Utah LE Archery. Is it worth it anymore?

elkocd

Active Member
Messages
247
With the early dates now do you guys that have hunted the archery hunts think they are worth it anymore? I only archery hunt elk and have called in many bulls in early Sept. but for one of these very rare tags I'm just wondering if I want to be limited to only early Sept. Not really into sitting on a tank somewhere. The fun is chasing hot bulls. What do you guys think?
 

cantclosethedeal

Active Member
Messages
217
I would have rather hunted during the rut with my tag this year, but the bulls are pretty vunerable and much more predictable while still in their bachelor groups.
If it is a quality unit, you will find success. IMHO
 
F

frkybugleboy

Guest
No way!...It's not worth the frustration elko. Better just put in for the anyweapon hunt. All archery hunters should apply for the anyweapon. Double the number of tags for the anyweapon and let the hunt run an extra week. The success rates need a little help on that hunt. lol..sorry I just needed to get that out of my system.
 

Silentstalker

Very Active Member
Messages
2,883
I am also a die hard bowhunter. I would advise you as I have many of my friends. If you are capable of hunting very hard with 14 days in the field or more, I would expect you to do just fine. If you are limited to long weekends etc, and are not in great shape, I would suggest going with a muzzy tag or a any weapon tag.

You can still hunt with your bow on the any weapon tag if you choose too. Honestly the last 3 years I have been on all 3 of the season hunts and I would not say the rut has been great on any of them. The elk are more vocal and move more during shooting hours on the muzzle and any weapon hunts.

The archery hunt is very hot and very quiet. If waterholes and spot and stalk are not your thing, I would look at the gun hunts. If you are willing to adapt to the weather and heat, there are some great trophy's to be killed on the bow hunt. Especially that last week.

Keep in mind, the majority of Bow hunters do NOT kill a bull on the LE hunt, vs. the majority of muzzy and rifle hunters do. Good luck on whatever you choose. It will be an awesome hunt!

Chad
 
D

DR_DEATH

Guest
Apply for the any weapon hunt and carry your bow and have your buddy carry your rifle. Not sure if it's legal but an idea. That way you have an option and are hunting in the rut.
 

blazingsaddle

Active Member
Messages
566
Its worth it to me. It is not worth the wait of an extra 8+ years for an any weapon hunt.
I know the dates/odds going into it.
Although I do not think its sound managment.
 

snakeoil

Active Member
Messages
136
I scouted hard and hunted even harder and ended up eating tag soup! Not to say I didn't have the chance at some great bulls, but on my LE hunt I had 2 days of them talking and that is it. I guess you just have to look at what would be best for you, 50/50 chance with a bow or much greater odds and getting to hunt the rut. I would have kept my points. Chad
 

bowhunt

Long Time Member
Messages
3,422
If you are set on killing an elk, then it is probably not worth it. You have at least a 70% chance of not harvesting.

If you are content to hunt, then yeah go for it.

It is not a bugle fest, although I was into bugling bulls for 3 days when I hunted.

Plan to sit water, hunt wallows, spot and stalk.

I have heard changes may be coming on the dates, if they do, I would sure like to be the first guy to hunt with a bow.

The stars can line up, and you could be like Silentstalker, lowcountryelk, or like this:




IMG_21722.jpg
 
M

mathewsman

Guest
What silentstalker and bowhunt said are RIGHT on. Based on what you said about not wanting to sit in ambush and chasing "hot" bulls, then the archery hunt most likely is not the hunt for you. But here's the "flip side". Are you ok with very real possibility/PROBABILITY that it will be a LONG time before you even have the opportunity to hunt with a gun (or even your bow with that any weapon tag). If you're a VERY patient person, then I say go for that any weapon tag. If you want to at least have the chance (in the next lifetime) to hunt, knowing full well going in that you're up against some longer odds of killing a bull, then go for the bow hunt! All boils down to how you measure success; a great hunt ending with a kill, or a great hunt (very possibly) ending with tag soup. 3 years ago I helped myself to a great big bowl of tag soup (san juan archery elk). The soup tasted horrible, but that still goes down as some of the funnest 10 days of my life!
 
