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2016 EDITION | A COMPLETE HUNTING GUIDE FOR WESTERN COLORADO | FREE

Olympian hunters REAL GEAR HUNTERS USE PLUS: Everything you need to know: Business Directory, Maps, Fees, Dates and More!

WHAT’S NEW FOR 2016

Combat Buck Fever!

HEAD TO THE MOUNTAINS: HUNTING OPPORTUNITIES ABOUND IN WESTERN COLORADO


RA NGELY CO L ORAD O Camping and Lodging, Taxidermy, Game Processing, Sporting Goods Supply

Rangely Area Chamber of Commerce 255 East Main Street, Suite A

970-675-5290 rangelychamber.com 2016 | colorado hunter | 3


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From Economy to Luxury!

Truck Camper

Short beds, Long beds and Travel Trailers Travel Trailers!

YEAR END CLOSEOUT DEALS!

Fishing Boat Headquarters! 2308 Hwy. 6 & 50 • Grand Junction, CO (970)241-8517 • One Mile West of Mesa Mall

Sales • Service • Parts & Accessories

www.mattasmarine.com| 2016 | colorado hunter

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Your Local Grocery Store Is Also Your Hunting Headquarters! Hunting Licenses Ice and Dry Ice Food, Beer, Soda, and Candy Batteries, Charcoal, and Hand Warmers Fishing Supplies Miscellaneous Camping Supplies

Your

Locations:

Avon 0072 Beaver Creek Pl 970-949-5409

Breckenridge 400 North Park Ave 970-453-0818

Craig 505 W. Victory Way 970-824-6515

Delta 122 Gunnison River Drive 970-874-9710

Dillon 300 Dillon Ridge Road 970-468-2363

Eagle 0103 Market Street 970-328-1302

Fruita 135 S. Plum 970-858-9506

Glenwood Springs 1410 S Grand Ave. 970-945-8207

Granby 1001 Thompson Road 970-887-7140

Grand Junction 2770 Hwy 50 South 970-245-1411 569 32 Road 970-434-9603 200 Rood Ave 970-241-2278 630 24 Road 970-244-8100 2600 N 12th St. 970-628-7555

Montrose 128 S Townsend 970-249-3405 16400 S Townsend 970-240-3236

Rifle 1320 Railroad Ave 970-625-3080

Steamboat Springs 1825 Central Park Plz. 970-879-3290

Vail 2109 N. Frontage Road West 970-476-1017 2016 | colorado hunter

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48 hour Turnaround European Mounts

Scott Moore - Award Winning Taxidermy

1176 Yampa Avenue, Craig, CO 81625 970-824-4910 • www.mtnmantaxidermy.com 8 | visit cohunter.com for more


Eagle Springs Meats Wild Game Processing • Meat cut and wrapped to your specifications • Cutting and grinding included in the base fee • Sausage flavors including Summer, Smoked, Chorizo, Italian, Bratwurst, Jalapeno and Cheese Bratwurst, Mild Medium and Hot Breakfast Sausage, Jalapeno-Cheddar Smoked, Jalapeno-Cheddar Summer Sausage, and Plain and Jalapeno-Cheddar Snack Sticks • We have a 1,500 sf Smoker - Jerky, Hunter Sticks, smoked meats • All Orders Vacuum-Packaged • Quick turn-around and friendly service

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner, Drink Specials!

1733 Railroad Avenue / Rifle, Colorado (Next to the Dollar Store) 970-625-5249 • After Hours: 970-930-5965 56398

2016 | colorado hunter

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We Sell Lifestyle

Imagine Living Where Others Vacation

DAVE WOODWARD 261-3850

TERESA RENS 210-5190

NATE RICHARDSON 201-7637

CRYSTAL RICHARDSON 210-7036

OMAR RICHARDSON 719-530-8441

CRAIG GINTER 260-6230

ANGIE TAYLOR 314-1104

BRYAN CROWE 778-7900

JULIE PILAND 985-0913

MIKE KRIEG 640-4772

90 ACRES W/HOME - COLLBRAN, CO • $475,000

3700 ACRES IN GLADE PARK • $4,900,000

SW COLORADO ELK RANCH • $499,900

Teresa Rens • 970-210-5190

Craig Ginter • 970-260-6230

Omar Richardson • 719-530-8441

2000 SF HOME, VIEWS, 24X50 EQMT SHED

WATER, WILDLIFE, EASY ACCESS, VIDEO TOUR

GUNNISON RIVER INCOME • $939,000

LOG CABIN NEAR SALIDA • $189,900

Omar Richardson • 719-530-8441

Omar Richardson • 719-530-8441

RV PARK & MOTEL IN DELTA, 19+ ACRES

30 FT YURT NEAR RIDGWAY • $115,000 4.26 ACRES, UTILITIES, NEAR TOWN

Omar Richardson • 719-530-8441

HIGH FENCE, RECENT APPRAISAL

LOG CABIN ON LAKE • $149,900

REMOTE,OFF-GRID, EASY ACCESS

ON THE GRAND MESA, PHONE & ELECTRIC

MOUNTAIN HOME IN MESA • $399,900

LOG HOME NEAR COLLBRAN, CO • $1,575,000

Julie Piland • 970-985-0913

Julie Piland • 970-985-0913

7.71 ACRES, HOME W/GUEST HOUSE, POND & CREEK

Omar Richardson • 719-530-8441

159 ACRES W/IRRIGATION, SHOP, GUEST HOUSE

970-256-9700 • No One Knows the Country Like We Do!

54217


HOME W/PRIVACY NEAR COLLBRAN, CO • $385,000 MODIFIED LOG HOME ON 35 ACRES • $350,000

8.44 ACRES, SHOP, CORRALS, HORSE PROPERTY

Julie Piland • 970-985-0913

OVERLOOKS WHITE RIVER NEAR MEEKER, CO

Dave Woodward • 970-261-3850

VACANT LAND 36 ACRES • $125,000 RED CREEK RANCH GLADE PARK, CO

Dave Woodward • 970-261-3850

LD

SO

LOG CABIN ON 38 ACRES • $139,900 NEAR CRAWFORD, COLORADO

Dave Woodward • 970-261-3850

MOUNTAIN CABIN NEAR COLLBRAN, CO

OVERLOOKS VEGA LAKE, VIEWS & PRIVATE WELL

Angie Taylor • 970-314-1104

LOG CABIN • $199,900

22 ACRES VACANT MOUNTAIN LAND

Dave Woodward • 970-261-3850

Dave Woodward • 970-261-3850

GRAND MESA RESORT, COLORADO

McCLURE PASS, COLORADO

TURN KEY RESTAURANT/BAR IN COLLBRAN GUNNISON RIVER RANCHETTES FROM $125,000 $160,000 INCLUDES REAL ESTATE

Angie Taylor • 970-314-1104

35+ ACRE TRACTS, NEAR GRAND JUNCTION, SELLER FINANCE

Nate Richardson • 970-201-7637

www.RealQuestRealty.net • RealQuest@UnitedCountry.com • Grand Junction CO 56634


12 | visit cohunter.com for more


clEaR FORk R anch

3400+ acres with exceptional mule deer and elk hunting. Borders USFS and includes 6 cabins. Significant water, springs and conservation opportunity.

$6,70 0,0 0 0

Because this is the best burger you ever killed

Sl atER cR EEk R a nch

1500 deeded acres plus 1400 acre USFS lease. Borders USFS, great hunting and native trout stream. 5 bedroom lodge built in 2006.

$5,950,000

Ya m pa R i v E R R a n c h

594 acres including 1/3 mile of the Yampa River. Excellent elk & deer hunting. Older house and barns, fenced for livestock.

$3,000,000

hOmEStEaD R anch

160 acres in north Routt surrounded by USFS. Beautiful 2 bedroom cabin plus barn, shop and extra cabin. Equestrian facilities and adjacent to continental Divide.

$1,79 9,0 0 0

You want the best game processing in the Yampa Valley. Clean, Quality Workmanship

24 hour Courtesy Cooler

Specialty Items:

Quick, Friendly Service

or after hours check in

Jerky, Sausage & other snacks.

Your game will be processed individually and all meat is shrink wrapped and clearly labeled then given back to you. We ship anywhere and meat will be sent on dry ice and in insulated containers.

DUncklEY pEak R anch

160 acre private retreat surround by USFS. lodge, cabin, large shop and covered dance floor! Excellent elk and deer hunting & 3 acre stocked lake. Ren maRtyn Ranch, Land & exceptionaL homes 970.846.3118 h i g h m o u n ta i n l a n d . c o m r e n . m a r t y n @ s t e a m b o at s i r . c o m

$1,5 95 ,0 0 0

1030 Yampa Ave. Steamboat Springs • 970-879-3504 HUNTING SEASON HOURS: Open 7 days a week 2016 | colorado hunter

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Your Hunt – begins with –

Photo by Trent Swanson

tHe Best

ELK RIVER GUNS

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS

Swarovksi CL Companion You can use the CL Companion 8x30 binoculars with their 372 ft / 124 m field of view to gain a good overview during observation, and their 8x magnification offers you a very smooth, judderfree image for comfortable viewing. Apart from weighing a mere 17.6 oz / 500 g and being 4.7 in / 119 mm long, you will also be impressed by the CL Companion 8x30 binoculars’ ergonomic, compact product design.

Browning X-Bolt Hell’s Canyon Long Range McMillan

Leupold VX-6 Riflescopes

Featuring unsurpassed light transmission, uncompromising mechanical performance and unbeatable optical clarity, the VX-6 is undeniably as good as it gets. The powerful 6:1 zoom ratio and crystal clear image from edge to edge throughout the entire magnification range make the farthest targets seem as though they were dropped right into your lap.

McMillan Game Scout gives a sporter style stock with tactical long range features of vertical pistol grip and high comb. McMillan stocks are US Marine proven tough, now on the Browning X-Bolt

Elk River Guns

970.879.7565

14 | visit cohunter.com for more

Dream Island Plaza

Steamboat Springs, CO


WelCoMehunterS W

elcome to the 2016 issue of Colorado Hunter, the premier guide to big-game hunting in western Colorado. We’re glad you chose western Colorado for your trip — you couldn’t have picked a better place for your hunting vacation. The region offers some of the best deer and elk hunting in the world, whether you’re pulling back a bow, packing your muzzle-loader or sighting in your scope. Whatever your big game fancy, whether it’s elk atop Grand Mesa, mule deer in Middle Park or moose near Walden, we hope you make our region your hunting

destination for years to come. While the area offers countless, year-round recreational opportunities — as well as outstanding scenery, friendly locals and Old West charm — for hunters, the action kicks in every autumn when game migrates from the high country to its winter range. That’s when hunters make the migration here also, flocking to Grand Junction, Meeker, Rangely, Craig, Hayden, Steamboat Springs, Walden, Kremmling, Granby, Yampa and more to hunt some of the largest elk herds in the nation. Whether you fill your tag or not, the real reward

comes in hunting one of the most beautiful locations in the country. Colorado Hunter is designed to make your hunt easier, whether you’re hearing your first bugle or you’re a seasoned pro looking for a trophy. Inside, you’ll find tips on what to bring and where to go, information on herd updates, tales from local hunts, reader submitted photos and a directory listing everything you need for your stay, from outfitters and guides to meat processors and more. We hope you have a great hunt, and thanks again for visiting western Colorado.

From left: Renee Campbell, publisher, Craig Daily Press; Suzanne Schlicht, publisher, Steamboat Today; Jay Seaton, publisher, Grand Junction Daily Sentinel.

Luxury Drop Camp at 10,000 Feet Untracked. Uncrowded. Unbelievable.

20703 Barin Lake Dr. Grand Mesa, CO 81413

970-856-6240

info@thundermountainlodge.net www.thundermountainlodge.net

Operating Under Special US Permit

• Hot Showers • Full Kitchen & Bath Night $35 Per Per Person

Or 3 Meals Per Day • Espresso • Hunt Plan • Safety Plan • Base Camp Guide • Spot Emergency Locator Beacon • Unlimited Fishing Boat Rentals Night $195 Per Per Person

Premium Snowmobile Rentals & Gas on Location! 2016 | colorado hunter

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Inside Features Welcome message . ........................................................ 14 Letter from Colorado Parks & Wildlife . ........................... 18 Gear gurus ................................................................... 23

ShortShots

29

What’s new for 2016: pink the new orange, globe-trotting, smart rifles, taxidermy traditions, Olympian hunters, mountain lions, fees and seasons and more

TheHERDWord

59

Herd numbers for 2016 and the low-down on this year’s elk tag numbers

SkillSets

65

Combating buck fever, the gist on glassing, 8 tips for archers, safety and hunting hints, avoiding violations and more

HotSpots

83

Grand Mesa, Meeker, Craig, Grand County, shooting ranges and more

Fishing . ........................................................................ 91

Outfitters

94

Superior Guide Service and meat processors

HuntingTales

101

Father knows best, a family affair, a teen’s first hunt, stormed out and more

Readerphotos

108

Colorado-made gear..................................................114

HuntingDirectory

116

Western Colorado outfitters, Craig region, Grand Junction region and Steamboat Springs region businesses and Northwest Colorado visitor information 16 | visit cohunter.com for more


Publishers Suzanne Schlicht (Steamboat Today) Renee Campbell (Craig Daily Press) Jay Seaton (The Daily Sentinel, Grand Junction) editor Eugene Buchanan Writers Andy Bockelman, Dave Buchanan, Royce Carville, Patrick Kelly, Dan Olsen, Jim Patterson, Joel Reichenberger, Noelle Leavitt Riley, Dale Shrull, Trent Swanson Photographers Andy Bockelman, Dave Buchanan, John DePalma, Dave Dietrich, Jeff Draper, Dean Humphrey, Joel Reichenberger, John F. Russell, Bill Van Ness Creative services manager Lindsay Porter

Advertising sales Craig region: Sheli Steele, Cori Kroese, Melissa Valentine Grand Junction region: Grand Junction Media — Doug Freed, Lori Henricksen, Dennis Mitchell Steamboat Springs region: Bryna Sisk Advertising Design and Production Craig region: Janette Najera, Julia Perry Steamboat Springs region: Mirko Erspamer, Veronika Khanisenko, Mack Maschmeier, Chris McGaw, Jessica Wagner Grand Junction region: Grand Junction Media

Colorado Hunter is published once per year by the Steamboat Today and distributed free throughout western Colorado. It is available online at ColoradoHunter.com For advertising information, Call 970-875-1782 (Craig region); 970-871-4243 (Steamboat Springs region); 970-256-4289 (Grand Junction region). To get a copy mailed to your home, Call Audrey Dwyer at 970-871-4229 or Gary Cole at 970-875-1785. on the cover: A bull elk bugles in the backcountry of Northwest Colorado. photo by John DePalma

2016 | colorado hunter

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Wildlifeupdate

a letter From colorado parKS and WildliFe By Ron Velarde, NW regional manager, Colorado Parks and Wildlife

W

elcome to Colorado and the 2016 hunting season. You are hunting in one of the country’s premier big game hunting areas, and we’re glad you chose Colorado as your destination. We look forward to helping you have a great hunt. Colorado offers hunters what few other states can offer: some of the largest big game herds in the country and rugged wilderness. For ron Velarde many, it’s an experience not too far removed from CPW Northwest regional manager what the pioneers experienced when they settled the West. Due to the challenges of hunting in Colorado, prepare yourself, and be ready to adapt your strategies to sudden changes in weather conditions, road closures and other events. Successfully overcoming these challenges often provides memories that will last a lifetime. Remember, a hunt does not always end with a harvest. Spending time with friends and family in our beautiful mountains is a reward in and of itself; however, by doing your homework and adapting your strategies as needed, you can significantly increase your chances. There is a significant amount of public land in Northwest Colorado, allowing sportsmen plenty of hunting opportunities. With a good set of maps, such as those at cpw.state.co.us/learn/pages/maps.aspx, huntdata.com or coloradohuntingmaps. com, sportsmen can get much of the information they need, including GMU boundaries and other important information. The use of modern equipment, such as GPS units and Google Earth, is also highly advised. Remember, it’s your responsibility to know private land boundaries; never trespass onto private land. Contacting the district wildlife manager responsible for your GMU is another good idea. They know the backcountry and are a valuable resource if you have questions about regulations, places to camp, access or general information about big game in the unit.

18 | visit cohunter.com for more

Hunt carefully and legally. This helps you remain safe, but also protects the species you’re hunting and demonstrates to the public that hunters are ethical and law-abiding. Remember, you are the best ambassador for the sport. During the rifle seasons, all hunters are required to wear 500 square inches of visible, fluorescent, orange garments, including any head covering, which is visible from 360 degrees. Beginning this year, hunters have the option of wearing pink instead of orange, however the size requirements are the same. Placing a camouflage backpack over an orange or pink vest or coat reduces your visibility. Visibility equals safety in the woods. Being 100 percent sure of your target before you shoot is critical and can help you avoid serious accidents, such as shooting the wrong animal, or worse. Always know the laws associated with hunting, including hunter education requirements, tagging procedures for a harvested animal and the proper methods of take. Regulation brochures can be found at cpw.state.co.us/thingstodo/pages/hunt.aspx Unfortunately, not everyone chooses to be responsible and ethical. If you see a wildlife violation occur, please call Operation Game Thief at 877-265-6648. You can find harvest stats, population objectives and general information in our NW Region Hunt Guide. Pick one up at a local CPW office, or download a PDF copy from our website at cpw.state.co.us/thingstodo/pages/biggamehuntguides.aspx. Winter conditions this year were severe in portions of the Yampa and White river drainages and were at the high end of average across the remainder of the region. Fortunately, big game animals entered the winter in good body condition. While substantial winter mortality occurred in some areas, hunting opportunity across the region was not adversely affected. In recent months, the region has received good moisture, leading to better-than-average forage conditions. Hunters should see healthy big game animals this fall. Elk populations in the NW Region remain within the desired long-term objective ranges in most herd units, and hunting opportunity in most units within the region is similar this year. Exceptions include increased cow license numbers in the Avalanche Creek and Bears Ears herds to maintain elk numbers within objective. License numbers in the Piney River and Frying Pan elk herds were reduced for 2016 in an attempt to increase the herds. Deer populations in many areas of the region are below the desired long-term objective. Exceptions include the Middle Park, State Bridge and Bears Ears herds. Decline in deer numbers led to the West Slope Mule Deer Strategy, a multi-faceted effort to stabilize the drop in the population. For more information, visit cpw.state. co.us/learn/pages/co-westslopemuledeerstrategysummit.aspx. But even though certain deer numbers are below desired levels, the proportion of buck deer is, and in many cases, well above, long-term objectives. This results in excellent hunting opportunities across the region. Pronghorn antelope herds across the region are generally stable. License availability is similar to previous years. Black bear populations within the NW region remain quite high, and abundant bear hunting licenses are available this year. A new bear season structure, initiated in 2015, allows hunters with a valid big game license during one of the four rifle hunting seasons to hunt bears in the area during any of the rifle big game seasons. See the regulation brochure for additional information. Finally, remember to have fun during your hunt. Enjoying the outdoors can be a great experience for an individual or a group, and spending time with friends and family can provide memories that will last a lifetime. Have a great hunt this year.


The hunT sTops here

21 Beers on tap | 15 Flavors of Wings The Tap House — A Steamboat staple since 1997 | colorado hunter | 19 729 Lincoln Avenue, steamboat springs — (970) 879-2431 2016


www.HaydenOutdoors.com

ROAN CREEK RANCH Located one hour from Grand Junction, this property has over 9 miles of private roads, 15 long deep canyons & 9 miles of the very private fishable Roan Creek. There are 3,167 deeded acres and 9,267 BLM acres all behind a locked gate. From sub irrigated bottoms thoughout to irrigated fields, this is an incredible ranch for sale.

ELK HORN LODGE 80 Acres • $498,500 • Rio Blanco Cty, CO This is a spectacular property with basically every outdoor attribute one could only dream of owning. As you enter the property it begins as a very grassy and small open area with tall mature pine trees and aspens. Overlooking the breathtaking spring fed pond you find the 2100 sq +/- cabin that is all on one level with 4 bedrooms and 2 baths.

ELK SPIRIT LODGE 89 Acres • $1,895,000 • Rio Blanco Cty, CO Sitting on what feels like the top of the world, with views of the Flattop’s Mountain Range. There are 90 fenced acres, post and rail turnout, round pen and loafing shed. Miles and miles of trails and roads for horseback riding, hiking and hunting. Suitbale for a year round residence.

Lonnie Gustin • Broker, Licensed in CO, UT & WY • (970) 629-0520 • Lonnie@HaydenOutdoors.com 20 | visit cohunter.com for more


www.HaydenOutdoors.com

SOLD

MILLION DOLLAR VIEWS | 48 Acres | Rio Blanco Cty, CO | $1,100,000 Your million dollar views feature an incredible home with over 5900 square feet of finished space. This amazing home is located on 48 deeded acres close to National Forest and State wildlife area. Located east of Meeker, Colorado just above the White River and Lake Avery.

SOLD

MARTIN RANCH

100 MILE VIEWS

590 Acres • $1,300,000 • Rio Blanco Cty, CO 13. The Ranch consists of 590 deeded acres that borders BLM lands on the west side.

comforts of home and 20 acres to call your own

SOLD

SHEEP CREEK LAND

THE RIVER HOME

YAMPA RIVER RANCH & WATER RIGHTS

244 Acres • $390,400 • Rio Blanco Cty, CO South of Meeker and North of Rifle, lies 244 acres which has great hunting, grass and water.

The River Home is a stunning riverfront property consisting of over 2000 square feet of living space.

133.46 Acres • $1,499,000 • Routt Cty, CO 1/2 mile of riverfront with fishing, elk & deer hunting & 50 acres of flood irrigated farm ground.

Lonnie Gustin • Broker, Licensed in CO, UT & WY • (970) 629-0520 • Lonnie@HaydenOutdoors.com 2016 | colorado hunter

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www.HaydenOutdoors.com

SHAW RANCH | 1,135 Acres | Routt Cty, CO | $2,850,000 Incredible new listing on the market featuring 1135 +/- acres of hunting, grazing, farming and good water 45 minutes from Steamboat Springs.

SOLD

SOLD

TWO MOUNTAINS RANCH

EAST FORK OF THE WILLIAMS FORK RIVER

LIKELY RANCH

Excellent bull elk hunting during the rut and big mule deer bucks during the rut with a rifle in unit 5.

36 Acres • $859,000 • Rio Blanco Cty, CO 700 feet of both sides of the river with great fishing and a 1,386 sf custom cabin & big deck.

134 Acres • $1,390,000 • Representing Buyer Likely Ranch is 134 acres of irrigated meadows, pastures, water rights and improvements.

SOLD

ALHEIT RANCH

SHEEP CREEK RANCH

HOME, WATER RIGHTS & PASTURE

Featuring 1/2 mile of Willow Creek frontage with large mature Cottonwood trees and willows.

1,000 Acres • $1,300,000 • Rio Blanco Cty, CO A very well located ranch in hunting Unit 22 just outside of the town of Meeker, Colorado.

45 shares of water rights on Yampa River & income opportunities with a bunkhouse that sleeps 20.

Lonnie Gustin • Broker, Licensed in CO, UT & WY • (970) 629-0520 • Lonnie@HaydenOutdoors.com 22 | visit cohunter.com for more


What they Wear

three Js — JuStin, JaKe and JaSon — Share their Favorite gear JAke Bell

Hunting has been an integral part of Jake Bell’s life for as long as he can remember. “My dad took me duck hunting with him in Minnesota before I was old enough to hunt, and ever since then, it’s been my biggest passion,” he says, adding he killed his first mule deer with a .223 in New Mexico when he was 11. “I also spent a lot of time hunting whitetails and turkeys throughout high school.” Since moving to Steamboat Springs, the certified archery tech for Straightline Sports has turned his attention to big game, with rifle and bow. Apparel 1 “Sitka Gear is awesome. This pattern is Gore Optifade Open Country, scientifically designed using algorithms based off of ungulates’ vision and optimized for hunting out west. I’m wearing the Dewpoint jacket and pants, a great top and bottom outer piece for rifle hunting in the late season. They’re extremely lightweight and breathable, with taped seams and a Gore-tex membrane with a two-way stretch face-fabric for durability.” Boots 2 “The Lowa Tibet is a great late season boot. It’s made from Gore-tex, and is high-cut, with great torsional rigidity for the support needed for heavy pack-outs. A 100 percent leather upper makes it get better with time as it breaks in.” Gators 3 “The Gore-tex Sitka Stormfront gator is also great for late season hunts. Gators are a musthave when running around the mountains; they keep the inside of your boots free of snow and debris and your lower pants dry, whether you’re walking through tall wet grass or snow or crossing streams.”

Bino harness 4 “The Kuiu bino harness is my favorite, because it’s a one-handed system; the top two straps are connected to the binoculars instead of the case. This can be crucial in situations such as stalking.” Pack 5 “The Sitka Gear Bivy 30 is a lightweight pack that offers great support with a built-in aluminum frame. A removable sleeping pad doubles as a glassing pad. It’s a 3,000-cubic-inch pack that weighs less than 6 pounds and has a rain fly.”

4

rifle/scope 6 “I love my Sako 85, 300 Winchester short mag. I shoot a 180 grain Winchester XP3 bullet. The scope is a Swarovski Z3 3.5x10 with ballistic reticle. It’s a great combination for hunting in Colorado.

6

5 1

2

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2016 | colorado hunter

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JUsTin sAleeBy

Longtime fishing and hunting guide Justin Saleeby, 34, harvested his first animal at age 10 with his bow and has been hooked on it ever since, with several Pope and Young animals to his credit. “Growing up back East, people told me hunting and fishing wasn’t a job,” he says. “So I moved to Steamboat Springs.” A certified bow technician, he’s the hunting manager and lead guide for Cutty Creek Outfitting and a fly fishing guide for Straightline Sports. “Even as a kid, hunting and fishing have always been my passion,” he says. “Most of my days now are spent sharing that with others.”

3

Binos 1 “These are Swarovski EL Range 10x42. They make the best field optics available. I like the range finder/bino combo to eliminate weight and increase efficiency. Most range finders have a small field of view, meaning more time for target acquisition. The EL Range has 90 percent light transmission, making them extremely bright even in low light. Knowing accurate distance can mean the difference between success and the one that got away.” Boots 2 “Crispi is an Italian boot maker, and everyone knows Italians make great shoes. I use the Idaho GTX for early season and the Guide Boot for late season. They’re lightweight, waterproof and durable. They come with a full Gore-Tex bootie inside, making them totally waterproof.”

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Clothing 3 “Kuiu is the most suitable for my backcountry expeditions. They use excellent materials and design it specifically for my hunting needs. The fit is exact and provides great function in the field. And the computer-generated camo patterns are perfect for Colorado. I use everything from their rain gear to bino bivy.” Packs 4 “Mystery Ranch’s Cabinet pack is my new favorite. It’s lightweight and durable and features a load sling, so, when packing game, it handles heavy weight in stride. A number of sizes ensure proper fit in a variety of color options. Best of all, they’re based in the hunting Mecca of Bozeman.” Bow 5 “The Bowtech BTX-31 is my weapon of choice. It generates a speed rating of 350 FPS, making it a great choice for big game. It has a smaller grip than previous Bowtechs and the larger cams give it a larger feel even thought it’s still compact.”

24 | visit cohunter.com for more

2

Bow sight 6 “Being on Spot Hogg’s pro staff means I’m kind of partial, but my three-pin Hogg Father has been my go-to sight for the past four years. I enjoy the three fixed pins but also the option of adjusting for long range, if needed. They’re reliable, with all metal construction and bulletproof pins; they haven’t failed me yet.”

Arrows 7 “Easton Injexion arrows are awesome. They combine strength and durability in a micro-diameter shaft, providing great down-range penetration. I like the A/C Injexion for combining the weight of aluminum with the durability of carbon, giving you the best of both worlds.”

Calls 8 “This Out West custom call is made right here in Oak Creek. Their cow calls are excellent, and because they’re a small company, not many people have them. When elk hear the same Walmart call all the time, they learn to stay away. The Out West gives me a unique sound, making wary bulls more interested.”


GIVEAWAY

Win a 5-day elk hunt on private land

2016 | colorado Hunter

| 25


JAson BlACkWell

A seven-year hunting guide in Texas, whose employer co-owns Meeker’s Elk Creek Lodge, Jason Blackwell, 41, moved to Craig from Pampa, Texas, four years ago for one thing: the hunting — in particular, for elk and wild turkeys. In Texas, his boss would bring the crew to Northwest Colorado to bow hunt elk, and now, he gets to do so every season, alongside his 13-year-old son Ty, who got his first elk last year.

6

4

5 8

Binos 1 “These are 8x42 Vortex Optics. They’re lightweight, but have strong visuals. They’re also bino-harnessed, making them hands-free; they also don’t swing while you’re walking or get caught on a fence. They stay tight to your body and are easily accessible.”

1

Bow sight 5 “This is a Spot Hogg bow sight; they’re one of the first companies to use wrapped, fiber-optic pins, which makes them brighter. It allows more light to hit the fiber optic, which makes the pins look like they’re glowing.”

7

stalker decoy 6 “This is the Stalker, by Migs Decoys. It attaches to your bow, allowing you to walk right up on your game. I won it last year through a Facebook contest. It works great for sneaking up on animals.”

Boots 2 “I wear size 10.5 Wolverines. They’re waterproof and lightweight, which is good for long days hunting.”

3

Clothing 3 “The brand I use is Mossy Oak, but the actual name of the camo is Obsession. The colors work great for blending into your surroundings during early bow hunting in September.”

2

hunt huMor 26 | visit cohunter.com for more

Bow 4 “I use a Bowtech RPM 360. It’s fast and shoots flat. The bow is quiet and hardhitting. I’ve shot two deer and one elk since I bought it three years ago for about $2,500.”

TWo HUnTers

Arrows 7 “For me, it’s Easton Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) arrows. They’re small in diameter and have great penetration.” Pocket knife 8 “I make handcrafted knives and use those often, but this one is my everyday Schrade pocket knife, which I take everywhere I go. It’s great for everything.”

Two hunters were dragging their dead deer back to their car. Another hunter approached pulling his. “Hey, I don’t want to tell you how to do something...but it’s much easier if you drag the deer in the other direction. Then the antlers won’t dig into the ground.” After the third hunter left, the two decided to try it. A while later one said to the other, “You know, that guy was right. This is a lot easier!” “Yeah, but we’re getting farther from the truck,” the other said.


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ShortShotS What’S neW For 2016 W

hat’s new for hunting in western Colorado this year? Plenty, affecting everything from license sales to youth hunting options. We checked in with Colorado Parks & Wildlife for changes to put on your radar. Changes to license refunds Beginning April 1, 2016, all licenses must be returned to CPW or postmarked at least 30 days prior to the start of the season for which they are valid in order to be eligible for a refund or preference point reinstatement. For details, visit cpw.state.co.us/licenses. new Hunter education options For new hunters, “test-out” and apprentice license options are available for the hunter education certification requirement. Test-out option: Hunters age 50 or older or U.S. military personnel defined as activeduty, reserve-duty, veteran and National Guard can test out of the hunter education requirements by creating a customer identification number and taking a onetime, online test. Apprentice license option: The free apprentice license is a one-year waiver of the hunter education requirement and can be obtained once. It is valid from April 1 - March 31 and allows for the purchase

of hunting licenses. The apprentice license holder must be at least 10 years old. For details, visit cpw.state.co.us/ huntered.

2016 liCense Fees ($10 2016 Habitat Stamp required) Subtract $3 for over-the-counter

moose hunting open in Unit 43 After the completion of a successful moose reintroduction program, GMU 43 is now open for antlered moose hunting. See pages 53-55 of the 2016 Big Game Brochure for details.

Deer — Draw (limited) ■ Resident — $34 ■ Youth resident — $13.75 ■ Non-resident (with fishing) — $364 ■ Youth non-resident (with fishing) — $103.75

Bear hunts added Private-land-only bear hunts have been added to GMUs 15,27, 181 and 371, within Middle Park, to help reduce urban bear conflicts and increase harvest opportunity. See page 58 in the 2016 Big Game Brochure for details.

elk — Draw (limited) ■ Resident — $49 ■ Youth resident — $13.75 ■ Non-resident bull/either sex (with fishing) — $619 ■ Non-resident cow (with fishing) — $461 ■ Non-resident either sex — $616 ■ Youth non-resident (with fishing) — $100.75

Hoof overgrowth CPW’s Wildlife Health Program is investigating Hoof Overgrowth in moose and elk. If you harvest an animal with overgrown hooves, please report it immediately to a wildlife officer, your local CPW office or by email to karen.fox@state.co.us. Include your closest estimation of where the animal was harvested. GPS coordinates are helpful.

