Wyoming Region G poor deer hunting this year

RoadlessHunter

Active Member
Messages
467
We have hunted long and hard in Region G this year. We have hit most of the areas that we have hunted in recent years and never seen it so bad. Hikes of up to 15 miles some days have produced nothing but small bucks, and not many of them. Between me, my wife, two sons and dad, we have seen only one shooter on a trail cam and not a single shooter while hunting. We have seen a lot of elk though, including some pretty nice bulls. With the small numbers of deer, it doesn't look promising for the next couple of years either.
 

Homer

Long Time Member
Messages
8,635
I certainly don't want to start a huge argument over this...but....it always seems as elk numbers go up...deer numbers go down. They don't act like they hate each other and I'm pretty sure elk don't eat deer...interesting though
 

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
It’s a little early in the year to start the “region G” talks. This is normally a December topic.

bad winter kill and unknown harvest is going to keep G and H down for a few years. I would like to see WY so mandatory online harvest reports for all license holders. Alaska does it and it’s quick and easy. It’s just a guess in Wyoming at this point...
 

DesertRanch

Active Member
Messages
332
For some great insight on why elk can be a factor in declining deer numbers look up an article that was published in Muley Crazy a few years ago. I believe the guy in Dr. Charles Kay. Not sure about the first name. Anyway his point is when deer used to dip on their typical cycle cougars and predators would also dip, just like coyotes and rabbits. With elk as another source of groceries, the predator numbers aren’t dipping and deer aren’t rebounding like historical data says they should. I’ll look for a link. It’s a good read
 

PLK

Active Member
Messages
249
It seems pretty obvious that Regions G and H can’t thrive with the continued unlimited resident hunting pressure, continued improvements in equipment available to both residents and non-residents coupled with above average winter kill.

The remedy will cause some serious heartbreak to those that are accustomed to hunting these Regions ever year on a general license.
 

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
It seems pretty obvious that Regions G and H can’t thrive with the continued unlimited resident hunting pressure, continued improvements in equipment available to both residents and non-residents coupled with above average winter kill.

The remedy will cause some serious heartbreak to those that are accustomed to hunting these Regions ever year on a general license.
This is based off of what? Whiney ass non residents have been saying this for 25 years.

They can adjust the season dates. For starters let’s have the non resident season start a week later and end on the same day as resident season.

all it takes is a couple decent winters and all will be good again. Deer numbers go up and down. What doesn’t is people whining about deer numbers.
 

BearCub

Member
Messages
22
We have hunted long and hard in Region G this year. We have hit most of the areas that we have hunted in recent years and never seen it so bad. Hikes of up to 15 miles some days have produced nothing but small bucks, and not many of them. Between me, my wife, two sons and dad, we have seen only one shooter on a trail cam and not a single shooter while hunting. We have seen a lot of elk though, including some pretty nice bulls. With the small numbers of deer, it doesn't look promising for the next couple of years either.
How big is a shooter in your book?
 

Chesterwyo

Active Member
Messages
882
The problem is people‘s unrelenting thirst for likes, mentions, and comments. There’s damn few people left hunting big bucks anymore for the sole purpose of just wanting to be there for the pure pursuit of it. They’re doing it for the “crew” the “public land” and “muley Monday“ Every 24” buck that feeds out a little too long in the morning or stands up to get out of the sun, gets the turret spun on it and gets deflated. Just so some flat brimmer can get that shot of dopamine from being worshipped by the unwashed masses. There’s a multitude of other problems as well. But people needing to let the world know they’re out there “hammering” is the biggest problem. IMHO.
 

RoadlessHunter

Active Member
Messages
467
How big is a shooter in your book?
Big wide and massive or what we call a rocker when their head sways uncontrollably as they run. My biggest concern would be the lack of 3 plus year old bucks left after the hunt. We did our part and went 0 for 4 this year, but seriously people wacking yearlings in Region G. I say let them grow.
 

Founder

Founder Since 1999
Messages
10,059
Enjoy what you’ve got as long as you can. It’s not likely to last as it is. Hunters keep getting better at killing and something has got to give. If we’re going to make use of all the technology, then tags will either need to be reduced or quality will suffer.
Gary Fralick and I were talking the other day about the deer up there. Since the winter kill a few years ago, neither of us have seen herd numbers rebounding. If you think it’s going to get better in a few years, you’re nuts.
In region G you’ve got a 3 week season!!!! It gets harder every year for big bucks to slip through the cracks for that long.
Enjoy it as long as you can, I know I will be.
 

Bowhunter13

Active Member
Messages
254
IMO I wish they would split G up into multiple units. I think that would be a start and help the deer out. Also having a full moon on opener didn't do any favors as we hunted a buck I knew about and didn't see him or any of his buddies until the 6th day when the moon started to cooperate a little. I do think if your willing to put in the time you'll find a big buck. Big for me is 180+ I know some people on here don't consider that big though. I shot my buck on Sept 18th and I started scouting for the 2021 season on Sept 19th.... Guess that's the perks of living here and buying the tag over the counter though I can put in anytime I have off into looking for deer.
 
Last edited:

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
I honestly think the WYGFD has been lazy in the management of region G and H. For so long the remoteness of the country made management easy. Few were willing to go way back to hunt for various reasons. It wasn’t popular to backpack hunt back then, the hunting was great close to the road, snow always came early etc etc.

We all know it’s getting more crowded back there. The storms are fewer and don’t last. Warms back up pretty quickly. Throw in some winters, technology etc and now region G and H cannot self manage themselves. Now I’m no @mightyhunter and will not sit here and blame WYGFD. They have cut season dates and made a few other changes. But I feel like they could do more but some of the easiest attainable data is not being collected.

I will keep saying mandatory reporting for all hunters in WY is a good thing. Whether you are successful or not. Days hunted, method to access hunting grounds, successful or not, size of buck could all be great data that could be use to quickly adjust years of big winter kill etc.