Z

zbow

Guest
>What silentstalker and bowhunt said are
>RIGHT on. Based on what
>you said about not wanting
>to sit in ambush and
>chasing "hot" bulls, then the
>archery hunt most likely is
>not the hunt for you.
>But here's the "flip side".
>Are you ok with very
>real possibility/PROBABILITY that it will
>be a LONG time before
>you even have the opportunity
>to hunt with a gun
>(or even your bow with
>that any weapon tag). If
>you're a VERY patient person,
>then I say go for
>that any weapon tag. If
>you want to at least
>have the chance (in the
>next lifetime) to hunt, knowing
>full well going in that
>you're up against some longer
>odds of killing a bull,
>then go for the bow
>hunt! All boils down to
>how you measure success; a
>great hunt ending with a
>kill, or a great hunt
>(very possibly) ending with tag
>soup. 3 years ago I
>helped myself to a great
>big bowl of tag soup
>(san juan archery elk). The
>soup tasted horrible, but that
>still goes down as some
>of the funnest 10 days
>of my life!
 

Silentstalker

Very Active Member
Messages
2,883
Bowhunt and Lowcountryelk,

Your bulls are absolute studs!! Those are bulls that dreams are made of! The bowhunt for me is absolutely worth it. I am okay eating tag soup if necessary. The experience is what it is all about! Congrats.
 
Z

zbow

Guest
Sorry, just figuring this site out. I have hunted elk in Idaho my whole life and have had some great elk hunting, but I had a LE archery permit in Utah this season and it was the best elk hunting I have ever experienced. YES ITS WORTH IT! I hunted from August 22nd to Sept 8th and heard bugling almost every day. As soon as we got off the road a ways there where bulls responding to the calls. Early off some came in silent, but the last 10 days the bulls where screaming. I passed on bugling bulls on a daily basis and missed a couple good bulls before taking mine. He wasnt as big as the ones I missed, but nice none the less. I would take the hunt again with the existing dates any day. Sure later dates would be nice, but if you are willing to hunt hard you will have the hunt of your lifetime.

4ad0021d4ec63f0c.jpg
 

elkocd

Active Member
Messages
247
Thanks for the info guys. I'm a go anywhere as long at it takes elk hunter and I keep myself very fit. So those are not my concerns. But I do also like to be successful so it would drive me crazy to have to quit hunting right when the bulls are getting hot if I had not tagged out. I'll probably continue with the archery draw and put my dad into the any weapon.
 
B

brianguy

Guest
>Great bull Zbow! Congrats on
>a successful hunt!

+1

congrats

[a href="http://www.mybinocularharness.com/"]binocular harness system[/a]
 

snakeoil

Active Member
Messages
136
Zbow, what unit did you hunt? That is awsome you had them talking 7 days after the opener! That is a great bull! I hunted on the Boulder, and can say it isn't the best unit to spot and stalk, I never saw another hunter while hunting so I would say I was off the road a bit."Not really into sitting on a tank somewhere. The fun is chasing hot bulls. What do you guys think?" Everyone I spoke to that had a Boulder archery tag like mine, for the most part sat water most of the hunt. Good luck in however you decide to use your points. I did have the time of my life being able to hunt great bulls!
 
Z

zbow

Guest
Snakeoil,
I hunted the Fishlake unit. Not really that good for spot and stalk either. I just went out and got after it like I do elk hunting anywhere. Everyone told me elk are to call shy to call in in Utah. I just went out found elk sign and called. Even when they werent bugling they were coming in. Early on you had to get in on them and call to fire them up. From the 28th of August on they would be bugling in the mornings and we would just go after them. The funny thing after having 20 different bulls in bow range I sat on a wallow I found and that is where I ended up killing my bull. It wasnt boring though there were 10 or more different bulls bugling all around and 5 in sight when I killed mine.
 

AWHOLELOTTABULL

Long Time Member
Messages
4,394
Tag soup in '06. Hunted 19 straight days (can't do that with a rifle) and passed several bulls looking for the one that tickled my pickle. Found him, chased him and he won! ABSOLUTELY worth the money and the time spent. I would do it again in a second.