Pronghorn —Draw (limited) ■ Resident — $34 ■ Youth resident — $13.75 ■ Non-resident — $374 ■ Youth non-resident — $103.75

Bear — Draw (limited) ■ Resident — $44 ■ Non-resident — $354 moose — Draw (limited) ■ Resident — $254 ■ Non-resident — $2,064

*Non-resident fishing licenses are good through March 31, 2017. Prices include a 25-cent searchand-rescue fee, a 75-cent surcharge for the Wildlife Management Education Fund and a $3 application fee for limited licenses applied for in the draw.

HUnTinG seAsons

muzzleloading ■ Deer/Elk/Moose — Sept. 10 to 18 ■ Black Bear (over-the-counter with caps) — Sept. 10 to 18 ■ Pronghorn — Sept. 21 to 29

Archery ■ Deer/Elk — Aug. 27 to Sept. 25 ■ Pronghorn; bucks only — Aug. 15 to 31 ■ Pronghorn; either sex —Sept. 1 to 20 rifle ■ Black Bear (over-the-counter with caps) — Sept. 2 to 30 ■ Black Bear; limited (by draw) — Sept. 2 to 30 ■ Moose — Sept. 12 to 27 ■ Moose — Oct. 1 to 14

Pronghorn; draw — Oct. 1 to 7 Limited Elk; first season — Oct. 15 to 19 ■ Deer/Elk; second season — Oct. 22 to 30 ■ Deer/Elk; third season — Nov. 5 to Nov. 13 ■ Deer/Elk; fourth season — Nov. 16 to 20 ■ Black Bear (over-the-counter with caps) — concurrent with deer/elk rifle seasons ■ ■

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thinK pinK

By Dave Buchanan

O

hunting-season violations. Donovan also suggests the new garments may be good for small business. “Hunting is a billion dollar industry in Colorado, and if we can diversify the product lines of some small businesses, that seems like a great advantage of the bill, as well,” says Donovan. Fluorescent colors in a camouflage pattern, though common, are not legal as hunting garments. Not everyone is pleased with the adoption of pink. When Minnesota lawmakers described it as an effort to recruit more women into hunting, advocates for women hunters rebelled, saying women hunt for food, fun and/ or empowerment, not because of fashion. “We felt like it was demeaning,” says Sarah Ingle, president of Wisconsin’s Women’s Hunting and Sporting Association. Jean Bergerson, past president of Minnesota-based Women Hunting & Fishing in All Seasons, echoes the support for safety but says she’s uneasy with the argument of pink being an attractant to women and girls. “I don’t care what color it is, as long as it’s safe,” Bergerson says. “But I guess what disturbs me is there should be far more reasons for women to go outdoors and explore

COURTESY OUTDOOR OVERLOAD

ne of the more common questions big-game hunters get from non-hunters is, “But can’t they see you?” The reference is to the daylight fluorescent orange the state requires big-game hunters to wear. For a generation, Colorado has required hunters of deer, elk, pronghorn, bear or moose to wear at least 500 square inches of solid daylight fluorescent (blaze) orange above the waist, including a head covering. Bowhunters are not required to wear fluorescent orange during archery-only seasons. The proper response, other than a brusque “No,” is that, while fluorescent orange is unnatural and borderline obnoxious to humans, research indicates a deer’s eye is unable to detect it as the unnaturally bright color. This year, however, fluorescent orange won’t be the only color deer and elk won’t see in the woods. Last April, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed into law a bill allowing hunters to wear fluorescent pink as an alternative to fluorescent orange. The Colorado Wildlife Commission adopted fluorescent pink as the second legal color for hunting gar-

ments in June. The bill’s sponsor, state Sen. Kerry Donovan (DEagle County), says the legislation sends the message that women like to hunt, too. “I want to send the message that women belong in hunting,” Donovan says. “I grew up in the hand-medowns of my dad and my brothers.” Research indicates deer are color-blind to red, seeing it as more of a gray color, and are perhaps even less likely to notice fluorescent pink. An article in the Twin Cities (Minnesota) Pioneer Press quotes Majid Sarmadi, a professor on the science of color at the University of Wisconsin, as saying “the right pink and the right orange ... could be equally safe.” Sarmadi said fluorescent pink might be a better choice for fall deer hunters, because pink doesn’t appear in the fall foliage colors, while orange does. Not all states have fluorescent orange requirements, a fact that causes some confusion among nonresident hunters. CPW reports the failure to wear fluorescent orange, or not wearing enough as one of the more-common

Colorado this year joins Wisconsin in allowing hunters to choose between fluorescent pink and fluorescent orange as legal outwear during big game hunting. A minimum of 500 square inches of either color, including headgear, must be worn.

Q:

Which side of a deer has the most meat?

A:

The inside

Q: A:

What do deers call hunters? Doe foes

hunt huMor 2016 | colorado hunter

| 33

ShortShotS

neW color JoinS orange aS legal For hunting


PHOTO COURTESY OF PROHUNT CONCIERGE

ShortShotS Amy Martin Shaffer and clients of The ProHunt Concierge celebrate a successful 2015 hunt of a Bezoar ibex in Turkey.

gloBe-trotting

prohunt concierge ServeS hunterS near and Far By Andy Bockelman

T

he memories made on a hunting trip can last forever, but as Amy Martin Shaffer puts it, the one-tenth of a second it takes to pull the trigger can only happen after hours, days, weeks or months of preparation. Shaffer owns and operates The ProHunt Concierge, a Craig-based hunting service that arranges hunts around the world. The business has been around for five years, but Shaffer has been in the field for even longer as a lifelong athlete and outdoorswoman. A competitor in the 2000 Summer Olympics in women’s rowing, Shaffer has long been an avid bow and rifle hunter, and operating out of Craig has let her surround herself with a community that treasures the sport. ProHunt functions as a booking and consulting agency that can open global locations to hunters, as well as outfitters and guides, to aid in their activities 34 | visit cohunter.com for more

on virtually every continent. Political unrest in certain countries can affect hunters’ visits, meaning it’s Shaffer’s job to stay abreast of such issues to keep clients safe. One of the more complicated aspects is arranging permits for firearms in areas experiencing turmoil. “You have to make sure you have the right outfitter who can provide help for your clients,” she says. “I also coordinate with insurance companies that do medical and security evacuations. There are ex-Navy SEAL groups that will go in and pull hunters out.” Companies such as Ripcord and Global Rescue are among such services. Shaffer has recently turned her attention to bookings within the United States. “I’m focusing more on domestic hunts, because I want to make sure America is getting attention and bringing in business locally,” she says. Among outfitters in Northwest Colorado, she often

collaborates with Western Outdoors Adventures, owned by Jeff Musgrave, out of Meeker. The majority of her clients seek elk and deer, while others go after antelope and even mountain lions. Many clients are from outside the country, and Shaffer’s many international connections serve her well there. “What’s great is Northwest Colorado provides a lot of opportunities at a low cost,” she says. “There’s a huge interest still for the do-it-yourself hunter who just needs a little extra help.” While she’s traveled everywhere from Canada to Turkey to New Zealand alongside clients and for her own hunts, she says Colorado remains a premier destination worldwide for its management of game populations. “There’s still wide open spaces and good public land for hunters, and it’s beautiful,” she says. “The whole region is a hot spot, because it really does exemplify the Wild West.”


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ShortShotS

licenSe loWdoWn getting a late SeaSon tag

By Dave Buchanan

M

iss the license deadline? Here are a few options for picking up a late tag. Without drawing a limited license in the computer draw, start perusing the list of over-thecounter (OTC) and over-the-counter with caps (bear and elk) licenses available online and at CPW offices and license agents statewide. Unlimited over-thecounter licenses are licenses that are unlimited in number and available in a range of units and seasons. There are some unlimited over-the-counter licenses for cow and either-sex archery elk, and bull elk in the second and third rifle seasons, as well as other choices. (A list of vendors and regulations can be found at cpw. state.co.us.) If you’re not too picky, pick up an unlimited OTC bull elk tag for one of the many GMUs on the Western Slope. While there are plenty of licenses available, these popular walk-up tags generally mean you won’t be hunting alone. You can also go online for leftover licenses, tags that didn’t get claimed during the June limited-license draw or the following leftover draw. But as the state’s elk population gets closer to desired levels, these coveted extra licenses are starting to disappear, and you may have to settle for an unfamiliar unit. Another possibility is private-land licenses, for which permission from the landowner is required beforehand. It’s not impossible to hunt prime ranch land, as several ranchers may allow cow hunts late in the year after the paying customers have gone home. “Offering last-minute license help to hunters really isn’t that rare,” says Meeker CPW terrestrial biologist Darby Finley. “It depends on what kind of hunt people want, but usually, I’ll send them to areas with lots of public land, where they don’t have to do much scouting, where there’s good access and chances to see some elk. But there’ll likely be a lot of hunters, since everyone likes easy access.” Another option: finding last-minute space with an outfitter. “The chances of getting on a guided hunt at the last

hunt huMor 36 | visit cohunter.com for more

minute are better than they used to be,” says Collbran outfitter Colby Olford, adding that the Colorado Outfitter Association (coloradooutfitters.org) can supply information on its members. “Many outfitters aren’t booked as full as they once were, due to the draw and the license limitations.” So there’s hope for the last-minute hunter. As long as there is a day left in the season, there’s time for you to go hunting.

liCenses 101

Colorado offers several different types of big-game licenses and different options for purchasing them. Limited licenses award licenses to hunters for specific units and dates. To get one, or preference points, hunters must apply for the draw in April. These are distributed through an application and drawing process and include public-land hunts, private-landonly licenses and Ranching for Wildlife (RFW) licenses. Private-land-only licenses include private lands within GMUs listed on the licenses, as well as State Trust Lands not leased by CPW but which have an active private recreational lease through the State Land Board (ask the landowner if this applies). Permission from private landowners is always needed before hunting with a private-land-only license. Ranching for Wildlife licenses are available to all Colorado residents. Resident hunters may apply to hunt a specific ranch, with each ranch having its own specific rules. Leftover draw licenses are those for elk and deer applicants only, giving them the first chance at the limited licenses left after the draw by checking the “Leftover Draw” box on the application where it states, “If unsuccessful, send me...”. They’re available starting July 21. Over-the-counter licenses with caps include a preset number of licenses and are available on a first-come, first-served basis for both resident and nonresident hunters. These are called licenses “with caps.” Over-the-counter unlimited licenses are available to both resident and nonresident hunters

THAnks, PAsTor

liCense AlloCATions

Nonresident allocations are determined by the average number of preference points a Colorado resident needed to draw a specific license during a three-year period that ended with the 2009 drawing. (Units with low numbers of available licenses may not have any remaining for nonresidents after resident licenses are drawn.) 1. For elk and deer hunt codes that required six or more points for a Colorado resident to draw, up to 20 percent may go to nonresidents. These hunts are designated in unit tables by a “+ ” under the “SEX” column. 2. For hunt codes that required fewer than six points for a Colorado resident to draw an elk or deer license, up to 35 percent may go to nonresidents. 3. Nonresident allocations may increase if licenses remain after all Colorado resident first choices have been drawn for that hunt code. 4. License allocations do not apply to privateland-only and Ranching For Wildlife licenses. 5. In a group of applications made up of both residents and nonresidents, all nonresidents in the group will count against the nonresident allocation.

also starting July 21. There are an unlimited number of these licenses that may be purchased any time until the day before your hunting season starts. After the season starts, they are available at CPW offices only, except for archery elk OTC licenses and plains elk OTC licenses, which can be purchased at any license agent. Both are sold online, by phone at 800-244-5613 or at CPW locations and license agents starting July 21. Leftover limited licenses are available starting Aug. 4 to both resident and nonresident hunters. They are the limited licenses remaining after the draw and leftover draw processes. They go on sale in person and by phone at 800-244-5613 Aug. 4. These licenses are sold by different methods at different license agents and are available online on the CPW website, starting midnight Aug. 5.

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Smart riFle conundrum Fair game or Fair play?

By Dave Buchanan

W

hen does technology win and fair chase lose? The question is more than mere philosophical musings; it’s the basis of a fair chase policy developed this year by Colorado Parks and Wildlife. The policy, based on similar policies developed by other state game agencies, follows the sideboards of fair chase principles as set forward in the early days of the Boone & Crockett Club and the Pope & Young Club. The respected groups defined fair chase as “the ethical, sportsmanlike and lawful pursuit” of game animals without a hunter having “an improper advantage over such animals.” Hunters for millennia have sought advantages in their pursuit of animals whose senses are honed to a far greater degree than those of humans. From spears to bows to increasingly powerful and accurate firearms, finding a quicker and more effective way to put meat on the table long has been the goal of hunters. But rarely before has technology advanced so quickly and so far that even the most-elusive animals face a disadvantage. Today, among the choices are hand-held liveaction cams, which can transmit live video of hunting and wildlife movement to monitors hundreds or

thousands miles away. And there is the “smart rifle,” mounted with a laser- and computer-aided scope that, according to CPW regulations manager Danielle Isenhart, “allows shooters to shoot further and beyond their normal abilities.” Similar to a computer video game, a shooter uses a laser to lock the scope onto a target by pushing a button near the trigger. Once locked, the trigger is pulled. But the scope, not the shooter, makes the decision when to fire. Only after the scope determines the rifle is pointed in the right direction does the rifle fire. Wind, distance the steadiness of the rifle all are considered and accounted for by the computer. In addition, says Jason Schauble, president of TrackingPoint, maker of the $22,000 rifle, the scope has a built-in laser range finder, a ballistics computer and a Wi-Fi transmitter to stream live video and audio to a nearby iPad. Every shot is recorded and can be replayed or posted to social media. “Think of it like a smart rifle,” Schauble says. “You have a smart car; you got a smart phone; well, now, we have a smart rifle.” Opposition to the smart rifle and live cams being used for sport hunting came from wildlife managers

and sportsmen groups. Kent Ingram, representing the Colorado Wildlife Federation and Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, told the wildlife commission both groups are against the smart rifle. “As much as we use technology in our hunting, some technology is OK, and some is not,” Ingram told the commission. “One of the key questions, especially with these items, is how much technology is too much? And what is fair chase, and do these animals have the advantage? The answer is, they have to.” CPW spokesman Mike Porras notes the fair chase policy “refers to ethical hunting in the face of advancing technology, whether it be drones, advanced ammunition, arrows with built in transmitters or any device that gives hunters an unfair advantage.” The wildlife commission decided the smart rifle and live-action cams step over the line of fair chase and banned both advances as providing “an improper advantage.” However, the issue is far from settled. As Dan Gates, of the Colorado Trappers Association, said during a recent commission meeting in Meeker, “If you look at how some of our opposition thinks, everything we do as trappers is improper, according to this definition.” 2016 | colorado hunter

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Taxidermist Mark Zimmerman examines his handiwork in the form of a six-point bull elk, a mount that won him multiple honors in the 2016 Colorado State Taxidermy Championships in June.

taXidermy titan

craig taXidermiSt preServeS trade By Andy Bockelman

D

ozens of eyes stare down from the walls of Mark Zimmerman’s workshop on the outskirts of Craig, each belonging to an animal that, if it weren’t completely motionless, you would swear was still alive. That’s the aim of Bullseye Taxidermy, a business Zimmerman has operated full-time for 13 years, en route to earning several prestigious awards. Beside trophy elk, deer and bear mounts in the Bullseye lobby, the wall is festooned with years of blue ribbons from taxidermy contests, the most recent being the 2016 Colorado State Taxidermy Championships. Mark took Masters Best of Category Gamehead, Taxidermist Choice Gamehead and the United Taxidermist Association Artisan Award for Taxidermist

Choice Best of Show for a six-point bull elk he entered, an animal shot by his mother, Margie, two years ago. He says he normally doesn’t use older bulls, due to their scarring from years of fighting, but found this elk still had a beautiful cape. “There’s a lot more that goes into it other than just putting a set of eyeballs in, putting the skin on and calling it good,” he says. Graduating from Colorado Institute of Taxidermy in 2003, Mark says he’s gained the most skills by competing in shows and picking up tips from seasoned pros. “You need to know their anatomy,” he says. “If you can put him back as close to what Mother Nature did, you can’t go wrong.” Mark has shown his work at contests in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Montana and New Mexico,

as well at a national event in Arkansas. His goal is to craft a piece that will last for many years, potentially a hunter’s lifetime, if they take proper care of it. “I’ve never had anybody bring a mount back and say I need to fix it,” he says. Leading up to hunting season, Mark gets help in the shop from his 16-year-old son, Drake, who the elder Zimmerman said began showing his talent at an early age. “When he was 5 years old, I’d cut off pieces of foam from my form, and he’d sculpt them into animal shapes,” Mark says. “He’s got an artistic eye.” While innate skill is a plus, the father and son also share a mantra that guides them in providing quality pieces: “Do it right the first time,” Mark says.

2016 | colorado hunter

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ShortShotS

Four men Fined For WildliFe violationS PHOTO COURTESY OF COLORADO PARKS AND WILDLIFE

olorado Parks and Wildlife recently unveiled details of a two-year investigation after the last of four individuals involved in the illegal take of a high-quality bull elk was sentenced in Garfield County Court. The bull was taken on private land not open to hunting in October 2014. After reaching a plea agreement Thad Bingham with his illegally taken elk. with the Garfield County District Attorney’s office in exchange for lesser penalties, 44-year-old Thad Bingham, of Fruita, who killed the elk, pleaded guilty to trespassing and illegal possession of wildlife. He paid more than $200 in court fines and was ordered to donate $5,000 to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Prior to his plea agreement, he faced more than $12,000 in fines for several charges. Bingham, along with Brian Scheer, 45, Barrett Rowles, 48, and Josh Fitzsimmons, 45, all from the Western Slope, participated in the illegal hunt after trespassing onto private land on the Roan Plateau, northwest of Rifle. Scheer was accused of trespassing by complicity. The four were initially charged with trespassing, illegal transportation of wildlife, failing to contact the landowner prior to entering private property to pursue wounded game and the illegal possession of a trophy-class 6x6 bull elk. In Colorado, illegally killing an elk with at least 6 points on one antler can yield up to an additional $10,000 in fines over the standard criminal penalties, known as the ‘Samson Law’ in Colorado. Bingham and Scheer are employees of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, working at the Horsethief Canyon Native Fish Facility Ponds near Fruita. “Poachers come from all walks of life, but everyone is subject to the same rules and regulations,” says Area Wildlife Manager JT Romatzke, of Grand Junction. “Colorado Parks and Wildlife will prosecute anyone to the full extent in cases like this one.” All four men face up to a five-year suspension of their hunting and fishing privileges in Colorado and 43 other Wildlife Violator Compact states, pending a review by a CPW hearings officer. CPW learned of the violations after Bingham posted a photo of himself with the elk online. Wildlife officers learned of the photo a few weeks later, and upon further examination, they recognized landmarks in the background of the snapshot, confirming the bull was killed in an area well into private property and closed to hunting. CPW officers traveled to the site, where they recovered evidence of the crime, then executed a search warrant at Bingham’s home in Fruita and searched a federal fish hatchery in Grand Junction. During their search, they recovered additional evidence linking Bingham and his three accomplices to the illegal take of the bull, including the bull’s antlers, seized by CPW. “This was good work by all officers involved,” says Romatzke. “We cannot stress this enough: If you commit a wildlife crime, no matter who you are, we are going to do what we can to find you. Colorado game wardens know every rock, tree and canyon in the state and are constantly on the lookout for people that ignore our wildlife laws.” To anonymously report a wildlife violation, call Operation Game Thief at 877-2656648. Rewards are available for information that leads to a conviction.

2016 | colorado hunter

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ShortShotS

From the olympic gameS to Big game BoW hunting With olympianS Johnny Spillane and todd lodWicK

W

hile Northwest Colorado is home to trophy elk and deer, it’s also home to a few hunters who have earned trophies — or at least medals — from the Olympics. Local Nordic combined skiers Todd Lodwick and Johnny Spillane helped their ski team bring home seven silver medals from the Vancouver Games — enough to hang from every point of a Routt or Moffat county bull. Retired from competition, they both now happily set their bow sights on big game rather than the Olympic Games. “Archery season is what I live for, and the month of September is it,” says Spillane, who owns Steamboat Flyfisher. “There’s adrenaline in it, but it’s really about getting deep into the woods. I generally get an elk every other year or so with my bow. Usually, I’m hunting for something big during archery season, and then I always shoot a cow with a rifle for the freezer.” Spillane and Lodwick both grew up fishing and hunting in Northwest Colorado. While training for the Olympics — Lodwick has competed in a record six Winter Olympics, and Spillane three — used to cut into their time spent bugling elk, they now have more time than before to break out their bows. And they’re as accomplished with bows as they are in Nordic combined. During one recent 24-hour hunt in New Mexico, Lodwick harvested a 343-inch bull elk and an 18.5inch, 400-pound black bear, both record book animals. He’s also on the pro staff of camouflage clothing manufacturer Mossy Oak, which explains the camou-colored Uvex ski jumping helmet he wore to the podium at the 2009 World Championships. Lodwick draws an easy analogy between Nordic combined skiing and bow hunting. “Competing in Nordic combined is a lot like hunting,” says Lodwick, who once packed out an elk on his mountain bike. “You start out to conquer something, and then, it all comes together. It’s like a long stalk.” As with racing, Lodwick, who says he has only missed filling his tag once, takes a cerebral approach to his hunts.

“I understand the animals,” he says. “I want to out-smart them and figure out what their next move is. I’ve touched a cow (elk) on the nose with the tip of my broadhead.” If it’s not fishing — Six-time Winter Olympian Todd Lodwick for trophy trout, the highlight of Spillane’s year comes every hotel rooms while on the World Cup circuit. “It’s about autumn when he, too, picks up his bow. His favorite enjoying the outdoors with friends and family.” trips involve joining his brother, Sam, in the Mount Spillane started hunting with a rifle at age 10, “the Zirkel Wilderness Area. first year you can legally get your license.” He then “I can tell hunting stories all day long, but it’s not took up archery at age 17 and has been at it every year about the hunt,” says Spillane, who used to tie flies in since.

“Competing in Nordic combined is a lot like hunting. You start out to conquer something, and then, it all comes together. It’s like a long stalk.”

PHOTO COURTESY OF RALPHA RAMOS

By Eugene Buchanan

Six-time winter Olympian Todd Lodwick with a recently harvested bull.

2016 | colorado hunter

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PHOTO BY JOHN F. RUSSELL

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“I love the challenge of it,” Spillane says. “Plus, there are fewer hunters, and the ones that are out there, you don’t see.” He says his biggest bull came in 2007, a 302-inch, five-point he got deep in the Zirkel Wilderness Area. “It was a bit of a nightmare getting it out,” he says, adding that he got help from fellow Nordic combined teammate, Bill DeMong. He adds his favorite time of year is September, when the leaves have turned, the temperatures have dropped and the bulls are bugling. “That’s when it’s time to get into the backcountry,” he says. “When my brother and I finally get into our area, it feels like home. We’ve experienced every kind of weather and challenge the Rockies can muster, and we relish the opportunity to get out every year.” He adds that their coaches never minded them taking time off from training to hunt. “It’s good crosstraining, both mentally and physically,” he says. “We’re pretty active, oftentimes out running around for eight hours a day.” Comparing the two, he says the adrenaline rush is the same. “They’re both a thrill,” says Spillane. “When a big bull charges you, it gets your heart pumping like a race does.” And as with competing in the Olympics, it’s all about the experience. “Sharing time outdoors with the special people in my life will always be my favorite part of hunting,” he says.

OK, so longtime hunting outfitter and Alpine ski racer Lonny Vanatta, 59, might have eschewed the Olympics to race on the pro circuit. But he’s still one of the most accomplished Alpine racers in U.S. Ski Team and pro tour history, winning a whopping 20 races, en route to becoming the World Pro Slalom champion in 1981. The same could be said for his prowess hunting. For more than 30 years Vanatta has been in the outfitting business in Northwest Colorado, running Vanatta Outfitters with his brother, Dirk. As for his personal hunts, he’s taken more than 100 animals with a bow, including 17 that have qualified for Pope & Young record books. In 1989 he took a world record Stone Sheep, and he completed his “grand slam” of sheep in 2013. Hunter satisfaction remains a top priority for his outfitting business, which is based on a 25,000-acre ranch north of Hayden. He maintains, “We don’t do this for the money, we do it for the lifestyle.” “I can’t imagine doing anything else,” Vanatta says, adding some of his most memorable trips have been hunting Brown’s Park trophy areas. “I like hunting for trophies more than younger animals. Those trips are always pretty special. It’s a lot of long days and we work hard, but when we get into the woods and hear that first elk bugle in the morning, it makes our job all worth it. I also like it during the rut, when the leaves are turning. It’s just a special time to be outdoors.” 46 | visit cohunter.com for more

PHOTO BY JOHN F. RUSSELL

lonny VAnATTA

Three-time Olympian Johnny Spillane, owner of Steamboat Flyfisher, wets a line on the Yampa River.


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royal treatment By Andy Bockelman

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all it paying it forward. Last August, the Veterans Hunt Program through the Grand Junction Veterans Health Care System gave two former soldiers the chance to hunt in Moffat County. Former Navy personnel Elmer Beights and Sydney Medina, of Grand Junction, went on a guided hunt during antelope season on the Bord Gulch Ranch, marking the program’s first World War II-era and female participants. “A lot of veterans feel like they can’t go hunting because of a disability, and this gives them the opportunity,” says the program’s Matt Lucas, adding the project, which has benefited more than 70 vets in the last decade, is the only such program in the nation available through the Veterans Administration office. “It’s a very positive program.” Beights’ Navy career began in 1943, in the South Pacific, and eventually moved to the Reserves, before finishing as a radarman, first class. At 90, he felt his age might be a hindrance, despite having hunted in the region before. Pronghorn was a new challenge.

“I’ve never had an experience like this; it was just beyond reality,” he says, crediting guide Ray Owens. “I don’t think I could hack an elk hunt, but this was great.” Hunting was new for Medina, a third-generation soldier and part of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom from 2004 to 2006. Medina’s firearms training had previously been limited to handguns, and she finished her hunter’s safety class and rifle training just in time for the trip. “I found the program by accident, and I thought it’d be a perfect opportunity,” she says. “It was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. I’m a mother of three kids, and they all want to go now, too.” Medina’s time in the Navy wasn’t easy. While serving, she went through a divorce and had to choose between her career or keeping custody of her children. Eventually she received an honorable discharge. Posttraumatic stress disorder has also been a struggle, and she’s only recently sought ways to handle it by stepping out of her comfort zone. “I felt comfortable going with other veterans and grateful there were donors willing to do all this,” she

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hunting program helpS veteranS

U.S. Navy veterans Elmer Beights and Sydney Medina hold up their pronghorn antelope bucks harvested while participating in the Veterans Hunt Program through the Grand Junction Veterans Health Care System.

says, adding going with Beights was an honor. Lucas credits the local people and businesses who have pitched in to make the hunt possible, including the Bord Gulch Ranch, Gilliland family, Safari Club International Yampa Valley Chapter, Big Cat Taxidermy and Mountain Man Taxidermy. “The community has been great,” he says. “We couldn’t do this program without everyone’s support.”

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urBan Jungle living With mountain lionS

By Dave Buchanan

P

eople spending their time in the pursuit of mountain lions understand the dangers of their passion. It’s what happens when a lion enters the unsuspecting urban world — as has recently happened in Boulder, Paonia, Durango, Rangely and other places where urban living interfaces with wild country — that things get particularly eventful. Residents learn that having deer and antelope play nearby also means predators aren’t far behind. Nothing illustrates this better than a June 17 incident south of Aspen, in which a 5-year-old suffered serious, but not life-threatening, injuries after a runin with a young mountain lion. Wildlife officials say the boy, who was playing in his backyard, probably stepped unwittingly on the lion, which was lying unseen beneath a tree. The boy’s mother rescued the child (the lion weighed about 40 pounds) and called law enforcement officers, who later killed the lion. The

next morning, federal wildlife officers tracked and killed another young lion in the vicinity. These lions, thought to be siblings and estimated to be 7 to 9 months old, were too young to be out on their own, and wildlife officials are guessing the mother lion had been killed, leaving the two kittens orphaned. The Roaring Fork Valley is known to have a healthy population of mule deer and, it follows, mountain lions, also known as pumas. Ron Velarde, Northwest Region manager for Parks and Wildlife, said autopsies on the young pumas revealed both had deer hair — but not deer meat — in their stomachs, indicating the lions had been too young to make a proper kill and had been scavenging a deer carcass. Although the wildlife agency receives regular reports of mountain lion sightings, it’s rare anything more happens. According to CPW, since 1990 Colorado has seen

PHOTO COURTESY D COETZEE A grown mountain lion relaxes on a bench, seemingly unperturbed by its urban setting. The urban/wildlands interface often creates unwanted conflicts between humans and wildlife.

hunt huMor 52 | visit cohunter.com for more

three confirmed human deaths by mountain lions and since 1970, only 17 reports of lions causing injury. “People around here are reporting more (lion) sightings and are on high alert” after the incident, says wildlife commissioner Bill Kane, of Aspen. He adds residents of the upper Roaring Fork Valley “are modifying their behavior; runners no longer are going out alone or as early.” Do more sightings mean there suddenly are more mountain lions in Colorado? Probably not. The population estimates of between 4,500 and 7,000 lions have remained steady. What’s changed is the number of people living in Colorado, a number that state officials expect to grow another 2.3 million by 2040. And seven of the 10 fastest-growing counties are on the Western Slope. “Some of the encounters may be precipitated by an increase in human activity in wildlife habitat,” says Kane. “There are more ATVs, more mountain bikers, just more people recreating in wildlife habitat.” In 2014, hunters killed 476 lions, in line with the long-term average of 450-500 according to CPW data. An estimated 150 or so more are killed each year in non-hunting incidents, such as vehicle collisions and game-damage claims. Research by CPW indicates hunters have a marked influence on puma populations, and without sport hunting, puma populations can increase. But hunters rarely can do anything about the urban refuges and open spaces where hunting is not allowed. These safe areas attract deer and, in turn, their predators, which may look at a human as a much simpler quarry than an alert and speedy deer. CPW has long made available information on how to live around wildlife, particularly bears and mountain lions, and wildlife officers regularly address the public about the responsibilities of being a good and watchful neighbor. But everything changes when a child, left alone to play in lion country, encounters a young lion, left alone to grow up in people country.

THree’s ComPAny A duck, a skunk and a deer went out for dinner at a restaurant. When it came time to pay, the skunk didn’t have a scent and the deer didn’t have a buck, so they put the meal on the duck’s bill.


ShortShotS

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2016 | colorado hunter

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ranching For WildliFe F

or Coloradans seeking a great hunt, without the expense of guides, outfitters or access fees, more than a million acres of prime private wildlife habitat is open to the public on a limited basis under CPW’s Ranching for Wildlife program. Licenses for these private land hunts, available only to in-state residents, cost the same as any public land hunting license issued by CPW. This makes them popular and also hard to get. Trophy hunters have to wait years to get enough preference points — up to 15 for a bull elk or a buck deer on some ranches. Doe and cow elk hunters need fewer points but are subject to the luck of the draw. Hunters seeking licenses to hunt on a Ranching for Wildlife property must plan ahead, since these licenses are available only through the big game license draw. The payoff for patience is a quality hunting experience on a private ranch with a 65 to 95 percent success rate. Initiated in 1985, Ranching for Wildlife is limited to ranches with at least 12,000 contiguous acres that contain a significant number of species for which licenses can be drawn — elk, deer, pronghorn, bear, turkey, moose and bighorn sheep. The program now encompasses more than 25 ranches. Participating landowners must have an acceptable management plan to improve wildlife habitat on their properties. Some ranches make special contributions to managing threatened and endangered species, and species of special concern such as sage grouse.