Some things I laugh at is the study put on regarding the deer migrating from the hoback all the way to north of superior WY. Everyone made this out to be groundbreaking news. Any shed hunter in that part of WY could tell you that information for free. Hell the sell out Eastmans mentioned it in videos in the early 90s. Why it was great info I would like to know the following for western Wyoming:

how many hunters chased deer in region G/H?

how many were successful?

how many were 4 pt bucks with spreads of 24”?

what’s the average amount of days does a hunter hunt in G?

the fact they can’t answer this is fricking sad.

Now you may say it would cost too much or take too much time. Well there are states already doing this. Alaska you have to do it for every tag. And on some tags if you don’t report in time you can’t put in for tags the next year. Now whether they chose to act on the data is another thing.
 

Hunt_the_West

Active Member
Messages
321
I honestly think the WYGFD has been lazy in the management of region G and H. For so long the remoteness of the country made management easy. Few were willing to go way back to hunt for various reasons. It wasn’t popular to backpack hunt back then, the hunting was great close to the road, snow always came early etc etc.

We all know it’s getting more crowded back there. The storms are fewer and don’t last. Warms back up pretty quickly. Throw in some winters, technology etc and now region G and H cannot self manage themselves. Now I’m no @mightyhunter and will not sit here and blame WYGFD. They have cut season dates and made a few other changes. But I feel like they could do more but some of the easiest attainable data is not being collected.

I will keep saying mandatory reporting for all hunters in WY is a good thing. Whether you are successful or not. Days hunted, method to access hunting grounds, successful or not, size of buck could all be great data that could be use to quickly adjust years of big winter kill etc.

Some things I laugh at is the study put on regarding the deer migrating from the hoback all the way to north of superior WY. Everyone made this out to be groundbreaking news. Any shed hunter in that part of WY could tell you that information for free. Hell the sell out Eastmans mentioned it in videos in the early 90s. Why it was great info I would like to know the following for western Wyoming:

how many hunters chased deer in region G/H?

how many were successful?

how many were 4 pt bucks with spreads of 24”?

what’s the average amount of days does a hunter hunt in G?

the fact they can’t answer this is fricking sad.

Now you may say it would cost too much or take too much time. Well there are states already doing this. Alaska you have to do it for every tag. And on some tags if you don’t report in time you can’t put in for tags the next year. Now whether they chose to act on the data is another thing.
Are you drunk or sober? Two constructive posts on one thread? Wtf man...
 

270Whatelse

Active Member
Messages
535
Well let's see. 1000++ yard long range guns. More roads into the back country. Atv's and SXS allow you to fly up rough roads easily that would have been a 5mph ride in the truck. Greatly improved backpacking equipment. No one in the 80s was working out year round to stay in mountain shape. Nobody had multiple spotters for every tag. Dont blame the flat brimmers. More winter range gets destroyed every day. Technology plane and simple has done the most damage IMO.
 

kickerbuck

Active Member
Messages
475
Well let's see. 1000++ yard long range guns. More roads into the back country. Atv's and SXS allow you to fly up rough roads easily that would have been a 5mph ride in the truck. Greatly improved backpacking equipment. No one in the 80s was working out year round to stay in mountain shape. Nobody had multiple spotters for every tag. Dont blame the flat brimmers. More winter range gets destroyed every day. Technology plane and simple has done the most damage IMO.
+1 The future of Mule Deer is over!
 

Bocephus

Active Member
Messages
678
Easy solution get rid of all and any kind of range finder. Hard to dial in a turret or dial in a pin when you aren't certain of the range. This would bring rifles, muzzys and bows back to reality.
 

Chesterwyo

Active Member
Messages
882
Easy solution get rid of all and any kind of range finder. Hard to dial in a turret or dial in a pin when you aren't certain of the range. This would bring rifles, muzzys and bows back to reality.
Not that that’s even a possibility. But if it were, you’d just have people guessing ranges. And blowing legs off a couple bucks every season. Compounding the problem.
 
Messages
33
Lots of good points on this subject! I thought there were too many hunters in G back in 2005 and haven't hunted there since! Packed into hunters rather than away from them! Founder along with many of you are all correct.... Better equipment, more time to spend, better educated about big buck hunting and plenty of hunters willing to take the best of the lesser bucks all take their toll! Utah was over hunted all through the 60's, 70's and 80's and now Wyoming is as well and I doubt will ever recover. Look how many hunters know about and chase the same bucks no matter how remote the country is! I'm an old man, my son talks with me regularly about how it used to be in the 60's. Most younger guys don't realize back then freeways were non-existent, travel was much more time consuming, most hunters only hunted first and 2nd weekend usually only hunting on Saturdays! Very few 4-wheel drive vehicles, lots of hunters using open sights and many with Winchester carbines. Archery equipment was wooden recurve bows and cedar arrows! (many aspen trees in the Fish lake area probably have some of my arrows sticking in them today LOL) Hunters used their old clothes for hunting, not expensive well made clothing! Everyone one was poor! When I went with my dad and Grandpa I wore my regular and only pair of shoes! The only coat I owned and rag type gloves or mittens! Froze my ass off! I remember my dad making fires for me to sit and get warm! He was limited where he could go by sacrificing to take me with him! He didn't kill any big bucks and only a few little ones but I know those were the best and most cherished hunts I've ever been on! Enjoy your friendships and your family time together, there worth more than all the big bucks ever born! I know Roadless hunter does this and if he never gets another big buck it'll still be worth it!
 