It's always an adventure!!!
www.awholelottabull.com
 

theox

Very Active Member
Messages
2,303
LAST EDITED ON Oct-12-09 AT 01:54PM (MST)[p]as long as the spike hunt is the same time i would never ever ever ever put in for a archery le elk tag in utah again. most frustrating hunt ive ever had.would have rather hunted the open bull unit for 45 dollars instead of 280 on panguitch honestly!i can honestly say i hunted and hiked as ahrd as i possibly could have, ive had unsuccessful hunts before but this was by far the most dissapointing.

?It takes a genius to whine appealingly.?
Mr.Whiny
 

bowhunt

Long Time Member
Messages
3,422
Silent,

You hunted a unit that had TONS and TONS of spike hunters, they were not spread out over the whole state.
Tell us about your experience.
 
Z

zbow

Guest
There were a ton of spike hunters where I hunted as well, but they werent really an issue. I only ran into one other hunter when I was actually out hunting. When I first got there I saw the people on the road everywhere and was pretty bummed that I would be constantly running into people. Just wasnt the case, sucks that they ruined your hunt theox, that would suck when you are so excited about a tag only to run into people behind every tree.
 

theox

Very Active Member
Messages
2,303
LAST EDITED ON Oct-12-09 AT 02:57PM (MST)[p]LAST EDITED ON Oct-12-09 AT 02:53?PM (MST)

>Silent,
>
>You hunted a unit that had
>TONS and TONS of spike
>hunters, they were not spread
>out over the whole state.
>
>Tell us about your experience.

i know this was intentded for silent bu here is
my 2 cents....well all the bulls i had watched pre hunt on the south end of the unit were pushed around by guys in an attempt to get them pushed on the open side for there buddies. by the last 2-2.5 weeks of the hunt i found no fresh elk sign closer than a mile and a half to any roads so i had to hike in at least 1.5 miles before i could even start hunting and have a chance at seein a mature bull let alone an elk period! ran into spike hunters every where i went blowing bugles and cow callin.there were guys chasing the herd bull's and their harems around trying to get shots on his cows.
the spike/cow hunters were so dedicated it was insane if i had any idea they were gonna get so into it and be soooo many i would have turned my tag back instantly! it was insane! i figured guys that normally hunt deer up there would buy a tag and hunt deer and shoot a spike if they ran into one. not go all out for spikes. there was not very many spots i went and did not see several sets of fresh foot prints and when i did it was usaully while crossing the millions of lava flows i crossed. sometimes id get lucky and hear a bull bugle once or twice and drop off in the direction it came from and try and find him but was usaully a long way a way and they just were not bugling enough to chase bugles.and in fact they completley quit bugling the last 2 days of my hunt the country they were in was to thick to even attempt glassing.
ive hunted with a buddy on that same archery hunt 3 years ago and it was way way way way more fun than my own!
i have hunted deer up there the last five and i can tell you i never seen the elk so hard to find. you can usaully at the least see little bulls or cows near roads. not this year! this felt no different than the archery any bull hunts i have hunted in fact they were a lot funner and had less pressure!
now lucky me gets to wait 5 years before i can even start puttin in for elk again i honestly feel pretty cheated dont feel like i got the limited entry hunt. out of 11 tags i knew of only 1 was filled and i believe it was on private land.
i even teamed up with another guy that had a tag in hopes one of us would get lucky if we worked together but we both ate tag soup!i kept in contact with a couple others with tags they had the same problems i was having.i cant speak for any of the other units but panguitch lake is not worth it if the spike hunts continue!


