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Author Topic: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips  (Read 1668 times)

Offline jamesfromseattle

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Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« on: November 16, 2017, 04:12:45 PM »
I took a deer and antelope trip to Wyoming both this year.  I was pretty bad about taking pictures and whatnot, so I thought I would share some random and mundane pieces of advice that others who are new to out of state hunts may find useful in planning hunts. 

We were in northwest Wyoming--I'll leave the specific units vague to not draw any unnecessary attention to them, but it's not a big secret because I've posted about them elsewhere this year.  There are ton of good looking units there (and also in the areas of Montana and Idaho that we drove through, for that matter), and the specifics don't really have anything to do with this post.  Happy to discuss via PM, though.

Things we did right:


1.  We rented a truck.  I have an older Ford Escape, which would have worked, but renting a full sized pickup allowed us to take all of the creature comforts we wanted.  For around $300 for the week, this was absolutely worth it.  Limped it back in to the rental company with an additional 2000 miles or so on it, a leaky tire, and crumbs/dirt/mud/deer hair pretty much everywhere.  A bit surprised to get our deposit back and glad it wasn't my vehicle.

2.  We camped on BLM land.  We were in an area with quite a bit of public land.  Apparently you can camp anywhere that isn't too far off the established roads.  Wyoming is pretty rural and towns are few and far between in some parts.  I'm glad we didn't waste time going back and forth to a hotel or campground in town.

3.  We talked to the locals.  Everyone we ran into was friendly and we got to know some other people camped in our neighborhood.  Talked to a landowner that showed us where a spring was on his property in case we needed more water, and got some good advice on where to go from other hunters.  I think hunters in Washington (myself included) tend to be tight lipped because success is far from guaranteed up here.  Down there, the locals punch their tags every year if they want to.  The people we talked to were happy to help us out when they saw we were from out of town.

4.  We talked to the game wardens at a check station.  They were also very friendly and helpful pointing us in the right direction.

5.  We took a whole bunch of ice.  Again, we were a ways from town so it would have been a pain to go back to restock.  Took a couple big coolers with frozen one gallon jugs and they lasted the whole trip.  Quartered our animals and put them in the coolers in game bags.  Everything got home in good shape.  Next time I'll take some towels as well to throw in the coolers because the condensation still caused the meat to get a little damp.

6.  We took multiple knives (or replacement blades).  I've never had a multiple animal trip in Washington.  We got four animals down there, so we obviously spent a lot of time making knives get dull.   

7.  We were patient with the antelope.  I read in a number of places (including posts here) that antelope sometimes come back after you shoot them.  They absolutely do.  If you spook one, just wait a while and see if it comes back.  We did and got one because of it.

8.  We stopped at Yellowstone on the way.  If you're driving from WA, it is pretty much on the way there.  Bison are cool to watch.  Might as well stop.

Things we did wrong:

1.  We almost ran out of gas in Western Montana.  There aren't many gas stations between Coer D'Alene and Missoula.  Kind of surprising for an interstate highway.  Was a bonehead thing to do, but we almost ran out of gas.

2.  We got too many tags.  My Washingtonian instincts were to buy as many tags as possible just because I could.  Having all of them made things a little more stressful than necessary and we ate two of them (we went 4/6 on deer and lope between the two of us).  In future years, I think I'm going to stick to one species trips and relax a little more.  Deer and antelope in particular are a brutal combo since antelope are active mid day.  I never realized how important my mid day deer hunting nap was until I gave it up to chase antelope.

3.  We had tags in multiple units.  This was a pain and caused us to spend a bunch of time in car.  After a 14 hour drive, nobody wants more car time.

4.  I tried to shoot the first buck I saw.  Everyone says not to do this, but again, my Washingtonian instincts compelled me to go after the first legal animal I saw.  Fortunately I blew the stalk and shot a bigger one the next morning.  Unfortunately, I saw an even bigger one the day after that after I'd already punched my tag.

5.  I didn't practice my long range shooting.  There is a lot of open country in our unit and I wish I was better prepared for a 300 yard shot.  I hunt mostly on the west side in Washington and my comfort level is only about 150 yards.  Would have likely had a bigger deer if I was better prepared for long shots.

6.  We didn't do any fishing.  There are some great looking rivers down there and I wish we had time to do some fishing.

Offline huntnfmly

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2017, 04:24:57 PM »
Great write up.
Thanks for the tips.
I've been thinking about taking my daughters
I'm your dam tour guide arty...
Take as many dam pictures as you want ....
Are there any dam questions ..

Offline Ridgerunner

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2017, 08:09:55 PM »
Lots of good info in that post, you forgot to warn people not to do this unless they can handle the addiction.