Other ranchers have dedicated significant perpetual conservation easements. Many provide youth hunting opportunities, special public seasons during premier hunt times and offer exceptional services to public hunters. All ranches must provide free public access to hunters who draw a limited license for the property. The number of licenses issued on these ranches and the season dates are determined through negotiations between the landowner and CPW officials, with 10-20 percent of the male licenses and 100 percent of the female licenses allocated to the public. In return, landowners receive 80-90 percent of the male licenses issued for their properties, for which they can charge hunters fees to access the land. They also are allowed up to 90 days to hold their hunts. Both the public and the private seasons can start earlier and run later in the year than regular rifle seasons. Program coordinator Jerry Apker says some ranches with resident herds manage their big game populations to increase the age and size of their males, offering true trophy hunts. Other ranches simply play host to migrating herds. Those animals move between private and public land but, during the seasons, are usually under little hunting pressure. “One added advantage is that we get a female animal harvest on private land where, without Ranching for Wildlife, we probably wouldn’t get much at all,” says Apker. “That helps us meet our management objectives.” Licenses issued for these ranches can only be used

on the specified ranches. While public hunters are given the same access to the private property as those who pay a fee, wildlife managers and landowners often place additional conditions on public hunters to spread hunting pressure and relieve concerns about security and liability. “Hunting on these ranches is a privilege, and public hunters need to respect the ranch rules for hunting, from closing gates to sticking to designated hunting areas,” says Apker. “And public hunters should never forget that they’re hunting for a fraction of the fee they’d pay as a private hunting guest. Their behavior may determine whether the landowner opts out or stays in the program.” Successful applicants receive information on ranch rules well before their hunts. Each hunter is usually allowed to bring one non-hunting companion. Each must sign a liability release and check-in and checkout with the landowner. Hunters may have to camp on adjoining public land or secure lodging in the nearest town. More than 3,000 Ranching for Wildlife licenses are available each year. Anyone who has hunted on a Ranching for Wildlife unit has waited years to amass the preference points, but most will tell you the wait was worth it. Season dates for each ranch vary and change each year. Vistit http://wildlife.state.co.us/ranching/ ranching.asp for more information.

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lucK oF the draW can yield Big trophieS


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FirSt time’S a charm

teen getS pope and young BucK on FirSt archery hunt By Dale Shrull

Z

achary Brown took a deep breath. A big buck was in the cross hairs and his nerves were churning, but he focused on the deer. The 14-year-old from Crawford had already had successful hunts: two elk; three wild turkeys and a bear. But those all came with a rifle. This one, in 2015, was his first archery hunt, and this buck was huge. He didn’t notice the antlers as he focused on his shot. “I was kind of nervous,” he says. “My bow was shooting high the day before, so I knew I had to aim low.” That, he did, and the shot paid off with a recordsetter. “It was phenomenal,” says his dad, Christopher. “It was great to share the experience with him. He had no idea what he hit. When he got closer, he said, ‘I’m glad I didn’t look at the antlers.’” The antlers were first measured at 176 inches, with 140 inches the minimum requirement to make the

Pope and Young Club. After the 60-day drying period, the official measurement was 170 4/8, still landing him in the club after his first archery hunt. “It’s hard to say which one I like better,” he says of rifle and archery hunting. “Archery is more exciting, because you’re closer to the animal, and you have to aim better. I’m more nervous than I am with a rifle.” After practicing archery for three days per week, he improved quickly. “I’ve put a lot of work into it,” he says. After mastering the target, he had another challenge: His dad upped the poundage on the bow, making it more difficult to pull. But he mastered it, making the record book at 14. Christopher says they had a long talk about the hunt afterward. “I asked him what he learned and what he’d do differently,” he says. Zachary answered he needs to practice more, so he can make more accurate shots. The hunt was in the Unit 63 area near Crystal Creek on Black Mesa. Not only was it his first hunt, but

Zachary Brown and his trophy buck.

Zachary got his buck on the opening day of archery season. “I love hunting, and have been around it my whole life,” he says. “I like the thrill.” After deer season, Zachary was back at it, bagging a cow elk. But after his first bow season, he realizes the big buck might be the best he’ll ever get. “It might be tough to beat,” he says.

ATTENTION ALL HUNTERS! Hunt somewHere new

Photo Credit: Dean and Susan Billington at Bull Basin

If you’ve never been hunting out of Kremmling, you are truly missing out on some of the best big game hunting in Colorado! Kremmling is situated in West Grand County bordering Summit, Eagle and Routt Counties, where things are “Untapped, Untamed!” We are surrounded by some of the best elk, deer, mountain lion, and big game hunting in the state. While locals boast that it is still “the way Colorado used to be,” there are many services available to make your hunting trip that much more enjoyable.

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theherdWord herd numBerS Strong W

hile a strong El Nino had wildlife officials concerned about winter mortality rates for deer and elk herds in northwest Colorado this year, the threat was mitigated when the cold weather broke in early February. “We flat-out dodged a bullet,” says Andy Holland, state big-game manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife. “We started into the winter and had a pretty good one going. By Feb. 1, the alarm bells were going off.” Curiously, the biggest punches of the winter pounded a fairly restricted region in northwest Colorado, mostly west of Rangely and Craig to the stateline. “If you didn’t see, you wouldn’t believe it,” says Bill De Vergie, CPW area manager in Craig. “The sagebrush was completely covered about waist high. If things had continued like that, we would have been facing a disaster.” Though the storm cycle broke in early February, the winter snows and cold hit the local deer herds hard. “It was about on a par with 2007-2008, our last

really bad one,” Holland says. Still, even with that winter mortality, the wildlife commission enacted a slight increase in limited deer licenses for the 2016 hunting season. Statewide, deer licenses (bucks and does) have been increased to 88,900, an increase of 5,700 (7 percent) over 2015. In the herds west of Interstate 25 — where the license quotas also went up 7 percent over 2015 to 74,000, limited buck tags went up to 44,300, again, a 7 percent increase. “It’s important that we allow hunters to take some of these bucks before something else does, whether it’s winter, predators or disease,” Holland says. “If we have the bucks, I’d like to be able send hunters after them.” Holland says the increases were in response to a slight, but continuing, improvement in deer numbers across the state. “For a while now, our deer herds have responded (to limited hunting pressure and mild winters), particularly the buck-to-doe ratios,” Holland says. “So this year is a pretty good bump from last year.” Despite losing 75 percent of the yearling fawns in part of the northwest region, Holland adds there still

are plenty of deer. “There might be some concern about us having a bad winter and still increasing limited license for bucks, but even with that, we had so many deer going into this winter, and they were in such good body condition, we still have enough,” he says. “With these license recommendations, we’re still going to be at 40 bucks per 100 does, post hunt.” Only buck licenses were increased in the northwest, Holland emphasized, not doe licenses. Doe licenses for west of I-25 were increased by 9,600, and Holland emphasized this was only where deer herds are at or above population objectives. He adds the statewide deer population is estimated at 436,000, up from the 2015 estimate of 424,000. “Populations went up 10 percent, or more in 11 of our 55 deer herds, and seven of those are on the Western Slope,” he says. Holland predicts this year’s overall deer harvest may reach 36,000, up from the 34,000 taken in 2015. “We have a high demand for our licenses,” he says. “We’re still one of the go-to, if not the, destination for deer hunting.”

PHOTO BY JOHN F. RUSSELL

By Dave Buchanan

2016 | colorado hunter

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limited opportunity By Dave Buchanan

C

all it the “We told you so” elk hunt. In contrast to the increase in limited deer licenses approved this year by the Colorado Wildlife Commission, would-be elk hunters seeking a limitedissue license again are finding it harder to be successful. Those coveted limited elk tags, especially the oncefreely available cow elk tag, are fewer in number this year as overall elk numbers drop to desired levels. This year, the number of limited elk licenses was set at 136,700, a drop of 2,800 (2 percent) from the 2015 total. The reason, says state big game manager Andy Holland, of Colorado Parks and Wildlife, is that elk herds no longer need the intensive management demanded 15 years ago, when elk numbers peaked. “There’s been a declining trend in elk limited license numbers for more than a decade,” Holland says. “We saw our peak elk population in 2001, at 305,000, and in 2003, our peak elk harvest at 64,000 animals.” But that couldn’t last, for a variety of reasons. Landowners groused about too many elk damaging

fences and eating livestock forage, winter ranges were being hammered and wildlife officials were concerned a hard winter would knock back elk numbers. In response, wildlife managers made more licenses available, and in some cases, hunters were able to purchase more than one license. In 2003, almost 192,000 hunters applied for the more than 198,000 elk tags available. But those same wildlife managers for years have been warning hunters the times of plentiful licenses wouldn’t last. Sure enough, today, elk numbers have dropped to about 276,000 statewide, spelling fewer licenses. There are three reasons for the decline in license numbers, Holland says. First, efforts to cut the elk population were successful, which meant; two, a lower harvest is needed to maintain elk numbers than to reduce elk herds. “And three, for about a decade, our elk calf-to-cow ratios in the southern half of the state has been declining, so we’ve had to reduce cow licenses to maintain the same size herds.”

The decline in elk calf survival has puzzled officials, Holland adds. Some parts of the southern regions are seeing calf-to-cow ratios of 30:100, compared to 50:100 in the northern part of the state. “That 20-calf gap has us really concerned,” Holland says, adding a research project has been planned. Elk harvest this year is projected to be around 42,000, down from the estimated 44,852 in 2015. “Our populations are pretty near where we want them, in most cases,” Holland says. “Overall, the licenses have declined because of the calf-to-cow ratio.” License numbers were increased a bit in the far northwest “because we need to keep pressure on those elk to keep them from getting away from us and creating more conflicts” with landowners, Holland says. He said last year saw more than 200,000 applications from elk hunters. “Having all these limited licenses gives us an amazing hunting opportunity,” he says. “There’s a lot of interest in elk hunting in Colorado, which is good for all of us.”

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SkillSetS upping your glaSS game BeSt practiceS For uSing BinoS

E

ach year, thousands of hunters head to the woods with new binoculars and visions of huge antlers and tasty meat dancing in their heads. But do they make the most of their glassing abilities? Following are a few pointers to up your glassing game. Buy the best you can afford When it comes to optics, you get what you pay for. If you can only afford $200 for a new binocular, wait until next year, when you can afford at least twice that. Once you get into the $500+ range, you’re barely scratching the surface of long-lasting, usable, functional binoculars. Pay less, and you’ll get sub-par performance and longevity. Brands such as SWAROVSKI OPTIK will last your entire lifetime and are well worth the investment. Get a tripod A tripod-mounted binocular allows you to glass farther and longer. Many optics companies make their own tripod-mounting systems, and some retailers, such as the Outdoorsmans, make their own systems. A tripod allows viewing without movement or shake, making such details as an ear flick or tail swoosh stand out. You’ll be able to glass farther and longer. If not using a tripod, get as steady as possible. Rest your binoculars on your knees, pack, a tree branch, or a

rock. By handholding, your body and eye muscles will tire more easily and quickly, shortening the amount of time you can glass. Get comfortable Often, new glassers laugh when I pull out a sleeping pad, stool, or camp chair to sit on, wondering why I’d carry them up the mountain. But after sitting on cold, hard ground for hours on end, they understand. One key to glassing is spending as much time as possible behind your binoculars. You can only do that if your body can stand it. The more comfortable you are, the longer you can glass. The longer you glass, the more successful you will be. Dress in layers, so you can add and subtract clothing as the weather dictates. You might start glassing in frigid conditions before sunrise but warm up by late morning. Likewise, a storm might move in, the wind might start blowing and the temperatures might drop. If you can regulate your temperature, you’ll be able to glass longer. Grid system There’s no right or wrong way to glass. Many people advocate a grid system, methodically covering every square inch of real estate. If you can do that, you’ll be highly effective. However, most of us can’t stick to a constant and equal grid for long — we get sidetracked by other critters, our friends and our gut

feeling to look somewhere else. The most important thing is cover the area you want to glass efficiently. Look in the places most likely to hold animals — edges, saddles, fields, etc. If you don’t see anything, check back periodically. It’s amazing how many times you can look at the same spot before an animal “magically” appears. Be patient Glassing takes time. The more time you spend behind your binoculars, the more you will see. Be in place well before daylight, and stay until after you think they have bedded. Stay all day, if you can, or head back early in the afternoon and then stay until after dark. Binoculars vs. spotting scopes Some hunters like to glass through a spotting scope, however most people are unable to use one for extended periods. For this reason, I consider a binocular a glassing tool and a spotting scope a trophy-judging and verification tool. Use your tripodmounted binoculars to find game, then zoom in with your spotting scope for verification. Also use the spotting scope to differentiate between rocks that look like elk, deer and sheep. — Colorado native Trent Swanson is the Mountain Territory sales rep for SWAROVSKI OPTIK. He is a selfprofessed “optics nerd” who has been chasing big game critters for nearly 30 years. PHOTO BY RICK MESSMER

By Trent Swanson

2016 | colorado hunter

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PHOTO BY TRENT SWANSON

Digiscoping is defined as taking pictures or video through a magnified optic. Usually, hunters mount a DSLR, mirrorless camera, or smartphone to a spotting scope to photograph the animals they find. When mounting a DSLR or mirrorless camera, you must use the manual focus in the spotting scope to acquire the sharpest photos. When using smartphones, you can use the spotting scope to get your subject in focus; then the smartphone’s auto focus takes over. Typically, better cameras provide better photos, but the quality of cameras in today’s smartphones is amazing. If you are already carrying a spotting scope and either a camera, a smartphone or both, make sure you throw in a digiscoping adapter. In addition, a manual shutter release or bluetooth shutter will help you get the sharpest pictures. Also, as you are learning, make sure you take plenty of video, too. — Trent Swanson

PHOTO BY RICK MESSMER

SkillSetS

DiGisCoPinG

Above: Digiscoping is the art of taking photos and video through a spotting scope. Left: While not the best quality photo, this bull was digiscoped from more than two miles away.


tipS For Filling your tag I

n Colorado, the average success rate of public land deer and elk hunters is between 14 and 20 percent. But some hunters fill their tags every year. Here are five ways to better your odds. know thy equipment Taking that steep downhill shot with confidence only comes with practice. Spend time at the range, and change up your shots. While there’s no better feeling than making that great shot on an animal you’ve spent time and effort pursuing, it takes range time beforehand. Also, know your limitations and consider the animal. Get the lay of the land Know the area you’re hunting and scout it out for animals beforehand. Elk and deer often summer in the

UniQUely FUnny

deer? Tame way.

same areas up high and head to the same areas in rut, sometimes to the same day. Know where they bed and feed and how they get to these areas. All this comes with spending time in your hunting area. Heed the wind Sneaking up on bugling bulls is exciting, but check the wind beforehand. Get it correct, and you can get close. Get it wrong, and you’ll hear crickets after they’ve whiffed you. Western Colorado has consistent wind almost every morning until the thermals pick up around 10 am. Use it to your benefit, and plan accordingly. You can bust an elk with it seeing or hearing you, and it probably won’t go far, but if they smell you, they’ll be long gone. shape up Get in good physical shape beforehand to get

How do you catch a unique deer? Unique up on it! How do you catch a tame

farther into the backcountry. Big game doesn’t like people; you won’t find animals near trailheads. Being in shape also helps you give chase without thinking. Also, have a pack-out plan. Taking an elk three miles back can be a challenge. And have the proper gear to get the meat out of the woods. keep at it Don’t give up. Every time you step into the woods, believe you’ll be successful. A positive attitude can go a long way. Also, have several areas lined up, in case certain ones don’t produce. If area A is dead, move to B, then C. A three-day rotation gives areas time to calm down and get scent free. Regardless of your success, hopefully, you’ll leave the mountains with a renewed appreciation for the animals and their habitat.

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SkillSetS

By Bill Van Ness


Battling Big game nerveS By Bill Van Ness

PHOTO COURTESY OF JJ REDDEN

SkillSetS

BucK Fever

A

huge part of why I hunt is to experience the unequaled, natural high that occurs in the few moments just before the animal is within range, all the way through the shot process. There’s nothing that equals that rush, but it can also become so dramatic it takes us out of the game entirely. Hunt long enough, and you’ll experience buck or bull “fever.” It’s happened to all of us at one time or another and can cause you to freeze up or get the shakes. I’ve even heard of someone vomiting during a close encounter with a giant bull. In 2012, I had a coveted Colorado archery bighorn sheep tag. I spent five weekends in the unit, finding rams and learning the country and their habits. At first, having trouble finding rams, it started to play into my head: “How can I stalk within bow range if I can’t even find one to stalk?” The pressure built, as I knew if an opportunity arose, I needed to make the most of it. Sure enough, on day two, I found nine rams and was cutting off the band with that damn voice in my head, “Make it happen!” As I was drawing on the lead ram, my entire world started to melt around me. I felt dizzy and sick to my stomach. After a few long moments, I was able to get a shot off and make what I thought was a marginal hit. The ram took off, but I was lucky enough to watch him lie down and expire within 400 yards. The arrow did its job and saved me from my own nerves. While satisfying, I made a commitment to work on my selfinflicted pressures and not let my nerves get the best of me again. Here are a few techniques I’ve used to combat the fever:  Practice, practice, practice. Pre-season practice builds confidence and lowers the effects of nerves at the moment of truth. Shoot and visualize a clean shot over and over.  Appreciate it for what it is. It’s just a deer, elk, bear or ram. Enjoy the moment, and laugh at yourself quietly if you feel the fever coming on. Be absolutely present in the moment. This really works.

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The author after putting “buck fever” behind him.

 Positive vibrations. Create a thought process as the buck or bull approaches that is positive and confident. Know that it will happen and that, if it doesn’t, you’ll create another chance.  it’s the being there. Success is just being there. If you treat your hunt as a success by just getting

lAnD oF THe losT

out and participating, there will be less pressure at crunch time.  never give up. If your nerves blow the opportunity, stay after it and lay it out there again. Enjoy every minute of it.

Two deer hunters met in the woods. The first one said to the other, “Boy am I glad to see you, I’ve been lost for hours.” The second deer hunter said, “That’s nothing, I’ve been lost for a week.”


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hunting SaFety 101 By Eden Laase Colorado sells more than 560,000 hunting licenses every year, resulting in several million hunter recreation days. Since the passage of two laws in 1970 — one requiring hunter education training and another requiring at least 500 square inches of fluorescent orange clothing — hunting accidents have dropped. But there are still too many. “Hunting is safe and getting safer,” says Colorado Parks and Wildlife hunter education coordinator Mark Cousins. “But one moment of carelessness can mean a lifetime of consequences.” Almost all hunting accidents can be avoided by exercising care, Cousins adds. Safety measures include familiarizing yourself with your gun or bow at a range beforehand; exercising caution when loading and unloading, well away from your vehicle (it’s illegal to place a loaded firearm in or on a vehicle, and to hunt from one); and unloading when you’re crossing streams and fences and hiking in rough terrain. “The gun’s safety isn’t always enough to prevent it from firing,” he says. After the hunt, unload your gun well before

getting to the vehicle or camp, and triple-check it before placing it in a case or vehicle. “At the end of a long day, it’s more important than ever to be extra careful with firearms,” Cousins says. Basic safety rules:  Treat every firearm as if it is loaded.  Keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction at all times.  Be sure of your target — what is in front of it and what is beyond it.  If you’re in doubt about the target, don’t shoot.  Keep the safety on and your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.  Never place your hand over the muzzle of a gun.  Load and unload your gun at least 100 yards from your vehicle.  Don’t hurry while loading or unloading.  Talk about safety issues with youngsters and less inexperienced hunters.  Stop to rest when you are out of breath.  Wear daylight fluorescent clothing when and where required.

HUnTer eDUCATion Planning to go hunting? First, you’ll have to take your hunter education test. Implemented in the 1970s, hunter education tests are mandatory before getting a license. And the program has worked. In the program’s first 10 years, fatalities decreased by more than 50 percent. Today, the number of accidents has dropped to 1.6 fatal and 10 nonfatal accidents per year. “Hunting is now one of the safest outdoor activities you can do,” says Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Mike Porras, “and those tests have contributed greatly to its safety.” Hunter education teaches how to safely handle firearms before, during and after a hunt, plus skills that enable hunters to be more successful, such as wildlife identification, how to practice ethical hunting, and the requirement of wearing neon orange. Students learn basic survival skills and how to deal with crises in the wilderness. CPW encourages anyone who spends time outdoors, not just hunters, to enroll in the classes. Available year-round, the classes cost $10 to $20, depending on the course, and consist of 10 hours of training, a live-fire exercise and a final exam. They’re available to hunters of all ages, and arrangements can be made for people with disabilities. Options include Standard Hunter Education, Internet courses and crash courses, as well as such specialty options as Field Dog Training, Turkey Hunting, Navigation and Predator Calling. Upon completion, students receive a hunter education card, which they need to get a license. Info: www.cpw.state.co.us.

DoGGone Two deer hunters were not having any luck so they asked for advice from an old timer. “You can just about guarantee a deer if you learn to hunt with dogs,” he said. So they got a trained deer dog and hit the woods. At the end of the day and still empty-handed, one hunter said to the other, “Maybe tomorrow we should throw the dog out of a higher treestand.”

SkillSetS

tipS For Staying SaFe on your hunt

AVoiD ViolATions

To ensure you return home with a trophy, not a ticket, game wardens stress that violations can result in fines and the loss of hunting privileges. “Know your responsibilities,” says wildlife manager Rick Basagoitia. “Wildlife laws are written for your safety and to protect a valuable resource.” Common violations include:  Not wearing fluorescent orange: You must wear at least 500 square inches of daylight fluorescent orange, plus a head covering of the same color. Camouflage orange or mesh orange do not qualify.  Carrying loaded firearms in or on vehicles: Rifles must not have ammunition in the chamber while in or on any motor vehicles. For those riding ATVs, weapons (rifles and bows) must also be in a closed case and fully unloaded (chamber and magazine). Most accidents involving firearms occur in or near vehicles.  Shooting from a road: Before firing a shot, you must be at least 50 feet off of a designated state or county road, and just off Forest Service or BLM roads.  License not voided: After you kill an animal, you must void the license immediately.  Improperly attached carcass tag: The carcass tag must be attached to the animal. Cut a hole in the hide and attach with a tie. It is OK to wait until you get back to camp or to your vehicle to attach the carcass tag.  No evidence of sex: Be sure to leave evidence of sex (head, ovum or scrotum) naturally attached to the carcass.  Wasting game meat: Big game meat can begin to spoil at 38 degrees. Remove the hide as soon as possible after the kill to allow air to circulate around the meat. Reduce carcass mass by quartering and/or boning the meat. Place the meat in a cooler quickly (don’t hang outside for more than 36 hours).  Shooting a spike-antlered elk: Hunters who hold a cow elk tag sometimes shoot spike bulls. Be sure of your target; it can often be difficult to see spike antlers. If you’re not absolutely sure, don’t shoot.  Illegal tagging: Only place a tag on an animal that you shot (no trading tags with other license holders).

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SkillSetS

PHOTO BY JOHN DEPALMA

Wild call

game callS For hunting By Christina Currie

M

any hunters, especially during bow and black powder seasons, use calls to mimic the bugle of a bull — it brings prey to them and eliminates the need to track. But success requires a call realistic enough to fool an animal into the sights of a gun or bow. Fortunately, new devices let even novices mimic the bugle of a bull elk, the quack of a duck or the call of a moose. There’s a call for any animal that makes noise and some for those that don’t, says Dave Hutton, owner of Craig Sports. “Game calls are popular for elk, more so than deer, but hunters do use deer calls to stop the deer so they can get a better shot,” he says. “Depending on the time of year and call you’re using, they’re very effective.” Becca Nielsen, co-owner of Meeker’s Rocky Mountain Bowstrings, says game calls are essential in elk hunting, where spot-and-stalk type hunting is difficult. Call types range from beginner to advanced, from taped recordings to squeezables and blowables. (Note: electronic callers are illegal in Colorado.) Advanced calls — reeds or diaphragms — often require hours of practice. Nielsen says they’re more effective, because they’re more realistic. “If elk have been messed with at all, you have to be authentic,” she says. Many styles and brands of mouth calls are available — open reed, closed reed, semi-enclosed reed, plastic reed, metal reed, variable reed and interchangeable reed — with their advantages, including price and convenience. They generally range from $2 to $15, and are easily transported in pockets. They’re also easy to handle, lightweight and easily stored. Disadvantages of mouth calls vary by type. Some are easy to break, some are difficult to clean and can get out of tune easily. In windy situations, it also can be difficult to blow a mouth call with adequate volume. No matter what kind you use, practice makes perfect, from what the call should sound like, how much to call, and where and when to do it. There’s nothing worse than blowing your chance at blowing your bugle.

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BoW SenSe

W

ant to better your chances of bringing down big game with a bow? Heed the following tips from longtime Steamboat Springs archer Paul Franklin. make your own wind indicator You’ll use a wind indicator every five minutes, but forget buying a new one every hunt. Make your own out of something as simple as a small shampoo bottle filled with baking soda. It’s odorless and still works when wet. Flour smells and gets heavy in the morning dew. Bring extra to refill. Heed the heat In the mornings, the ground is heating up, so even if there’s no wind, your scent is going uphill. In the evenings, it’s heading downhill. Get dirty Your face and hands are shiny, but forget the storebought paint and just rub mud or dirt on them. This is especially important for your hands. They move

around a lot; any glint of unnatural shine will catch an animal’s eye.

PHOTO BY JOHN DEPALMA

By Luci Franklin

Go natural You showered with scent-free soap and are ready to rub on artificial elk urine. Don’t. The area you’ve scouted is where the elk are, or you wouldn’t be hunting there. Find some fresh droppings or urinesoaked dirt and rub it on your boots. snow job After gutting your kill, clean up the natural way. Use the snow. And don’t wipe your bloody hands on your hunting clothes. The smell does not come out easily. noiseless apparel Animals are super sensitive to unnatural sounds. Wear quiet clothes, such as wool, flannel or fleece. Break twigs and crackle leaves; just don’t rub your pants together when you walk. multiple calls Bring more than one cow call. Bulls are looking for herds of girls, not just a stray lady. Bring a Hoochie

Mama, a Sceery and recalls. They may be harder to master, but they’re worth it. Keep a call in your mouth, around your neck and in your pocket. Sound like a bunch of cows, not just one. Forget the phone Turn off your phone, period. Get away from your spouse, kids, job, society. If you’re not all in, you might as well stay home. When you’re pulling back that arrow for the perfect shot, the last thing you want to hear is “Please say a command” coming from your pocket.

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WELCOME TO IVORY TIP OUTFITTERS LOCATED IN CRAIG COLORADO. One of the greatest destinations for any sportsmen! NW Colorado is known for being the Elk Hunting Capital of the World. We also offer Deer, Antelope and Lion hunts. Ivory Tip Outfitters is a place where memories are made, dreams come true and bucket lists are wiped away. We pride ourselves in knowing what it takes to make a successful hunting camp and we assure our clients that we will do everything in our power to make it a successful hunting trip. If you chose to hunt with Ivory Tip Outfitters you can expect to have a trip of a lifetime, quality food, great accommodations, knowledgeable guides, lots of laughs and a desire to come back again and again. 78 | visit cohunter.com for more


PHOTO BY JOHN DEPALMA

SkillSetS

HUNTING

101

BIG GAME TIPS

By Dave Buchanan

HoW To HUnT elk

Filling your elk tag isn’t a given. On any given year, hunter success rates for elk in Colorado hover near 20 percent. Following are a few tips to better your chances: spread out. In warm weather, elk stay spread out over vast areas at high elevations at and above timberline. When snow falls, elk will usually start to move, bunch up, and look for food sources at lower elevations or on slopes offering exposed vegetation. It usually takes more than a foot of snow on the ground to get elk moving. embrace the hike. While ATVs are great for getting you deep in the woods, go beyond where they can take you. Hunt slowly and quietly, far from any road. Elk are smart, move quickly and hide in rugged terrain. They also typically gather in groups of 10 or more. If one is spooked, they can run easily for a mile or more. scope transition areas. Watch transition areas at first light and dusk. Elk are most active during the night and graze in transition areas — i.e. meadows next to heavy 2016 | colorado hunter

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HoW To HUnT mUle Deer

While mule deer success ratios are higher than they are for elk — most years see success rates as high as 45 percent — deer hunting can still be challenging. Follow these tips to improve your chances. Hunt varied terrain. Mule deer don’t spend much time in heavy timber, preferring aspen and forest edges, low shrubs and varied vegetation. In warm weather, look for deer along ridgelines. Hunt at dawn and dusk. Mule deer are most active at night and can often be found in meadow areas during lowlight hours. During the day, they bed down in protective cover. scout out edges. During low-light hours, hunt in meadows at the edge of thick cover. Deer move during the middle of the day toward the areas where they feed in the evening. stalk slowly. Spend time scanning slowly with binoculars. monitor wind direction. If the wind is blowing in the direction you’re moving, a deer will likely pick up your scent. Also, avoid hunting near moving water during the day.

Play off their curiosity. When mule deer are spooked, they’ll often run a short distance then turn to see if they are being pursued. This may offer the chance for a shot. Go to snow. Light snow will get deer moving quickly out of high-altitude areas to their winter range areas. Aim for the vitals. It’s a small target — about the size of a dinner plate just behind the front quarter — but it represents your best chance for success.

HoW To HUnT PronGHorn

Pronghorn hunters enjoy the highest success rate of all big game hunters, with success rates often as high as 60 percent. Still, even with Colorado’s population of 80,000 pronghorns, filling your tag isn’t a sure thing, requiring a different set of strategies. Ask for private land permission early. Never wait until opening day. If properly asked in advance, many landowners are willing to allow access and even directions to the best locations and information about watering holes and road access. keep hidden. Pronghorn have the vision of looking through 8X binoculars. They can also burst into a 60 mph sprint to stay out of range of even expert marksmen. Be patient. A stalk may include crawling on your belly for an hour, only to have the animals spook and quickly move. Only one out of five stalks gets you close enough for a shot. Be prepared to crawl the final few hundred yards — even if it’s through yucca, sagebrush, cactus and cow pies. Sew leather patches onto your knees and elbows for added protection. see them first. This gives you a huge advantage. Avoid ridge tops and hills, and move through draws and along the back sides of ridges to avoid detection. Consider wind direction. It’s easy to send a foreign odor in their direction. Winds change direction less frequently on wide-open prairies. Catch your breath before firing. Crawling can be exhausting. Steady yourself before the shot. Try an ambush. Waterholes and fence lines are good places to wait (they tend to go under fences rather than over). Pronghorns alternate between feeding grounds and watering holes during the day. But they move unpredictably. Practice flagging. Pronghorns react with curiosity to shiny things and other objects. Flagging piques their curiosity and gets them to come to you. After you spot an animal, walk back and forth in an adjacent downwind draw while hoisting a white handkerchief on a stick (or sit with a flag flapping above you). They might approach you. nail your shot. Shot selection is important. Pronghorn present a small target; the vital area is the size of a small plate. Shots also tend to be longer, especially on windy days when the animals are more alert. Know the capabilities of your rifle and scope. Also, don’t shoot a pronghorn that is running. Blind early. If you use a blind (best around water holes or fence crossings), set it up a week before hunting to let the animals get used to it. Decoy in bow season only. Decoys cut in the shape of a pronghorn often attract bucks chasing challengers (bow hunters often hide behind them). But they also attract other hunters, so don’t use them during rifle season.

TAke A ClAss According to Colorado Parks and Wildlife, out of more than 200,000 elk hunters every year, a meager number go home with meat for the freezer. Last year, general-season rifle hunters saw a 21 percent success rate, while muzzleloaders managed a 19 percent success rate. If you’re on the wrong end of those scores, CPW has a solution. Each summer the Northwest Region offers several “Elk Hunting 101” classes (as well as deer and pronghron hunting classes), free, one-night seminars co-sponsored by the Rocky Mountain Elk Federation. “It doesn’t matter if you’ve been hunting for years or this is your first time in the field, you’ll benefit from this seminar,” says Dick Severin, hunter outreach coordinator for CPW. “We can’t guarantee success, but we can increase your chances.” Part of CPW’s Hunter Outreach Program, primarily aimed at inexperienced hunters, the classes cover a wide range of topics, including basic elk biology, what they eat, migration patterns and calling and field dressing techniques. But even experienced hunters looking for an extra edge can use a refresher, and that’s where these seminars come in. “Learning as much as you can about animals’ behavior is one of the most important things you can do,” says Severin. “And while they include great information, the discussions and exchange of experiences with other hunters and the instructors is also beneficial.” Specialized seminars, such as “Field Dressing Big Game,” are also offered. Perhaps the crown jewel is the Elk Hunting University, a free online resource offering elk-hunting tips from Colorado hunters through articles, videos and stories. Info: cpw.state.co.us. 2016 | colorado hunter

SkillSetS

timber, and where different types of vegetation meet near ridgelines. Find where animals graze at night, and you’ll find them in adjacent areas during the day. Don’t neglect dark timber. In particular, check out cool north-facing slopes and hard-to-reach areas during the day. move quietly for short distances. Move quickly and quietly. Then, scan the woods for 10 minutes or more before moving again. Even in dense forest, use binoculars to discern subtle movement or unusual colors. move far above or below roads. In areas where two roads are in close proximity, locate the most difficult terrain in between. line your shot carefully. Elk are difficult to knock down. Deliver your shot in the critical area of the lungs and heart just behind and below the front quarters. Never try for a head shot.