35huntdeer

Member
Messages
78
The problem is people‘s unrelenting thirst for likes, mentions, and comments. There’s damn few people left hunting big bucks anymore for the sole purpose of just wanting to be there for the pure pursuit of it. They’re doing it for the “crew” the “public land” and “muley Monday“ Every 24” buck that feeds out a little too long in the morning or stands up to get out of the sun, gets the turret spun on it and gets deflated. Just so some flat brimmer can get that shot of dopamine from being worshipped by the unwashed masses. There’s a multitude of other problems as well. But people needing to let the world know they’re out there “hammering” is the biggest problem. IMHO.
Amen!
 

bugleb

Active Member
Messages
282
I agree. This is the worst year I have seen in Wyoming since 1970. It was so bad, it was a relief when the season finally ended after 15 days hunting Region G and 4 days hunting Region K (where the hunting was much worse). The herd will rebound to some extent after 3 or 4 milder winters, but if everyone keeps killing all the little fellers, it could become a lot like Utah, permanently bad.
 

Founder

Founder Since 1999
Messages
10,059
I have to be careful about my complaining, as good fortune came my way. I was able to walk away from hunting a harvested and reported 196-incher, plus some others that were very big, and a buck I went hunting for that was mid 190’s and killed a heavy 203 stud.
I’ll complain some with everyone else, but can’t go too far with it or I might mess up my good mojo. Ha ha
Definitely not the worst year I’ve ever seen, but the number of people in the woods was more than ever before. Who’d of thought 6 months ago that more people than ever would be out hunting this fall???
 

callsalot

Active Member
Messages
533
I don't mean to be a jerk but every time I read threads about a certain unit I have to laugh. Muley numbers are in trouble in almost ever unit in the country with few exceptions. Most arguments here are pretty valid and have been discussed over and over again. Until those that manage these animals put the herd over the checkbook and us hunters are OK with more limitations nothing is gong to change. I'm in favor of limiting technology as I've pointed out in multiple threads but it just one tool in the toolbox.
 

chicken77

Member
Messages
64
I did my part to preserve the herd. After hunting for 9 days in region G, I came home with a tag in my pocket and not one shot fired. In that time I saw almost 50 deer and not one buck older than 3-4 years. I am not the greatest of deer hunters but I can usually find deer if they are around, I don't believe there were many to be found.........
 
Messages
50
I think the thing is there is just plain and simple too many hunters period. All these hunting shows and organizations are all saying that we need to get more people into hunting, but that just does nothing good for the animals or the hunting community, all it does is line the pockets of companies and the fish and games do make it impossible to draw and decent tags. Maybe eventually people will get sick of how hard it is and will quit.
 

SDBugler

Active Member
Messages
722
I have only hunted G a couple times and harvested some pretty decent buck both times but will throw in my two cents along with the rest...…..

I hunted in 2016 and 2020. Both years I scouted for a full week and hunted 7 days 2016 and 10 days 2020.
-I saw a LOT more deer in 2016 (about twice as many)
-I saw better quality bucks in 2016
-I saw a LOT more people scouting and hunting in 2020 that 2016.

As others have said, I think the couple bad winters have impacted numbers of deer and some age classes of bucks.

As others have said, I think we as hunters are getting way better at finding and killing these bigger bucks. We are spending more time scouting/hunting and equipment/technology is making us better at killing them.

Without any management strategy to limit the pressure (number of hunters) and to maintain a certain herd size/ratio, this cannot continue without impacting quality/quantity. Yes, with the genetics and remoteness there will always be a few giants but they will get harder and harder to come by as more and more people are chasing them and they become better hunters/killers.

With "self management" as others have called it, it will eventually get too crowded, too difficult to find big deer, too few of deer, etc that people will choose not to go there before some type of equilibrium is reached. Until then, there is still too big of a draw to go to H or G and give it a try before other areas of the state open up. If I was a resident I would hunt it every year as there is still a realistic opportunity for a giant compared to other areas.

Harvest surveys are worthless without a management strategy and the desire to implement and accept changes and reduce tags based on those numbers. (yes they have limited the number of NR hunters but that doesn't seem to have impacted the pressure - based on the reports from those posting here)

I'm a non resident so I really have no say in how WY should manage its herds and limit its hunters. I do however, appreciate the opportunities that I and my sons have had to hunt in WY. We have enjoyed all of our trips there for deer, elk and antelope and we will continue to do so as long as we can.
 

Mr_Lahey

Active Member
Messages
114
I’m not surprised at all when you guys say you saw more people this year than ever before. This past summer was the most cluster F’ed out summer ever. There were people everywhere and it was like someone flipped a switch. In the Island Park/West Yellowstone area it was a ghost town in June and by July 4th it was a complete shitshow. People camping everywhere. I saw people camping in places that I’ve never seen anyone camp before. People using highway turnouts as camping spots. At one point on hwy 20 thru Island Park there were 6 fatal accidents in one week! Every weekend was like Memorial Day weekend and everyday was like a weekend. It’s absolutely insane. Stupid people everywhere. I’ve never seen so many California license plates in my life. I hope and pray this isn’t the new normal.
 
Messages
50
I’m not surprised at all when you guys say you saw more people this year than ever before. This past summer was the most cluster F’ed out summer ever. There were people everywhere and it was like someone flipped a switch. In the Island Park/West Yellowstone area it was a ghost town in June and by July 4th it was a complete shitshow. People camping everywhere. I saw people camping in places that I’ve never seen anyone camp before. People using highway turnouts as camping spots. At one point on hwy 20 thru Island Park there were 6 fatal accidents in one week! Every weekend was like Memorial Day weekend and everyday was like a weekend. It’s absolutely insane. Stupid people everywhere. I’ve never seen so many California license plates in my life. I hope and pray this isn’t the new normal.
Let’s blame the amount of hunters on COVID that will make us feel better
 

mightyhunter

Very Active Member
Messages
1,075
I hunted G this year for the first time in many years. I was hunting a drainage I had been sent to by a friend who lives in the area and works for G&F in Star Valley. My impressions on the experience were based on that hunting trip and the scouting trip a month earlier. My observations were simple. I never saw a single fawn with a doe on either trip. That was a surprise for me that suggests a serious winter kill. I was also surprised at the number of elk in the drainage. I have lived in the Cody Region for many years and have never seen or heard more elk than I did in this drainage. During our hunt, I did run into some locals bowhunting elk. I also ran into a small group of deer hunters from California who were loud and noisy that would repeatedly ride their horses up and down the trail talking. It was annoying, but other hunters are always a factor in hunting public land.

