Scouting Plateau, Thousand Lakes

iluvrax

Active Member
Hello everyone,
My 13 year old son drew a dedicated hunter tag for Plateau, Thousand Lakes starting this year. We are headed out on Tuesday for a 4-5 day trip. Plan on backpacking/camping around on the Plateau for a couple days, then cruising around on the sidexside for a day or so.
Never been in the unit before, but I’ve done some escouting, and have somewhat of a plan. It doesn’t look like there’s much roadless areas other than the Plateau itself? It’s looking like with our schedules, we’ll only be able to hit the rifle hunt this year. If it works out, I’ll jump in next year as I should have enough points to draw the DH tag, as long as the allocation isn’t full?
Anyway...
If anyone has some insight, it would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks!
 

iluvrax

Active Member
Why would you get a DH tag for a youth when they can hunt all of the seasons with a rifle tag anyway?
Because we wanted to try this unit, and I wanted him to have a tag...
Look at the numbers!
That’s why?
And I believe you have to give a unit at least three years to find its potential, if any.
 

SureShot

Active Member
I'm not trying to be rude. I truly don't understand the logic. He could still hunt every year for three years and shoot a deer every year with the youth tag. Or, is it not possible for a youth to draw every year?
 

BIGJOHNT

Long Time Member
I'm not trying to be rude. I truly don't understand the logic. He could still hunt every year for three years and shoot a deer every year with the youth tag. Or, is it not possible for a youth to draw every year?
No my youth daughter didn’t even draw a tag the first year she put in. If the remember correctly she only drew twice for deer as a youth. Luckily for her good old dad had a lifetime tag and could mentor her. So this young man is guaranteed a deer for the next three years. Hopefully he is close enough to the unit to hunt all three seasons.
 

iluvrax

Active Member
I'm not trying to be rude. I truly don't understand the logic. He could still hunt every year for three years and shoot a deer every year with the youth tag. Or, is it not possible for a youth to draw every year?
I know “feelings” can’t really be portrayed on the internet, but your reply seemed to be a little condescending?
Anyway...
It is not possible for a youth to draw this unit, or several other units every year. I’m going off the last few year draw odds...
We want to hunt “this” unit, there’s the logic!
Sure, there’s other units that are “possible” to draw every year, but we are just looking to try something different?
 

iluvrax

Active Member
No my youth daughter didn’t even draw a tag the first year she put in. If the remember correctly she only drew twice for deer as a youth. Luckily for her good old dad had a lifetime tag and could mentor her. So this young man is guaranteed a deer for the next three years. Hopefully he is close enough to the unit to hunt all three seasons.
Thank you!
Close enough...
And since he can only harvest 2 deer in the three years, this might just be a getting to know the unit year, but having the tag in his pocket is a plus!
The mentor thing is great! We both drew cow elk tags this year. He drew Deseret, and I drew Skull Crack. He wasn’t guaranteed, I was. If he didn’t draw I was going to mentor my tag, and he’d draw next year. Now he drew, I’ll turn my tag back in as we don’t need two elk this year, I’ll draw next year and mentor my tag. It’s a great way to get the bug in our youth...
Love it!!!
 

elktaker

Active Member
I would probably ditch the backpacking idea. Most of the unit can be hunted/scout easily as day trips unless you want that experience.
 

iluvrax

Active Member
I would probably ditch the backpacking idea. Most of the unit can be hunted/scout easily as day trips unless you want that experience.
Thanks, but yes, it’s the experience for my son. I figured most of the places I want to glass from are only a couple miles at most from a trailhead. And he would want me to bring the trailer, with TV, and probably his xbox, etc...
I need to get that kid away for a few days!
But thanks again for the heads up!!
 

pounder

Member
Try looking around the foothills above the fields from lyman to bicknell. Just make sure you have a good map to locate public private and you will see mature bucks. Good Luck and unplug the kid is a great Idea.
 

iluvrax

Active Member
Try looking around the foothills above the fields from lyman to bicknell. Just make sure you have a good map to locate public private and you will see mature bucks. Good Luck and unplug the kid is a great Idea.
Thank you, that’s the best I’ve got yet!
Looking forward to being outside!
 

1911

Long Time Member
Tune out the white noise. For a general unit it is as good as any and better than quite a few. I've never gone on top of the table but from everything I have heard and seen there isn't much going on up there. You'll find a handful of decent bucks, a lot of smaller bucks, and it's not nearly as crowded as many general units. You can find animals anywhere in there but the trend seems to be they like the edges of the unit. It's a beautiful area and you'll enjoy your time spent there.
 

iluvrax

Active Member
Tune out the white noise. For a general unit it is as good as any and better than quite a few. I've never gone on top of the table but from everything I have heard and seen there isn't much going on up there. You'll find a handful of decent bucks, a lot of smaller bucks, and it's not nearly as crowded as many general units. You can find animals anywhere in there but the trend seems to be they like the edges of the unit. It's a beautiful area and you'll enjoy your time spent there.
I’m all about staying positive!
I’m sure a PM is coming soon...
 

iluvrax

Active Member
So, we had a great time on the unit! Wish I had more time...
Deer densities are low for sure (at least where we found them). Mature deer yes, (but on private, at least where we found them).
Definitely need more time, but like I said, it would be a three year commitment...
Hunting some alfalfa fields, probably wouldn’t hurt;)
Amazing country! Love to be be there with a tag or not?
Anyway...
Thanks again to anyone that pipe in, always could use advice!!!
64B00151-31A8-4732-9DF4-43227FDB68E3.jpeg
 

Freedom

New Member
Keep in mind that the deer patterns will be completely different during the rifle hunt. In some ways the rifle hunt can be more challenging and difficult because you just don't know what your going to get with their pattern/habits. I can tell you that this year doesn't look great for deer on TL. Its been a little sketchy ever since 2011 when they changed this unit to a general draw. The premium deer are on the decline but there are still a number of smaller bucks. The weather in October will also be a factor. If the weather isn't bad you could consider hunting on the backside of Gyser or on Hens Peaks and concentrate on the groupings of aspen....good luck!
 

iluvrax

Active Member
Keep in mind that the deer patterns will be completely different during the rifle hunt. In some ways the rifle hunt can be more challenging and difficult because you just don't know what your going to get with their pattern/habits. I can tell you that this year doesn't look great for deer on TL. Its been a little sketchy ever since 2011 when they changed this unit to a general draw. The premium deer are on the decline but there are still a number of smaller bucks. The weather in October will also be a factor. If the weather isn't bad you could consider hunting on the backside of Gyser or on Hens Peaks and concentrate on the groupings of aspen....good luck!
Thank you!
I figured nothing stays the same for long, especially when weather plays a part in it. And I’m sure after the pressure of the archery, and then the muzzleloader, it can be tough! But that goes for anywhere?
And I figured the units been getting tougher and tougher to find mature bucks, but I’m looking forward for my son and I to give it a shot!
Interesting the areas you pointed out if the weather turns? We looked that over pretty good a couple weeks ago, and we seen little to no deer. I guess that’s what your talking about...
Well, thanks again!
And good luck on any hunts you have this year.
 

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