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GrAnD mesA By Dale Shrull The Grand Mesa is a year-round playground that caters to every kind of outdoor enthusiast, from snowmobiling, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter to hiking, mountain biking, fishing and plenty of hunting in summer and fall. Thousands of hunters descend upon the region once the leaves start to turn, primarily muzzleloader, archery and rifle hunters looking for deer and elk. “I’ve been hunting on the Grand Mesa for about 30 years,” says former Grand Junction local Ty Roberts, who filled a big bull tag on the mesa 10 years ago. “I don’t always have success, but I love it up there.” The Grand Mesa rises from an elevation of 4,800 feet to 11,000 feet. Colorado Parks and Wildlife categorizes the hunting pressure of the area as heavy in the three main Game Management Units (41, 42, 421) on north Grand Mesa. Much of the area is on public lands, and only a handful of outfitters guide there. According to CPW, the elk population is in good shape, with an estimated 19,000 animals, including the southern Grand Mesa GMUs 52, 411 and 521. The second and third rifle seasons for elk were the most popular with GMUs 41, 42 and 421, accounting for 3,257 hunters for the second rifle season and 1,915 in the third rifle season in 2014. Success ratios ranged from 12 to 20 percent in those two seasons. Grand Mesa is also hugely popular for archery, with 2,228 hunters heading into those three GMUs in 2014, with a high 980 hunters in GMU 421. Their success rates ranged from 14 to 19 percent. The deer herds on Grand Mesa are still struggling, but there are plenty of opportunities for hunters. The population estimate was around 15,000 (41, 42, 421) in 2014, and officials want the herd to be between 17,000-23,000. The third rifle season had 1,354 hunters in 2014, and the second rifle season had 1,202. The success rate was between 39-67 percent. There were 409 archery hunters in 2014, with a success rate ranging from 25-34 percent. Every year, Grand Mesa remains a more popular destination for elk hunters at the high elevation. Roberts, who now lives outside Bozeman, Montana, still makes it back every fall. “I know that area so well, so it’s my hunting home,” he says. Plus, the Grand Mesa is just spectacular when the leaves change in the fall. It’s a real special place.”

a hunting hot Bed

T

ake a bead on western Colorado as your hunting destination, and you’re in a great spot for chasing big game. The Pacific-most portion of the Centennial State harbors two key ingredients all hunters crave: the largest elk herds in the country and extensive public lands. All this equals a great chance of filling your tag. “The scale of the elk herds in western Colorado is unprecedented compared to the rest of the country,” says Brad Petch, Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s senior biologist for northwest Colorado. “Very few places in the West let you can pick up a license at the counter and have a decent shot at getting a four-point bull.” Petch estimates there are about 280,000 elk in Colorado, the most of any state, with more than 15 percent of those harvested every year. Other big game populations are also strong, including mule deer, moose, pronghorn, bear and mountain lion. From Grand Junction, head to Grand Mesa (units 41, 42, 411, 421, 52 and 521 for over-the-counter elk) and the Uncompahgre Plateau (units 61 and 62 for elk), as well as the Gunnison Basin (units 76 and 77 limited elk) for some of the best hunting in the state. After your hunt, tour Grand Mesa or Colorado National Monument. Farther northwest, Dinosaur National Monument offers a glimpse of the region’s prehistoric past amid world-class pronghorn options. The region also contains Brown’s Park, a former outlaw hideout that now offers world-class trout fishing below Flaming Gorge Reservoir on the Green River.

Just off U.S. Highway 40, Rangely is another sportsmen’s hotspot, whose hilly landscapes are populated with deer, pronghorn, elk and small game. Craig, the seat of Moffat County, is consistently ranked one of the top hunting destinations in the country for its vast public lands, private ranches and herds. From Craig, Colorado Highway 13 heads north toward Wyoming and south to hunter-friendly towns such as Meeker, all prime hunting habitat. East of Craig on U.S. 40 is Hayden, which is also rich in ranching and hunting heritage, and another 30 minutes east is Steamboat Springs, the seat of Routt County. Known for its world-class ski area, Steamboat also is home to fifth-generation ranches and some of the best elk, deer and moose hunting in the state. South of Steamboat, on Colorado Highway 131, are the hunting hotbeds of Oak Creek, Phippsburg and Yampa, the “Gateway to the Flat Tops” and the wilderness area’s prime hunting habitat. Across the Continental Divide, North Park is known for its moose and fishing. Located an hour drive from Steamboat and Laramie, Wyoming, on Colorado Highway 14, Walden is the region’s largest city and is surrounded by extensive public lands for hunting. Farther south, in Middle Park, are the hunting hotbeds of Kremmling, Hot Sulphur Springs and Granby, which also carry vast herds of elk and, especially, mule deer. No matter where your crosshairs are set, western Colorado is a hotbed for hunting big game.

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hotSpotS

craig:

elK hunting capital oF the World By Andy Bockelman

Y

ou know you’re hunting in a good area when it’s known as the “Elk Hunting Capital of the World.” Craig recently achieved that official status, echoing what residents and visitors have known for years. The official “Elk Hunting Capital of the World” designation became a trademark for the city in 2012, thanks to the efforts of local businessman John Ponikvar, who put forth the time and money to brand Craig with the namesake it deserves. More than a slogan, the title remains an important part of promoting the area for hunting. Melody Villard, director of Moffat County Tourism Association, cites a 2015 article from Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation publication Bugle Magazine that references Craig as a hunting hub thanks to the 55,000 elk in a 50-mile radius. According to the article, that number accounts for more than a fifth of the elk in Colorado and about as many as exist in the entire state of Washington. The article lists Craig as No. 8 on Bugle’s listing for Elk City, USA. Villard adds there are multiple considerations for the ratings on the list — including the ratio of humans to animals. The “Elk Hunting Capital of the World” tagline, she says, increases Craig’s visibility across multiple media outlets. “There’s definitely articles out there that showcase that tagline,” she says, noting that Web searches for “elk hunting” continue to redirect people to Craig, whose economy benefits from the accolades.

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The challenge, she adds, is ensuring the moniker provides an accurate expectation for hunters. Though the herds around Craig are massive, the number of elk licenses given each year isn’t always what it should be, Villard says. “The draw situation has impacted our area in the last few years,” she says. Nevertheless, Christina Oxley, director of Craig Chamber of Commerce, says the “Elk Hunting Capital of the World” topic continues to “spark conversation” within and outside the community. The key, she says, is making that brand work to its full potential. “Like any marketing campaign, you have to actively promote it,” she says.


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grand county: By Eugene Buchanan

Grand County’s high percentage of public land makes it a prime hunting destination.

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t’s hard to find a grander location for hunting than Grand County. Thanks to vast tracts of public land and sizable animal herds, Grand County — which encompasses Kremmling, Hot Sulphur Springs, Granby and Grand Lake — easily lives up to its billing for big game hunting. “The hunting opportunities there are excellent, especially for mule deer,” maintains Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Mike Porras. “It has its own unique opportunities and tons of hunting acreage.” The Middle Park deer herd is modeled at more than 15,350, with a target objective of 11,500, making deer a primary target. “This region has always been known for its deer hunting,” says Lyle Sidener, CPW Grand County area wildlife manager. “We have a lot of low-lying central sage brush that helps gets deer through winter.” Sidener adds the region also has a long history of supporting deer research efforts, be it experts studying habitat use or nutrition. “Deer here have probably been studied more than they have anywhere else,” he says. Adding to the region’s hunting opportunities is its vast acreage, comprising units 15, 18, 27, 28, 37, 181 and 371, and the majority of it open to the public. “There’s a high percentage of public land here to hunt, which is largely what makes it such a prime hunting destination,” Sidener adds. Every fall, hundreds of out-of-town hunters flock to the area in search of elk and mule deer, joining a strong population of local hunters, many of whom moved here for the mountains and hunting opportunities they present. The region also harbors

l, Mote

hotSpotS

grand For hunting

— Lyle Sidener, CPW wildlife manager

a robust outfitter business, with several of the state’s busiest guides and outfitting services calling the area home. And it’s more than deer driving this demand, Sidener says. Moose have migrated down from North Park to Middle Park, and area elk herds are also blossoming. The region’s three elk herds — Gore Pass, Troublesome Creek and Williams Fork — total nearly 15,000 animals. Hot spots include Gore Pass, William Peak and Willow Creek Pass, as well as Parkview, Elk and Grouse mountains. Big bulls can also be found south of the boundary for Rocky Mountain National Park in the Meadow Creek area. “That area is pretty under-utilized because it’s hard to get to,” Sidener says. “While there’s no hunting in the park, elk don’t necessarily understand that boundary. It’s truly a great region for hunting.”

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hotSpotS

Shooting rangeS

a rundoWn oF WeStern colorado Shooting rangeS

T

o hone your shot before heading into the hills, head to one of the following shooting ranges scattered around western Colorado to fine-tune your game.

CrAiG Bears ears sportsman Club loCATion: Moffat County Road 7 ABoUT: Bears Ears Sportsman Club is a private club working toward advancing shooting sports skill. The members focus on a variety of shooting disciplines, including cowboy action shooting, three-gun competition, bowling pin shooting, NRA bullseye competition and 4-H shooting sports. The range is open to the public Dec. 1 through March 31, as well as the first Friday and Saturday of every month. ConTACT: Craig Rummel, 970-824-7538; bearsears.org Wyman living History museum Archery Pitch loCATion: 94350 East U.S. Highway 40 ABoUT: In 2014, the Wyman Museum added a 60-yard archery pitch, which the community can use for free, to its grounds. After shooting a few arrows, you can explore the fantastic collection of artifacts in the museum or visit with Junior, the resident pet elk. ConTACT: Lou Wyman, 970-824-6346; wymanmuseum.com Craig Trap Club loCATion: U.S. Highway 40, Moffat County Road 64; First driveway on the right. ABoUT: Craig Trap Club is a local club dedicated to the

safe and fun enjoyment of trap shooting. ConTACT: Larry Neu, 970-629-8437

HAyDen Hayden shooting range loCATion: Three miles south of Hayden on Routt County Road 37 ABoUT: Hayden’s range is a free outdoor range operated by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, with accommodations for long gun, pistol and shotgun. Usually only slightly crowded on weekends, this range is perfect for uninterrupted shooting. Open to the public seven days per week from dawn to dusk. ConTACT: CPW, 970-870-2197; Rainbow Sporting Goods, 970-276-3425

sTeAmBoAT sPrinGs Three Quarter Circles sporting Clays loCATion: 26208 U.S. Highway 40 ABoUT: This sporting clays course, which involves 12 log-shooting platforms, is designed to accommodate beginners, seasoned competitors or sportsmen who simply want to sharpen their marksmanship. It can be modified daily to accommodate individuals or a team, camaraderie or competition, sport or training. The ranges are open seasonally May 1 through Oct. 30, weather permitting. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekends and weekdays by appointment. ConTACT: 970-846-5647; 3qc.net

routt County rifle Club miles west of Steamboat Springs on U.S. Highway 40, adjacent to M&M Auto Co. ABoUT: This is a private club that accommodates five-stand, skeet shooting, rifle outdoors, handgun outdoors, trap shooting, competition shooting, night shooting and semi-automatic. Three days prior to first and second rifle seasons, the range is open to the public, with range officers available for assistance, for sighting. There is a $5 fee per rifle. ConTACT: Elk River Guns, 970-979-7565 loCATion: Three

meeker meeker sportsman’s Club loCATion: 36684 Colorado Highway 13 ABoUT: This is a private club that accommodates skeet shooting, rifle, handgun, trap shooting and more. It is a great location to sight in your rifle before the big hunt or join others from the area in some friendly competition. ConTACT: Meeker Sportsman Club, 970-878-3456

riFle rifle sportsmen’s Club loCATion: 0194 Garfield County Road 244 ABoUT: The Rifle Sportsmen’s Club is a private nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving shooting sports. You must be a member in good standing to access the club outside of sanctioned club events. ConTACT: Rifle Sportsmen’s Club, 970-625-1050; riflegunclub.com

WAlDen Walden Public shooting Area loCATion: Jackson County Road 12, off Colorado Highway 14 ABoUT: The Walden range is a public facility operated by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, with ranges up to 200 yards to accommodate pistol and rifle shooters. No scattergun facilities. ConTACT: CPW, 970-870-2197

kremmlinG Blue Valley sportsman Club loCATion: Mile Post 128.1 on Colorado Highway 9, approximately 27 miles north of Silverthorne ABoUT: The Blue Valley Sportsman Club is a membersonly, non-profit corporation. The original range facility was located off Williams Peak Road and was later relocated to its current location. The range is not open to the public, except for three scheduled shoots. ConTACT: Steve Schake, 970-724-9368 88 | visit cohunter.com for more


meeKer:

By Andy Bockelman

A

ttention, hunters: Want a stellar hunting location without the hustle and bustle of larger cities, but with all the amenities you need — including a big elk population just minutes from your doorstep? Set your sights on Meeker, just an hour south of Craig, with access to some of the best elk hunting in the country. Quietly off the radar, nestled at the base of the Flat Tops Wilderness Area, Meeker is an unsung Mecca for big game hunting. Once people get a taste of its smalltown friendliness and world-class access to big game, they put it on their calendar every hunting season thereafter. “We get a lot of repeat customers every year,” says Stan Wyatt, owner of Wyatt’s Sports Center, which is nearing its 25th year of operation. “Most of our business comes from non-residents. We see so many people year after year that it’s hard to remember them all.” Wyatt estimates he’s had a customer from every

state in the country and beyond, many of them returning year after year. “We’ve had them from Alaska, Hawaii and Canada, and even England,” he says. “People always say how beautiful it is around here, what a great little town it is and how friendly the people are. It has a great reputation.” This reputation — as well as the bountiful filling of hunting tags — is what leads to so much repeat business. “It’s usually the same groups coming back year after year, and it’s always nice to see them,” says Blue Spruce Hotel manager Beckey Dowker, also an avid hunter. “It’s like family coming back every year. Most people like that we’re just a quiet little mountain town.” Further illustrating Meeker’s charm are its lifelong residents, many of whom have been all over the world but are more than happy to call it home. Bill Wille, owner of Antlers Taxidermy, has hunted all over the world and first came to town decades ago for the hunting. He decided to stay, and has now operated his service out of Meeker for the past 35 years.

hotSpotS

gateWay to the Flat topS “The hunting is why I came out here, and that’s what I still love about it.” — Bill Wille, Antlers Taxidermy, Meeker “The hunting is why I came out here, and that’s what I still love about it,” says Wille, whose workshop contains more than 200 mounts of large cats, bears, rodents, fowl and other animals from all over the world — including a rare ibex from Turkey. But despite his world travels, Meeker will always be home and remain close to his heart, for the same reasons that keep visiting hunters returning.

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970-826-0060 Warning: The Polaris RANGER® can be hazardous to operate and is not intended for on-road use. Driver must be at least 16 years old with a valid driver’s license to operate. Passengers must be at least 12 years old. Drivers and passengers should always wear helmets, eye protection, and seat belts. Always use cab nets or doors (as equipped). Never engage in stunt driving, and avoid excessive speeds and sharp turns. Riding and alcohol / drugs don’t mix. All drivers should take a safety training course. Call 800-342-3764 for additional information. Check local laws before riding on trails. ©2015 Polaris Industries Inc.

2016 | colorado hunter

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PUBLIC HUNTER SIGHT-IN DAYS Fresh Meat,Same Great Service!

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• October 13 & 14 th

th

• October 20th & 21st • November 3rd & 4th • November 15th Open to all hunters at a cost of $10 per gun Experienced and trained volunteers are on site to assist hunters with the sight-in process. The Rifle Sportsmen’s Club provides shooting benches, sandbags, spotting scopes, and targets. Water, soda, and foam ear plugs are available for purchase. Follow the instructional signs upon arrival for parking, registration, and firearm safety procedures. All rifles beyond the parking area must be unloaded with actions open. Attendees should arrive with eye protection and ammo.

Stock up on hunting camp essentials with us!

We accept cash payments for this event. Our annual Hunter Sight-In Days is open to the general public and is serviced by members of the Rifle Sportsmen’s Club on a volunteer basis. Tips are greatly appreciated. ||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||||

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Range Location: 0194 County Rd. 244 • Rifle, CO 81650 For more information and location map, visit www.riflegunclub.com

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Email: info@riflegunclub.com Phone: (970) 625-1050 Mail: P.O. Box 944, Rifle, CO 81650

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By Eugene Buchanan

W

hen you’re not casting glances toward ridges for big game, there’s other casting to do in Northwest Colorado. Rifle or rod, world-class options abound for both pastimes, with the region harboring hot spots for trout as well as trophy game. From the boundless lakes atop Grand Mesa and the Colorado and Gunnison rivers near Grand Junction, to the White River and lakes of the Flat Tops near Meeker, to the Yampa and Elk rivers near Craig and Steamboat Springs, to the upper Colorado and William’s Fork outside Kremmling, the region has enough worldclass angling options to keep you casting for years. And wetting a line can be the perfect tonic to complement time chasing deer and elk. “It’s the perfect companion activity to hunting,” maintains Brett Lee, a veteran hunter, fly-fisherman and co-owner of Steamboat’s Straightline Sporting Goods. “The whole Northwest Colorado region offers some of the best fishing in the country, from high Alpine lakes to cool, clear rivers.” The heart of hunting season is also when fishing is at its best, he adds, with aquatic and insect life teeming. The trout sense the onset of winter, meaning flies and lures don’t go unnoticed. “Fall is one of the best times to fish here,” adds Lee. “Fish know winter’s coming and start feeding.” Following is a primer on where to cast your rod.

riVers

Coursing from the Flat Tops Wilderness Area west to its confluence with the Green River, the Yampa River offers more than 100 miles of prime fishing, especially during the cooler hunting months of autumn. Prime public areas include the Stagecoach tailwaters just below Stagecoach Lake, the Chuck Lewis State Wildlife Area three miles south of Steamboat Springs on Routt County Road 14, and the six-mile town stretch, which carries as many as 2,000 trout per mile. For flies, try elk hair caddis, bright green caddis emergers or weighted streamers.

PHOTO BY DAVE DIETRICH

FiSh FRENZY The Elk River offers public access upstream of Hinman Park Bridge along Seedhouse Road or at the Christina Wildlife Area along its lower portion on Routt County Road 129, northwest of town. In Jackson County, try the blue ribbon trout waters of the North Platte River or the countless meandering streams near Walden. Farther south in Grand County near Kremmling, the upper Colorado lures anglers the world over, as does the hidden treasure, William’s Fork. Those hunting near Craig can fish for smallmouth bass and northern pike in Elkhead Reservoir and the Yampa (try white/chartreuse streamers and lures for “smallies”) and also troll these spots for trout. Another world-class option: Head west to the Green River in Browns Park, which offers blue-ribbon trout fishing on three great sections of water (A, B and C). The area is known for its large brown trout and clear, cold water released from the Flaming Gorge Reservoir. The White River, which flows through Meeker and Rangely, drains the Flat Tops and teems with trout in the fall. Head upstream from Meeker on Moffat County Road 8 toward Buford, where you can branch up the south or north fork, or try the Meeker town stretch, the section between Meeker and Rangley or the Rangely reach. Near Grand Junction, hit the blue-ribbon Gunnison River Gorge below Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, which attracts anglers all season. Wade fish near the take-out at Gunnison Forks at the confluence of the river’s north fork, or book a float trip through the gorge.

lAkes AnD reserVoirs

For lake fishing, hit any number of reservoirs near Craig and Steamboat (Stagecoach Lake, Steamboat Lake and Elkhead Reservoir). Recent expansions have increased the sizes of Stagecoach and Elkhead. “Colorado Parks and Wildlife has been stocking them with bigger fish than normal to give them a chance to survive the northern pike,” says Straightline’s Lee. October is when the fish charge out of the depths

“The whole Northwest Colorado region offers some of the best fishing in the country ...” — Brett Lee, co-owner of Straightline Sports in Steamboat Springs to feed before winter sets in. Cooler temperatures also bring rainbows back into shallower water. Go early and get your fly down 10 to 11 feet. Boat rentals are available at the marinas of Stagecoach and Steamboat lakes. For fly patterns, try woolly buggers in olive, black and brown to imitate minnows. As water temperatures drop, slow your reeling motion, adds Lee. “Autumn’s cold water dictates a slower retrieve,” says Lee, touting crayfish patterns as a good bet. Countless smaller lakes also exist for dipping a line. On the other side of the Park Range from Steamboat, in Jackson County, lie Delaney Buttes lakes, which offer free camping, as well as Big Creek Lake and Lake John. In the Flat Tops Wilderness Area, Trapper’s Lake, where you can rent canoes, rowboats and rustic accommodations, as well as Chapman, Sheriff and Stillwater reservoirs and the smaller Rainbow and Mosquito lakes, also offer great fishing options. North of Steamboat, Hahn’s Peak and Pearl lakes, as well as the Alpine lakes of the Mount Zirkel Wilderness Area, serve up prime angling, as do the more than 200 stocked lakes atop 10,000-foot-high Grand Mesa near Grand Junction (favorites include the Gold Medal waters of Mesa Lakes, as well as Cottonwood Lakes and Vega Reservoir). Several fishing lodges on Grand Mesa stay open through the fall. Info: wildlife.state.co.us, 800-244-5613 2016 | colorado hunter

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outfitterS Superior guide Service horSeBacK hunt SpecialiStS

By Noelle Leavitt Riley For several decades, the Seely family has owned thousands of acres of prime game unit land spanning Moffat and Routt counties, letting them operate a unique outfitting business at which clients ride horseback on their hunts. In an era when most outfitters offer hunts via ATVs, Superior Guide Service provides something a little more rustic and tranquil with a little more yippeekiyay. “We’re one of the only outfitters offering hunts by horseback,” says Sheila Brennise, who runs the

business with her husband, Scott. “It makes our hunts unique.” The Brennises own more than 20 horses they care for year round at their ranch home in Craig. Come hunting season, those horses are transported to the Knez Divide in GMU 12, where the White River elk herd migrates each season. Hunting elk is Superior Guide Service’s most popular service, though it also offers mule deer, bear and mountain lion hunts. The couple speaks with hunters beforehand, giving them all the information they need for their hunt, including tips for riding. The majority are from out of state, hunting for four days on the rustic property

Superior owners Sheila and Scott Brennise. Scott inherited the land where they operate Superior from his grandfather Hugh Seely.

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Coberly Creek outfitters.... This working ranch is located in the center of the best elk hunting country in Colorado. The rich Yampa grass and cool timbered forests attract thousands of elk to the area. Mule deer and black bear are also plentiful. In addition to great hunting on the 3,400 acre private ranch, the Routt National Forest borders the property on three sides. The permit area includes 10,000 acres of hunting on the National Forest.

Mon-Fri 6:30-5:30 Sat 7:00-5:00 970.824.3496 • 400 Taylor Street, Craig, CO www.thparts.com largest seleCtiOn Of winChes, tire Chains, bubba tOw rOpes & mOre! 2016 | colorado hunter

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outfitterS

A client celebrating the fruits of a Superior horseback hunt.

while overnighting in a 4,000-square-foot house, equipped to sleep eight, with flat screen TVs and a cozy living room with fireplace. A cook — usually a family member — prepares all the meals. Each year, they book up to 60 clients, many of whom return year after year. Scott says it’s unusual for a client not to shoot anything. “Year in and out, we’re over a 90 percent success rate,” he says. “They hunt for four full days.” Superior offers one guide for every two clients, with most driving to Craig and bringing their own firearms. “I’ve had clients drive all the way from North Carolina and upstate New York to come hunt with us,” Scott says. “A lot of them love the drive out.” The company offers hunts during every hunting seasons, including archery. At the end of each season, they take disabled veterans out to hunt, free of charge. “The best part is taking people out for the first time on an elk hunt,” Scott says. “I love offering them the experience and then seeing their reaction.” Info: wehuntcolorado.com, 970-824-4767


outfitterS

a Finer cut

meat proceSSor roundup By Jim Patterson, Dale Shrull and Patrick Kelly

S

o you shot your elk. Now what? It’s time to get your meat processed. Luckily, a slew of highquality meat processors bed down in Northwest Colorado, ensuring you can enjoy the spoils of your hunt without spoiling your game.

sTeAmBoAT sPrinGs elk river Custom meats Twenty-four hours per day, seven days per week, Elk River Custom Meats stands ready to supply all the needs of Yampa Valley hunters. Located at 2464 Downhill Drive, the business has been in operation for seven years. Normal business hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., but owner Dan Bubenheim says he is available 24-7 to assist hunters in the field. “Anyone can reach me on my cell phone (970-8467642) at any time,” he says. As for big game services, Bubenheim says his facility processes elk, deer, antelope, bear, mountain lion, moose, bighorn sheep and “pretty much anything.” He says his big game services are akin to other meat processors but noted a couple of differences. “The way we wrap is special and unique to itself,” he says. “We also offer flash freezing for shipping … and we have free pickup service, which no one else offers.” He says this last is particularly important during

Steamboat Meat & Seafood Co. owner Bill Hamil. 96 | visit cohunter.com for more

bow season “when it’s 80 degrees in the woods. We’ll get out there and get the animal in.” In addition, the business employs several chefs, who prepare a variety of sausages and jerkies. “I have four culinary chefs working for me,” Bubenheim says. “All our sausages are made from scratch, and we have seven types of jerky, all preservative-free.” The business normally employs four workers, but that number varies seasonally. Elk River also maintains a retail store, supplying a variety of hunting needs, as well as dry ice and cubed ice. Bubenheim, a culinary school graduate himself, says he has won numerous awards through the years, including accolades for best restaurant and top showings at several chili cookoffs. “We’re very customer oriented,” he says. “We spend a lot of time with each individual, and I welcome any hunter to come in and check out the processing plant and take a tour. We guarantee their animal back, 100 percent. We don’t mix, match or batch.” Info: 970-846-7642 steamboat meat & seafood Co. With five consecutive Best of the Boat wins under its belt, as well as numerous grand-champions awards for bacon, sausage, hams and summer sausage, Steamboat Meat & Seafood Co., a USDA-inspected, HACCP-certified facility, has been operating in Steamboat Springs since 1982 and shows no sign of letting up. The business has grown and expanded through the years, purchasing O.K. Meats in 1999 and changing to its current name. Located at 1030 Yampa St. in downtown Steamboat, the company specializes in big game processing, including elk, deer, antelope bear, moose, mountain lion and buffalo, and boasts more than 25 years experience. Open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays, services also include custom meat grinding and preparing a variety of sausages and jerky. The business offers a wide selection of fresh and frozen seafood, meats, homemade pastas and a wide variety of other items, as well. “We make a game breakfast sausage and a game Italian sausage,” says owner Bill Hamil. “We also can custom make sausage, summer sausage, Bratwurst and different kinds of jerky.” Varying seasonally, the company averages about 15 employees, Hamil says, with 24-hour-per-day access

to its courtesy cooler for after-hours drop-offs. Hamil says the business’s success owes itself to quality work. “We have the finest, cleanest workmanship around, and we process for a lot of the big outfitters,” he says. Info: steamboatseafood.com; 970-879-3504.

GrAnD JUnCTion

D&M’s Dan and Michelle Gillian.

D&m meats Dan and Michelle Gillian are the husband-and-wife team that put the D&M into D&M Meats. The Grand Junction meat processing business is in its 14th year, and it’s now time to expand. The business is relocating from Grand Junction to a new 3,000-square-foot facility at 1301 20, Road closer to Fruita. As for hunting season, it’s go-time. “That’s a huge part of our business, from September sometimes right through January,” Dan says. Deer, elk, bear, moose, antelope — if people hunt it and bag it, D& M Meats will process it. Things haven’t changed much through the years when it comes to processing wild game, but one thing Dan has noticed is the smaller deer herds. “We do a lot of elk now. Over the years, I’ve seen the deer numbers go down,” he says. “Bears are up, too.” Processing wild game and domestic animals is a little different. “With wild game, we cut out as much of fat as possible and take out all the bone,” Dan says, adding domestic animals are raised to have the fat and bone add to the meat’s flavor. He adds quality and customer service is what they keep in the cross-hairs. “People like our quality,” he says. “They’ll get their animal back, and it’s the way they want it. We have some good smoke products, too, but the biggest thing is quality and customer service.” Info: 970-241-1073


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outfitterS

old World meats For more than 50 years, Old World Meats has been processing wild game for hunters. For five decades, the business has been in the same family, and now, it’s a pair of husband and wife duos handling the duties. Matt Anderegg and his wife, Cyndi, and Matt’s sister Sue and her husband, Rick Nehm, are now in their 20th year carving meat for clients. “Our busy time starts around county fair time and goes right through the end of the year,” Matt says. “We do domestic processing all year, but wild game is a big part of what we do in the fall.” He says the main difference between processing wild game and domestic meat is how it’s taken care of in the field. “We may have to take a little more time cleaning wild game,” he says. “With domestic, it’s always consistent.” Whatever the meat, quality control and high standards are always the goal. “We’re known for our wild game sausage and snack sticks,” he says. “And when you open a package of wild game we processed, it’s ready to eat. There’s nothing to cut off.” Some out-of-state clients get their wild game processed before heading home, meaning rush service. But that’s no problem. “We can get an animal in the early afternoon and have it ready and frozen the next morning,” Matt says. Old World Meat has been in the same location, at 1765 Main St. in Grand Junction, for more than a half a century. Info: oldworldmeatgj.com; 970-245-2261

Old World Meats’ Matt and Cyndi Anderegg, and Sue and Rick Nehm.

Association’s annual convention. The business received four Grand Champion honors for its smoked turkey, bone-in ham and specialty wild game and bacon, as well as Reserve Grand Champion for large diameter luncheon meat and meat snack sticks and a champion distinction for jerky. “We’re just doing a good job,” Satterwhite says. Info: brothersprocessing.com, 970-824-3855

In addition to processing services, Mountain Meat offers specialty sausages, shipping services and a selection of retail items. “We can accommodate whatever hunters’ needs are,” Jeff says. Info: mountain-meat.com, 970-824-4878

CrAiG Dave Tafoya of Custom Quality Meats.

Mountain Meat’s Loren Baysinger.

Dave Satterwhite of Brother’s Custom Processing.

Brother’s Custom Processing Brother’s Custom Meat Processing, at 383 East First Street in Craig, offers full game processing, as well as a selection of award-winning retail products. Owner Dave Satterwhite says his business can handle any Northwest Colorado game, as well as livestock. “We get trophies ready for hunters to take home, we ship, and we make different sausages,” he says. Brother’s has been operating for 15 years and in 2015, it took home seven awards at Hands Across the Rockies, the Wyoming-Colorado Meat Processors 98 | visit cohunter.com for more

mountain meat Processing At Mountain Meat Packing, processing is the family specialty. Four generations of Baysingers have offered game and livestock processing services to the Craig area since 1977. Because of the connection to the family name, Mountain Meats strives to live up to an expectation of excellence. “Our name is kind of on the line there,” co-owner Jeff Baysinger says. Jeff ’s grandfather, Loren Baysinger, started the business, and at 85, he still helps out around the shop. Located at 291 Lincoln St. in Craig, Mountain Meat Packing can handle any type of Northwest Colorado game, minus poultry, and also processes livestock.