Just before dark on the night before the opener, I got within a 100 yards or so of a buck that I would consider harvesting if the opportunity presented itself when the season opened. He did not know I was watching him and wandered off right before dark. From September 15th through September 19th, I never saw another buck of any size during that trip. I cannot make a judgement on what has happened in the Greys based on my experience in 2020. Anyone who suggests otherwise, is clueless.

I have known SD Bugler for a few years. We have conversed on these boards and also in person. I believe him to be a good hunter and very selective about what he will harvest. I respect his opinions. He appreciates the opportunity to hunt in Wyoming.

I have also received info from a couple of others who post on Monster Muleys concerning mule deer hunting in both G and H. I also know Doug WcWhirter who is the regional biologist for the area. I met him when he was a biologist in this area for G&F. He was especially knowledgeable on bighorn sheep in this area. He was also a good guy. I wish he had not left.

I have been advocate for mandatory harvest reporting in Wyoming for a long time. It has been implemented in Idaho for years and I think it would benefit Wyoming G&F with its harvest reports. Last year, the G&F set up a check station on the Chief Joseph Highway. This was the first check station set up in the area since before the year 2000. I believe it was an eye opener for the biologist that manned that station. He realized that with the large reduction in hunter opportunity (changed season dates) on a migratory hunt, you end up with a lot of yearling bucks being killed.

When I returned to the Cody Area to hunt mule deer this year, I went out for the first 3 days of the season in 106. I was hunting in high country with the sheep and goats. I observed a lot of goats and also some ewes and lambs. On the afternoon of the opener, I discouraged my son from taking a shot at a 170 type buck from 650 yards with his long range rifle. I didn't like the crosswind. His attempts to get closer did not work out. The full moon and the wind were the biggest factors in a lack of harvest.
I have always been up front with my opinions about the management of species in Wyoming by G&F in the Cody Area.. I have been accused by one individual on Monster Muleys of blaming G&F for everything that plagues big game hunting in Wyoming. This individual has a problem with reading comprehension and his handle may be an understatement as to his real problem. I will always level criticism where criticism is due. I have hunted in the Cody Region for mule deer for the last 22 years. I have witnessed the ups and downs of the mule deer hunting. I have witnessed many missteps by G&F in the management of mule deer in this part of Wyoming. I won't rehash my disagreements. You can read my posts or you can listen to the words of a crank.

just sayin...mh
 

Bowhunter13

Active Member
Messages
254
Another problem I see G is a general unit that has been hyped up to the point that people think they are going to walk up and look around every corner and see a 180"+ buck (yes back in the day maybe thats how it was) but, how many 180+ deer do you see a year on the utah general hunt? People are comparing and making G sound like a limited entry unit that would take me 20 years to draw in utah. Yes there was more deer back in the day no doubt but there are still big bucks spread through the unit.. This tag used to take 2 points to draw now its what 7 and its a general unit. There are more units in wyoming than just G that you have a good chance of killing a deer thats 190+ but your going to have to wait to draw just like you would in any other limited entry deer tag in utah or any other state. My opinion is go scout and if you don't like the bucks your seeing then switch areas and if you do put in and draw make the best of what you got. And definitely dont have it in your mind that no doubt your going to kill a big limited entry sized deer on a general unit that has been over hyped.
 
Last edited:

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
I’m not going to fault someone for filling their tag with a small buck, doe where legal. As long as they are happy with it.

Now the guys who smoke a buck then come home and complain about quality etc are a bunch of sissy la las

I also believe hunters that get on forums make up a very small % and if you were to poll all the hunters who hunt G and H regularly they will not want any changes vs changing to manage for more big bucks.
 

BrowningRage

Long Time Member
Messages
3,303
Hunters are far more effective at longer ranges these days with all equipment types. Optics are far better. More people have and use horses. More people backpack hunt. People have more time to hunt than ever. Hunting out of state is far easier these days due to better income and more time off of work. Deer cannot survive on their own when the greatest predator to ever walk the Earth has all of these advantages...
 

SDBugler

Active Member
Messages
722
One add'l comment that came to mind after reading Bowhunter 13's post. With a tag that takes 7 years to obtain, those non residents are going to put a LOT more time and effort into that hunt than a tag that can be drawn every other year (thus more scouting pressure and possibly more "helpers" along on the hunt).

I know my son and I had planned for this hunt for several years and set aside 4 weeks for our hunt this year - one week scouting, 1.5 weeks archery, and 1.5 weeks rifle. (We both harvested opening day of the rifle hunt.) We wouldn't normally put this much time/effort into a hunt that we can draw with one or 2 points.
 

