2021 Idaho Elk Hunt

Discussion in 'Hunting Out of State' started by 180class, Jan 14, 2020.

  1. 180class

    180class Well-Known Member

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    I'm in the beginning stages of planning an Idaho archery Elk hunt in 2021. Never been out west on a hunt, so don't know where to start. Was hoping someone with experience could give me some tips on which public land unit I should focus on, gear, camping location, ect.....Any advice will be much appreciated. Thanks.
     
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  3. TeenageHunter

    TeenageHunter McNorrisBieber Staff Member

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    Let me give you some advice...

    "I don't want your honey hole, but, what canyon are the elk in and where do I camp to have the best shot at elk?"
    Don't ask other people for their Elk areas, find your own. This might sound harsh but it's more rewarding in the end when you finally figure it out and put all the pieces together. Nobody is going to hand you their honey hole out west and just give you the golden ticket to their spot and their exact location. Over the years I've had hundreds if not upwards of a thousand people ask me advice for hunting out west and they keep digging and trying to get more information about areas. I've seen a good area get turned into an awful one because of the information I've given out and then people spread that information.

    Don't tell people your area once you find it unless you don't mind it getting overrun. You might be asking yourself right now "Then why do you invite people to come hunt with you?" I invite people to come with me because I found out the areas, learned them, and now I want to learn new areas. I'm sure someone will spill the beans out of eleven people coming with me for Pronghorn/Deer to a family member, best friend, etc. or even someone I gave the information to apply. There are thirty views on the video on how to apply and what area to apply for and I only sent it to twelve people. You can never trust anybody with your areas or information. Once you've done this process you'll understand why people out west are secretive about their areas. You've put hundreds of hours of e-scouting, boots on the ground, etc. just to give that information away willy-nilly? Why?

    GET OnXMaps, you're going on a DIY hunt that costs $1,250+...people need to shut up about how OnXMaps is $30 a year, it's worth it. OnX isn't just a valuable tool to figure out where you're at but it can help with e-scouting. It's an invaluable tool and at points, if I didn't have it I wouldn't have ever harvested an animal in the area. E-scouting helps out a lot and you can learn a lot about an area just by looking at it online. Google Street View and Google Earth can be valuable tools too.

    Bring a snow shovel, get a winch, bring a first aid kit. Yes, it snows in Idaho in September can it can get bad really fast even at 4,000' elevation. After hunting Idaho for Black Bear I've learned don't slack off on these things. You'll regret it when a blizzard moves in and dumps a foot of snow on you and you can't get out. Luckily for me in the spring the days are getting warmer, not colder. In the fall, it could be a different story and I know of people that have left vehicles in areas into late May/early June. I wouldn't venture into these areas alone the first time (especially your first time out west) and would bring a friend to hunt with me.

    Buy a Deer, Black Bear, Mountain Lion, and Wolf tag it's not much more depending on the area. FUN FACT: Idaho allows you to harvest predatory animals on your big game tag but it fills your big game tag. You might be surprised and come home with something extra or something you wouldn't have been able to come home with.

    Look at harvest success rates, draw odds (if you want to draw a tag), and public/private percentage. The best site to look at is the IDGF website but huntscore and toprut are both great resources.

    https://huntscore.com/hunts/id/elk

    https://www.toprut.com/maps/


    Go shed hunting, Pronghorn hunting, small game hunting, summer scouting trip. Do you want to be really successful? Go on an easier hunt or scouting trip out west first. Jumping straight into Elk hunting IMO without any information about the area or not stepping foot in the area can be a killer unless you've learned an area previously. I'm constantly going shed hunting in new areas, scouting new areas, and learning new areas all across the west. I'm lucky and move from job to job state to state out west (I'm working for Colorado Parks and Wildlife right now).

    Learn the difference between State Lands, National Forest, National Grassland, National Parks, and Bureau of Land Management. Depending on the state these can all be different and don't assume you can/can't hunt them or have access. Most National Forests/National Grasslands/BLM lands you can hunt, camp, fish, etc. on but there are still rules and regulations regarding all of those things.

    Don't rule an area out for low success rates. Some of the best areas I've ever been to have had the lowest success rates in the state and I've don't my research and found the animals and am willing to hike in further than other people. NEVER rule out an area just because of low success rates, use other factors as well. I've had people not want to go on hunts with me because the success rates for the area are "too low" even though I've always killed a deer, pronghorn, or elk in those areas even with low success rates.
     
  4. hillrunner

    hillrunner PMA Member

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    Thanks for the info. I went with a group on an elk hunt to NW Montana 6 years ago. We went with an outfitter and came away disappointed in every aspect of the hunt. That soured me for a couple years but lately I've been starting to feel the tug out west again. I read everything you post about hunting out west and appreciate you taking the time. I like your suggestion of starting out shed hunting. I've always felt that shed hunting was the best time to scout for deer in Iowa since all the sign from the fall is still visible and I assume that would translate out west. I'm thinking of putting in for a mule deer hunt for starters, probably in Wyoming but haven't completely narrowed it down yet. Thanks again for your insights!
     