Custom Quality meats The name says it all for Craig’s Custom Quality Meats. They process to perfection. “We custom cut it the way you want it. We’ll give you good quality,” says owner Dave Tafoya. Tafoya has processed most every big game animal in North America and can handle whatever hunters bring in. Despite experience with ostrich and other birds, he doesn’t process poultry, so go elsewhere for your birds. “I don’t deal with anything with feathers,” he says. Located at 1430 Yampa Ave. in Craig, Tafoya has been in the business since 1992 and is now entering his 25th year processing meat in Moffatt County. In addition to high-quality processing, he also assures customers leave with exactly what they brought in. “The animal they bring in, I guarantee it’s the one they take back,” he says, adding his company can also FedEx orders overnight. Info: 970-824-4668


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outfitterS

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huntingtaleS Father KnoWS BeSt a leSSon in patience From popS

By Dale Shrull

I

remember something my dad taught me one of the first times we ventured into the high country in search of a bull elk. Actually, he taught me many things about hunting and life. As we strolled through the trees and open fields, he’d talk a little more than usual, sharing stories about his youth. As we approached the hunting area, his voice would drop to a whisper. “OK, time to be quiet, I know there’s some elk up here,” he said. And he was right. Four cow elk glanced at us and bounded away. But no bulls. This didn’t upset my dad, he knew it was part of hunting. As the elk disappeared, my dad started walking again, and I hustled to keep up with his long strides. “Patience, hunting is about patience,” he said. Hunting is also about expectations and hope. Why else would someone, besides Little Red Riding Hood, traipse through the woods without a goal? Hiking is fun, but why take a rifle and a hunting license along if you’re just out for a hike? Hunting was always fun, whether I aim and shoot or not. And for me, the success rate was on always on the low end. As with any youngster, patience was not my forte. As I grew older, it got better, but I think it was more about lowered expectations than anything. I was always a little disappointed when I came home with the same amount of ammunition that I left with, but it was still a fun day in the backcountry. I had a couple of successful deer hunts, but my only shot at a bull elk zipped high and wide, and the big animal crashed away through the trees, and I

Q:

What do you get when you cross Bambi with a ghost?

A:

Bamboo.

Q: A:

pummeled him with profanities. My grandfather had a ranch north of Silt, and it was good deer hunting country. Once, I invited a high school buddy to come hunt the property with me, but I was guilted into inviting another classmate, whose company I didn’t really enjoy. I had made the mistake of touting the ranch as some kind of hunting haven, where deer were roaming like bison in the 1800s. At least, that’s what the one non-friend believed. He grumbled and groaned as we hiked. On this day, the deer had vanished like Houdini. My friend was patient. He understood. He was taught about hunting patience from his dad. As we turned for home, the non-friend was PO’d. “You said this was a sure thing!” he yelled “I didn’t have to come here, you know?” He cussed and kicked the dirt, grabbed a rock and flung it at nothing. “This sucks. This place sucks.” He wouldn’t shut up. “I’m gonna shoot something!” he said. As my friend and I looked on in irritation, this dude plopped down in the dirt and took aim at a tree. That’s when, just to our left, a four-point buck stood up. I nudged my friend and we both looked. “Don’t shoot,” I said in a hushed whisper. “There’s a buck.” He chuckled and gave me a few choice words, including something about bovine feces. Then he squeezed off the shot. Bulls-eye — one dead tree. The buck jumped and my friend and I took off after it. “Take the shot!” I screamed at him. I knew I’d probably miss, so he had the best chance.

Who did Bambi invite to his birthday party? His deer-est friends.

We crested a little hill, and he pulled up and squeezed the trigger. It was the perfect shot, and the buck fell. It was a really impressive shot. Then, a little two-point buck appeared to my left. By this point, the tree killer was back. He frantically fiddled with the bolt on his rifle, then stumbled and almost fell. My friend looked at me and grinned. “Shoot the sucker.” At first, I wasn’t sure if he meant the deer or the dude. I aimed and zeroed-in on the small buck in the scope, squeezed the trigger. I made the best shot of my life. The non-friend screamed, sending an array of expletives into the air. He stomped off, and I never heard another word about hunting from him. As my friend and I walked to our bucks to do the dirty work, I smiled. A great hunt, sure, but it was more about what my dad had taught me. “Patience.” You gotta have patience, and sometimes, if you make the perfect shot, it’s the best hunting day ever.”

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a Family aFFair

the WagonerS Find multiple BeneFitS to hunting

I

n the Wagoner household, hunting is more than a way to keep food on the table. “There’s a huge amount of life skills in hunting,” Doug Wagoner says. Doug has taken his two oldest kids, Samantha, 19, and Chase, 18, on elk hunts since they were 12 years old. Both kids bagged their first bulls years ago and look at hunting as a valuable way to bond with family and an opportunity for personal growth. “It teaches them patience and how to be thorough and aware,” Doug says. One hunting excursion in particular stands out for the family. The trio was hunting together, and Chase, who was 16 at the time, had just shot his first bull elk. Celebrating the shot, the three hunters were momentarily distracted when, all of a sudden, Samantha, then 17, noticed another bull about 30 yards away from their makeshift blind. “I hollered at her to shoot it,” Doug says. Samantha made the shot, and the two siblings were able to compare their first bulls, side-by-side. Such experiences make all the work and waiting worthwhile for the Wagoners, and it isn’t the only story the family has to share. “Every hunt I’ve ever been on is something that I’ll remember forever,” Chase says. Doug’s two younger children, Chance, 10, and BeccaAnn, 7, aren’t old enough to go after elk yet, but they have some hunting experience, and Doug plans to keep them exposed to the sport.

BeccaAnn, left, Chance, Doug, Samantha and Chase Wagoner love to hunt together.

“It teaches them respect for everything — for the land they’re on, for the rifle they’re shooting and for the animal,” Dan says, “and that translates to a lot of different aspects of life.” The meat from their hunts keeps the Wagoners fed, but the time spent together and the lessons learned are just as valuable. “There’s hundreds of life lessons wrapped up in hunting,” Doug says.

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Finding a paSSion By Andy Bockelman You only get one hunting story about your first time claiming an animal, and Tehya Johnson will have a good yarn to spin for years to come. During Johnson’s first hunting season last October, the 15-year-old stuck close to home — specifically, in the driveway of her family’s home near Cedar Mountain, about 5 miles north of Craig. Johnson was feeling nervous about her initial foray into the sport, unsure if she’d be able to pull the trigger when the time came. Having Game Management Unit 3 right outside her front yard made it easier, but wrapping her mind around it was tough once she spotted a deer. “The first time, I was shaking too hard to even do it. I was so scared,” she says. “I fired, and the deer ran off.” Luckily, the deer wandered back again, and this time, she was ready, all the anticipation having melted away as she took aim. “It worked out really well, I got the perfect shot,” she says.

Tehya Johnson and her deer.

“Just taking your first shot is the scariest part.” — Tehya Johnson Though she became involved in hunting later in life than some, Johnson says her stepfather, Gary Cole, got her interested in the sport, which her mother, Shara, wholeheartedly supported, including the hunter’s safety courses lead up to it. “It’s a tradition that I’m just starting in my family, because it wasn’t in my family history,” Shara says. Now, Johnson is prepared to go back this year, this time with a cow tag for the Black Mountain area. “I’m feeling a lot more confident,” she says. “Just taking your first shot is the scariest part, and once that’s out, it’s easy.”

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moFFat teen StartS tradition With FirSt hunt


huntingtaleS

that’S your Bull!

mental and phySical challengeS pay oFF By Trent Swanson Editor’s note: The first hunter in a given area will typically reach one of two outcomes: either the hardest or best hunt of his life. Rick Messmer got both. fter hunting for three days without seeing a moose, much less a good bull, we were starting to get worried. Since my friend, Rick Messmer, had the first-ever moose tag given in two units in north-central Colorado, we had no history to call upon. Had all the scouting been a waste of time? What about the miles put on our rigs and boots? As we were packing up around noon on day four, a phone call changed the direction of the hunt. On the other end was Mike, Rick’s landscaper and another long time friend. Rick explained he couldn’t meet that week for his sprinkler blow-out, because he was moose hunting. Then, all thoughts about sprinklers went out the window as Mike told Rick about a friend, Pete, who had seen some moose while bowhunting for elk a couple weeks before. Rick quickly took notes and got directions, but I remained pessimistic. Rick had done all the research,

A

talked to Parks and Wildlife personnel, attended the Moose Hunter’s Orientation and studied calls and hunting tactics. No one knew as much about the moose in those units as Rick. But we were ready to grasp whatever straws we could. moose nirvana That evening, we jumped in Rick’s rig and headed to a place neither of us had ever seen. Pete’s directions were perfect. We drove right to the indicated spot, hiked up over a ridge and watched moose nirvana open up in front of us. The small, hidden valley looked perfect, with thick willows and plenty of grass. Tall aspens and spruces rimmed the valley and prevented an easy approach. We slowly moved through the aspens until we found a place to glass, which was difficult into the setting sun. Rick let out a four-part cow call as he had practiced so many times, and as I slowly scanned the willows, a slight movement caught my eye. A moose antler was sticking out from behind the aspens, and that was all I needed to see. I instantly told Rick, “I got a bull. He’s a good bull. That’s your bull!”

I re-situated myself for a better view and grabbed the spotting scope. With the bull bedded broadside, it was easy to see he was worthy of any moose hunter’s dreams. He had about 12 points per side, including split brow tines. He had great width, and his palms were long and wide. Rick setup his rifle, as I ranged the moose. The bull was 391 yards away. This shot was well within Rick’s capabilities, and his .300 Win Mag was well suited for the job. However, because of the aspens trees, Rick didn’t feel comfortable. As a respectful hunter, Rick knows and respects his own limitations. So we had to move. I side-hilled about 20 yards until I found a perfect slot between the aspens. Rick followed and got himself comfortable. The bull never moved, still intrigued by Rick’s cow call. We didn’t have long to wait. Preparation becomes success As soon as the bull stood up, Rick shot. I saw no reaction from the bull and never heard the distinctive thwack of the bullet. He took a couple steps forward as Rick reloaded and shot again. The bull shuddered

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huntingtaleS

once, then disappeared into the willows. Rick thought both shots felt good, but without hearing anything and seeing very little reaction, I wasn’t sure. We packed up our gear and headed down the hill. We found where the bull was bedded, but no sign of a hit. Then, we found a spot of hair. After a few more yards, Rick found a pool of blood. Just then, he saw a moose moving through the willows. It was only 10 yards away, but the willows were so thick, I could barely see it. Finally, I spotted the moose’s antlers. It wasn’t Rick’s bull. It was much smaller, with far fewer points. The small bull slowly moved around us, then entered the clearing behind us, barely looking our direction. With fading light, we ignored it and tracked Rick’s. His bull traveled less than 30 yards before expiring. Rick had made a perfect first shot through the heart from just under 400 yards away. We hugged, high-fived and stared with wonder at the amazing animal before us. We quietly gave thanks for the chase, the excitement, the sustenance and the life. We moved him into position for photos, and then, the work began. Through the next eight hours, we skinned, quartered, trimmed and packed out the bull. Even though the Shiras subspecies of moose is the smallest, a trophy-class bull is still a huge critter. We carried out almost 450 pounds of meat, bone, head, horn and cape. Luckily, our pack-out wasn’t too far.

A huge amount of scouting, information and help from friends, shooting practice, amazing optics and other quality gear allowed Rick to punch his tag on the bull. The hunt was a challenge, both mentally and physically, but Rick’s preparation allowed him to make the most of his opportunity. In Colorado, once you shoot a bull moose, you can never do it again. This once-in-a-lifetime hunt proved to be both Rick’s hardest and best.

Trent Swanson, left, helped Rick Messmer with his once-in-alifetime Colorado moose hunt.

— Colorado native Trent Swanson is the Mountain Territory sales rep for SWAROVSKI OPTIK. He is a selfprofessed “optics nerd” who has been chasing big game for nearly 30 years.

Come to Walmart to get all you need to make this hunting season your best one yet.

Guns Hunting Licenses Sporting Goods Camo and more! 2000 W. Victory Way Craig, CO 81625 2016 | colorado hunter

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huntingtaleS

The storm that put a damper on Royce Carville’s hunt.

oh SnoW!

Stormed out in the WeSt elKS By Royce Carville

W

hat a beautiful fall day! My best friend and hunting partner, Mike Chapman, and I were unloading my horses at Bald Mountain Reservoir. Three weeks earlier, we had camped at 11,800 feet and scouted the headwaters of Soap Creek in the West Elk Wilderness. The first two days of the season, we passed up smaller bulls, waiting for the trophies we had seen. On the third day, it started snowing. Some other hunters were packing out and recommended we do the same as a massive snowstorm was bearing down fast. We discussed it, but decided to stay. I knew we were in trouble the next morning, when I zipped down the tent fly. An endless white sheet of snow gave the landscape a ghostly appearance. We were six miles from our truck, and the snow was already 30 inches deep. Hastily packing camp in frozen packsaddles and panniers, we post-holed the one mile to the confluence of East Curecanti Creek in four hours. Visibility was about 100 feet, and the temperature was 0 degrees F. Then, I broke through the creek. Within minutes, I had a severe case of the shakes and came close to passing out. Untying my horse, Blue, I floundered uphill, knowing that if I stopped, I might not get going again. I’ll never forget struggling up the trail, violently shaking, slipping and falling in the three-foot-deep snow. Hypothermia was an everpresent threat the rest of the journey, as we were ill -prepared for the wind and subzero temperatures. We trudged up the mountainside, and by 4 p.m., we could no longer walk without digging with our

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Rubbermaid dish pans. I had seen a movie where Indians tail-walked their horses to break a snow trail. Evidently, neither Blue nor Peaches had seen the movie, as neither would plow, no matter how hard we yelled and prodded. It was throw three dish pans, take a step, throw three and step, on and on. Things looked bad — then, they got worse. Reaching the creek draining the east side of Bald Mountain at dark, I expected trouble. Above and below the creek crossing were huge boulders and drop offs. Halfway across, I slipped on a boulder and fell in over my head in the snow. Blue floundered and, suddenly, was on top of me. I had crossed above the trail and fallen in a drift. I literally swam from under Blue while he was kicking and struggling to get out. The panniers were like boat pontoons, keeping him from getting his hooves on the ground. He kicked and struggled for three to four minutes, while I lay half buried a few feet away. I somehow managed to get on Blue’s back, and release the panniers. We found the trail 15 feet below, but Blue was unable to get up the embankment until, on hands and knees, I dug hoof holds in the icy embankment with my hunting knife. Finally, we made it across at 9:30 p.m. It took more than two hours to cross that 30-foot-wide creek. I’ll never forget that night in our tent. Wind howling, us constantly banging the tent top to keep the huge flakes from caving it in. I didn’t sleep, but I recall a lot of praying and thoughts of hanging on a rope as a helicopter hauled us out. We were scared and exhausted when we broke at 5 a.m. My God, the

reliGioUs skUnks

snow was up to my chest! It was impossible to walk anywhere without dishpans. The horses were a pitiful site, heads and necks covered with large icicles. The trail up Baldy is a series of switchbacks, difficult in dry weather — rock cliffs to the west, dense spruce deadfalls to the east. Within 100 yards, we had lost the trail and were fighting boulders and deadfalls as we trenched our way up the mountain. Blue was sick and getting worse. He was stumbling and had fallen a couple of times in the trench, which was becoming dangerous. In a steep spot, Blue slipped, reared and went over backwards in the trench, nearly crushing Mike. Blue lay on his side, seemingly unwilling to go on. When we finally got him up, we saw a large limb stuck in his belly below his ribs. I’ll never forget the crack of the rifle and how quickly it faded. I saw Blue’s legs buckle. I never looked back, but heard his soft thud. Blue’s troubles had ended. As I trudged up the trench, I wept out loud. Usually able to control my emotions, I was overcome by the events and our plight. From here on out, it was strictly survival, whatever the hardship. We dug and clawed at that mountainside for the next 18 hours in subzero temperatures, 50 percent visibility, pitching snow with dishpans in a narrow trench of drifted snow, at times 20 inches over our heads. We constantly had to change our course to get Peaches over or around cliff rock or deadfalls. My story must end here due to lack of space, but Mother Nature and fate had much more in store for us ... — Editor’s note: For the full story, visit carvillesautomart.com/blog/hunting-story/

Two skunks observed a deer hunter sneaking through the woods with a rifle. “I hope he’s not going to shoot at us,” said one skunk. The second skunk bowed his head and said, “Let us spray.”


hotSpotS huntingtaleS

Thank you for standing with Trapper. We remain committed to the safety and well-being of our employees, the needs of our local community and our commitment to protect the environment.

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readerphotoS

Lance Poole hunting antelope with his daughter in Unit 3.

Tyler Enger celebrating his first bull.

Specializing in Unguided “Do it Yourself” Hunts & Extreme Guided Hunts

Come hunt our Private Ranches for the Hunt of a lifetime for Elk/Mule Deer or Antelope. Our Private Ranch Do-It-Yourself hunts in Southeast Colorado are producing some of the largest trophy bulls in the state. Elk/Mule Deer Hunts are in GMU’s 64/65 & 85. Antelope hunts are in the Eastern Plains GMU 133 & 134 and offer many premier trophy bucks. We have several Ranches to choose from with a minimum group of four to six hunters per Ranch. We also provide Guided hunts Archery / Muzzeloader / Rifle hunts that continue to provide great Elk • Deer • Turkey • Anelope success rates.

Laurel’s first animal, taken in November 2015 at age 12. With one shot, she stopped him in his tracks. (By Stacy Boesch).

LOOK UP BEFORE YOU SHOOT! Have a Safe, Fun Hunting Season! Be careful of overhead powerlines while hunting! Target Practice is for the Gun Range! Every year electric infrastructure is used for target practice resulting in dangerous and costly damage. These repair costs impact everyone’s cost of electricity. White River Electric:

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Craig: 970-824-5041 Steamboat: 970-879-1160 Visit: www.yvea.com


readerphotoS

Kelly Fender with his massive mule deer from the 2015 season.

Craig, CO 81625

Contact Country Living Realty.

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MLS # 144021 This working ranch has it all! Located in migration path...there’s plenty of elk, deer & antelope. 500 Acres in CRP, runs 60 pairs of 130 yearlings, water rights included for hay irrigation & mineral rights. Log sided home w/4 bdrms, 3 baths, 36x36 shop, 36x45 shop, pipe corrals & creek, ponds & springs. This type of property doesn’t come up very often!

MLS #144789 Your Hunting Headquarters! 3 bdrm + loft custom cabin close to Routt National Forest. Located in Wilderness Ranch with great views on 37.55 Acres. Ideal for hunters!

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readerphotoS Mark Zimmerman took the day off from his shop at Bullseye Taxidermy to take his sons Drake, 16, and Dylan, 11, hunting. Drake got this bull opening morning with his muzzle loader. It’s a great thing when you can carry on the hunting family tradition. (By Gayle Zimmerman)

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readerphotoS

Audrey Hogan with her Unit 10 bull from October 2015.

Tyrel Gerloff’s Area 21 buck from 2015.

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Secluded 80+/- acres located in the Bookcliffs and bordered on two sides by BLM. A 576+/- sq ft rustic cabin with breathtaking views! Perfect for hunting big game. Additional 160+/- acres available, contact agent for more info.

Private 160+/- acres in the Bookcliffs, bordered on three sides by BLM with good access road to property. Great for mule deer and elk hunting. Nice meadows, oaks and pinyons. Additional acreage with cabin available. Seller is licensed Realtor in State of Colorado.

Stunning picturesque 144+/- acre ranch w/a newer 4,100+/- sq. ft. rancher with 3 BD/2.5 BA with a full walkout basement. Gorgeous mtn. and valley views, 60+/- irrigated acres under sprinklers and in hay/pasture, shop, barns, livestock setup, borders BLM and more!

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Gorgeous and very private 500+/- mtn. acres. Excellent big game hunting for elk, deer, bear, and turkey in GMU 53. Plus your very own trout pond and creek located near the main cabin. Well maintained 3 BD/1 BA log cabin (off grid), plus a 2nd smaller log cabin. Borders the Gunnison Nat’l Forest.

320+/- mtn. acres. Goat and Beaver Creeks traverse the ranch and are excellent trout fisheries. Vehicle/foot access to both Beaver Creek and Beaver Canyon is controlled by owner via a locked gate on the ranch and gives the owner private access to hundreds of acres of gorgeous BLM lands. Located in GMU 70 with excellent big game hunting and over the counter tags in some seasons.

Brian Mason, broker/owner | 970-234-3167 H.B. Mason, broker associate | 970-314-3326 112 | visit cohunter.com for more

Glade Park, CO - $6,400,000 - TBD 16 1/2 Road Beautiful 1,600+/- mtn. acres on Glade Park with a nice mix of aspen, pine, oaks, mountain meadows, springs, ponds and more! Excellent big game hunting in GMU 40 and borders public lands. Convenient to Grand Junction with seasonal access.

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readerphotoS

Be Ready For The Hunt!


readerphotoS It only took eight years to draw, but it was definitely worth the wait for this monster, harvested on the Craig Wild Bunch Guides & Outfitters. Kraig Kerry’s green scores came in at at 209 7/8, measured by an official SCI scorer. He said he hasn’t seen a buck this big in years. (By Kathy White)

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Check out our Taxidermy School at: www.gunsmoketaxidermy.com 2016 | colorado hunter

| 113


Colorado-made

don’t leave without this top-notch local gear Need outdoor gear for your hunting trip or beyond? Try something from the following companies based in the heart of Northwest Colorado in Steamboat Springs. TALON Grips

TALON Grips targets gun users, hunters included, desiring enhanced grip for their firearms. The company has grown from a basement operation to now offering 126 different gun model grips in two textures. Business is, shall we say, booming. “We never could have imagined it would grow so quickly,” says President Mike Morris, whose company also recently expanded into iPhone grips. “Steamboat’s a great place to be based. The mountain lifestyle and community are hard to beat.” Prices vary, talongungrips.com

Big Agnes Deer Park Sleeping Bag

Founded in 2000, Big Agnes is an awardwinning tent, sleeping bag and sleeping pad manufacturer headquartered in Steamboat Springs. Its new 600 fill DownTek™ Deer Park Sleeping Bag is part of its new system bag-pad combo geared for those who want girth but also might want to carry their bag. Its Park Series Downtek™ bags are ideal for serious hunters or those just hunting for a sleeping bag with tons of room. With double zippers and top corner hand pockets that feel like your comforter at home, the Park bags’ unique quilt-like construction turns your bag into a backcountry bed. $299.95, bigagnes.com

114 | visit cohunter.com for more

Helinox Camo Chair

Tell your hunting tales around the campfire in comfort in this versatile, low-profile, easy-to-pack camp chair for keeping your backside out of the dirt, and your eyes on the sunset. A super comfortable and supportive back and neck rest, along with the simple shock cord poles, make this the must-have chair for just about any occasion. Plus, you can’t beat the camo color scheme. $119.95, bigagnes.com


Creek Company T.Rex

Want to float fish on your trip? Head home with the new 9’8” T.Rex 9.8 Mini Drifter from Creek Company, a two-person fishing raft weighing just 115 pounds. Ready to drop in anywhere, it fits in the back of a truck or on a roof rack (no trailer required) and is made from heavy-duty PVC, with a self-bailing floor and 18-inch diameter tubes. The six-chamber craft comes with a custom NRS two-person fishing frame with leaning bar, selfdraining high-back fishing seat and low-back rowers seat; as well as two-piece, eight-foot-long Carlisle oars. $2,495, creekcompany.com

Point 6 socks

Honey Stinger

Sweetwood Cattle Co.

SmartWool

Tired of wet feet? Made in the USA and recently featured in Recoil magazine, Point 6 uses merino wool fibers, combined with stateof-the-art spinning and knitting, to create socks perfect for hunting. Its Boot Medium Mid-Calf (wool 70 percent, spandex 3 percent, nylon 27 percent) comes with a lifetime guarantee and offers cushioning around the entire leg and foot, with extra cushion on the instep to provide support and protection against pressure points from heavier footwear. The cozy, next-to-skin wool insulates the foot from hot spots and blisters, while its compact-spinning process keeps it soft, non-itchy and durable. $23.95, point6.com

While local energy food company Honey Stinger’s original line of honey-based energy gels arose as a natural energy source for endurance athletes, it now produces bars, chews, waffles and gels perfect for any outing in the mountains. The company’s bestseller is the Stinger Waffle, which fits easily into a breast pocket, and its chews are great for nibbling quietly while glassing a ridge. “It’s a great way to refuel on a long hunting hike,” says president Bill Gamber. Prices vary, honeystinger.com

Hog Island Boat Works

Hog Island Boat Works introduced the world’s first rotomolded drift boat to the fishing market in 2007. The company now produces a full line of rotomolded drift boats, as well as rotomolded, motorized skiffs, highlighted by the SW 16, which poles, rows and motors in the shallows. Made of tough, rotomolded polyethyene, it comes with molded-in inserts for plug-and-play accessory mounting and configures quickly. Options include poling platform, oar locks, casting platforms, anchor system, trolling motor mounts and rod storage. Rated for a 40-horse motor, it measures 16’4”, with a 78” beam and 54” floor. $5,950, hogislandboatworks.com

Founded by Under Armor co-founder Ryan Wood, Sweetwood Cattle Co.’s mission is to promote American agriculture and Western life. It offers a full array of naturally raised beef products, from all-natural hand-cut steaks, sent in reusable and recyclable containers, to award-winning Sweetwood Beef Jerky and its new Sweetwood Fatty, a hickory smoked meat stick. Order online or at specialty grocery and outdoor stores around the country; it stands behind every order shipped from its Steamboat headquarters. $25 (4-pack Jerky Sampler), sweetwood.com

Based out of the old Steamboat Springs Airport building, SmartWool’s merino wool apparel places a premium on comfort. Its 400 sock and apparel products — which use enough yarn each year to circle the earth 500 times — enjoy worldwide distribution in 35 countries. Of special note is its Hunt Medium Crew, carrying a medium full-cushion leg and foot with SmartWool fit system and arch and ankle support and flat knit toe seam. Made from 65 percent Merino Wool, 34 percent nylon and 1 percent Elastane, they’ll keep your feet warm, breathing and cozy over hill and dale. $18.95, smartwool.com 2016 | colorado Hunter

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huntingdirectory Western Colorado Guides & outfitters .......................116 Craig region...................121 [including Meeker, Maybell, Hamilton, Rangely, Dinosaur] Gear, Goods & Supplies .........121 Meat Processing & Taxidermy ..121 Licensing Agents ...................122 Shooting Ranges ...................122 Lodging & Dining ..................122 Other Supporting Businesses ...123 Real Estate ............................123 Shopping ..............................123 Grand Junction region ....125 [including Glenwood Springs, Rifle, Montrose, Durango] Gear, Goods & Supplies .........125 Meat Processing, Taxidermy & Fur Dealers ..................................126 Licensing Agents ...................126 State Parks ............................129 Lodging & Dining ..................129 Other Supporting Businesses 129 Real Estate ............................129 Shopping ..............................130 steamboat springs region ...........................132 [including Hayden, Walden, Oak Creek, Yampa, Kremmling, Granby] Gear, Goods & Supplies .........132 Meat Processing & Taxidermy ..133 Licensing Agents ...................133 Shooting Ranges ...................134 Dining ...................................134 Lodging.................................134 Other Supporting Businesses 134 Real Estate ............................136 Colorado Visitor info .......137

WesTern ColorADo GUiDes & oUTFiTTers 2V outfitters, ltd.

7380 Ds Drive, Glade Park, 970-245-0313 bc@2voutfitters.com; 2voutfitters.com

4+2T ranch

or 970-729-1954, Fax: 970-327-4776 robert@brayranches.com; brayranches.com

Bryce outfitting

P.O. Box 896, Hayden, 970-276-4283 huntco4plus2tranch.com

20439 E Road, Delta 970-874-4134 or 970-270-3586 brycehunts@yahoo.com; bryceoutfitting.com

Adams lodge outfitters

Buck mountain outfitters

6389 Rio Blanco CR 4, Meeker, 970-878-4312 adamslodgeoutfitters.com

Aspen Way llama rentals

North of Colo. 134 (Gore range), 970-724-9629

Bar Diamond ranch, llC

P.O. Box 688, Hotchkiss 970-527-3010, Fax: 970-527-3416 bardiomandranch.com

Bear mountain ranch

7401 U.S. 40, Kremmling, 970-724-9651 bearmountainranch.net

Bearcat outfitters

P.O. Box 110, Craig (28 miles south of Craig) 970-824-7958; coloradoelkhunts.net

Beaver Creek outfitters

Craig-based outfitter with full-service guided elk and deer hunts (archery, muzzleloader and rifle) and drop camps into the Flat Tops Wilderness Area (GMU 12) and other public private lands (GMUs 4, 441 and 214). Also offers wilderness pack trips. 19362 Glacier Road, Clearbrook, Minnesota 218-368-3679; huntbeavercreek.com

Beaver springs

15800 W. Fifth Ave., Golden, 303-961-4603 beaverspringscolo.com

Behrman outfitting

P.O. Box 172, Maybell, 970-272-3284 behrmanoutfitting.com

Big Gulch ranching for Wildlife P.O. Box 1342, Craig, 970-824-6933 bgwildlife.com

Big rack outfitters

Fair chase guided, semi-guided and do-it-yourself hunts including deer, elk, antelope and black bear. Over 30,000 acres of private land hunting. Archery, muzzleloader and rifle hunts. GMUs 3, 301, 4, 13, 131, 211, 441. Over 20 years outfitting hunters in Craig. Ranching for wildlife hunts also available. 42755 Routt CR 8, 970-826-4468 bigrack@bigrack.com; bigrack.com

Biggerstaff Guides & outfitters

P.O. Box 23187, Glade Park, 970-210-1032 biggerstaffguides@yahoo.com biggerstaffguides.com

Bray ranches

P.O. Box 65, Redvale, 970-327-4779

116 | visit cohunter.com for more

22990 Routt CR 54, Steamboat Springs, (15 minutes northwest of Steamboat), 970-870-9665 buckmountainoutfitters.net

Buck’s livery, inc.

