How long before you switch Units?

NickyD

Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2020
Messages
54
Location
Denver, CO
Hello All,

First I’d like to say I’m not looking for any unit suggestions.

I’ve been hunting for 4 seasons now and I’m considering switching units. I’m in Colorado and have been hunting the same unit cluster for the last 4 years, multiple weekends per year plus scouting. I’ve seen bucks in the summer and late season, but have only seen 1 (forkie) buck during season. I see plenty of does on almost every hunt I do. Would you consider hunting another unit, or should I stick to this area in hopes that I learn the area enough to where I’ll see the bucks. I consistently am glassing 1-3 miles at sunrise/sunset for a few hours per session and feel like I should be seeing more bucks.

Thanks in advance
 

bsnedeker

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
May 17, 2018
Messages
2,685
Location
MT
If you've put that much time into learning a unit I'd probably try hunting during the week instead of just doing weekends. Weekend warrior hunting pressure has significant impacts on where game is. The middle of the week can be entirely different than the weekends. If you are hunting during the rut and there are does there then there are bucks around too.
 

brn2hnt

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 27, 2012
Messages
354
Location
Treasure Valley, ID
What season are you hunting?

I’d have thought it was impossible to not see good numbers of bucks in CO, and I’ve only hunted a 0/1pt unit even for 3rd season.

I’d be looking to bust a move after one season of not seeing bucks.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
OP
N

NickyD

Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2020
Messages
54
Location
Denver, CO
What season are you hunting?

I’d have thought it was impossible to not see good numbers of bucks in CO, and I’ve only hunted a 0/1pt unit even for 3rd season.

I’d be looking to bust a move after one season of not seeing bucks.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Mostly 3rd but I hunted 2nd this year. I mostly see them late rifle for elk. I’ve legit seen more bull moose in 3rd….two bulls vs one buck
 

Researcher

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Mar 31, 2018
Messages
338
Location
Reno, Nevada
Mostly 3rd but I hunted 2nd this year. I mostly see them late rifle for elk. I’ve legit seen more bull moose in 3rd….two bulls vs one buck
Sounds like you’ve found a lot of places deer arent and thats useful info too. Check out new spots inside the units you’ve already hunted and see if they are there. Eventually you’ll cross off enough places they arent and you’ll be left with the places they are.
 

brn2hnt

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 27, 2012
Messages
354
Location
Treasure Valley, ID
Mostly 3rd but I hunted 2nd this year. I mostly see them late rifle for elk. I’ve legit seen more bull moose in 3rd….two bulls vs one buck

So how far away are the places you’re finding them in early season vs late rifle? 3rd season does mean bucks, no getting around that.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

LONE HUNTER

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 25, 2018
Messages
204
yeah that’s a head scratcher. I would pick up a bow and hunt them when you can find them if that were the case.
 

Muley Buck

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Jun 13, 2016
Messages
1,490
Location
California
What?? Colorado?? I thought that CPW tied big bucks up to trees all over the place just before the seasons open, just for hunters to harvest... Huh, well I guess I heard some bad info somewhere.🤷🏻‍♂️
 
OP
N

NickyD

Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2020
Messages
54
Location
Denver, CO
So how far away are the places you’re finding them in early season vs late rifle? 3rd season does mean bucks, no getting around that.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Quite far away. I’m certain they were different bucks. Yeah it’s definitely weird. But again I’m not sure if it’s just me not seeing them or that they’re not there.
 

Trumpkin The Dwarf

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 18, 2013
Messages
979
Location
Texas
1st off, if you're not running into hunters all the time, it's probably worth staying in the unit. But I'd say you should go scout a few days right now through the end of the year. Go check new spots, gather as much info as you can, and then make your decision.

Deer are much harder to see after they lose their summer coats, and it takes practice to learn to spot them later. So it could be you that's the issue. Have you gotten out in snow? Snow will make deer pop again if they're up and moving.
 
OP
N

NickyD

Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2020
Messages
54
Location
Denver, CO
1st off, if you're not running into hunters all the time, it's probably worth staying in the unit. But I'd say you should go scout a few days right now through the end of the year. Go check new spots, gather as much info as you can, and then make your decision.

Deer are much harder to see after they lose their summer coats, and it takes practice to learn to spot them later. So it could be you that's the issue. Have you gotten out in snow? Snow will make deer pop again if they're up and moving.
Oh I’m definitely seeing a lot of hunters everywhere I go unfortunately. I have been out many times when it’s snowing and seen does, it definitely helps. Think going out in late December/January would be similar to going out now? I just don’t have the time until after the holidays unfortunately
 

ColoradoV

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Nov 10, 2013
Messages
386
I switch units almost every year…

Don’t tie your self down when scouting pick a new unit/area or 2 and go somewhere new every single year. If you are a resident take weekend trips to where you think looks good..

Still hit your regular spot every year but look around a bit you might be surprised at what ya find.
 

Jimss

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Messages
1,881
There is probably a good reason you can draw the unit and season so often that ties directly to the size and number of bucks you are seeing?

I know units that are excellent archery hunts but slim pickings during late rifle. I know other units that are slim pickings archery that produce whoppers during late rifle. I know other units that are great during every season.

It likely takes a lot of experience snd boot leather to figure this out.
 

EdP

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Jun 18, 2020
Messages
517
Location
Southwest Va
You are consistently seeing does on almost every hunt. The bucks that helped make all those does are not moving to other units, they are still right there somewhere. To me, if you move you will just be starting the same learning curve all over again unless you find a unit with significantly less hunting pressure (unlikely). I'd work on finding the buck travel paths and feeding and bedding areas. They are probably going nocturnal due to pressure and you need to find their hideouts and catch them as they first start to move.
 

Wacko

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Oct 6, 2019
Messages
127
If you are hunting a cluster of units now I would stay there. That means it's a lot of country. I have been hunting the same cluster for over 20 years in CO. There are still new places I find. I also seem to go back to places that had nothing one year and now it does. So don't stick to one area for more than 2 days if you know it well. If you are seeing bucks there ever - they are still there somewhere.

Hunter pressure has definitely been on the rise as well. Mostly with OTC Elk hunters. The pressure still makes everything seem scarce. I was within 50 yards of several bucks this year in some blowdowns. All of them sat tight and didn't bolt. Even when I raised my rifle at them. Not shooters for me this year, but I wonder how many walk right by them? Or even go in there?

The advice above is what I recommend. Get out during the week. Pressure drops significantly and animals will move a bit more. Also hunt the thick stuff more if you aren't seeing anything. Go into blowdowns and thick nasty stuff. It sucks but they have figured out most guys don't go there either. In heavy pressured areas you are not likely to glass up a buck during "daylight" in any open areas. Lastly, don't be afraid to hunt areas your mind says - no buck is going to be there. Just MHO.
 

Firestone

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Feb 8, 2017
Messages
301
Location
Northwest Montana
4 years in Colorado and you have only seen one buck, yeah I would definitely be changing something up. Look at your unit statistics and compare them with other unit. If they are way low then I would switch units. If they are on par then you need to switch tactics.
 
OP
N

NickyD

Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2020
Messages
54
Location
Denver, CO
Thanks to all that have offered advice. I think I will put in for a different unit to see new country but continue to hunt elk and does in the area as I’ve had more success with finding those. Maybe I’ll figure the bucks out getting lucky as I learn more about the elk in the area
 

Tyeguy

Well Known Rokslider
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
135
Location
Utah
Just depends on the pressure. If pressure is high I’d switch units after a few years of hunting it.
 
Top