Longun

Long Time Member
Messages
3,923
I didn't hunt that hard this year because mainly of the indian summer weather....but I didn't see a buck over 24 inches so I passed on muleys..maybe go find a whitetail in the middle of the state..but Elk season starts tomorrow..that's mainly our beef..
 

nripepi

Very Active Member
Messages
1,546
It's all about the does and fawns and keeping enough bucks to breed all of them. The buck size can easily come back by limiting tags/hunters, but I don't think that is the main problem...it is fawn survival. The more deer you have, the more happier hunters you can have. If you limit the hunters, the deer size will go up, but there will be less opportunity (res and non) and it will take more points (non). If you want to control shot distance, your only option is go get rid of rifles or go to a low fixed power. Colorado with their open sights muzzleloader early, makes some sense.
 

appaloosa

Active Member
Messages
179
Mule deer, unfortunately, suffer from a human problem. They just aren't that compatible, and unfortunately, human numbers are increasing everywhere, especially the west.
We've built subdivisions and roads all over their winter range and throughout their migration corridors. We put gas wells and highways through critical winter habitat. We've over-stocked cattle and sheep to the point that some shrub and forb communities will never recover. We send armies of hunters out every year, that will sit on bucks for thirty days in the summer, camp on them for a week before the season opens, and snipe them from 1200 yards at daylight on opening day.
Then we all sit around, scratching our heads, wondering where all the deer have gone and why the hunting isn't as good as it used to be. The hunting will never be as good as it was in the 60's, or the 80's or the 90's or the 2000's, and in 20 years it won't be as good as it is now.
 

PinionMuley

New Member
Messages
2
I’m not surprised at all when you guys say you saw more people this year than ever before. This past summer was the most cluster F’ed out summer ever. There were people everywhere and it was like someone flipped a switch. In the Island Park/West Yellowstone area it was a ghost town in June and by July 4th it was a complete shitshow. People camping everywhere. I saw people camping in places that I’ve never seen anyone camp before. People using highway turnouts as camping spots. At one point on hwy 20 thru Island Park there were 6 fatal accidents in one week! Every weekend was like Memorial Day weekend and everyday was like a weekend. It’s absolutely insane. Stupid people everywhere. I’ve never seen so many California license plates in my life. I hope and pray this isn’t the new normal.
It was like that in southern Utah too. There has been people everywhere, no end in sight they just keep coming.
 

hardcore

Member
Messages
8
I am long time resident and hunt G every year and this was the toughest hunt I can remember. I hope a lot of it was the full moon and very dry and hot conditions. Most mornings I was able to turn my headlamp off once I hit the trails on the ridges because the moon was still so bright. I had several mornings of not even turning up a buck and then 30 minutes before dark I would spot 4-8 bucks on a few different occasions. I passed on one solid 180-185 typical that tempted me but was hoping I could find something a little better, which didn’t happen. I don’t think I ever remember such a hot deer season, I hardly wore base layers and was down to a T-shirt by most afternoons. With conditions like that I was convinced deer were staying more in the timber and aspens, at least I hope that was the case or the deer herd is in a bad way. I will be real curious to see what shows up this winter and will keep my fingers crossed that there were a few more good bucks in hiding that everyone just didn’t see!
 

letmgetbig

Active Member
Messages
111
There's not even close to enough Deer in G For the number of Hunters and hard pressure it gets.. Shame on the WY Game & Fish and the Hunters who are Hell Bent on killing a buck every year. I could but won't.. Changes should have been made clear back in 2000. If you want to see bad look forward to next year. One of my favorite drainages had over a hundred hunters hunting no more than 20 bucks. If there are 2 left it would be a miracle.
 

nontypical

Long Time Member
Messages
3,328
We need fawns. There aren't any in G right now. This year is hands down the worst I've ever seen; not just G but K as well. At least I was able to find a few mature bucks( didn't kill one) in K and was pleasantly surprised at the numbers of fawns I found while scouting. We need some mild winters and less predators until the deer can catch up.
 

DeerHunter53

Very Active Member
Messages
1,585
Hey I have the answer to this issue ban range finders that will limit the shooting and keep it ole time.
A long range gun is no use if you don't know the exact range. In the old days if you wanted to shoot out long range you practiced at different ranges.
A compound bow will be less efficient without a range finder. Do you think Fred Bear had a range finder?
Muzzleloaders would be short range and open sights without an range finder.
Thoughts
 
Messages
50
Does anyone know how the wilderness areas are doing in H, if the deer are fine there then that probably means over hunting is to blame in G, if they are all dead there too then hunting might not be to blame.
 

bugleb

Active Member
Messages
282
The deer in region G have always been hit hard on hard winters, and there has been several lately. The result is way low deer numbers. The elk are not affected by weather as much, so as expected, it has been a great year for elk. We just returned from a four day elk hunt in region G, and saw a lot of elk, including bulls, every day.
 

callsalot

Active Member
Messages
533
I already posted but have to do it again for the sake of all mule deer across the west.
1. Four point or better.
2. Predator control.
3. No optics on rifles
4. Traditional archery.
5. More off road vehicle restrictions.
Equals lots of deer, bigger bucks & bulls, lots of hunter opportunity and will never happen due to too much money against it and folks loving their toys more than loving seeing lots of game. It's not rocket science just some sacrifice.
 
Messages
50
I already posted but have to do it again for the sake of all mule deer across the west.
1. Four point or better.
2. Predator control.
3. No optics on rifles
4. Traditional archery.
5. More off road vehicle restrictions.
Equals lots of deer, bigger bucks & bulls, lots of hunter opportunity and will never happen due to too much money against it and folks loving their toys more than loving seeing lots of game. It's not rocket science just some sacrifice.
I could see having a kinda of trophy animals only tag for non residents just like in Alaska with moose, I think one way that could work is have a only bucks passed there ears rule or something to the same effect as the rule on Moose in Alaska does, I don’t Think it should apply to residents cause some people just want to shoot a deer for meat and non residents don’t hunt out of state just for meat, and if they did something like this I don’t think that banning scopes or rangefinder would be necessary maybe just have a rule to where you can’t shoot anything passed 300 or 400 yards which I think most law abiding hunter would follow, and off road use doesn’t really need to be limited cause everybody just hikes there a$$ off or uses horses nowadays.
 

mntnguide

Active Member
Messages
262
Does anyone know how the wilderness areas are doing in H, if the deer are fine there then that probably means over hunting is to blame in G, if they are all dead there too then hunting might not be to blame.
There are lower deer numbers in the wilderness areas compared to G and national forest parts of H no question. I would agree this was a tough year, and it's been expected since the bad winters 3+ years ago. It's like people don't realize, a bad winter will not truly show you the damage until years later, not the year after. Still, there were some giants taken including a potential record breaking typical.. when the news on that comes out people will be dropping their jaws. I had a 220 buck that i had 3 years history with taken by another hunter below me on opener, bad luck for me. I will eat my tag before i shoot a young buck, but unfortunately basically all non-res and many residents don't share my views on letting bucks grow, therefore always keeping trophy potential limited when you shoot 160 class bucks that could become much more. I don't see the next few years getting any better, we are missing an entire age class of deer that would now be in that 3-4 range, and it is starting to show significantly
 

tracker12

Very Active Member
Messages
1,102
This is based off of what? Whiney ass non residents have been saying this for 25 years.