61 La Plata CR 248, Durango 970-385-2110 or 970-749-0858 info@buckslivery.com; buckslivery.com

Buffalo Creek ranch

P.O. Box 2, Rand, 970-723-4045 buffalocreek.com

Buford Guide service

20474 Rio Blanco CR 8, Meeker (20 miles east of Meeker), 970-878-4745

Bull Basin Guides and outfitters

P.O. Box 1566, Kremmling, 970-724-0417 bullbasin.com, troublesomeflyfishing.com

Bull run ranch

Unit 12 hunting on 550 private acres. Borders White River National Forest. Hunt on your own. Cabin sleeps 12 with running water. 17454 Colo. 13, Hamilton, 970-824-5655 rickrayl@wreawildblue.org

Camp David outfitting, llC

17201 6200 Road, Montrose 970-252-1582, 970-596-6716 or 970-765-5500 ray@campdavidoutfitting.com campdavidoutfitting.com

Carr Creek Cattle Company, llC P.O. Box 2991, Grand Junction 970-261-5009, Fax: 970-255-9911 dave@carrcreekcattleco.com carrcreekcacattleco.com

Chris Jurney outfitting

2013 “Colorado Outfitter of the Year,” with over 30 years experience guiding and even more hunting experience. We offer hunts in the special draw areas 1, 2, 10 and 201 in Northwest Colorado and can help you set up hunts with other outfitters throughout the state. 574 Legion St., Craig, 970-824-5505 cjoutfitters.com

Circle k Guest ranch

27758 Colo. 145, Dolores, 970-562-3826 vacation@ckranch.com; ckranch.com

The Co Hunter llC

651 Clearview Drive, Clifton, 970-623-0399

Coberly Creek outfitters

All our guides are First Aid and CPR certified and

possess a thorough knowledge of our private land and permit area. Their understanding and knowledge of the local wildlife habits give hunters the best opportunity for a successful hunt. 35591 Colo. 134, Toponas, 970-638-4281 coberlycreekoutfitters.com

Code of the West outfitters

High country fishing and big game hunting trips as well as summer pack trips and cabin stays. Our guides are friendly, courteous professionals who are medic First Aid-trained. 2655 Rio Blanco CR 12, Meeker 970-878-0233 or 970-688-0249 codeofthewestoutfitters.com

Colorado elk outfitter, llC

Offering guided hunts for archery, muzzleloader and rifle. Elk, deer, moose, antelope, bear and coyote are present with the majority of the hunting concentrated on our outstanding elk hunting. Thompson Ranch in GMU 17, Rand, 970-481-4354 coloradoelkoutfitter.com

Colorado’s High lonesome outfitter and Guides P.O. Box 312, Yampa, (45 minutes south of Steamboat), 970-846-1449 or 970-638-4239 cohighlonesome.com

Colorado Hunter services

We have been in business since 2002 and are individually owned and operated. Booked hunts are on private land, some tracts border BLM and National Forest. Located in Slater, 866-210-2445 or 803-730-4176 coloradohunterservices.com

Colorado’s mountain West outfitting Co. P.O. Box 1380, Craig, 970-824-7257 primehunts.com

Colorado outfitters services

Private land hunts available for handicap and youth hunters and military veterans. 501 Cedar Mountain Ave., Craig, 303-726-5975

Colorado Private ranches

P.O. Box 447, Winnsboro, Louisiana 318-435-5029 or 318-376-5043 coloradoprivateranches.com

Colorado Trophies

P. O. Box 249 Redvale 970-327-4678, Fax: 970-327-4677 colander@wic.net; coloradotrophies.com

Colorado Twin Peaks

Colorado Twin Peaks private ranches offers unguided private ranch hunts on private properties located in Southeast Colorado in hunt units 85, 133, 134 and 64/65. Southern Colorado offers elk hunters some of the best trophy elk hunting found in the entire state. Franklin, West Virginia 304-358-3252 or 304-668-2147 coloradotwinpeaks.com


WeStern colorado guideS & outFitterS P.O. Box 530, Somerset, 970-929-6202 commanderandcompany@gmail.com commanderandcompany.com wildernesshunts.com

Coulter lake Guest ranch

80 Garfield CR 273, Rifle 970-625-1473 or 800-858-3046 info@coulterlake.com; coulterlake.com

Craig Wild Bunch Guides and outfitters

Del’s Triangle 3 ranch

Del’s has been in continuous operation in North Routt County since 1962, offering full-service, five-day hunts as well as drop camps deep into Routt National Forest. Elk, deer and bear hunts in GMUs 5, 14, 161 and 214. 55675 Routt CR 62, Clark (18 miles north of Steamboat), 970-879-3495 steamboathorses.com

Diamond Peak Cattle Co., llC

1280 Industrial Ave., Craig, 970-824-2803 crossmountainranch.com

Guided archery, muzzleloading and rifle hunts offered in the premier GMUs 2 and 201 for trophy bull elk, mule deer and antelope based out of historic lodge at base of Diamond Peak. 2991 Pine Ridge Drive, Craig 970-824-5750 or 970-326-8620 trophy-elk-hunting.com

Cutty Creek outfitting

Dunckley Peak outfitters and Pack service

855 Moffat CR 78, Craig, 970-824-9334 elk-craigwildbunch.com

Cross mountain Adventures

970-819-9430

P.O. Box 935, Craig, 970-824-8257 billscabin.com

D & G Horses and outfitting

Old time outfitting. 1631 Garfield CR 293, Rifle, 970-625-0234 dghorseoutfittin@aol.com dghorsesoutfitting.com

Dark Timber outfitting

236 S. Third St., Box 224, Montrose, 970-275-5047 darktimberlodge@hotmail.com darktimberlodge.com

Dave Parri’s outfitting and Guide service P.O. Box 254, Hot Sulphur Springs, 970-725-3531 traditionalelkhunt.com

David r. seely outfitting

1826 Colo. 394, Craig, 970-824-4288

eagle’s nest outfitting

elkhorn outfitters

37399 N. Colo. 13, Craig, 970-824-7392 elkhornoutfitters.com

elk river Guest ranch

Customized unguided hunting packages to vast public lands in the Routt National Forest, archery through second elk and deer rifle season. 29840 Routt CR 64, Clark (20 miles north of Steamboat), 800-750-6220 elkriverguestranch.com

Fawn Gulch outfitters

P.O. Box 727, Pagosa Springs 970-264-5266, Fax: 970-264-2123 TroyRoss@FawnGulchOutfitters.com fawngulchoutfitters.com

Feisty Fins outfitters

1427 Airport Road, Rifle, 970-319-5679

Fish & Cross ranch Pack Country outfitters

P.O. Box 1168, Craig, 970-826-4383 eaglesnestoutfitting.com

24300 Routt CR 11, Yampa (45 minutes south of Steamboat), 970-638-1064 packcountryoutfitters.com

ed Chamberlain Horse rentals

Fish Creek outfitters, llC

53 Garfield CR 223, Rifle, 970-625-2131 rifleareachamber.chambermaster.com

elkhead mountain lodge, llC

Offering DIY hunting for elk, deer and bear with convenient lodging complete with amenities. Operating northeast of Craig in the Elkhead Mountain Range 814-758-9278 (Jeff ) or 814-229-5238 (Shawn) elkheadmountainlodge.com

Garvey Brothers outfitters

Hunts are conducted by special use permit in the Uncompahgre National Forest on BLM and private ground depending on the game hunted and seasonal migration patterns. P.O. Box 646, Nucla, 970-864-2244 dustgarvey@hotmail.com

The Gunnison Country Guide service P.O. Box 1443, Gunnison 970-641-2830 or 970-209-7104 packtrip@gunnison.com coloradoguideandoutfitter.com

H & H Processing and outfitting 68656 Colo. 64, Meeker 970-878-5126 or 970-878-5151 handhoutfitting.com

Hester Hunting Company

1367 Eagle Ave., Kremmling, 970-724-9746 hesterhuntingcompany.webs.com

3600 Archuleta CR 359, Pagosa Springs 970-946-1888; larry@fishcreekoutfitters.com fishcreekoutfitters.com

High Country Cabin at Flat Tops ranch

Five springs ranch Guide and outfitters

High Desert ranch & outfitting

29550 Colo. 131, Steamboat Springs 970-879-0868; 5springsranch.com

405 Hill Drive, Craig, 970-629-1760 highdesertoutfitting.com

Frosty Acres ranch

High sierra expeditions, llC

Mostly trespass-fee elk, deer and antelope hunts (archery, muzzleloading and rifle) on

INJURED ON THE JOB?

15805 Garfield CR 245, New Castle, 970-379-5080 colorado-high-country-cabin.com

236 S. Third Street, PMB 331, Montrose 970-249-6334 or 970-275-3383

Operation Game Thief

Operation Game Thief is a Colorado Parks and Wildlife sponsored wildlife crime stoppers program which pays rewards to citizens who turn in poachers. You can call us toll-free at 1-877-265-6648 or 1-877-COLO OGT. Verizon cell phone users can dial #OGT, or contact us via e-mail at game.thief@state.co.us. Callers do not have to reveal their names or testify in court. A REWARD OF $500 is offered for information on cases involving big game or endangered species: a $100 REWARD is offered for information on other wildlife violations. A citizens committee administers the reward fund, which is maintained by private contributions. The Board may approve REWARDS OF UP TO $1,000 for flagrant cases. Rewards are paid for information which leads to an arrest or a citation being issued.

Withers Seidman Rice & Mueller P.C. Representing injured workers in Colorado for over 30 years.

WORKERS’ COMPENSATION & SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY 101 S. 3rd St., Suite 265, Grand Junction

245-9075 • (800) 431-6975

56100

Se Habla Español

FREE CONSULTATION

15,000 private acres of GMUs 4 and 301, with private lodging. 41380 N. Colo. 13, Craig, 970-824-8935 frostyacres-craig.com

Wildlife belongs to everyone. Poachers steal from us all.

2016 | colorado hunter

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huntingdirectory

Commander & Company, ltd


huntingdirectory

WeStern colorado guideS & outFitterS info@highsierraexpeditions.com highsierraexpeditions.com

Highlands Unlimited, inc

3931 La Plata CR 122, Hesperus 970-247-8443; mail@highlandsunlimited.com highlandsunlimited.com

Hills Guide service

56860 OE Road, Collbran, 970-487-3731 hillsguide@yahoo.com; hillsguideservice.com

Hodiak outfitters & Wildlife solutions P.O. Box 1638, Arboles 970-883-5401 or 970-799-3641 hodiak.com

Homestead Hunts

2050 Chapman Lane, Craig, 970-824-8549 homesteadhunts.net

Hubbard Creek outfitters & Pack station, llC P.O. Box 25, Hotchkiss, 970-872-3818 hubbardcreek.com

ivory Tip outfitters

We offer deer, antelope and mountain lion hunts. Ivory Tip Outfitters is a place where memories are made, dreams come true and bucket lists are wiped away. We pride ourselves in knowing what it takes to make a successful hunting camp, and we assure our clients that we will do everything in our power to make it a successful hunting trip. 774 Park Court, Craig, 970-629-1361 ivorytip-outfitters.com

J & ray Colorado High Country, inc

8360 6400 Road, Montrose, 970-323-0115 Prfranks55@yahoo.com; sportsmansdream.com

J-Bar-H outfitters

Archery, muzzleloader and rifle hunts in the White River and Routt National Forests. Fully guided tent and cabin hunts, drop camp hunts. GMU 12. P.O. Box 569, Meeker, 800-230-HUNT (4868) jbarhoutfitters.com

Jack Cassidy, Colorado Big Game Hunts, llC Our family operation has been offering quality hunts for nearly 40 years. We’ve hosted hunters from around the world while pursuing almost every huntable wildlife species in Colorado. 1436 N Road, Loma 970-858-6586 or 970-270-2112 packratspud@gamil.com or packrat@gvii.net jackcassidycoloradohunts.com

J.C. Trujillo Guide & outfitter

54768 Rio Blanco CR 8, (28 miles south of Hayden) 970-276-3300 or 928-533-6624

Jml outfitters

300 Rio Blanco CR 75, Meeker, (30 miles east of Meeker), 970-878-4749 jmloutfitters.com

James Creek outfitters

396 Colo. 13, Meeker, 970-824-6939 jamescreekoutfitters.com

Jeffcoat ranch & outfitters

P.O. Box 97, Hamilton, 970-824-3757 jeffcoat20@wreawildblue.org

kawcak Farms

keys Guide & outfitting, llC

We are located in Meeker, Colorado, just 35 miles from the Flat Tops Wilderness Area, via the Flat Tops Trail Scenic Byway. 25 Valley View Drive, Craig 970-824-3657 or 970-620-1511 lostsolaroutfitters.com

knight Canyon outfitters, inc

louisiana Purchase ranch outfitters

3699 Moffat CR 13, Craig, 970-824-7161 P.O. Box 1080, Clifton, 970-216-7899 info@keysoutfitting.com keysoutfitting.com P.O. Box 404, Norwood 970-327-4614 or 970-729-1806 knightcanyonoutfitters@yahoo.com knightcanyonoutfitters.com

P.O. Box 206, Meeker, 970-272-3006 louisianapurchaseranch.com or shootelk.com

luark ranch & outfitters

970-641-3313 lazyfbar@crestedbutte.net; lazybfbarranch.com

A taste of the Old West with base camp for big game hunting on King Mountain. 2834 Luark Road, Burns, 970-653-4324 luarkranch.com/hunting.htm

lobo outfitters, llC

m & m elk ranch

lazy F Bar ranch & outfitters, inc.

4821 A Highway 84, Pagosa Springs 970-264-5546 or 970-264-2812 dickray@centurytel.net; lobooutfitters.com

lone Tom outfitting

Elk, deer, mountain lion and antelope lodgebased hunts (archery, muzzleloader and rifle) and drop camps on public and private lands. Also offers fishing and pack trips and horse rentals. 12888 Rio Blanco CR 8, Meeker, 970-878-5122 lonetom.com

longshot ranch

28925 Routt CR 14, Steamboat Springs 970-879-4026

lost solar outfitters

Our permits are in Colorado Game Unit (GMU) 24, south of the North Fork of the White River.

Offering a wide range of products from custom steaks to specialty dog treats. Also offering the opportunity to shoot your own elk. 50803 Meadow Lane, Steamboat Springs 970-879-5200; mmelkranch.com

m&m outfitters

P.O. Box 1020, Craig, 970-824-5812 mmoutfitters@wreawildblue.org

majestic Trophy outfitters

Fully guided and semi-guided archery, muzzleloading and rifle hunts for deer, elk, antelope and predators on 2,500 private acres of scrub oak and mixed terrain 20 miles south of Craig (GMUs 3, 12 and 301). Also offers interpretive ATV tours and survival classes for all ages. 711 Desperado Road, Bailey, 970-620-0098 majestictrophy.net

Sarah Buckles Larner Custom Elk Ivory Jewelry

silverspursteamboat.com sarahsilverspur@gmail.com | 970.846.7787

Sand Springs Archery Northwest Colorado’s preferred propane provider! 118 | visit cohunter.com for more

223 6th St. Meeker, CO 970-878-5041

Wrenergy.COM

970-824-0139 970-756-9315 cell 80 East 4th St. Craig, CO 81625 Allen Jenkins, owner sandspringsarchery@yahoo.com


WeStern colorado guideS & outFitterS

myers Hunting service

Over 8,000 acres of excellent private land hunting in the Williams Fork Valley. In addition to having a large year-round resident elk and deer population, the ranch is located on natural migration routes of the large White River elk and deer herds. 6148 Colo. 317, Hamilton, 970-824-9317 lazy-v-box.com

nine mile Guest ranch

Nine Mile Guest Ranch offers guided archery and rifle elk hunting, mule deer hunting, trophy whitetail deer, pronghorn anelope hunts, ranching for wildlife hunting and combination deer/elk hunts. 50735 Colo. 13, Meeker, 970-878-4656 ninemileguestranch.com

northern Colorado outfitters

Guided archery, muzzle-loading and rifle elk and deer hunts and drop camps with exclusive outfitter rights to 90 square miles of the Sarvis Creek Wilderness Area (GMU 15), owned and operated by Olympic and World Cup mogul coach Timmy Meagher. northerncoloradooutfitters.com

oak ridge outfitters

P.O. Box 631, Meeker, 970-878-5822 meekercolorado.com/oakridge

I am here to help make Moffat County your new home!

7500 Gunnison CR 3, Marble, 970-963-5525 info@outwestguides.com; outwestguides.com

PT outfitters

129 Grand CR 12, Kremmling, 866-724-3616

Peak to Creek outfitters, inc P.O. Box 1986, Bayfield 970-884-0199, Fax: 970-884-0199 gene@peaktocreekoutfitters.com peaktocreekoutfitters.com

Pinnacle Peak Adventures, llC

Enjoy a memorable mule deer, elk or antelope hunt on two working ranches with approximately 6,000 acres of private land located in Northwest Colorado in management unit 4. Our property is very accessible, and by allowing only four to six hunters per season on 6,000 acres, we provide a very unique, private hunting experience. 2951 Moffat CR 18N, Craig, 970-824-9269 huntpinnacle.com

Pinyon outfitters, llC

P.O. Box 123, Cortez, 970-739-0892 dcpottorff@fone.net gohunt.com/outfitter/pinyon-outfitters-llc

r&r ranch of Colorado

10202 S.W. 138 St., Archer, Florida, 352-538-7094 rrranchco.com

red Feather Guides & outfitters 49794 Colo. 14, Walden 970-723-4204 (summer and fall) or 970-524-5054 (winter and spring) redfeatherguides.com

reeder Creek ranch

P.O. Box 223, Rangely, 970-675-2619 coloradorimrockoutfitters.com

seven lakes lodge

rocky mountain ranches

Our Colorado hunting, outfitting and guide service can provide you, the big game hunter, with both bow and rifle hunts, but we specialize in outfitting do-it-yourself non-guided trespass fee big game hunts on private Northwest Colorado ranches. 6855 W. 33rd Ave., Wheat Ridge, 970-439-1894 rockymountainhunting.com

roosters Guide & outfitting Adventures 970-283-8919 or 970-618-7203 raycogburn@ roostersguideandoutfittingadventures.com roostersguideandoutfittingadventures.com

11808 Rio Blanco CR 8, Meeker, 970-878-3249

sheep Creek ranch outfitters

Guided elk, deer and bear hunts (archery, muzzle-loading and rifle) on 11,000 acres of public and private lands in GMU 22. P.O. Box 2463, Meeker, 970-878-4757 sheepcreekhunts@yahoo.com sheepcreekhunts.com

shelton ranch

10955 Moffat CR 57, Maybell 970-272-3553 or 970-620-3993; sheltonranch.com

silver Creek outfitters

5100 Rio Blanco CR 4, Meeker 970-878-4765 sablemountainoutfitters.com

Full and semi-guided hunts and drop camps offered primarily for elk, deer and mountain lion on rugged National Forest Service public lands. Steamboat Springs, 970-846-5877 silvercreek-outfitters.com

saddleback ranch

silver Dollar outfitters

sable mountain outfitters

37350 Routt CR 179, (15 miles west of Steamboat) 970-879-3711; saddlebackranch.net

samuelson outfitters

P.O. Box 868, Fraser, 970-726-8221 samuelsonoutfitters.com

P.O. Box 5481, Pagosa Springs 970-264-9576 or 970-946-2976 attully@centurylink.net silverdollaroutfitters.com

silver spur outfitters, llC reg.

Colorado’s finest big game hunting. Trophy mule deer, huge elk populations, black bear and mountain lion. Join us for the hunt of a lifetime!

sawbuck outfitters 970-921-3557

Large to Small

We Care for them aLL! Quality Pet Care at Affordable Prices

24 hour

Gary Visintainer, D.V.M. Kate LeVasseur D.V.M. Kelly Hepworth, D.V.M. Bear Creek Labradors 2430 E. Victory Way Craig, Colo. www.bclabradors.com (970) 824-5964 (970) 824-7567 fax all major Credit Cards accepted

Colorado Outfitter Registration #1229

577 Yampa Ave. Downtown Craig 970.824.8148

Your hunt for the perfect

Boning Knife ends here!

504 W. Victory Way Craig, CO sandra@kinghomesland.com kinghomesland.com

P.O. Box 1040, Craig 970-824-5539 or 970-824-9474 cseely@dishmail.net; seelyhunting.com

rim rock outfitters

BEAR CREEK

EmErgEncy SErvicE

ABR, CDPE, CRS, ePRO Owner/Broker C: 970-629-0596 O: 970-701-3463

seely Hunting services

ANIMAL HOSPITAL

Pet Boarding Science Diet Pet Food

Sandra King

coloradohunts.com

137 Grand CR 39, Kremmling, 970-531-2008 reedercreek.com

Guided deeR & elk HuntinG

Knives, Jerky Seasonings, & More!

28310 Routt CR 31, Oak Creek, (25 miles south of Steamboat), 970-879-7353

outwest Guides

facebook.com/thekitchenshopofcraig

For Information or Reservations, Please Contact: don & Phyllis Myers 6148 Highway 317 Hamilton, CO 81638 (970) 824-9317 myersinc@wildblue.net

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WeStern colorado guideS & outFitterS GMU 42. 67290 E. La Salle Road, Montrose, 970-249-4242 info@huntsilverspuroutfitters.com huntsilverspuroutfitters.com

skiles Guest & Hunting ranch P.O. Box 12, Burns, 970-653-4329

snowmass Creek outfitters

3610 Capital Creek Road, Snowmass 970-704-0707; snowmasscreekoutfitters.com

sombrero ranches

Rents horses for all seasons, including tack and delivery/pick-up within a 50-mile radius of one of the Sombero camps. Guided deer and elk hunts from the Williams Fork Hunt Camp for archery through rifle seasons in addition to four drop camps in the Routt National Forest. GMU 12 Craig Ranch – 781 Moffat CR 15, Craig, 970824-3468; Steamboat Stables – 835 Howelsen Parkway, Steamboat (base of Howelsen Hill, behind the rodeo grounds), 970-879-2306; Meeker White River Horse Camp – 12900 Rio Blanco CR 8, Meeker, 970-878-4382; 303-442-0258 sombrero.com

steamboat lake outfitters

P.O. Box 749, Clark, 970-319-4866 steamboatlakeoutfitters.com

superior Guide service

T&D outfitters

P.O. Box 91, Hamilton (20 miles north of Meeker) 970-756-5000; tripletrackllc.com

Fully guided deer and elk rifle hunts on over 1,650 private acres in the Isles Mountain area outside of Craig (GMU 211). P.O. Box 443, Pine 303-618-2329 or 303-838-8437

Tenderfoot outfitters

124 W. Second St., Rifle, 970-625-HUNT (4868) timberlinesports.com

Topgun outfitters

108 Reigel School Road, Rimesburg, Pennsylvania 814-229-4514; topgunoutfitters@hotmail.com

Triple Track Hunting

Triple-o outfitters

Wauntia Hot springs ranch

8007 Gunnison CR 887, Gunnison, 970-641-1266 waunita.com

Welder outfitting services

P.O. Box 823, Meeker, 970-878-4559 welderoutfitters.com

Whiteley Peak ranch

Horse boarding. 14938 U.S. 40, Kremmling, 630-632-9134 whiteleypeakranch.com

Trophy mountain elk ranch

Williams Peak ranch

The Gunnison Country Guide service

P.O. Box 771710, Steamboat Springs 970-879-6164; vanattaoutfitters.com

Pagosa Springs, 970-219-7523 thirdgenerationoutfitters@aol.com thirdgenerationoutfitters.com

bc40hunts.com

Wild skies Four season Cabin rentals

P.O. Box 16, Cowdrey, (22 miles north of Walden) 970-723-4000; trophymountainranch.com

P.O. Box 1443, Gunnison, 970-641-2830 packtrip@gunnison.com coloradoguideandoutfitter.com

Warriors in the Wild Base Camp 40

448 Moffat CR 41, Hamilton, 970-824-6758 coloradooutdoors.com

P.O. Box 246, Gunnison, 800-641-0504 tenderfoot@tenderfoot-outfitters.com tenderfoot-outfitters.com

Third Generation outfitters

29420 Elk Horn Lane, (three miles north of

P.O. Box 69, Savery, Wyoming, 970-583-7396 threeforksranch.com

Timberline sporting Goods

128 E. Third St., Rifle, 970-625-GUNS (4867) 625guns.com

970-264-9576

Three Forks ranch

All of our hunts are horseback to ensure the hunters get the best opportunity possible along with the most memorable experience. The ranch is over 13,000 acres and located in Unit 12, home to some of the largest elk herds in the state. 5801 Colo. 394, Craig, 970-824-4767 wehuntcolorado.com

The Tradesmen

sundown outfitters rio Grande outfitters sunset ranch

Steamboat), 970-879-0954 sunsetranchinc.com

Vanatta outfitters

970-926-0216; wildskies.com

1330 Grand CR 315, Parshall, 970-725-3282 williamspeakranch.com

yampa Valley Anglers

Owner Mary Kreuger Guided elk hunts, game management unit 11, private and BLM land. P.O. Box 1195, Meeker, 970-878-4138 villaranchcolorado.com

We offer public and private guided fishing access on the Yampa, Colorado, N.Platte, Eagle and Roaring Fork rivers along with the Flat Tops Wilderness. Exceptional guides strive to safely teach proper techniques in casting, presentation, fly selection and catch and release. PO Box 775112, Steamboat Springs, 970-819-4376 yampavalleyanglers.com

W3 outfitters

yampa Valley outfitters

Villa ranch

(dba: Chuck Davies Guide Service) 500 12 Mile Gulch Road, Elk Springs 970-272-3002

P.O. Box 910, Craig (nine miles north of Maybell) 970-824-2102, 706-595-1044 or 706-990-9030

Freezers Available in Every Size CAMO Even

Freezers!

We also have Crystal Cold propane Refrigerators and Freezers Come see our selection of GE, Frigidaire, & Speed Queen Appliances! 970.824.9380 211 W. 4th St. Craig

Best of Moffat County 4 years in a row!

Best of Moffat County 2016:

Dinner • Lunch • Pizza Italian • Sandwich (TheDC) Vino, Craft Beer, & Full Bar

465 Yampa Ave. Craig 970-824-6868 120 | visit cohunter.com for more

Big Fish Time! Located near beautiful Steamboat Springs, CO, Yampa Valley Anglers is your go-to for guided fly fishing adventures.

Book a trip now. 970.819.4376

YampaValleyAnglers.com


meeker, mAyBell, HAmilTon, rAnGely, DinosAUr GeAr, GooDs & sUPPlies A&e Tire

378 E. 1st St., Craig, 970-824-0217 aetire.com/tires-auto-repair-craig-co

Bear Creek Animal Hospital

Our three staff veterinarians can take care of all of your animals, whether it’s your child’s hamster or your horse that needs our help. We provide all traditional veterinary services, plus we are available 24 hours a day for emergency care. 2430 E. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-5964 bearcreekanimalhospital.com

Big o Tires Craig

Voted Moffat County’s Best Tire Store, the Craig Big O Tires is your No. 1 center for tires, wheels, service and savings. 1111 W. Victory Way, Suite 128, Craig 970-824-2446 bigotires.com/Location/CO/Craig/81625/006241

Cook Chevrolet

Locally owned Chevrolet, Subaru and Ford dealerships. 24-hour towing, service and sales. Body shop and parts department. 1776 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-2100 cookchevrolet.com

Craig Powersports

Craig Powersports opened in 1999. Just as it was then, our goal is to be the most courteous and professional powersports dealer in Colorado. As a result, we have become the state’s largest side-by-side dealer! Give us a call or come on in and let us help you in the snow, on the trail or on the road! 2607 E. U.S. 40, Craig, 970-826-0060 craigpowersports.com

eyecare specialties

With full-service optometry offices in both Craig and Steamboat Springs, Colorado, we have long been recognized as a leader in patient care. 1111 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-3488 eyecare-specialties.com

chains and shovels. 2355 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-4100 murdochs.com

meAT ProCessinG & TAxiDermy

sand springs Archery

Axis leather Works

Tires, service and more. 1247 E. U.S. 40, Craig, 970-824-7094

Pick up a tanned, hair-on or rawhide while in Craig. Pick from six colors or take home a hairon hide that is ready for display. UPS shipping available 802 E. Second Place, Craig, 970-824-3256 axisleather.qpg.com

T&H napa Auto Parts

Brothers Custom Processing

Archery equipment and supplies. 80 E. Fourth St., Craig, 970-824-0139

GCr Tires

400 Taylor St., Craig, 970-824-3284 napaonline.com/co/craig

U.s. Tractor and Harvest

Ammunition, binoculars and scopes, camping equipment and cookware with some camouflage apparel, boots and clothing as well as certified hay. 290 Ranney St., Craig, 970-824-6581

U. S. Tractor and Harvest sells and services John Deere new and used tractors, combines, lawn and garden, work products, John Deere replacement parts and John Deere AMS (GPS) products. 3025 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-6163 ustractor.com

murdoch’s ranch & Home supply

White river energy

mJk sales & Feed

Ammunition, fishing and hunting licenses, cookware, coolers, deer carts, sleds, camping gear, knives, saws and a full line of Carhartt and Murdoch’s hunting clothes. Pack saddles and bridles, blaze-orange halters, blankets, tire

Gas and propane distributor. 668 E. Market St., Meeker, 970-878-9876 wrea.org

Brother’s Custom Processing is Northwest Colorado’s premier wildgame processor. With a combined 50 years of experience processing game, our staff can help to put the finishing touches on your hunt of a lifetime. 383 E. First St., Craig, 970-824-3855 brothersprocessing.com

Bullseye Taxidermy

Bullseye Taxidermy will provide the personal commitment and artistic quality, to bring your trophy to realistic measures. We strive for higher presentation standards and leading composition designs. All of the pieces we produce have the latest materials and technology available 1445 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-826-2997 bullseyetaxidermy.com

We cater to Hunters. Good Drinks, Fine Folks & The Best Pool Tables in Town

Great Quality and Friendly Service!

24 West Victory Way • Craig, Colorado • 970-824-6234

Bring home a Colorado Souvenir!

olorado Souvenirs • T-Shirts • Jewelry • Purses • Miss Me Jeans

We Custom Print COLORADO T-Shirts Headquarters for BS Outfitters

VICTORY MOTORS OF CRAIG Full service, repairs and detail shop. 2705 W 1ST ST. | 970-824-4422 WWW.VICTORYMOTORSOFCRAIG.COM

• Antler Jewelry • Colorado Mugs • Souvenirs • Caps • Sweatshirts • Coasters • Candles

Quality Deer & Elk Hunting! THE

VICTORY MOTORS

506 Yampa Ave. • Downtown Craig, CO • 970-824-4246 2016 | colorado hunter

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craig region [meeKer, mayBell, hamilton, rangely, dinoSaur] huntingdirectory

Do - It - Yourself

Elkhead Mountain Lodge

(Includes arrival the day before and departure the day after your hunt!)

Budget Friendly Self Guided Elk, Deer and Bear hunts starting at only $1,195 for 5 day seasons and $1,595 for 9 day seasons. Deluxe Lodging, Camp manager and great homestyle cooking all for a price that fits YOUR budget.

Custom Quality meats

1430 N. Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-4668

Gunsmoke Taxidermy and school of Taxidermy

Our new 2,400-square-feet building offers ample spaces for the workshop and showroom. Stop by and see our quality work for yourself. 37339 N. Colo. 13, Craig, (located 6 miles north of Craig), 970-826-4293 gunsmoketaxidermy.com

mountain man Taxidermy

Mountain Man Taxidermy, established in 1991, has been serving hunters of Northwest Colorado for nearly 20 years. Located in Craig, the Elk Hunting Capitol of the World. 1176 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-4910 mtnmantaxidermy.com

loaf ‘n Jug store

101 W. Brontosaurus Blvd., Dinosaur 970-374-2461

rangely True Value Hardware

105 W. Main St., Rangely, 970-675-2454

samuelson’s True Value Hardware & lumber

Offering quality tools, products and expert advice, Samuelson’s True Value is your one stop destination for all your hardware and hunting/ sporting needs. 43900 Colo. 13, Meeker, 970-878-3528 ww3.truevalue.com/samuelson/Home.aspx

samuelson True Value Hardware 456 Breeze St., Craig, 970-824-6683 truevalue.com/samuelson

Valley Ace Hardware

401 E. Market St., Meeker, 970-878-4608

Walmart supercenter

Open 24 hours, offering all products including grocery and hunting/sporting. 2000 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-0340 walmart.com

See Website for Rates

info@elkheadmountainlodge.com

21217986

122 | visit cohunter.com for more

Blue spruce inn

Carelli’s Pizzeria & Pasta

1198 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-2966

www.elkheadmountainlodge.com

loDGinG & DininG

Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife kmart

814-758-9278 or 814-229-5238

Hunter sight-in Thursdays and Fridays prior to each big game season . Sight-in is $5 per gun, or member shoot for $10. New memberships cost $20 plus dues per person and includes full use of archery, trap, rifle and pistol ranges. 36684 Colo. 13, Meeker (4.5 miles southwest of Meeker on Colo. 13), 970-878-3456 meekersportsmansclub.com

505 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-6515

liCensinG AGenTs

P.O. Box 1181, Meeker, 970-878-6090

Amenities include comfortable beds, washer and dryer, satellite TV, wood and propane heating, refrigerator/freezer, stove and on-demand hot water!

meeker sportman’s Club, inc.

We’re just a short distance from the Flat Tops Wilderness, the most accessible wilderness region in Colorado. We’re also close to some of the finest hunting areas in the state. 488 Market St., Meeker, 970-878-0777 bluesprucemeeker.com

City market

No long drives to get to your hunting area or sleeping in cold drafty wall tents. When staying with US you will be eating and sleeping in Prime Elk Country!

Sporting clays, trap, black powder, rifle and pistol ranges up to 200 yards. Hunter education courses also available. P.O. Box 2362, Glenwood Springs, 970-945-5556

Walden Conoco

609 Main St., Walden, 970-723-4246

sHooTinG rAnGes Bears ears sportsman Club’s Cedar mountain range

300-yard outdoor rifle and 50-yard outdoor pistol range for members, but open to the public the first Sunday and Monday of each month. Also open during daylight hours, Thursday and Friday prior to each big game season for rifle sight-in. P.O. Box 622, Craig (4.5 miles northwest of Craig on Moffat CR 7), 970-824-8376 bearsears.com

Glenwood springs Gun Club

Public welcome to shoot when range is open.