?It takes a genius to whine appealingly.?
Mr.Whiny
 
L

lucaar

Guest
I saw everal spike hunters in the Book Cliffs roadles also if you can believe that. What really suprised me was how many people were in there scouting for the rifle hunt. It was unbelieveable how many people were in there that didn't have archery tags that were scouting! We ended up with 1 for 3. Tough damn hunt with the high temps and all the people in there this year.
 

theox

Very Active Member
Messages
2,303
>I saw everal spike hunters in
>the Book Cliffs roadles also
>if you can believe that.
> What really suprised me
>was how many people were
>in there scouting for the
>rifle hunt. It was
>unbelieveable how many people were
>in there that didn't have
>archery tags that were scouting!
>We ended up with 1
>for 3. Tough damn
>hunt with the high temps
>and all the people in
>there this year.

i believe it thos spike hunters were desperate and dedicated!! ive packed elk out miles from roads and a spike would not be worth the trouble!

?It takes a genius to whine appealingly.?
Mr.Whiny
 

BattleBorn

Active Member
Messages
185
Theox

I also held an LE archery tag for Panguitch this year and agree the spike / cow hunt this year just put way to many people in the mountains. I have put alot of time in over the years in this area and hunted hard but came away empty. I just feel that when they added the spike hunt to the already crowded archery deer hunt it was just to much. Maybe my expectations were a little higher than they should have been, but I expected a little bit better quality of hunt. I will say though, this did not prevent me from enjoying the experience of a hard hunt. I could have filled my tag with a lesser bull and had a few opportunities to close the gap on 325-350 type bulls. Was I dissapointed I didn't fill my tag with a quality bull? Yes I was. Would I like to see this situation stopped in the future? Yes I would. Would I put in for this tag again, knowing the circumstances would be the same? Probably, because it's close to home and I just love to hunt.
 

Silentstalker

Very Active Member
Messages
2,883
LAST EDITED ON Oct-12-09 AT 04:10PM (MST)[p]Well,

I am sorry to hear of your guy's experience. I had much the same experience on my 1st LE archery hunt. I drew and hunted the Manti 5 years ago. My Dad and I both drew the same year and it was one of the funnest hunts I have ever been on. I was into elk almost every time out. Nearly got shots at some giant bulls. I missed 1 great bull.

Numerous times I had herds blow out in front of me only to find another hunter whom I would visit with for a minute and find out they were deer or spike hunting. I knew going into my hunt that there would be spike hunters. I knew the rut would be later. I knew it would be tough. I accepted those challenges and it cost my Dad a bull.

I applied for that hunt for 2 reasons:

#1- I hunted the area almost my entire life and really wanted to kill a bull on that mountain. I knew those bulls and wanted one of them.

#2- I applied for that hunt because I am a die hard Bowhunter and wanted to do it with my bow.

I ended up killing a respectable bull that season as the hunt drew to an end. My Dad did not. We experience a very tough hunt.

Fast forward 2-3 years and I draw another LE archery tag at the Expo. This was also on a very heavily hunted spike unit.

I changed tactics big time. No longer did I try to recreate a Primos video. I hunkered down and hunted mostly over water. Certainly not a traditional elk hunt, but proved very successful for me. I still encountered heavy pressure, Had many herds run off by other hunters, and did not kill my bull till the 14th full day of hunting.

I cherish both hunts and have many great memories. That being said, If I could draw the hunt up to fit my desires, we would not hunt with spike hunts going on. We would have a dedicated time to hunt.

Bottom line, the bowhunt is a very cool time to spend in the mountains chasing giant bulls. The opportunity to kill one is there for anyone willing to risk their points and hunt brutally hard. There will be heavy opposition such as weather and other hunters, but for me it is very worth it. I can reapply for elk this year for the 1st time. You can bet that regardless of season dates or spike hunts, I will be applying for the archery hunt and will give it everything I have got till I punch my tag. No hard feelings if I don't.

One thing I will say is elk are tough creatures to kill. I hunted with my brother this year on an any weapon hunt in a canyon that other hunters said had no elk in it. We killed his bull 3 miles from the road in that same canyon. Regardless of weapon type, be prepared for a physically demanding hunt and expect nothing. Put yourself in a place to be successful and it will happen.

Here are my two bulls. Good luck in your decision. The bowhunt is a great hunt, but certainly no guarantee.