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  5. JNRBRONC

    JNRBRONC Moderator

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    Commenting on TH’s low success areas: odds of drawing are usually much higher, as people apply for the high success/trophy zones. Applying to NM and WY, I asked myself what my goal was. Did I want the experience or did I have to kill a trophy?

    I ran into a trooper way back in on a National Forest road in NM. Seeing Iowa plates on my car, he figured I was up to no good and stopped to chat. He commented that it was a long way to drive from Iowa to hunt elk. My reply was there are NO elk in Iowa.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  6. TeenageHunter

    TeenageHunter McNorrisBieber Staff Member

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    Hunting Gear List -
    • Binoculars - DON'T SKIP OUT ON THESE. Buy 10x at minimum for out west and her in the midwest. There's Vortex Diamondback's on sale for $199.99 right now. https://amzn.to/38gr9WT
    • Flashlight - I've used everything and always go back to the cheap Walmart ones.
    • Hunting Knife - I have the Piranha (https://amzn.to/38grpFl) and the RazorBlade (https://amzn.to/2szqtgh) replaceable blades are cheap at Cabelas and Bass Pro.
    • Lighters
    • Phone Battery Charger you can't beat the Dark Energy Poseidon...it's expensive but worth it. https://amzn.to/366mt4u
    • First Aid Kit (Make sure you buy stuff like Peroxide, tape, etc. to put in it)
    • Fire Starter (You can buy cubes of them a lot of places)
    • Sleeping Bag I have the Coleman 0 Degree Mummy (https://amzn.to/2R2vnLX) and the Browning McKinley which is WAY too warm for me until it's 40 degrees https://amzn.to/2RspKWE
    • Rifle
    • Bow
    • Ammo 2 boxes 20rd
    • Paracord...lots of Paracord.
    • Tent
    • Bed Roll (Still trying to find a durable one that will withstand how I treat them)
    • Jet Boil - https://amzn.to/374HJci
    • Mountain House is way cheaper IMO than having to buy a bunch of food at Walmart and keep it in a cooler. Might not taste as great but it's what I used when I'm on the mountain looking for elk. Plus, it doesn't weigh much just don't forget your utility spoon. https://amzn.to/38jcABQ
    • Belts - Trust me..don't forget your belt.
    • Coat Hangers
    • Dehydrated Food Slices (Apples, Bananas, etc.)
    (Truck Essential Gear)
    • Brake Fluid
    • Power Steering Fluid w/Stop Leak
    • Blinker Fluid...maybe.
    • Oil
    • JumpStart
    • Snow Shovel (Grain Shovel)
    • Extra Serpentine belt
    • 12DC Portable Air Compressor
    • Flat fixer (Life saver in rough rocky areas)
    Sitka Stuff I'd Recommend -

    Sitka Blizzard Parka (LATE SEAOSN ONLY) https://amzn.to/30tMfP7
    Sitka Traverse Hoody https://amzn.to/361B3KK
    Sitka Traverse Pant https://amzn.to/364WsCF
    Sitka Timberline Pant. https://amzn.to/2FVRvBA

    Don't buy Sitka's rain gear, it's worthless.
     
  7. TeenageHunter

    TeenageHunter McNorrisBieber Staff Member

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    THIS is exactly what I'm point out, it's more fun to experience it five or six times than to wait your whole life to only do it once and be disappointed because you didn't kill that wall hanger you wanted.
     
  8. nontyp

    nontyp Active Member

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    That Alps Pack looks pretty sweet for the price. I’ve been thinking about upgrading to an Exo, but the price seems a little outrageous to me. Is that the pack you own? How does it handle heavy loads?
     
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  9. TeenageHunter

    TeenageHunter McNorrisBieber Staff Member

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    I'll never buy another pack than that one. I have a Mountain Hauler 6200 from Sitka and it's a piece of garbage compared to this pack IMO. I've had an entire deboned Deer in it and can carry it out myself easily and still have my gear in it! I've had half a bull elk (One front, one hind, one tender, and one loin) in it and carried it out and the pack has handled it WITH my gear in the bag for the first trip.

    It's the only pack I've used this entire year and plan to do a YouTube video review on it.
     
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  10. 180class

    180class Well-Known Member

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    Awesome! Thanks TH
     
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  11. chipterp

    chipterp PMA Member

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    I would try and chat with some people that have been out to Idaho in recent years. I have heard the population is way way down and hunting is tough due to wolves . Can anyone else chime in on that?
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2020

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