We are a pizzeria combined with fine Italian dining. We offer full service bar, with unique rotating micro-brews. Open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. for lunch and dinner. Voted Best Lunch and Dinner Restaurant for 2014 and 2015. 465 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-6868

Clarion inn and suites

Enjoy the numerous amenities offered at Clarion Inn and Suites® in Craig. You’ll appreciate spacious suites and amenities like: Free high-speed wireless internet, free weekday newspaper, full service restaurant and lounge. 300 S. Colo. 13, Craig, 970-824-4000 clarionhotel.com/hotel-craig-colorado-CO295

Cool Water Grille

American dining for breakfast and lunch. Open early to fill you up before the hunt begins. Award-winning Bloody Marys. 337 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-1756

Cowboy inn

Restaurant, bar/lounge and motel. 210 Penland St., Baggs, Wyoming, 307-383-2200 thecowboyinn.com

Dad’s Cookhouse

Dad’s Cookhouse specializes in steaks and burgers. See us on Facebook! 351 Ranney St., Craig, 970-701-3400

eastside liquor

Voted Best Liquor Store in Moffat County four years running. Great selection. 539 E. Victory Way, Craig, 970-826-0071 explorecraig.com/marketplace/craig/businesses/ eastside-liquor

elk liquor

1111 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-6679

elk run inn

Allow the Elk Run Inn to be your home when you are here. Eat out only if you want to, all our units have full kitchens. We are conveniently located in the center of town. Everything is close by; grocery stores, restaurants, liquor stores, post office, shopping, churches and internet access at the library next door. We look forward to seeing you on your next visit to Craig! 627 W. Victory Way, Craig 970-826-4444 or 888-696-9720; elkruninn.com


craig region [meeKer, mayBell, hamilton, rangely, dinoSaur] and Rio Blanco counties for more than 65 years. Area residents, workers and visitors count on Pioneers Medical Center to provide quality healthcare that includes a full-service hospital and Level IV emergency department, the Meeker Family Health Center. 100 Pioneers Medical Center Drive, Meeker 970-878-5047; pioneershospital.org

Delicious food and a fun environment with sports, spirits and spare ribs. 210 E. Victory Way, Craig, 970-826-0468 jwsnacks.com

la Cabana

Casual Mexican grill offering fast, fresh and authentic Mexican cuisine. 994 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-5051

Trapper mining, inc.

The Trapper Mine is a surface coal mine that produces nearly two million tons of coal per year. The development of the mine began in 1954. The mine is operated by Tri-State G&T. Daily production is around 9,800 tons, and the mining area is 12 square miles. P.O. Box 187, Craig, 970-824-4401 coloradomining.org/project/trapper-mining-inc/

maybell Park

Year round full-service camping. No reservations required. U.S. 40, Maybell, 970-272-3261

Popular Bar

Pool, music, bar. 24 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-9938

White river electric Association, inc.

Valley Vista inn

Sitting on a two-acre hilltop, Valley Vista Inn offers the best views of our beautiful Yampa Valley. 2855 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970- 620-4560 valleyvistainn.com

A consumer-owned nonprofit electric distribution cooperative serving parts of Rio Blanco, Garfield and Moffat counties. 233 Sixth St., Meeker, 970-878-5041 white-river-electric-association.org

Westward Hotel

rangely Chamber of Commerce

“Enjoy Craig , Colorado ... and when your head gets heavy, head Westward!” Free WiFi available, fridge and microwave in rooms. 517 E. Victory Way, Craig 970-824-3413 or 970-326-5500

Rangely is “A Great Place to Live.” It’s also a great place to visit, vacation and explore. The Town of Rangely hosts excellent overnight accommodations and restaurants. We pride ourselves on making our visitors feel welcome and hope that your stay in our community is memorable. 290 E. Main St., Rangely, 970-675-5290 rangelychamber.com

oTHer sUPPorTinG BUsinesses Colorado northwestern Community College

A unique college located in a spectacular part of Colorado with a new state-of-the-art campus in Craig. Within three new energy-efficient buildings, you may study nursing in our fully accredited program; work in a number of certificate areas in automotive technology; enroll in massage therapy and cosmetology courses; and more. 2801 W. Ninth St., Craig, 800-562-1105 cncc.edu/cms/

The memorial Hospital

Providing health care to the communities of Moffat County, offering a variety of general care and specialty services. 750 Hospital Loop, Craig, 970-824-9411 thememorialhospital.com

Pioneers Hospital

Pioneers Medical Center has served Meeker

reAl esTATe Backcountry realty

Country living realty

We are a full service real estate office offering experienced professional services when buying or selling residential, commercial, vacant land and farm/ranch. We also provide fast, efficient property management tailored to fit your needs. 304 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-0223 craigcorealty.com

Hayden outdoors

Hayden Outdoors represents the finest real estate for sale, including farm, ranch and recreational properties across the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains. From legacy ranches to farms and cropland, luxury real estate to recreational land, we can help you buy or sell your next property. 1204 W. Ash St., Unit A, Windsor, 970-674-1990 haydenoutdoors.com

king Homes and land realty, llC

We provide Northwest Colorado with the finest real estate services and property management. We work hard to match buyers and sellers, owners and tenants. 504 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-701-3463 Kinghomesandland.com

Custom embroidery Laser engraving • GIFts Quilting & Quilts • Fabric & notions stickers • tuxedo Rentals ROdneY & RenAtA BeAsOn (970) 824-6770 • 519 Yampa Ave. Craig, CO 81625 sewpolish@gmail.com

Serving all your appliance needs for 10 years! This family-owned business carries everything from stoves, dishwashers, refrigerators, freezers, washers and dryers and more. They offer outstanding customer service and products that will benefit your family. 211 W. Fourth St., 970-824-9380

Jack’s Bumpers

Offering custom bumpers and headache racks for pickups, SUVs and semis; winches, lights, tow hooks and receivers. 350 Russell St., Craig, 970-824-2423 jacksbumpers.com

Pack Center shipping

Offering UPS and FedEx packing and shipping services. 509 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-7957

meeker realty, llC

The nation’s premier turnkey car wash company. 1635 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-826-0731 superwash.com

1033 Market St., Meeker, 970-878-5877 Westernexposures.net

Laser Emporium

miller Family Appliance

With a satellite phone from Range Global Services, all of your equipment and airtime service is included in one low monthly fee. There is no upfront purchase of equipment required. As an RGS customer, you also get peace of mind with the “Full Range Service Plan.” 888-386-9517; idgeurope.com

Brass key realty

&

410 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-7441 theflowerminegiftshop.com

Specializing in ranch and recreation properties in both Colorado and Wyoming, Land Brokers Realty works as the sellers agent representing the seller in every aspect of the process of listing, marketing, due-diligence and closing with honest, straightforward service. PO Box 32, Maybell, 970-824-8266 haskins_realty@msn.com; ranchlandonline.com Meeker Realty LLC is situated in the heart of downtown Meeker, Colorado. This small, familyowned and operated business offers a wide variety of real estate services, representing residential and commercial properties, as well as vacant land and ranches. 643 Main St., Meeker, 970-878-5165 meekerrealty.com

The Embroidery Shoppe, LLC

The Flower mine and Gift shop

range Global services

land Brokers realty

The owner and employing broker of Backcountry Realty is a third generation Meeker native and has been a Colorado real estate broker since 1980. Steve and his office are at your service. Specializing in properties in the Meeker area and the beautiful White River Valley of Northwestern Colorado. 1130 Market St., Meeker, 970-878-4715 backcountryrealty.com Experts on Craig and Moffat County real estate with over 60 years experience. Offering residential real estate, recreational and mountain property, land and ranches. 840 W. Victory Way, Craig, 970-824-7086 brasskey-realty.com

jewelry and much more. Headquarters for BS Outfitters Quality Deer & Elk Hunting. 506 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-4246

Western exposures realty, llC

The embroidery shoppe

519 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-6770 explorecraig.com/marketplace/craig/businesses/ embroidery-shoppe

The Giving Tree

Gifts, home décor, jewelry, cards, candles and more. Like us on Facebook! 525 Yampa Ave., Craig; thegivingtree@q.com

The kitchen shop

sHoPPinG Bargain Barn

super Wash, inc.

“We custom print.” We have a large selection of Colorado T-shirts, jewelry, Miss Me jeans, antler

A locally-owned kitchen and gift shop. We carry a wide variety of knives, gifts, beer-making supplies and unique items. 577 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-8148 Facebook.com/thekitchenshopofcraig

Steve Wix - Broker Owner and Meeker Native Andrea Thiessen ~ Broker & Realtor Rachel Gates ~ Broker & Realtor

1130 MARKET STREET IN MEEKER, COLORADO …

For all of your real estate needs in Meeker and beautiful White River Valley.  Commercial & Investment  Ranches  Residential  Hunting and Recreational Properties See our listings with pictures on our web site at www.backcountryrealty.com P.O. Box 2107 • 1130 Market St. • Meeker, Colorado 81641 970-878-4715 • Fax 878-4780 • E-mail: backcountry@nctelecom.net stevewix@backcountryrealty.com

No One Knows This White River Country Like We Do! 2016 | colorado hunter

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JW snack’s Gulf Coast Bar & Grill


huntingdirectory

craig region [meeKer, mayBell, hamilton, rangely, dinoSaur]

W

s r e t n u H elcome

r u o Y E C N A e c n ENH e i r Exp e re i f p m Ca

with

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57140

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G l e n wo o d S p r i n g s

Pa rac h u t e

RECREATIONAL & MEDICAL

Exit 75 on I-70 RECREATIONAL

7 DAYS A WEEK |10AM - 7PM

7 DAYS A WEEK |9 AM - 9PM

970 - 384 -1234

970 - 285-9000

t h e g r e e n j o i n t. co m

“ m e n t i o n ca m p f i r e f o r 1 0 % o f f yo u r p u r c h as e ”

124 | visit cohunter.com for more


GlenWooD sPrinGs, riFle, monTrose, DUrAnGo GeAr, GooDs & sUPPlies Affordable Trailer sales

Campers, ATV trailers, enclosed trailers, sales and service, two locations. 2760 N. Townsend, Montrose, 970-240-5008 2568 U.S. 6 & 50, Grand Junction, 970-257-1400 affordabletrailersinc.com

All metals Welding & Fabrication

Known across the United States for specialized aluminum and stainless steel fabrication, welding, waterjet cutting and repair. 1707 U.S. 70 Business Loop, Grand Junction 970-243-6310; allmetalswelding.com

employees. Awarded the 2005 U.S. Army Soldier’s Choice and 2015 CAMA Manufacturer of the Year. 1328 Winters Ave., Grand Junction, 970-243-8750 hr_recruitment@capcoinc.com; capcoinc.com

selection of beer, wine and spirits on the Western Slope. 2438 F Road, Grand Junction, 970-242-0999 fisherliquorbarn.com

archery, camo, decoys, GPS units. 1210 N. Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-249-6573 gundepotus.com

Centennial rV

GCr Tires & service

Buy/sell/consign used campers, camp trailers, 5th wheels and motorhomes. Great parts and service department. 1396 U.S. 50, Delta, 970-874-9372 jimsoutbackrv.com

Western Colorado’s premier RV dealership carrying Cougar, Coleman, Open Range, Passport, Rubicon, Voltage, Fuzion, Reflection, Solitude, Momentum, Sunseeker, Forester and XLR. 2429 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction 970-245-8886 centennialrv.com

Colorado Cylinder stoves

Proud premier dealer of Yamaha, Kawasaki and BRP. We carry ATVs, dirt bikes and snowmobiles, and we service what we sell. 3080 U.S. 70 Business Loop, Grand Junction 970-434-4874; all-terrainmoto.com

Cylinder and collapsible pack stoves, canvas wall tents and campfire rings. 2481 Commerce Blvd., Grand Junction 970-243-4595, Fax: 970-243-4595 info@coloradocylinderstove.com coloradocylinderstoves.com

Bob scott rV

Colorado e-Bikes

All Terrain motorsports

Genuine. Complete. Reliable. 410 North Avenue, Grand Junction 970-778-3295 or 800-541-8473; 1101 Winters Ave. Unit C, Grand Junction 970-773-5094

Grand mesa motorsports

ATVs, UTVs, snowmobiles, motorcycles, Polaris, Arctic Cat, Yamaha. Sales and service. 1325 U.S. 50, Delta, 970-874-8621 Grandmesamoto.com

Grand West Tractor

We sell Coachmen campers, Mahindra tractors and ATV trailers. 2980 U.S. 50, Grand Junction 970-986-3986

Serving Western Colorado and Eastern Utah since 1988. U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction, 970-245-2175 bobscott@recvehicle.com; recvehicle.com

We can customize your e-bike for hunting and hauling your game, big game too! 561 25 Road, Grand Junction, 866-492-4328 coloradoebikes.com

Grease monkey

CAPCo

Fishers liquor Barn

Gun Depot

A premier employer since 1971 with over 265

Fisher’s Liquor Barn has quite simply the best

Looking For Something Different During this Year’s Big Hunt?

Pheasant Hunting In Beautiful

Western

Colorado

2857 North Avenue, Grand Junction 970-241-1895 greasemonkeygrandjunction30.com We buy guns! Authorized Bowtech dealer,

Jim’s outback rV

mattas marine & rV

Full service RV and boat store, featuring America’s favorite Lance campers and travel trailers. Boats by Chaparral, Centurion, Alumacraft and Ranger. Nautique tow boats. Also service and winterizations. 2308 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction 970-241-8517, Fax: 970-243-8128 mattasmarine.com

m.o.r.e. offroad AkA Doughty steel & machine

Specializes in providing the highest quality products for Jeep vehicles that we design and manufacture in-house using premium materials. 685 Colo. 92, Delta, 877-533-7229 info@mountainoffroad.com mountainoffroad.com

Come By & Check Out Our Fresh Produce! Open 7 Days a Week

Premium Jams, Syrups, Salsas & Beans for the Gourmet Chef in Your Family

Gifts for All Ages • Souvenirs for the Traveler

Quality guided hunts on over 1,200 acres of private land with our bird dogs or you can bring your own. • 1/2 Day or Full Day Hunts • No Membership or License Required

Broken Spoke Game Ranch

(20 miles Southeast from Grand Junction, CO) Hunts available 7 days a week 970-241-3949 Reservation required www.brokenspokegameranch.com • wildpheasants@yahoo.com

419 Main Downtown Grand Junction 3402 C½ Rd., Palisade, CO (970) 241-2091 • www.alidasfruits.com 2016 | colorado hunter

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As a full service repair shop, we can put our ASE-certified technicians to solve your most difficult problems! 1405 Motor St., Grand Junction, 970-241-4429

Pro Powder Coating

Professional firearm and high temp coats, powder coating and sand blasting. Like us on Facebook. 549 Bogart Lane, Grand Junction, 970-241-3422 propowdercoating@hotmail.com propowdercoating.biz

red Hawk rifles

We are a small family-owned business that specializes in Remington 700 rifles. 2317 Grand Park Drive, Unit 2B, Grand Junction 970-242-6166 sales@redhawkrifles.com; Redhawkrifles.com

red rock Archery

Full service provider since 1983. Bowhunter, target shooter or 3-D enthusiast, we have the resources to meet every shooter’s needs. 3193 Hall Ave., Grand Junction, 970-241-2697

rifle Truck & Trailer

slides, steps, fender flares, tool boxes and other after market products. 529 Pitkin Ave., Grand Junction, 970-254-9339

1733 Railroad Ave, Rifle, 970-625-5187 orders@eaglespringsmeats.com eaglespringsmeats.com

Alpine Angling & Adventure Travel

scotty’s

Hotchkiss meats, inc.

Area Best Pawn & loan

Scotty’s muffler is your complete car care center. 357 Pitkin Ave., Grand Junction, 970-263-4234 scottymuffler.com

The spring Works

We can outfit your truck, RV, boat, horse and utility trailers for the great outdoors. 555 W. Gunnison, Grand Junction, 970-242-4404 thespringworks@gmail.com thespringworksgj.com

sundance marine

New and used boats, outboards, parts, pro shop, service and fiberglass repairs. Your family fun link to water sports! 2490 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction, 970-243-4333 sundancemarine.com

meAT ProCessinG, TAxiDermy & FUr DeAlers

Over 150 trailers in stock. Good selection of horse, stock, equipment and snowmobile trailers. We appreciate your business. Open Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. 1725 Airport Road, Rifle, 970-625-8884 rttrailer.com

Bucktails Taxidermy

rocky Toppers & rhino linings of Grand Junction

USDA meat and processing plant at Eagle Springs. We provide the freshest beef, pork, lamb, goat, fish and poultry that you can buy.

Truck toppers and linings, grill guards, bed

The buck stops here but the tales go on forever. 0377 Emma Road, Basalt, 970-927-3301 bucktailtaxidermy@yahoo.com Bucktailtaxidermy.com

eagle springs meat

Domestic and game custom processing. Over 30 varieties of award-winning and smoked products. Since 1983. 219 High St., Hotchkiss, 970-872-3030 Hotchkissmeats@TDS.net HotchkissMeat.com

kinikin Processing

Open more during hunting season. Jerky, brats and summer sausage made in house. Beef, pork, lamb, elk, chicken, seafood. 1032 64.50 Road, Montrose, (on the San Juan bypass), 970-240-4329 kinikin.com

2014 Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-249-4100

Army & Factory surplus

2828 Glen Ave., Glenwood Springs, 970-456-1737

Battlement mesa Hardware

71 Sipperelle Drive, Parachute, 970-285-6678

Berfield stage stop

519 W. Tomichi, Gunnison, 970-641-5782

Big 5 sporting Goods

400 S. Camino Del Rio Suite A, Durango 970-247-1588

Big r of Alamosa

orchard mesa market

Locally-owned family market, provides meat processing, gasoline, propane, lottery sales, frozen food lockers and wild game processing. 176 29 Road, Grand Junction, 970-243-6601

148 Craft, Alamosa, 719-587-0435

Big r of Cortez

1319 E. Main St., Cortez, 970-564-5942

Cabela’s

rocky mountain Tanners

Rocky Mountain Tanners has been in business for over 20 years, showcasing all types of hide tanning services and custom leather products. 4965 S. Broadway, Englewood, 303-293-2882 rockymountaintanners.com

liCensinG AGenTs Action shop services, The

995 Cowen Drive, Suite 102, Carbondale 970-963-9245

2424 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction, 970-683-5000

Canon City sports outlet

1426 Royal Gorge Blvd., Canon City, 719-275-9160

Cedaredge Foodtown

210 SE Independence Ave., Cedaredge 970-856-3151

Circle k ranch

2412 Access Road, Rifle, 970-625-0943 actionshopservices.com

27758 Colo. 145, Dolores, 970-562-3808

Only what you need. GUARANTEED!

W G BU E U Y N S!

Gun Dep t

Buy • Sell • Trade Call Us Today!

(970) 249-6573

Guns • Archery • Ammo • Hecs Camo

Hunter ’s Ge ar Box Special!

Buy 3 - Get 1 FREE! Fluid Exchange on all 4x4s.

Grease Monkey #30 2857 North Avenue Grand Junction 970.241.1895

GRAND VALLEY’S #1 BOAT REPAIR CENTER 57104

huntingdirectory

grand Junction [glenWood SpringS, riFle, montroSe, durango] PDF Automotive repair, inc.

970-245-9701

2498 Industrial Blvd. www.970marine.com service@970marine.com Regular & Preventative Maintenance • Winterization Shrinkwrap • Parts • Accessories 126 | visit cohunter.com for more

We sell propane!


grand Junction [glenWood SpringS, riFle, montroSe, durango] 131 Market St., Alamosa, 719-589-2492; 1703 Fremont, Canon City, 719-275-1595; 1051 Colo. 133, Carbondale,970-963-3255; 508 E. Main St., Cortez, 970-565-6504; 122 Gunnison River Drive, Delta, 970-874-5488; 6 Town Plaza Shopping Center, Durango, 970-247-1276; 3130 Main Ave., Durango, 970-247-9435; 0103 Market St., Eagle, 970-328-1302; 135 S. Plum, Fruita, 970-858-9506; 1410 S. Grand Ave, Glenwood Springs, 970-945-0719; 200 Rood Ave., Grand Junction, 970-241-2279; 569 32 Road, Grand Junction, 970-434-8748; 630 24 Road, Grand Junction, 970-244-8100; 2270 U.S. 50 South, Grand Junction, 970-245-1215; 880 N. Main St., Gunnison, 970-641-3816; 215 Sixth St., Hotchkiss, 970-872-2600; 128 Townsend, Montrose, 970-249-2065; 16400 S. Townsend, Montrose, 970-240-3236; 850 Castle Valley Blvd., New Castle, 970-984-2067; 165 Country Center Drive, Pagosa Springs, 970-731-6000; 1320 Railroad Ave., Rifle, 970-625-3080;

Cox Conoco

Fred’s Hardware

High lonesome ranch

Dan’s Fly shop

Five Branches Camper Park

Jerry’s outdoor sports

Delta Hardware inc.

Frost rV Park & Country store

JP Flyfishing specialties

Dennis Gillilan Hunt, llC

Fruita Consumers Coop locations

ken Banks shooters World

Department of Parks & Wildlife offices

Frying Pan Anglers

kmart

Gardenswartz outdoor

kessler Canyon

Gene Taylor’s

leisure Time sports

201 Railroad Ave., Mancos, 970-533-7728 723 Gunnison Ave., Lake City, 970-944-2281 121 W. Gunnison River Drive, Delta, 970-874-9515 407 35 Road, Palisade, 970-464-9235 151 E. 16th St., Durango, 970-247-0855; 0088 Wildlife Way, Glenwood Springs, 970-947-2920; 711 Independent Ave., Grand Junction, 970-255-6100; 300 W. New York Ave., Gunnison, 970-641-7060; 2300 S. Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-252-6000;

1874 Enterprise Court, Rifle, 970-366-4340 4677 La Plata CR 501-A, Bayfield, 970-884-2582 21161 Baron Lake Drive, Cedaredge, 970-856-3216 1650 U.S.s 6 and 50, Fruita, 970-858-3667 132 Basalt Center Circle, Basalt, 970-927-3441 780 Main Ave., Durango, 970-259-6696 201 W. Tomichi, Gunnison, 970-641-1845

0275 222 Road, Debeque, 970-283-9420 2999 North Ave., Grand Junction, 970-245-1502 1100 Grand Ave., Canon City, 719-275-7637 27688 U.S. 160 East, Cortez, 970-565-8960 2809 North Ave., Grand Junction, 970-243-6250 4410 Mesa CR 209, Debeque, 970-283-8990 110-D S.E. Frontier Ave., Cedaredge 970-856-3000

Dove Creek superette

Glade Park store

445 W. Colo. 666, Dove Creek, 970-677-2336

16498 Ds Road, Glade Park, 970-242-5421

Duranglers Flies & supplies

Goods for the Woods

923 Main Ave., Durango, 970-385-4081

307 S. Camino Del Rio, Durango, 970-247-5725

We have been serving the Pine River Valley for over 35 years. 311 Bayfield Center Drive, Bayfield, 970-884-9502

eagle mountain mercantile

Grand mesa Adventures

2117 Rodeo Road, Collbran, 970-487-3511

20090 Barron Lake Drive, Cedaredge 970-856-4497

m & m mercantile

56 Talisman Drive, Unit 8C, Pagosa Springs 970-731-9900

Collbran supply inc.

eagle river Anglers

Grand mesa lodge

25 Eby Creek Road, Eagle, 970-328-2323

25861 Colo. 65, Cedaredge, 970-856-3250

Colorado Trails ranch

eagle Travel stop

Gunnison lakeside resort

1040 U.S. Interstate 70, Palisade, 970-464-7275

28357 W. U.S. 50, Gunnison, 970-641-0477

elk Point stables

Gunnison river Fly shop

Collbran Creamery

203 Main St., Collbran, 970-487-3341 12161 La Plata CR 240, Durango 877-711-7843, Fax: 970-385-7372 coloradotrails.com

25

21730 La Plata CR 501, Bayfield, 970-884-2482

300 N. Main St., Gunnison, 970-641-2930

lewis mercantile

P.O. Box 408, Placerville, 970-728-3216

me 2 Firearms, llC

314 E. First St., Parachute, 970-285-9170

montrose Travel Center

1440 N. Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-249-7343

montrose True Value

22 S. Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-240-4976

For Campers, Hunters & Outfitters Canvas Wall Tents

% off

EXCLUDES SPECIAL ORDERS, SALE ITEMS & GO PRO. IN STOCK ITEMS ONLY!

Fire Pit

Collapsible Pack Stoves

Cylinder Stoves

in stock apparel & accessories

WY 50, NORTH DELTA

8621

(970) 874-8621 1325 Hwy 50, Delta, CO 81416

Colorado Cylinder Stoves™ 2481 Commerce Blvd. Grand Junction www.coloradocylinderstoves.com CO 81505

970-243-4595

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grand Junction [glenWood SpringS, riFle, montroSe, durango] mr. T’s Hardware & Building

6300 CR 335, New Castle, 970-984-2977

naturita sales

150 W. Main St., Naturita, 970-865-2616

The nearly everything store

301 Broadway, Eagle, 970-328-6875

needles Country store

46825 N. Colo. 550, Durango, 970-247-1221

Pine river lodge

14443 La Plata CR 501, Bayfield, 970-884-2563

Priest Gulch Campground & rV

26750 Colo. 145, Dolores, 970-562-3810

rigs Fly shop & Guide service

565 Sherman Highway, Suite 2, Ridgway 970-626-4460

rite Aid

2901 F Road, Grand Junction, 970-248-9871;

The san Juan Angler

600 Main St., Suite 202, Durango, 970-382-9978

sapinero Village store

16020 U.S. 50, Gunnison, 970-641-2340

shoreline marina

26363 Morgan CR 3, Orchard, 970-645-2628

ski and Bow rack

1635 Grand Ave., Norwood, 970-327-4238

400 N. First St., Grand Junction, 970-263-7415; 1834 N. 12th St., Grand Junction, 970-243-3125; 2992 Patterson Road, Grand Junction, 970-241-3795; 1412 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, 970-945-7403

olathe Hardware

roaring Fork Anglers

237 W. Main St., Cortez, 970-565-8571

newberry’s store

82111 U.S. 50, Cimarron, 970-249-5689

norwood True Value

321 Main St., Olathe, 970-323-5708

old Grand mesa Corner market 10986 Colo. 65, Mesa, 970-268-5484

ouray Apteka

611 Main St., Ouray, 970-325-4388

outdoor World

1234 Greene St., Silverton, 970-387-5628

outfitter, The

21 Pike Drive, Pagosa Springs, 877-645-6651

Paonia Farm and Home supply

206 Rio Grande Ave., Paonia, 970-527-3301

Piedra store

22391 W. Colo. 160, Bayfield, 970-731-5646

2205 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs 970-945-0180

roaring Fork Valley Co-op

0760 Colo. 133, Carbondale, 970-963-2220

rocky mountain General store and meats 17454 La Plata CR 501, Bayfield, 970-884-0999

121 W. Colorado Ave., Telluride, 970-728-3895

Telluride sports

562 Mountain Village Blvd., Telluride 970-728-8944

Telluride sports

150 W. Colorado Ave., Telluride, 970-728-4477

Terry’s Ace Hardware

354 E. Pagosa St., Pagosa Springs, 970-264-2370

525 Navajo Trails Drive, Pagosa Springs 970-731-4022

skyline Food & Gas

Tim’s Tools

27963 Colo. 184, Dolores, 970-882-2171

slavens True Value Hardware sportsman

238 S. Gunnison Ave., Lake City, 970-944-2526

sportsman’s Campground & mountain Cabins

2095 Taylor Lane, Pagosa Springs, 970-731-2300

sportsman’s Warehouse

810 Main St., Silt, 970-876-2784

Timberline sporting Goods

We focus on firearms (long guns and hand guns), archery, reloading, muzzleloading, firearm and hunting optics and all hunting and shooting sport accessories. 124 W. Second St., Rifle, 970-625-4868 timberlinesports.com

Toad’s Guide shop

309 E. Main, Montrose, 970-249-0408

riverside Convenience store

1110 Railroad Ave., Dolores, 970-882-3434

2464 U.S. 6 and 50, Suite A, Grand Junction, 970-243-8100

Trader’s rendevous

safeway

sun Valley Truckstop

Vail Valley Anglers

112 N. Spruce St., Gunnison, 970-641-0787; 1414 Main St., Canon City, 719-275-5221; 1329 S. Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-249-8822; 2001 Grand St., Glenwood Springs, 970-945-2002; 1550 Colo. 92, Delta, 970-874-9032; 1580 E. Main St., Cortez, 970-564-9590; 681 Horizon Drive, Grand Junction, 970-254-0227;

57243

26 YEARS IN BUSINESS FULL SERVICE TAXIDERMIST COLD MEAT STORAGE

Call (970) 927-3301 or (970) 618-3492 377 Emma Road • Basalt, Colorado 81621 bucktailstaxidermy.com bucktailstaxidermy

Telluride outside

Bucktails Taxidermy

128 | visit cohunter.com for more

1440 N. Townsend Ave., Montrose, 970-249-7343

sundance rV Camp

11674 Colo. 65, Mesa, 970-268-5651

Taylor Creek Fly shops inc.

183 Basalt Center Circle, Basalt, 970-927-4374

516 W. Tomichi, Gunnison, 970-641-5077 97 Main St., Unit E102, Edwards, 970-926-0900

Vallecito resort

13030 La Plata CR 501, Bayfield, 970-884-9458

Valley ranch supply

57454 Colo. 330, Collbran, 970-487-3000


1835 E. Main St., Cortez, 970-565-6138; 16750 S. Townsend, Montrose, 970-249-7544; 3010 Blake Ave., Glenwood Springs, 970-945-5336; 171 Yoder Ave., Avon, 970-949-6442; 2881 North Ave., Grand Junction, 970-241-6061; 900 N. Main St., Gunnison, 970-641-1733; 1155 S. Camino Del Rio, Durango, 970-259-8755; 2545 Rimrock Ave., Grand Junction, 970-248-0031; 1000 Airport Road, Rifle, 970-625-5367; 37 Stafford Lane, Delta, 970-874-1585

Weekenders sports

Pickup and drop off for service on ATVs, snowmobiles and motorcycles. We carry Can Am and Polaris. Full service sporting goods store with hunting licenses. 141 W. Bridge, Hotchkiss, 970-872-3444 weekendersports.com

Western Anglers

grand Junction [glenWood SpringS, riFle, montroSe, durango] Highline lake state Park eventive-events & Promotions oTHer sUPPorTinG 1800 11.8 Road, Loma, 970-858-7208 Event planner. BUsinesses 9391 6075 Road, Montrose, 970-209-8221 Jackson lake (Park)

26363 Morgan CR 3, Orchard, 970-645-2551

42545 Montezuma CR N, Mancos, 970-533-7065

Our team of service technicians take pride in understanding boats and they understand the people who drive them. 2498 Industrial Blvd., Grand Junction 970-245-9701; service@970marine.com 970marine.com

ridgway state Park

Broken spoke Game ranch

lone mesa state Park

1321 Railroad Ave., Dolores, 970-882-2213

mancos state Park

28555 Colo. 550, Ridgway, 970-626-5822

rifle Gap state recreation

5775 Colo. 325, Rifle, 970-625-1607

sweitzer lake (Park) Delta, 970-921-5721

sylvan lake state Park

10200 Brush Creek Road, Eagle, 970-328-2021

413 Main St., Grand Junction, 970-244-8658

Two rivers marina/Park

sTATe PArks

Vega reservoir state rec Area

361 32 Road, Clifton, 970-434-3388

Colorado river Fruita (Park)

595 Colo. 340, Fruita, 970-858-9188

Colorado river-island Acres

361 32 Road, Clifton, 970-434-3388

Crawford state Park

40468 Colo. 92, Crawford, 970-921-5721

25

% off

1526 Archuleta CR 982, Arboles, 970-883-2628 15247 64 6/10 Road, Collbran, 970-487-3407

Colorado river-Corn lake

loDGinG & DininG Thunder mountain lodge

Enjoy the beauty of the Grand Mesa in the winter or summer while staying in one of our cozy cabins. 20703 Baron Lake Drive, Grand Mesa 970-856-6240; info@thundermountainlodge.net thundermountainlodge.net

Pheasant hunts on 1200 acres of private land with our guide and dog, or your dog, no membership/license required. 8700 Reeder Mesa Road, Whitewater, (20 miles southeast from Grand Junction) wildpheasants@yahoo.com brokenspokegameranch.com

CDl Certifiers inc.

Grand Valley rural Power

845 22 Road, Grand Junction, 970-242-0040

Grimsley Upholstery

Upholstery for your auto, boat, RV or furniture. 804 Pitkin Ave., Grand Junction, 970-245-3316

oilex

Focused on value delivery. P.O. Box 254, West Perth, Washington

rifle sportsman Club

Private nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving shooting sports in our community 0194 Garfield CR 244, Rifle, 970-625-1050 info@riflegunclub.com; riflegunclub.com

Withers seidman rice & mueller PC

CDL (commercial driver’s license) training and testing services in Grand Junction and Pueblo. Convenient locations and competitive pricing! 2801 Grand Ave., Grand Junction 719-225-6784 or 719-429-4945 cdlcertifiers.com

Serving Western Colorado since 1975. 101 S. Third St., Suite 265, Grand Junction 970-245-9075 or 800-431-6975 wsrmpc.com

Colorado Division of Wildlife

Bray & Co inc.

