you will be. If you go in expecting success the first year, you will probably learn a lot, but be unsuccessful. Most areas have about a 6% success rate for archery, and that includes people who do know the areas. Rifle hunt success probably goes up to about 10%. There is a pretty steep learning curve.

The guided hunt will be just as fun, more comfortable, probably more chance of harvesting a bull, and definitely easier on the packing with all the help. If the money is not a concern, I would try to go guided first and learn as much as possible, then go DIY the next few times and see how you do.

For your DIY hunt, you will be much luckier if you can draw a controlled hunt somewhere when the odds are better in your favor for location, elk #s, and limited hunting pressure.

Good luck with whatever you choose.
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Old 09-10-2018, 02:33 PM   #11
MatthewStatum
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Good info, is there any particular outfitter y'all would recommend?
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Old 09-10-2018, 02:57 PM   #12
diamond10x
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Sounds like you should just take diamond with you
Hey Iím never opposed to new hunting buddies and extra hunting trips as long as I can get off work
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Old 09-10-2018, 03:17 PM   #13
MatthewStatum
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Hey Iím never opposed to new hunting buddies and extra hunting trips as long as I can get off work
lets set it up.
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Old 09-10-2018, 06:17 PM   #14
Blank
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Leaving in the morning for an Arizona Unit 8 archery elk hunt for my partner. He can't bugle, can't hear, and walks in circles. Hoping to find a big bull with suicidal tendencies, just lovesick enough to like my calling!!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-10-2018, 06:27 PM   #15
meltingfeather
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I just got back (yesterday) from my first elk hunt in Unit 4 outside Chama, NM. I faced the same decision and decided to go with a guide. I'm glad I did and while we were not successful, learned a LOT... so much that I just could not have soaked up without being there and seeing/hearing it... no matter how much online info I read, and I read a lot.
Given the choice I would go guided again... and will probably make that call for next year.
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Old 09-11-2018, 06:40 AM   #16
MatthewStatum
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Originally Posted by meltingfeather View Post
I just got back (yesterday) from my first elk hunt in Unit 4 outside Chama, NM. I faced the same decision and decided to go with a guide. I'm glad I did and while we were not successful, learned a LOT... so much that I just could not have soaked up without being there and seeing/hearing it... no matter how much online info I read, and I read a lot.
Given the choice I would go guided again... and will probably make that call for next year.
Who was your guide and would you recommend them?
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Old 09-11-2018, 02:45 PM   #17
tiberiuswade
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Hey Mathew
For my first high mountain elk hunt(archery), I went on guided BLM (which lots guides do, unless they have private ranch available which cost more$$$ for you).
Went to Colorado [sweet for me], archery and got a nice 5x5. Them following years I do DIY in area, camp where outfitters are(there's always someone round doing cooking, taking care extra horses). BLM lands is way I'd go after guided hunts, ask many questions about area best time to go etc..

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Old 09-11-2018, 08:26 PM   #18
NoFence
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Go DIY on public land. Between now and 2020 you'll learn so much. I started elk hunting last year and have learned more than I thought possible in a little over a year. You'll save money and get more satisfaction doing it on your own. Start doing some research and watch lots of YouTube videos of diy public land archery elk hunts. You have more time than you need to get ready for it.
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Old 09-11-2018, 08:45 PM   #19
Wiley64
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I didn't read any of it but the answer is guided.
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Old 09-12-2018, 08:07 AM   #20
MatthewStatum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tiberiuswade View Post
Hey Mathew
For my first high mountain elk hunt(archery), I went on guided BLM (which lots guides do, unless they have private ranch available which cost more$$$ for you).
Went to Colorado [sweet for me], archery and got a nice 5x5. Them following years I do DIY in area, camp where outfitters are(there's always someone round doing cooking, taking care extra horses). BLM lands is way I'd go after guided hunts, ask many questions about area best time to go etc..

Sent from my SM-G935V using Tapatalk
Do you still have the guides info?
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Old 09-12-2018, 08:45 AM   #21
wytex
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MatthewStatum View Post
I'm looking to take my first Elk hunt in 2020 and would like to get your opinions on the best route to take. I found a Guided hunt in Wyoming that i liked, i met the outfitter at the Houston TTHA Extravaganza. I planned on taking one guided hunt to get my bearings (I have no experience calling or hunting Elk in any form) and the next hunt try my luck on public land.

What would y'all suggest? For a first timer with limited experience. Stick with the guided hunt for my first go around or try my luck with public land (which is the ultimate goal)?

Note: i'm not picky on what i kill, if i take the guided hunt i'm gonna kill a bull but the ultimate goal for me is the meat, so having to kill a trophy isn't a factor for me. I would be satisfied with a good cow.
I would be curious who you talked with and what area they hunt? Pm me if necessary.
In Wyoming you could very well do a guided elk hunt for archery in the right area then if no success hunt it for rifle too.
Everyone like Colorado for OTC tags , hunting in Wyoming has much less pressure than Colorado. Just a fact due to population, tag numbers and no OTC for NR.
Get some PP now for your upcoming hunt.
Guided is a great way to learn, but you could also get a cow tag or 2 and come up for a learning experience that is not as expensive, DIY. Our cow tags are less than $400 and 2 each is the limit.
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Old 09-12-2018, 01:57 PM   #22
MatthewStatum
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Originally Posted by wytex View Post
I would be curious who you talked with and what area they hunt? Pm me if necessary.
In Wyoming you could very well do a guided elk hunt for archery in the right area then if no success hunt it for rifle too.
Everyone like Colorado for OTC tags , hunting in Wyoming has much less pressure than Colorado. Just a fact due to population, tag numbers and no OTC for NR.
Get some PP now for your upcoming hunt.
Guided is a great way to learn, but you could also get a cow tag or 2 and come up for a learning experience that is not as expensive, DIY. Our cow tags are less than $400 and 2 each is the limit.
Wildman Adventures out of Thayne. Bull hunt priced at $4500. Any other guide or DIY area recommendations would be appreciated.
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Old 09-12-2018, 02:38 PM   #23
Pkripper
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Do a drop camp. They scout all yr and put you around elk. Just show up with gear and food.

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Old 09-13-2018, 09:04 AM   #24
MatthewStatum
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Originally Posted by Pkripper View Post
Do a drop camp. They scout all yr and put you around elk. Just show up with gear and food.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
I looked into that option yesterday and i'm leaning in that direction now. Have you been on one yourself?
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:07 AM   #25
abilliott
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Originally Posted by MatthewStatum View Post
I looked into that option yesterday and i'm leaning in that direction now. Have you been on one yourself?
Let me know if you do this or not and what you thought about it. I am wanting to do a DIY but also saw the drop camp option and am curious about it. I am still trying to get a "group" so that I can start making plans.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:46 AM   #26
MatthewStatum
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Originally Posted by abilliott View Post
Let me know if you do this or not and what you thought about it. I am wanting to do a DIY but also saw the drop camp option and am curious about it. I am still trying to get a "group" so that I can start making plans.
it wont be until 2020 for use due to the Wyoming point system.
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