Offline jamesfromseattle

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2017, 08:14:37 PM »
Lots of good info in that post, you forgot to warn people not to do this unless they can handle the addiction.

That's a good point.  The true cost of your first out of state hunt includes about a grand in tag fees every year for the rest of your life...possibly more depending on how many family members you have.

Offline follow maggie

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2017, 10:03:59 PM »
Great post. I'm trying antelope for the first time next year. Haven't decided Montana or Wyoming, maybe I'll enter both and let the draw decide.

Online Dan-o

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2017, 10:30:16 PM »
Great share.
Member:   Yakstrakgutp (or whatever we are)
I love the BFRO!!!
I wonder how many people will touch their nose to their screen trying to read this...

Online Seahawk12

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2017, 11:22:09 PM »
Solid.
Thanks for the advice.
"I make up my opinions from facts and reasoning, and not to suit any body but myself. If people don't like my opinions, it makes little difference as I don't solicit their opinions or votes."
William Tecumseh Sherman

Offline Stickerbush

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2017, 07:43:07 AM »
Good write up, I never thought of renting a truck like that but that's a good idea if you need a bigger one. We're you there in October?
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Offline Stickerbush

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2017, 07:58:17 AM »
Also what rental company did you use
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Offline jamesfromseattle

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2017, 08:02:31 AM »
Yeah, we were there mid October. Our truck was from Enterprise but found it on Kayak.com. There’re a bunch of companies that rent full sized trucks and SUVs—they just happened to be the most convenient

Offline huntingfool7

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2017, 08:12:11 AM »
Nice write up with good points down the list. 

Offline doubletall

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2017, 11:09:56 AM »
Thanks for the write up.  I'd like to plan something out of state for next year but haven't even narrowed it down to what state.  I thought about antelope in Wyoming but at 50 years old according to their regulations  I'd have to take hunters ed because I was born after 1966.  I'm thinking probably Montana for mule deer.

Offline DOUBLELUNG

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #12 on: November 21, 2017, 12:18:35 PM »
Thanks for the write up.  I'd like to plan something out of state for next year but haven't even narrowed it down to what state.  I thought about antelope in Wyoming but at 50 years old according to their regulations  I'd have to take hunters ed because I was born after 1966.  I'm thinking probably Montana for mule deer.
There is some great advice here: Read and understand the rules when you hunt out of state (or are new in state for that matter!). 

Just as an example, where a Washington hunter might get in trouble without thinking: In Wyoming, if born after 1966, you not only must have taken hunter safety, you are required to carry your hunter safety card while hunting.  Forest grouse ARE game birds in Wyoming, you need an upland bird license to hunt them legally.  Evidence of sex must remain naturally attached to an edible portion of the carcass - just having the detached head accompanying won't cut it.  Tagging in Wyoming requires three elements, not just notching the month and day, you must also detach the tag from the license and sign it. 

On the flip side, in Washington a Wyoming hunter could get in trouble having a loaded long gun in a motor vehicle, not wearing enough orange, not having the tag attached to the animal while in transport, despite being legal in Wyoming. 
As long as we have the habitat, we can argue forever about who gets to kill what and when.  No habitat = no game.

Offline Stickerbush

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #13 on: November 23, 2017, 09:23:48 AM »
Thanks for the write up.  I'd like to plan something out of state for next year but haven't even narrowed it down to what state.  I thought about antelope in Wyoming but at 50 years old according to their regulations  I'd have to take hunters ed because I was born after 1966.  I'm thinking probably Montana for mule deer.
There is some great advice here: Read and understand the rules when you hunt out of state (or are new in state for that matter!). 

Just as an example, where a Washington hunter might get in trouble without thinking: In Wyoming, if born after 1966, you not only must have taken hunter safety, you are required to carry your hunter safety card while hunting.  Forest grouse ARE game birds in Wyoming, you need an upland bird license to hunt them legally.  Evidence of sex must remain naturally attached to an edible portion of the carcass - just having the detached head accompanying won't cut it.  Tagging in Wyoming requires three elements, not just notching the month and day, you must also detach the tag from the license and sign it. 

On the flip side, in Washington a Wyoming hunter could get in trouble having a loaded long gun in a motor vehicle, not wearing enough orange, not having the tag attached to the animal while in transport, despite being legal in Wyoming.

Are you positive about the evidence of sex? I shot a doe and detached the head and utter flap. The gamie checked me and never said anything about it
Coastal Perspective.

Offline Machias

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Re: Some random advice on out of state hunting trips
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2017, 08:17:18 AM »
Awesome write up, thanks and glad you had a great trip!
Fred Moyer


History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.

 

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