Our mission is to perpetuate the wildlife resources of the state, to provide a quality state parks system and to provide enjoyable and sustainable outdoor recreation opportunities that educate and inspire current and future generations to serve as active stewards of Colorado’s natural resources. 711 Independent Ave., Grand Junction 970-255-6100

reAl esTATe 1015 N. Seventh St., Grand Junction 970-985-9230

extreme log Homes

We build homes, not houses. 1820 O Road, Fruita, 970-255-8116 info@extloghomes.com; Extloghomes.com

EXCLUDES SPECIAL ORDERS, SALE ITEMS & GO PRO. IN STOCK ITEMS ONLY! in stock apparel & accessories

50, NORTH DELTA

21

970 marine

Stop in and see our Polaris line up!

(970) 874-8621

1325 Hwy 50, Delta, CO 81416

Waiting for that perfect shot? Catch up on local news, sports, weather and more! Download the free app today. AvAilAble in All App stores. CrAigDAilypress.Com/Apps

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Walmart


grand Junction [glenWood SpringS, riFle, montroSe, durango] FsBo - robin Tabor

huntingdirectory

265 32 ½ Rood, Grand Junction, 970-778-7703 taberfamily2@gmail.com

mason real estate

263 Main St., Ste. 1, Delta, 970-874-9968 brianmason@reagan.com, masonrecolorado.com

new image realty

1000 N. Ninth St., Suite 40, Grand Junction 970-234-2179

re/mAx4000

Search thousands of Grand Valley properties. 120 W. Park Drive, Suite 200, Grand Junction 970-241-4000; gjproperties.com

United Country real Quest realty

Serving Grand Junction, Mesa County and the surrounding mountain communities of Western Colorado. 2518 Monument Road, Unit B, Grand Junction 970-256-9700; unitedcountry.com realquestrealty.com

sHoPPinG Alidas Fruits

56233

Bringing you the best Colorado jams, jellies, syrups, Palisade peaches and chocolate-dipped fruits! 419 Main St., Grand Junction, 970-241-2091 3402 C ½ Road (E. Orchard Mesa), Palisade 970-434-8769; alidasfruits.com

Carvilles Auto mart

Voted Local’s Choice as the #1 Used Car Dealership on the Western Slope. 2507 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction 855-489-9432; carvillesautomart.com

ed Bozarth Chevrolet/Buick

Quality. Value. Service. Selection. 2595 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction 970-986-4293; EdBozarthgrandjunction.com

Fuoco motor Company

Honda, Nissan, GMC, Cadillac and pre-owned quality vehicles since 1934. Friendly and professional full service motor company. 741 N. First St., Grand Junction, 970-242-1571 fuocomotors.com

Grand Junction Chrysler

2578 U.S. 6 and 50, Grand Junction 877-470-2542; grandjunctionchrysler.com

The Green Joint

We are a friendly small town marijuana dispensary with a total of three amazing locations. 1030 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs; 315 East 1st St., Parachute 970-384-1234 or 970-285-9000 Thegreenjoint.com

Hellman motor Company

Sales, service and parts. 750 Colo. 92, Delta, 970-874-4444 hellmanmotorco.com

AsAP Auto service

Emergency service. 803 Ute Ave., Grand Junction, 970-210-0723

Starting at $9,999

ALL YOUR HUNTING NEEDS! UTVs • Utility Trailers • Campers

YOUR ONE STOP SHOP 2980 Highway 50 Grand Junction HWY 50 & 30 Road

(970) 986-3986

www.GrandWestTractor.com

130 | visit cohunter.com for more

Hellman Motor Company “Everything we do is driven by you”

Be ahead of the Game... 4WD INSPECTION & TRANSFER CASE SERVICE

*customs and some modifications extra. Schedule yours today! See dealer for details.

750 Highway 92 | Delta, CO 81416 | 970.874.4444


1386 Highway 50 • Z BARN • DELTA, CO

Joanna Little 970-260-5190

970-241-4000 • 120 W. Park Drive Ste. 200 • Grand Junction, CO 81505

3853 16 1/2 Road - Glade Park A touch of Tuscany meets the Old West. This beautiful Glade Park home built in 2009 sits on 36.77 acres with irrigation.  Quality custom home has granite counter tops, rich tile, high expansive ceilings and oak hardwood floors.  Additionally there is a guest house, garage and loft for art or hobbies.  This property has a small tree farm, greenhouse, three stall pole barn and so much more.  360˚ views abound from this 3 bedroom, 3 1/2 bath country home!

GREAT ROOM

RIVER FRONTAGE

Magnificent venue with direct access off Hwy 50 to the North and river frontage on the South end. Gated pipe Irrigated fields produce high-quality grass horse hay utilizing 4 separate head gates. Property is completely self-contained w/ no end to all of the amazing facilities including a 12 stall barn w/tack room, & break room w/kitchenette + bathroom. 300x150 arena w/sprinkler system, 40x20 fully insulated shop, heated & cooled. Fully enclosed breezeway for loading/unloading animals and equipment. Entering the barn you will find a gorgeous great room, with massive fireplace and bar. Not to mention the nicely appointment bunk house w/fully equipped kitchen, granite countertops & SS appliances. Property also offers a 3 BR, 2 Bath single family dwelling. Please call for more spectacular details.

970-260-1310

www.mandyrush.com

Motivated Sellers!

Grand Mesa, Colorado 15123 HARRISON CREEK ROAD A Cabin you will want to call home. Mountain retreat just over an hour from Grand Junction. Beautiful 1640 SF cabin. Very roomy with nice finishes & all set up with a well, propane, & solar/generator for power. Includes a 30x40 workshop for all your toys. Great views with loads of recreation just outside your door & wildlife everywhere. Year round access too. You can purchase the home & 72 acres for $329,000 or purchase it with all 180 acres for $499,900. There are five 36 acre parcels total. If you prefer to build your own cabin or just have mountain ground, 3 of the parcels may be purchased for $200,000.

Mesa, Colorado 11011 46 6/10 Road - $212,400 Get ready for hunting season, ski season, not to mention ALL seasons with this year-round cabin off a main road! This cabin has it all! Just under 10 acres of gorgeous views and wildlife sightings. Enjoy all the comforts of home as the MOTIVATED sellers offer this turn-key package fully furnished with acceptable offer. Lots of sleeping areas between lofts and bedrooms. The outdoor firepit is great for making memories and you’ll never get tired of the views! The home has two separate bedrooms, one with a loft, and an extra loft in the living area.

Amy Rogers

Lynn Gillespie

970-773-0586

120 W Park Drive, Suite 200 • 241-4000

120 W Park Drive, Suite 200 • 241-4000

57246

970-260-1587 • lynn@gjproperties.com

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sTeAmBoAT sPrinGs reGion

HAyDen, WAlDen, oAk Creek, yAmPA, kremmlinG, GrAnBy GeAr, GooDs & sUPPlies 3 Wall enterprises

The pink hunting vest company. PO Box 175, Walden, 970-846-3491 fishcopmike@yahoo.com

Aqua Vita spas

Family-owned and operated, Aqua Vita Spas sells only spas and spa-related products. They carry only Hot Spring Spas; the world’s number one selling brand of hot tubs. Stop by the showroom in Central Park Plaza today. 1815 Central Park Drive, Steamboat Springs 970-879-4390; aquavitaspas.com

Arctic liquors

Fulfilling all your beer, wine and liquor needs and featuring the largest walk-in beer cooler in Steamboat. Conveniently located on the west side of Steamboat. 2093 Curve Plaza, Steamboat Springs 970-879-7355; arcticliquors.net

Bonfiglio Drug and liquor

Natural preventative healthcare, pharmacy, gifts, cards and sundries. 118 Main St., Oak Creek 970-736-2377 or 877-Bonfiglio

Del’s Triangle 3 ranch

Del’s Triangle 3 Ranch offers hourly horseback

rides, summer pack trips and elk and mule deer hunting camps. 55675 CR 62, Clark, 970-879-3495 steamboathorses.com

elk river Guns

Full-service shooting sports center with firearms, gun-smithing, ammunition, spotting scopes and binoculars, rangefinders and hunting accessories. 1320 Dream Island Plaza, Steamboat Springs 970-879-7565

extreme Powersports

Carrying Arctic Cat, Husaberg and Schwinn, as well as ATVs, snowmobiles, prowlers, dirt bikes and scooters. Providing service and maintenance for all of your powersports needs. 300 River Road, Steamboat Springs 970-879-9175; extremepowersports.net

Flat Tops ranch supply

Farm supplies, animal feed, tack, tools, propane, sporting goods and gifts. 21475 Colo. 131, Phippsburg, 970-736-2450

Hahn’s Peak roadhouse

From cabin lodging to gasoline, a grocery store, rentals and old-fashioned sit-down dinners inside a quaint lodge, the spot to fill your belly after exploring North Routt. 60880 Routt CR 129, Clark

Don’t Be This Guy On Opening Morning!

Stop by for a complimentary multi-point inspection before hunting season begins.

970-879-4404 or 800-342-1889 hahnspeakroadhouse.com

Jeweler’s mine

Custom jewelry store located in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, specializing in diamonds, engagement rings, elk ivory jewelry and precious gemstone jewelry. 118 Eighth St., Steamboat Springs, 970-871-1413

kremmling Area Chamber of Commerce

Stop in or visit website for maps and information on where to eat play and stay while in the Kremmling area. 203 Park Ave., Kremmling, 970-724-3472 kremmlingchamber.com

kremmling mercantile

One-stop-shopping for hunting and fishing licenses, liquor, groceries, clothing and boots, gifts, pharmacy, bakery, deli, gas, diesel and car wash. 101 Martin Way, Kremmling, 970-724-8979

montgomery’s General merchandise Groceries, ammunition, licenses, maps and sporting goods. 24 Main St., Yampa, 970-638-4531 montgomerysstore.com

mountain View Carwash

Steamboat’s only “Flex-Serve” car wash.

Mountain View Carwash has a wide range of detailing services to fit your budget and needs. Whether it is for your ranch truck or G5 jet, they are your one stop shop for detailing any of your vehicles and/or recreational toys. 150 Trafalger Drive, Steamboat Springs 970-870-3363; steamboatcarwash.com

orthopaedics of steamboat springs

At Orthopaedics of Steamboat, our goal is to provide comprehensive treatment for all orthopaedic conditions in a personal and professional manner. We strive to provide stateof-the-art medical care, with our additional training and modern facilities. 940 Central Park Drive, Suite 280, Steamboat Springs, 970-879-6663 orthopaedicsofsteamboatsprings.com

routt County rifle Club

Located just outside of Steamboat Springs in scenic Northwest Colorado, the Routt County Rifle Club, Inc., was founded in 1941 and has over 300 participating members. Facilities include a clubhouse and four shooting ranges. 4184 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-620-0564; routtcountyrifleclub.org

select super markets

Local super market carrying groceries and produce. In-store deli serving fresh sandwiches and soups.

Experience Historic Colorado

Historic 1800’s gold miner cabins Nestled at the base of Hahns Peak in Northern Colorado. Located in the Routt National Forest near Steamboat Lake, Pearl Lake, Hahns Peak Lake and the Mt. Zirkel Wilderness. Cabins feature furnished kitchens, bedding, towels and firewood.

741 N. First St., Grand Jct. • 242-1571 • 800-323-6483 www.fuocomotors.com • Hours: M-F 7:30- 5:30

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54672

CabinsInColumbine.com · Clark, Colorado · 970-879-5522


SteamBoat SpringS region [hayden, Walden, oaK creeK, yampa, Kremmling, granBy] 103 W. Main St., Oak Creek, 970-736-2455 Fine gold and silver custom jewelry. Unique elk tooth jewelry pieces. P.O. Box 771717, Steamboat Springs 970-879-3880

sombrero ranches

Whether you are a local or a visitor, experienced in riding or new to the world of horses, Sombrero Ranches invites you to join them on one of their trail rides, trips or adventures in the magnificent high country of the Rockies. 835 Howelsen Parkway, Steamboat Springs 970-879-2306; sombrero.com

south side liquor

Conveniently located off U.S. 40 across from the Holiday Inn. Your one-stop shop for beer, wine, liquor and ice. 905 Weiss Drive, Steamboat Springs 970-879-5929

space station

Gas and convenience store conveniently located in downtown Oak Creek and Steamboat Springs. 312 Myers St., Oak Creek, 970-736-8319; 644 S. Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-1811

steamboat meat and seafood

Serving lunch and offering fresh and frozen seafood, meats, gourmet sausages, homemade pastas and more. Plus, all your butchering needs. 1030 Yampa St., 970-879-3504 steamboatseafood.com

Steamboat Motors can fulfill all of your Ford, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and RAM needs all in one fantastic location. 2310 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-8880; steamboatmotors.com

straightline sports

The oldest fly-fishing guide service and shop in Steamboat. We also have boots, shoes, maps, knives, camping equipment and more. Plus, come check out our new bow shop! 744 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-7568 or 800-354-5463 straightlinesports.com

swarovski optik

Swarovski Optik manufactures products that encourage people to experience nature, to appreciate its value, to commune with it and to ensure its continuity. In other words, our company’s business is about the long-term vision in every respect. 2 Slater Road, Cranston, Rhode Island 800-426-3089; swarovskioptik.com

Union Wireless

In the west, rural service is critical for safety and security since this is where people travel and work each day. Unlike the national wireless companies, Union provides mobile service in both the cities and rural areas; the places that other wireless carriers typically don’t cover. 1809 Central Park Drive, Suite 16, Steamboat Springs, 888-926-2273 unionwireless.com

UPs store

Specializing in the transportation of meat and mounts as well as shipping excess gear. Also your office away from home providing fax, copy, document and overnight delivery services. Central Park Plaza, Steamboat Springs 970-879-6161; theupsstorelocal.com/4730

meAT ProCessinG AnD TAxiDermy B & l Quality Taxidermy

Providing taxidermy and mounting services for game and fish. Expert knowledge in preparing your game for taxidermy services. 2101 Snow Bowl Plaza, Steamboat Springs 970-879-1316

steamboat meat & seafood

Individually process each game. Courtesy cooler available. Shipping available anywhere with shrink wrap, dry ice and insulated coolers. Specialty items also available. 1030 Yampa St., Steamboat Springs 970-879-3504; steamboatseafood.com

Colorado Parks and Wildlife

346 Grand CR 362, Hot Sulphur Springs 970-725-6200; 925 Weiss Drive, Steamboat Springs 970-870-2197

Corkies mini mart

597 Main St., Walden, 970-723-4733

Hayden mercantile

111 N. Sixth St., Hayden, 970-276-3922

kremmling mercantile

101 Martin Way, Kremmling, 970-724-8979

lake John resort

2521 Jackson CR 7A, Walden, 970-723-3226

north Park/Gould/Walden koA

53337 Colo. 14, Walden, 970-723-4310 koa.com/where/co/06117

safeway Food & Drug

37500 E. U.S. 40, Steamboat Springs 970-879-3766

shop & Hop Food stop

liCensinG AGenTs

35775 E. U.S. 40, Steamboat Springs 970-879-2489

City market

state Forest state Park

1825 Central Park Plaza, Steamboat Springs 970-879-3290

Clark store

General store, eatery and coffee house, with on-site liquor store and post office. 54175 Routt CR 129, Clark, 970-879-3849 clarkstore.com

huntingdirectory

silver spur

steamboat motors

56750 Colo. 14, Walden, 970-723-8366

stagecoach lake state Park (marina) 25500 Routt CR 14, Oak Creek, 970-736-8342

steamboat lake state Park

61105 Routt CR 129, Clark, 970-879-7019

www.pinkhuntingvest.com

A new Colorado company producing pink hunting vests 2016 | colorado hunter

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SteamBoat SpringS region [hayden, Walden, oaK creeK, yampa, Kremmling, granBy] Walmart

Walden Public shooting Area

Walden Conoco

DininG

1805 Central Park Drive, Steamboat Springs 970-879-8115 609 Main St., Walden, 970-723-4246

4 miles east of Walden on Jackson CR 12E 970-723-4625

Creekside Cafe and Grill

yampa river state Park

6185 W. U.S. 40, Hayden, 970-276-2061

sHooTinG rAnGes Byers Canyon rifle range

Hot Sulphur Springs (12 miles east of Kremmling) 970-725-6200 (Colorado Parks and Wildlife Hot Sulphur Springs office)

Serving Yampa Valley beef and Yampa Valley Farms pork. Chicken fried steak, biscuits and gravy, local thick-cut bacon and more. 131 11th St., Steamboat Springs, 970-879-4925 creekside-cafe.com

Hahn’s Peak roadhouse

and delicious breakfast and lunch daily. The pancakes can’t be beat. 740 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-9975

continental breakfast, Wi-Fi and pool. 1055 Walton Creek Road, Steamboat Springs 970-879-6669; qualityinn.com

The Tap House sports Grill

The Rabbit Ears Motel, located in beautiful Steamboat Springs, is your choice for comfortable, affordable lodging right in the center of downtown. 201 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-1150; rabbitearsmotel.com

A sports grill and music venue, The Tap House is the place for fun, games and food. Large parties welcome. Late-night entertainment. 739 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-2431; thetaphouse.com

loDGinG The Cabins at Historic Columbine

Hayden shooting range

2 miles south of Hayden on Routt CR 37 970-870-2197 (Colorado Parks and Wildlife Steamboat Springs office)

From cabin lodging to gasoline, a grocery store, rentals and old-fashioned sit-down dinners inside a quaint lodge, the spot to fill your belly after exploring North Routt. 60880 Routt CR 129, Clark 970-879-4404 or 800-342-1889 hahnspeakroadhouse.com

routt County rifle Club

The moose Café

m & m elk ranch

4184 Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs (2 miles west of Steamboat on U.S. 40), 970-620-0564 routtcountyrifleclub.org

Three Quarter Circles sporting Clays and Driving range 26185 U.S. 40, Steamboat Springs, (6 miles west of Steamboat) 970-879-5649 or 970-846-5647; 3qc.net

Vail rod & Gun Club

1 Sporting Clay Way, Wolcott, (just south of U.S. 70), 970-926-3472 lazyjranch.net

Located at the west end of town across from the Mercantile. Home style cooking in a family atmosphere. Open seven days a week from 6 a.m. until 2 p.m. 115 W. Park Ave., Kremmling, 970-724-9987

steamboat meat & seafood Co.

Serving lunch and offering fresh and frozen seafood, meats, gourmet sausages, homemade pastas and more. 1030 Yampa St., Steamboat Springs 970-879-3504; steamboatseafood.com

The shack Cafe

A local’s favorite since 1969, serving hot

The

Jeweler’s Mine Custom elk ivory Jewelry

118 8th St. • Steamboat SpringS • 970-871-1413

theJewelersmine.com 134 | visit cohunter.com for more

Fourteen historic 1800s gold miners cabins are fully restored and include a bathhouse, wood-fired sauna, commercial kitchen and a general store. 64505 Routt CR 129, Clark, 970-879-5522 cabinsincolumbine.com Offering a wide range of products from custom steaks to specialty dog treats. Also offering the opportunity to shoot your own elk. 50803 Meadow Lane, Steamboat Springs 970-879-5200; mmelkranch.com

oak Creek motel

Clean, affordable, friendly hospitality year round. Drive a little, save a lot! 408 Willow Bend just off Main Street, Oak Creek 970-736-2343; oakcreekmotel.com

Quality inn & suites

Conveniently located on U.S. 40, Clean, comfortable and affordable rooms. Free

rabbit ears motel

oTHer sUPPorTinG BUsinesses Feldmann nagel, llC

Attorneys in oil and gas, family, criminal defense, military, civil and wildlife law. The wildlife division defends recreationists, outfitters and outdoorsmen with corporate operations, hunting leases, ranch/family estate planning, hunting citations and release and hold harmless agreements. 1120 S. Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-8616; colo-lawyers.com

rePs (reaching everyone Preventing suicide)

Reaching Everyone Preventing Suicide (REPS) provides suicide crisis support, suicide prevention and suicide support groups in Routt and Moffat counties in Northwest Colorado. P.O. Box 773324, Steamboat Springs 970-819-2232; preservinglife.org


Hall & Hall real estate

Features ranches and farm land for sale, agricultural real estate appraisals, ranch property management, agricultural land loans and more. 3001 S. Lincoln Ave., Steamboat Springs 970-879-5544 ; hallhall.com

steamboat sotheby’s international realty — David Baldinger, Jr.

Three locations in Steamboat Springs; 610 Marketplace Plaza, 56 Ninth St., 1855 Ski Time Square Drive 970-879-7800; steamboatsir.com

steamboat sotheby’s international realty — ren martyn

Three locations in Steamboat Springs; 610 Marketplace Plaza, 56 Ninth St., 1855 Ski Time Square Drive 970-879-8100; steamboatsir.com

Horses for rent Hunting and Pack Horses

Meeker

CraiG

SteaMbOat

buSineSS OFFiCe

970-878-4382 12900 County rd 8 Meeker, CO 970-879-2306 835 river road Steamboat Springs, CO

WilliaMS FOrk

970-842-3468 781 County rd 15 Craig, CO

303-442-0258 911 kimbark St. longmont, CO

970-276-2048 781 County rd 8 Hayden, CO

DOtSerO

970-524-9742 13721 CO river rd Gypsum, CO

Available: Archery, Muzzleloading & Rifle Seasons Summer Horses available • Guided & Unguided Rides • www.sombrero.com Permitted on White River and Routt National Forests License #217 E.O.E.

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SteamBoat SpringS region [hayden, Walden, oaK creeK, yampa, Kremmling, granBy] reAl esTATe


huntingdirectory

SOuTH ROuTT

Welcomes Hunters!

40

Hayden

Steamboat Springs Airport

Milner Yampa Valley Regional Airport

Steamboat Springs

Yampa River

The Flat Tops Wilerness area is the second largest wilderness area in Colorado Year designated: 1975 Hunting areas: 24, 25, 12, 26, 33, 34

It’s all right here! Phippsburg Merchants

Oak Creek Merchants

21475 Hwy 131 | 970-736-2450 Farm supplies, animal feed, tack, tools, propane, sporting goods and gifts.

118 Main St. | 970-736-2377 | 970-877-Bonfiglio Natural preventative healthcare, pharmacy, gifts, cards and sundries.

Flat Tops Ranch Supply

Yampa Merchants

Montgomery’s General Merchandise

24 Main St. | 970-638-4531 Groceries, ammo, licenses, hardware, maps, gifts, sporting goods.

Oak Creek

Stagecoach Reservoir

Phippsburg

Oak Creek Motel

408 Willow Bend just off Main St. | 970-736-2343 www.oakcreekmotel.com Clean, affordable, friendly hospitality year round. Drive a little - Save a lot!

Select Super Markets

103 West Main Street | 970-736-2455 Local super market carrying groceries and produce. Instore deli serving fresh sandwiches and soups. 312 Myers St. | 970-736-8319 Gas and convenience store conveniently located in downtown Oak Creek.

Spend a day in South Routt!

136 | visit cohunter.com for more

Lake Catamount

131

Bonfiglio Drug and liquor

Space Station

Want to learn more?

40

iv R ar e B

er

Size: 235,035 acres Elevation: 7,600 to 12,994 feet Miles of trails: 160

Yampa

SARVIS CREEK WILDERNESS AREA 134 3 34

Topanos Just 20 minutes from Steamboat


Bureau of land management

Little Snake Field Office — 455 Emerson St., Craig, 970-826-5000; Kremmling Field Office — 2103 E. Park Ave., Kremmling, 970-724-3000; Glenwood Springs Field Office — 50629 Colo. 6 and 24, Glenwood Springs, 970-947-2800; White River Field Office, 220 E. Market St., Meeker, 970-878-3800; Grand Junction — 2815 H Road, 970-244-3000, co.blm.gov, Lakewood State Office — 303-239-3600, co.blm.gov

Carbon County Visitors’ Council

If hunting is on your agenda, Carbon County, Wyoming, is unparalleled. A variety of terrains provides habitat for a wide variety of wild game species. P.O. Box 1017, Rawlins, Wyoming 307-324-3020 or 800-228-3547 wyomingcarboncounty.com

Colorado Welcome Center at Fruita 340 Colo. 340, Fruita, 970-858-9335

Craig Daily Press newspaper

466 Yampa Ave., Craig, 970-824-7031 CraigDailyPress.com, ExploreCraig.com

Craig sportsman information Center Moffat County Visitor’s Center and Craig Chamber of Commerce 360 E. Victory Way, Craig 970-824-5689 or 800-864-4405 craig-chamber.com

Delta Area Chamber of Commerce, inc. 301 Main St., Delta, 970-874-8616 deltacolorado.org

Dinosaur national monument Canyon Area Visitor Center

Colorado Department of Transportation 877-315-ROAD, cotrip.org

4545 U.S. 40, Dinosaur, 970-374-3000 nps.gov/dino

Colorado outfitters Association

Fruita Area Chamber of Commerce

P.O. Box 849, Craig, 970-824-2468 coloradooutfitters.org

432 East Aspen Ave., Fruita, 970-858-3894 fruitachamber.org

Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Glenwood springs Chamber of Commerce

Grand Junction Regional and Area Office — 711 Independent Ave., 970-255-6100; Steamboat Springs — 925 Weiss Drive, 970-870-2197; Hot Sulphur Springs — 346 Grand CR 362 (west of Byers Canyon), 970-725-6200 Meeker — 73485 U.S. 64, 970-878-6090; Glenwood Springs — 50633 U.S. 6 and 24, 970-947-2920; Durango — 151 E. 16th St., 970-247-0855; Gunnison — 300 New York Ave., 970-641-7060; Montrose — 2300 S. Townsend Ave., 970-252-6000

802 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, 970-945-6589 glenwoodchamber.com

Colorado state Parks

740 Horizon Drive, Grand Junction, 970-256-4060

Steamboat Lake and Pearl Lake State Parks — 61105 Routt CR 129, Clark, 970-879-3922 or 970-879-7019; Stagecoach State Park — 25500 Routt CR 14, Oak Creek, 970-736-2436 or 970-736-8342; State Forest State Park — 56750 Colo. 14, Walden, 970-723-8366; Yampa River State Park — 6185 W. U.S. 40, Hayden, 970-276-2061; parks.state.co.us Info — 970-434-6862 Reservations — 800-678-2267

Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce 360 Grand Ave., Grand Junction 970-242-3214 or 800-352-5286 gjchamber.org/index.asp

Grand Junction economic Partnership Business services

122 North Sixth St., Grand Junction, 970-245-4332

Grand Junction Visitor & Convention Center Hayden Chamber of Commerce

252 W. Jefferson, Hayden, 970-819-5918 yampavalley.info/haydenchamber.asp

kremmling Area Chamber of Commerce 203 Park Ave., Kremmling, 877-573-6654 kremmlingchamber.com

meeker Chamber of Commerce

710 Market St., Meeker, 970-878-5510 meekerchamber.com huntmeeker.com

moffat County Tourism Association

Blaze your own trail to Moffat Country and then stay awhile. With pioneer personality, the hand clasps are firm and the smiles are genuine. This far-flung corner of Northwest Colorado is just the place to hang your hat and renew your spirit with discovery and adventure, we are here to help you do it all. 1111 W. Victory Way, Suite 117, Craig 970-824-2335, moffatcountytourism.com

montrose Chamber Association of Tourism 1519 E. Main St., No. A, Montrose 970-249-5000 or 800-923-5515

noAA’s national Weather service Weather Forecast office

792 Eagle Drive, Grand Junction, 970-243-7007 nws.noaa.gov

north Park Chamber of Commerce 416 Fourth St., Walden, 970-723-4600 northparkchamber.com

Palisade Chamber of Commerce 319 Main St., Palisade, 970-464-7458 palisadecoc.com

rangely Chamber of Commerce

Promoting and fostering a positive business climate in our community. 209 E. Main St., Rangely, 970-675-5290 rangelychamber.com

rifle Area Chamber of Commerce 200 Lions Park Circle, Rifle 970-625-2085 or 800-842-2085 riflechamber.com

rocky mountain elk Foundation

P.O. Box 2984, Grand Junction, 970-200-3003 rmef.org

Town of south Fork

South Fork is located at 8,200 feet near Wolf Creek Pass, surrounded by the Rio Grande National Forest. Come play with us! P.O. Box 1030, South Fork 719-873-5512 or 800-571-0881 southfork.org

stay The Trail Colorado

The mission of Stay The Trail Colorado is to encourage the responsible use of the roads and trails that are open to motorized recreation in Colorado. Stay The Trail Colorado is a program of

more photos and interactive features. push notifications for issues you want to stay on top of.

Update your current Steamboat Today app or download a new copy free today. STeamboaTToday.com/appS

steamboat Today newspaper

1901 Curve Plaza, Steamboat Springs 970-879-1502 SteamboatToday.com, ExploreSteamboat.com

steamboat springs Chamber resort Association 125 Anglers Drive, Steamboat Springs steamboat-chamber.com

U.s. Fish and Wildlife service

P.O. Box 25486, Lakewood, 303-236-4216 fws.gov

U.s. Forest service

Hahn’s Peak-Bears Ears Ranger District — 925 Weiss Drive, Steamboat Springs, 970-879-1870; Parks Ranger District — 2103 E. Park Ave., Kremmling, 970-724-3000 or 100 Main St., Walden, 970-723-8204; Rio Blanco Ranger District — 220 E. Market St., Meeker, 970-878-4039; Rifle Ranger District — 94 Garfield CR 244, Rifle, 970-625-2371; Sulphur Ranger District — 9 Ten Mile Drive, Granby, 970-877-4100; White River National Forest — 900 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, 970-945-2521; Yampa Ranger District — 300 Roselawn Ave., Yampa, 970-638-4516

U.s. Forest service maps

303-275-5350, nationalforeststore.com

U.s. Geological survey

(topographical maps) Central Region Offices, Denver Federal Center, West Sixth Avenue and Kipling Street, DFC Building 810, Lakewood 303-202-4700 or 888-275-8747 topomaps.usgs.gov

Wild sheep Foundation

Dedicated to enhancing wild sheep populations, promoting professional wildlife management, educating the public and youth on sustainable use and the conservation benefits of hunting. 720 Allen Ave., Cody, Wyoming, 307-527-6261 wildsheepfoundation.org

Elk Liquor

all the local news at your fingertips Quick and convenient when and where you want the news.

the Responsible Recreation Foundation. P.O. Box 915, Wheat Ridge, 720-684-9960 staythetrail.org

until Open on 11pm ys! a Sund 1111 W. Victory Way ∙ 970-824-6779 Behind Village Inn- Inside the Centennial Mall (West end)

Largest Beer Cooler in Craig! 19 Doors 2016 | colorado hunter

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huntingdirectory

WesTern ColorADo VisiTor inFormATion


huntingdirectory

WeStern colorado guideS & outFitterS

NorthWest ColorADo’s PreMIer MeAt ProCesser & retAIler

Full lINe oF AWArD WINNINg retAIl MeAt For Your CAMP!

Breakfast sausage • ItalIan sausage • Jerky snack stIcks franks • summer sausage Jalapeño cheddar sausage polIsh • Brats • and more!

Unparalleled experience in Game processinG Regular Skinning is included in price. Trophy Services Available

In a Hurry to Head Home? 24HR turn around service Full shipping, pack for airlines, regular shipping boxes, cooler boxes, and dry ice! For the “Do-It-YourselFer”: KnIveS, pApeR, SeASonIngS And FAT!

383 East 1st Street, Craig, CO 81625 • 970-824-3855 138 | visit cohunter.com for more


WeStern colorado guideS & outFitterS huntingdirectory

Red Rock Archery 3193 HALL AVE. GRAND JUNCTION, CO

(970) 241-2697 Business Hours

Tuesday - Friday • 12pm - 9pm Saturday • 10am - 6pm August Only Open Sunday • 12pm - 6pm

OUR Family Family Business Business OUR YOUR Family Family Tradition Tradition YOUR 2016 | colorado hunter

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Colorado Hunter 2016  

A complete guide to hunting for Western Colorado.

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