Muzzleloader Elk Unit 34 vs. 52

thewoods

Member
Messages
25
Trying to decide on a 3rd choice for my wife for an elk hunt. Got the 1st and 2nd choice figured out. As far as 34 and 52 which would be easier terrain or more vehicle access. Don't care to road hunt yet do not want to pack in either. I know 34 has a youth hunt just prior to the 1st ML Hunt that may affect my decision. Anybody have experience in these units. We plan to stay in motels or if in 52 a cabin that we know of.Never been toNew Mexico, but hunted Arizona a few years back. I will just be along to help my wife hopefully get her 1st Elk if she is lucky in the draw. The other unit that I was loooking at for her 3rd pick is 17, but it looked fairly rugged on google earth and I know it is most likely a better unit. Just don't want to kill her in rugged mountainous terrain., Any help would be appreciated. Rob from MN
 

hunting1

Active Member
Messages
856
3rd choice I doubt you will draw either, but both units are awsome and have lots of elk. 34 has bigger bulls, but 52 is my favorite. Good luck and you would have a great hunt either way. 52 can be snowed in at that time of year. I have been run down to lower country in September.
 

thewoods

Member
Messages
25
The way I understood it was they looked at all 3 choices if your name came up before they moved on to the next applicant, so all 3 choices are looked at the same. I know most other states only look at your 1st choice then move on to the next applicant and a unit that has excess tags you could get on your 2nd choice. Hope I am not wrong, but thats how I understood it.
 

vmcfadden

Active Member
Messages
202
>3rd choice I doubt you will
>draw either, but both units
>are awsome and have lots
>of elk. 34 has bigger
>bulls, but 52 is my
>favorite. Good luck and you
>would have a great hunt
>either way. 52 can be
>snowed in at that time
>of year. I have been
>run down to lower country
>in September.

Agree. That said don't compare it with your Arizona hunt. Trust me It won't be close the same quality or quanity. The Arizona middle tier hunts are way better than the 16s or 15s in NM which are their best. Good luck though.
 

1FastGambler

Active Member
Messages
982
You are correct in how the NM draw works, but you need to consider that if your 1st and 2nd choices are already filled up, then your 3rd choice probably will be also. Lots of people put cow hunts down as 3rd choice thinking that they will settle for a cow tag if they don't draw their 1st & second choices. If you look at the draw odds many cow hunts aren't any easier to draw than the bull hunts.

Being a NR all you can apply for are bull hunts with the new rules, so some of the above doesn't apply to you, but the general method does apply to everyone.

In my opinion there are two ways to apply in NM.

First you must decide if you really want to hunt or if you are ok with not drawing a tag unless you draw one of the best hunts.

Once you make the above decision then you can apply intelligently.

What that means to me is that if you just want to hunt then you should put hunts with the best odds as your first choice, 2nd choice, and 3rd choice.

If you're willing to hold out for the best tags then apply all three choices with the best hunts that you want.

Study the draw odds reports and then make your decision. Both of those units can be good hunts. And yes, most of 17 is steep. It's really not a good choice for someone's first elk hunt.
 

cantgetdrawn

Active Member
Messages
162
If you like 34 then you might want to consider the other side of the rez in 36. It has some big bulls just like 34.

You are right about the draw. Find the past drawing odds and order your choices from the lowest odds to draw to the highest. The draw will assign you a number and rank you accordingly, when your number comes up if your first choice is full it will go to the second, then the third.

I think that would be 34, 36 and 52 in that order, but I am not familiar with the odds for 52.

The area the elk hang in 17 tends to be very rugged. A friend hunted 17 last year for archery and did not see many. Hopefully they will be back with the wetter conditions.
 

thewoods

Member
Messages
25
Thanks for the reply's. She wants a better unit/hunt so I will put her in for better units and if she draws she draws. I am not expecting anything close to my Arizona hunt. Took me eleven years to draw and shot a 346 bull with my bow. She just wants to shoot a halfway decent 280-300" Bull. I am leaning towards unit 34 as I have read other good reports.
 

hunting1

Active Member
Messages
856
"Agree. That said don't compare it with your Arizona hunt. Trust me It won't be close the same quality or quanity. The Arizona middle tier hunts are way better than the 16s or 15s in NM which are their best. Good luck though."

+1 AZ is awsome! I have 9-points, so getting close to going back again!
 

outdoorsdude

Active Member
Messages
352
In your post what jumped out to me was: "As far as 34 and 52 which would be easier terrain or more vehicle access. Don't care to road hunt yet do not want to pack in either."

52 is a limited road area and is "travel restricted" you can only be 100yds from an open road with a motor vehicle. So you may want to consider a 2 mile pack-out with a bull on your back a reality!

I have never hunted elk in 34, but just look at the difference in the amount of roads on the map.

Hope this helps-
 

ElkSniper

Very Active Member
Messages
1,133
LAST EDITED ON Mar-02-12 AT 10:10PM (MST)[p]I have never hunted 34 but have hunted 52 a lot over the years. I consider 52 as a meat unit. For my 52 elk hunt last year it snowed 6 inches in the low country and about 8-10 in the high country. Some of the roads get pretty bad when they are wet. Again like every other 52 hunt... lots of people.

Hope this helps.
 

nmbighorn

Active Member
Messages
764
LAST EDITED ON Mar-03-12 AT 05:45PM (MST)[p]If you are dead set on hunting with a muzz, and as a non-res, it sounds like you would look for units that have the most tags for non res to give you a better opportunity to draw a tag with the new regs., look into unit 15 as well, fair terrain and good bulls.
If I were non res with the new regs in place I would apply for the following hunt in this order for a muzz tag.
34
15
52

NMBIGHORN
 

thewoods

Member
Messages
25
thanks again, still researching our options and just like the idea of not getting sucked into the points game. Doing enough of that with other species in other states. Does anyone know of any ATV Rental places if we were to fly into Albuquerque. Still have to get lucky and draw the tag, but trying to plan ahead.
 

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