They can adjust the season dates. For starters let’s have the non resident season start a week later and end on the same day as resident season.

all it takes is a couple decent winters and all will be good again. Deer numbers go up and down. What doesn’t is people whining about deer numbers.
Touch a resident nerve?
 

Gollywomper

Active Member
Messages
149
I have not hunted WY yet, so I have no real experience there. However it is not just Wyoming that numbers are falling it is all over the west. Hunting pressure is at an all time high. Big bucks do not hang around and show themselves after being bumped or pressured. It makes sense sightings would go down. There are folks on the mountains scouting as soon as the last snow melts. These bucks are now getting harassed from late spring until fall. Technology is destroying big game hunting. For example I am researching an area to hunt in WY next fall. I am able to look at satellite imagery and pick out any area that looks good without leaving my couch. There was a time when if you wanted to know what was over that hill you had to walk and look. Now I can bring it up on my phone in a few seconds. I can post a question on various forums or Facebook pages and I am immediately connected with 100’s of folks from all over with experience or knowledge on where and what to hunt.
In an area I have hunted all my life, known for poor hunting, the sightings of bucks has steadily decreased. However my trail cameras photos show there are still “normal” numbers there. Pressured deer get smarter every year.
 

slamdunk

Moderator
Messages
7,511
Enjoy what you’ve got as long as you can. It’s not likely to last as it is. Hunters keep getting better at killing and something has got to give. If we’re going to make use of all the technology, then tags will either need to be reduced or quality will suffer.
Gary Fralick and I were talking the other day about the deer up there. Since the winter kill a few years ago, neither of us have seen herd numbers rebounding. If you think it’s going to get better in a few years, you’re nuts.
In region G you’ve got a 3 week season!!!! It gets harder every year for big bucks to slip through the cracks for that long.
Enjoy it as long as you can, I know I will be.
I agree 100%.
"A couple of good winters" isn't going to rebound anything 🙄
 

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
I agree 100%.
"A couple of good winters" isn't going to rebound anything 🙄
Like usual you don’t know what you’re talking about. Hell you were the guy trying to hunt unit 102 on a region W tag 😂😂😂😂

you guys even scouted it. I bet slammy couldn’t even point region G out on a map!
 

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
you can't kill W bucks in 102????.......uh oh....lol
You think a guide would know the areas you could hunt right? Has a promising career in hunting for wade lemon hahaha

I’d wager slammy has never hunted region G, could point it out on a map, or even knows what comes after g
 

slamdunk

Moderator
Messages
7,511
Like usual you don’t know what you’re talking about. Hell you were the guy trying to hunt unit 102 on a region W tag 😂😂😂😂

you guys even scouted it. I bet slammy couldn’t even point region G out on a map!
It's your quote SS.....

And I'm don't owe you the same explanation again on the 102 incident....been there done that.
 

slamdunk

Moderator
Messages
7,511
You think a guide would know the areas you could hunt right? Has a promising career in hunting for wade lemon hahaha

I’d wager slammy has never hunted region G, could point it out on a map, or even knows what comes after g
Lmao....you're hilarious aren't you!
And I'll save you that wager by saying you are correct, i have never hunted unit G, never stood foot on it 🤣
 

Gpaw

New Member
Messages
4
Great article! Anyone on this forum who wants to know why the numbers of deer have plummeted need to consider what is said in this short article.

Yes, winter range encroachments and snipers on every nipple will have an impact, but it is nothing compared to predator- mediated competition.

Call me a conspiracy case, but the real culprits who are protecting cats and wolves and increasing their numbers and range are systematically on purpose eradicating the big game animals that we hunt, for a number of reasons! And they aren’t good! All of them important to every freedom loving American.
Smoke a pack a day, and don’t ignore the cats. They are not going away, though I’d be fine if they did.
Learn what predator-mediated competition is and then ask your local biologist if he knows what it means. I was told straight up by an Idaho DFG employee ( soon to be christened a biologist) that, at least in SE Idaho, the IDFG DO NOT KNOW WHY the deer are doing so poorly.
Also, as has been stated on this thread, hunter surveys are useless if the data collected is not used. (Cough) Idaho. (Cough)
 

carnicero

Active Member
Messages
176
It’s a little early in the year to start the “region G” talks. This is normally a December topic.

bad winter kill and unknown harvest is going to keep G and H down for a few years. I would like to see WY so mandatory online harvest reports for all license holders. Alaska does it and it’s quick and easy. It’s just a guess in Wyoming at this point...
I agree- harvest reports and teeth aging should be a requirement, not a request, with risk of not being able to apply the following year if a harvest report is not completed.
 

elkassassin

Long Time Member
Messages
25,268
You Mean a Stellar Few Months?

Most Dealers Ain't Selling Squat Right Now Cuzz that can't get anymore of them in!

Vehicles of any Kind right now are a Joke to Find!





I don't know about the # of hunters, but ask about any retailer that sells dirt bikes, four wheelers, SxS, campers, camping gear, etc and the answer will likely be that it was a stellar sales year.
 