4ad3a92274f5be4f.jpg


4ad3a6db61ee6264.jpg
 

UT1031

Active Member
Messages
223
I have not drawn an LE tag and did not hunt this year to a messed up shoulder, so instead of staying home, I helped several other hunters, one in particular had a Wasatch LE Archery tag. I took off several days from work to see if we could fill his tag. I called in several bulls, several missed opportunities and one 'clean' miss. WE ended up eating soup, but I would do it again in a second! There is NOTHING that matches the excitement a screaming bull!!!!! Even if I never have the opportunity myself, I WILL help anyone anytime!!!!
Kelly
 

elkocd

Active Member
Messages
247
LAST EDITED ON Oct-14-09 AT 10:03AM (MST)[p]Ok, so there are a number of archery hunts with pretty low success rates. Do you guys think a lot of this has to do with the effort or lack of by some of the hunters? What I mean is this: Where I hunt elk I would expect to have to hike 2-5 miles or bike 5-8 miles back to get into good hunting. It's not always the case, but I expect to have to do it. The biggest bulls are almost always in the most inaccessible places. It's OTC hunting so we expect it, but for these LE hunts do you think many guys think it should be easier than that and are not willing to go "as far as it takes" to get it done? Not bagging on anyone, just wondering if that may be part of the equation.

What I always tell my elk hunting partners when we are about to dive in ?It ain?t easy?
 

Silentstalker

Very Active Member
Messages
2,883
Very funny Dale!!

Elkocd,

Yes, effort absolutely plays a part in unsuccessful hunts. That effort is greatly influenced by weather, elk activity etc. The Bow hunt is a low success hunt, that makes it easier to draw.

I know some of the best bow hunters in the state who have ate tag soup. Most if not all of them could have killed a bull but stuck with it till the end for a great bull.

On both my hunts I hunted harder than I ever have and still felt fortunate to get my bulls.

I will end with this, the bow hunt is very doable. Success is not impossible by any means. Just be prepared for a lot of time in the field chasing great bulls! Nothing wrong with that!! I can't think of many things I would rather do than chase elk!
 

OpeningDay

Active Member
Messages
496
Lucaar,
You saw spike hunters on the (roadless) side of the books?? those gusy must be determined. I will agree with you that it was a very tough hunt for the archery guys this year. There was a ton of people in there for the rifle hunt, I will give you that. I was in there on Tuesday before the hunt scouting and getting ready for a friends hunt. We counted 77 trucks at the Trailhead on Saturday. When we got there on Tuesday, there were only maybe 10 including ours. I think the weather played a much bigger part in the low success with archery this year, than the people did. The last couple days of the archery it was hot and the elk were silent. Help me out here JACO, was it the weather or the people?? My hat is off to you archery guys though, it takes a lot of determination to connect with a real trophy, even on LE units.
 

JACO

Active Member
Messages
440
> Help me out here JACO, was it the weather or the people??

I would have to say for me personally, it was definitely the weather. Temps got into the 90s almost every day of my hunt, and it was tough to find elk. The first four days we were hunting we didn't even see a single elk. Then one night it cooled off a bit, we woke to overcast skies and there were elk everywhere! We probably saw 200 elk that day alone, including several "shooter" bulls. The next day it warmed back up, and most of the elk disappeared. We only saw one other archery hunter the whole time we were there, but we saw a lot of guys scouting for the rifle hunt. We were hunting a different area than Lucaar, but we thought about going to that same area. I'm glad I listened to OpeningDay and went where we did, it paid off for me.

In case you all missed it, here's my bull:

4ab8d3cb2aaca234.jpg


Nocked N Loaded
 

JACO

Active Member
Messages
440
By the way, this was by far the toughest hunt I've ever been on. We put dozens of miles on our boots, it was very discouraging going days at a time without seeing elk. The season dates kind of screwed the hunt IMO. I had come to grips with eating tag soup, then finally filled my tag on the last day of season.

To answer the question "Is it worth it anymore?", to me it is, but it's a huge risk of eating tag soup. Very low success rates for good reason. I feel very lucky to have found my bull at all. If you want a "guaranteed" chance at a mature bull, I would NOT suggest the Utah LE archery hunt. I would do any weapon. That is my honest opinion.

Nocked N Loaded
 

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