Forest Closures

Scrillznac

Active Member
Messages
274
Anyone ever experienced this before in Oregon? Walla Walla, Wenaha, and Mt Emily are pretty much shut down for the time being. Just wondering what the odds are of ODFW reinstating our points if we can't bow hunt National Forest.
 

muleylover

Active Member
Messages
170
It hasn't happened in Oregon since the early 90's. I would hope talks will be happening with ODFW about this scenario. I know in the past they have reinstated points for some hunts. When the Grizzly Fire burned up the Weneha unit in 15 tag holders were given the option to return there tags and get there points. I know one that was a max point holder that did, easy done. If you drew out of the 25% pool that makes it tough because you will probably never draw it again. Pray for Rain, its not going to get any better for the next couple of months.
 

Supertrucker

Member
Messages
37
I think after last years fires Oregon is taking a more proactive approach at try to curb accidental (and intentional) fires from starting.
 

Togwotee

Long Time Member
Messages
5,332
If there are major fires in in a major portion of the unit during the season most likely the tag can be surrendered and points reinstated. just because there are closures most likely won't get any action from ODFW.

Good tags and junk tags get the same consideration . don't expect anything unless it's something extreme.
 

desperatehills

Very Active Member
Messages
1,108
It hasn't happened in Oregon since the early 90's. I would hope talks will be happening with ODFW about this scenario. I know in the past they have reinstated points for some hunts. When the Grizzly Fire burned up the Weneha unit in 15 tag holders were given the option to return there tags and get there points. I know one that was a max point holder that did, easy done. If you drew out of the 25% pool that makes it tough because you will probably never draw it again. Pray for Rain, its not going to get any better for the next couple of months.
I know a guy that drew that year with no points. No brainer for him, he kept the tag and killed a nice 6 point
 

Scrillznac

Active Member
Messages
274
I drew Walla Walla Archery with 16pts. All wouldn't be lost if I couldn't hunt and got my points back. If that happens, I'm hopeful they would also give me a point for this year as well. I'm all for the Forest Closure with hopes that it lessens the risk of other fires starting. I totally get why they closed it from a resources standpoint. Hopefully they continue progress on the Bootleg and more resources become available by mid-August. It sounds like the Elbow Creek fire has a good fire line around most of it and winds out of the NW should help it from spreading west into more national forest. Fingers Crossed! Off to Warner in 11 days for my brothers archery antelope hunt. Going to be a busy fall! (Let's hope anyway).
 

muleylover

Active Member
Messages
170
When they gave folks the option in 15 to return there Weneha tags they were given a pp from what I was told. sounds like Elbow may have spotted across the Tucannon on the North side and doubtful they will catch it there. Fingers crossed. Good luck on the archery hunt!
 

ricochet

Active Member
Messages
145
Just got an email from the ODFW giving me the option of opting out of my antelope tag. If I accept I will get my points reinstated and another point for this year. I assume that will be the MO for any other hunts that are severely impacted by fire closures or drought in general.
 

Togwotee

Long Time Member
Messages
5,332
We didn't get enough rain to be a game changer. but enough to help get a handle on things a little. more lightning forecast all week though so look out.

What unit is your goat tag in ? there are a lot of units I'd want my points back on this year. record hot and dry has changed things up a lot some places.
 

ricochet

Active Member
Messages
145
I have an East Beatty muzzleloader tag. I have a friend who drew West Beatty rifle and he hasn't been given the option to turn his tag back, at least not yet. The bio I talked to said it's drier than he's ever seen it in the Guano Valley and the antelope have mostly moved to greener pastures. So I'm not sure if it's just the East Beatty unit, or if others to the east are included.
 

Togwotee

Long Time Member
Messages
5,332
There aren't many pastures in that country greener than the Guano drainage. but they can move a long ways for sure.

This has been a record hot and dry summer for sure. I think if anyone says they know how it's going to effect the fall seasons it proves they don't know. if it was me I'd probably get my points back if I had the chance but that has as much to do with not wanting to hunt in the weather they're forecasting for the next couple months as it does the hunting itself.
 

ricochet

Active Member
Messages
145
The offer to opt out came right after the bios flew the unit, so it must have been dismal. I wasn't exactly thrilled to be hunting three days after the rifle season ended anyway but the muzzleloader tag was just about the only option unless I wanted to wait until I'm 80. I haven't decided yet but leaning heavily toward getting my points back.
Oh well, it gives me more time to e-scout the Pole Creek bull hunt.
 

Togwotee

Long Time Member
Messages
5,332
I was on some private in the Heppner unit last weekend and as you'd expect it's oh my god dry. the Umatilla NF is closed off to the public so you can't get in at the moment. my wife has one of the late deer tags up there this November.

As far as your elk tag goes there's not much doubt you want to be on the north side of the 21 road on the road closure area. more water more cover and more elk always. I was in there late in regular deer season last year and I could have killed 15 bulls with a muzzle loader. nothing over 200 but I wasn't following the bugles either.
 

Scrillznac

Active Member
Messages
274
Walla Walla and wenaha opened yesterday the 13th with exception to close proximity to the Elbow Creek Fire. All Umatilla N.F. lands in Oregon are now open. Thank god. Now for 2 weeks of planning before my 17 year awaited tag starts lol.
 
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