Snoopdogg

Very Active Member
Messages
1,297
Great article! Anyone on this forum who wants to know why the numbers of deer have plummeted need to consider what is said in this short article.

Yes, winter range encroachments and snipers on every nipple will have an impact, but it is nothing compared to predator- mediated competition.

Call me a conspiracy case, but the real culprits who are protecting cats and wolves and increasing their numbers and range are systematically on purpose eradicating the big game animals that we hunt, for a number of reasons! And they aren’t good! All of them important to every freedom loving American.
Smoke a pack a day, and don’t ignore the cats. They are not going away, though I’d be fine if they did.
Learn what predator-mediated competition is and then ask your local biologist if he knows what it means. I was told straight up by an Idaho DFG employee ( soon to be christened a biologist) that, at least in SE Idaho, the IDFG DO NOT KNOW WHY the deer are doing so poorly.
Also, as has been stated on this thread, hunter surveys are useless if the data collected is not used. (Cough) Idaho. (Cough)
Thanks for sharing DesertRanch. I'm gonna share it as well.
 
Last edited:

bugleb

Active Member
Messages
282
Wyoming has always had a deer crash every 5-10 years due to winter kill. It used to be able to bounce back after 3-4 years, but there used to be a lot less hunters too. Now, the killer winters seem to come more frequently and between the hunters and predators, along with heavy road kill, the pressure is relentless.
Look at Tardville and what has happened here. I remember when the total population of the state was under 1,000,000. What is it now? I think over 3 million. Good hunting is now mostly a thing of the past in Tardville and Wyoming.
 

Robiland

Very Active Member
Messages
1,683
Well, I hope it is on the rebound sooner, rather than later. I have enough points to draw, but will probably wait until 2022, since I will have an elk hunt in Utah during the rut this year. So my hope is that there were alot of small and upcoming bucks this year, given 2 years, will be great 4-6 year old bucks. Now, if they can survive the onslaught of snipers on every ridge, and dodge a few cars and predators, I may have a chance at another 30 incher. ;)
 

huntingisfun

Active Member
Messages
117
It was really weird this year for me. I saw a ton of 2 points in Region G and H. I mean a TON. I saw quite a few small 4 points. A lot of guys killed small 4 points on every ridge. I didn't see a single 3 point during the hunt, and only one 3 point during scouting. There were only 3 bucks on my hit list from scouting and they all got killed by other hunters. It was as crowded as I have ever seen it. I ended up never firing a shot. I'm optimistic that hunting will improve in 2 to 3 years if we have mild winters and if a lot of those 2 points survive. The bad news about Wyoming hunting for me is that I just moved to Idaho, so I won't be able to hunt G and H unless I get lucky in the out of state draw.
 

highfastflyer

Active Member
Messages
399
The Wyoming Range Initiative a collaboration of Game and Fish, Univ. of Wyoming, Forest Service and others have been monitoring a group of adult Bucks they radio collared. So far they claim the harvest of these bucks has been much lower than anticipated. Not sure I support the data yet as likely many hunters would pass on a radio collared buck unless it really made their eyes water. The last 5 years have had 2 extreme winters where we lost 2 full age classes of fawn deer and even significant adult mortality. The oil and gas wells and the ranchettes and small habitat fractures have really taken a toll on the carrying capacity of winter range. Look at all the oil development from Google Earth and all those small homesteads and urban sprawl in the Pinedale, LaBarge and Big Piney, North Evanston areas and we have lost significant amounts of habitat and the deer walk well around them to avoid harassment. The elk numbers have skyrocketed and the West Green River herds are now 60% above objective. Dr. Monteith a treasure trove of information and knowledge and a true asset to Wyoming lists the majority of fawn losses to each year and they vary significantly. He lists Disease, predators and still born fawns and those vary from year to year. Disease is more prevalent in drought years. I have hunted the Wyoming Range for over 40 years and it’s the worst shape I have ever seen it. Now we have CWD moving in. Now all those high alpine basins which once all had numerous big Mule deer bucks now just hold lots of Elk and lots of hunter orange. Sad.
 
Last edited:

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
The Wyoming Range Initiative a collaboration of Game and Fish, Univ. of Wyoming, Forest Service and others have been monitoring a group of adult Bucks they radio collared. So far they claim the harvest of these bucks has been much lower than anticipated. Not sure I support the data yet as likely many hunters would pass on a radio collared buck unless it really made their eyes water. The last 5 years have had 2 extreme winters where we lost 2 full age classes of fawn deer and even significant adult mortality. The oil and gas wells and the ranchettes and small habitat fractures have really taken a toll on the carrying capacity of winter range. Look at all the oil development from Google Earth and all those small homesteads and urban sprawl in the Pinedale, LaBarge and Big Piney, North Evanston areas and we have lost significant amounts of habitat and the deer walk well around them to avoid harassment. The elk numbers have skyrocketed and the West Green River herds are now 60% above objective. Dr. Monteith a treasure trove of information and knowledge and a true asset to Wyoming lists the majority of fawn losses to each year and they vary significantly. He lists Disease, predators and still born fawns and those vary from year to year. Disease is more prevalent in drought years. I have hunted the Wyoming Range for over 40 years and it’s the worst shape I have ever seen it. Now we have CWD moving in. Now all those high alpine basins which once all had numerous big Mule deer bucks now just hold lots of Elk and lots of hunter orange. Sad.
😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂. Groundbreaking just groundbreaking news I tell ya 😅😅😅😅😅
 

Founder

Founder Since 1999
Messages
10,059
The Wyoming Range Initiative a collaboration of Game and Fish, Univ. of Wyoming, Forest Service and others have been monitoring a group of adult Bucks they radio collared. So far they claim the harvest of these bucks has been much lower than anticipated. Not sure I support the data yet as likely many hunters would pass on a radio collared buck unless it really made their eyes water. The last 5 years have had 2 extreme winters where we lost 2 full age classes of fawn deer and even significant adult mortality. The oil and gas wells and the ranchettes and small habitat fractures have really taken a toll on the carrying capacity of winter range. Look at all the oil development from Google Earth and all those small homesteads and urban sprawl in the Pinedale, LaBarge and Big Piney, North Evanston areas and we have lost significant amounts of habitat and the deer walk well around them to avoid harassment. The elk numbers have skyrocketed and the West Green River herds are now 60% above objective. Dr. Monteith a treasure trove of information and knowledge and a true asset to Wyoming lists the majority of fawn losses to each year and they vary significantly. He lists Disease, predators and still born fawns and those vary from year to year. Disease is more prevalent in drought years. I have hunted the Wyoming Range for over 40 years and it’s the worst shape I have ever seen it. Now we have CWD moving in. Now all those high alpine basins which once all had numerous big Mule deer bucks now just hold lots of Elk and lots of hunter orange. Sad.
What constitutes as “big”? I find what I call “big” bucks every year. Usually a few of them.
And not many basins I visit have elk. ???
Hunter orange though, is definitely around on September 15th.
 

highfastflyer

Active Member
Messages
399
What constitutes as “big”? I find what I call “big” bucks every year. Usually a few of them.
And not many basins I visit have elk. ???
Hunter orange though, is definitely around on September 15th.
Hmmmmm. I’ve seen many elk just in your videos, maybe you should take a look again at what you’ve posted as the few I watched certainly had elk in them as I also observe those high basins full of Elk and hunter orange. As far as big, that’s a subjective term but almost every high alpine basin was loaded with mature big bucks prior to the 92-93 winter. The 70s and 80s were the best. The Wyoming Range never fully recovered after the 92 Winter. We once had 50,000+ deer in that herd. Last year we had barely 29,000 deer. With CWD moving in, it’s getting SADDER by the year.
 

Founder

Founder Since 1999
Messages
10,059
Hmmmmm. I’ve seen many elk just in your videos, maybe you should take a look again at what you’ve posted as the few I watched certainly had elk in them as I also observe those high basins full of Elk and hunter orange. As far as big, that’s a subjective term but almost every high alpine basin was loaded with mature big bucks prior to the 92-93 winter. The 70s and 80s were the best. The Wyoming Range never fully recovered after the 92 Winter. We once had 50,000+ deer in that herd. Last year we had barely 29,000 deer. With CWD moving in, it’s getting SADDER by the year.
Gotcha’! I’ll have to rewatch my videos to remind myself of all the basins loaded with the elk.
Did I see lots of big bulls in these basins? Or do I just see cows and calves? :rolleyes: ;)
 

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
Hmmmmm. I’ve seen many elk just in your videos,
Well we finally figured it out. Highfastflyer is a youtuber with an opinion on everything :) . He's watched it so hes an expert on it. You can't beat the entertainment a hunting forum will provide. BTW HFF i checked out your youtube channel. Good stuff!

Back on topic I still stand by my thoughts that if we get a couple mild winters all will be well again. No need to cut non resident tags, change season structures, limit residents. This winter so far is looking mild, lets hope it happens.

Good luck in the draws!
 

highfastflyer

Active Member
Messages
399
Well we finally figured it out. Highfastflyer is a youtuber with an opinion on everything :) . He's watched it so hes an expert on it. You can't beat the entertainment a hunting forum will provide. BTW HFF i checked out your youtube channel. Good stuff!

Back on topic I still stand by my thoughts that if we get a couple mild winters all will be well again. No need to cut non resident tags, change season structures, limit residents. This winter so far is looking mild, lets hope it happens.

Good luck in the draws!
Sorry, you’re observation skills are even worse than your poor advice. Never posted ever an opinion video and the few I ever have posted weren’t even hunting related. I suggest you lay off the “Booze” awhile. Must be those long cold, dreary and lonely winters in Alaska. :cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool:
 

Slightlysober

Very Active Member
Messages
1,516
Sorry, you’re observation skills are even worse than your poor advice. Never posted ever an opinion video and the few I ever have posted weren’t even hunting related. I suggest you lay off the “Booze” awhile. Must be those long cold, dreary and lonely winters in Alaska. :cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool:
Never said you posted an opinion video. And I didn't say your 4 videos posted were hunting related. I'm just shocked you've procreated! :D

Back on topic now please. Feel free to PM me. This is a discussion regarding western wyoming mule deer. Its obvious you have no experience with said topic so please PM your personal attacks to me. I can handle them :D
 

highfastflyer

Active Member
Messages
399
Never said you posted an opinion video. And I didn't say your 4 videos posted were hunting related. I'm just shocked you've procreated! :D

Back on topic now please. Feel free to PM me. This is a discussion regarding western wyoming mule deer. Its obvious you have no experience with said topic so please PM your personal attacks to me. I can handle them :D
Wow, Hmmmmmm....... Now you are so drunk you don’t remember what you posted?

“Highfastflyer is a youtuber with an opinion on everything”

I suggest you lay off the “Booze” a little while. I’d explain it to you but I don’t have the time nor the CRAYONS big enough for that . :cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool::cool:
 
Last edited:

Gator

Long Time Member
Messages
17,172
How about closing both G&H for a year. no resident, outfitters or Nonresident hunters. Then you have killed by trapping or shot 5 coyotes before you can enter the draw for a tag.
Lot of guys would be shooting alot of coyotes
 

highfastflyer

Active Member
Messages
399
There’s no doubt you have crayons laying around. Does your mom let you draw while watching you tube videos?
Yeah, I use them to draw pictures of your wife. In her Defense I’m sure she keeps you warm on all those cold, alcohol infused Alaska nights.
A4B7D43D-1198-476E-886B-4F08824F7593.jpeg
 

Click-a-Pic ... Details & Bigger Photos
Top Bottom