Montana Unit 215 Antelope

Umpqua Hunter

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Apr 29, 2012
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North fork of the Umpqua, Oregon
I just found out my wife and I drew Unit 215 for antelope in Montana. We had applied there since it was about the toughest unit to draw in the state and was closer to Oregon. My plan was just to earn a point. It was looking like a slow year for tags with only a tag for Utah deer as of late May. In the last few weeks we hit on two Wyoming antelope tags, an Oregon sheep tag, then last week our card was hit for an Arizona deer tag (possibly a Strip tag). Last night we found out my wife and I drew the Montana antelope tags.

Unit 215 is just east of Deer Lodge, Montana. Does anyone have any insight on this unit? Is the trophy quality good. it was one of the recommended units in Mike Eastman's book on antelope. The draw odds are terrible for the minimal tags given (15 to 25 tags) that's why I applied there. I will need to make some decisions on how to try to work this hunt in (or not) to a very busy fall.

Thanks a bunch for any info you might share. Feel free to PM me.
 
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Umpqua Hunter

Umpqua Hunter

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North fork of the Umpqua, Oregon
Here's a couple pics from my wife's and my antelope hunt in Montana.

When we applied this year for Unit 215, we intended to just earn points, so we put in for one of the toughest to draw units in the state. After we drew these long shot tags, we were nearly certain we would not get to hunt due to other tags we had drawn and commitments at home. We were blessed and everything fell into place. We finished up our hunt in Wyoming early and a major commitment back at home got rescheduled, so we looped through Montana on our way back to Oregon. The landowner that owns the ranch that holds most of the antelope in this unit was kind enough to work us in between a couple other hunters.

My wife killed this great looking buck on the first day.

IMG_3623.jpg


We took the next day off and went for a swim at Fairmont Hot Springs. The following day we looked over numerous bucks, but I couldn't find that buck that just stood out from the others. On the last hour of the day I took this buck with my CVA Accura, my first with a muzzleloader.

IMG_3653.jpg
 

Matt Cashell

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Congrats, UH!

Besides being a great trophy, your wife's buck has an exceptional cape! I hope it sees a spot on your wall.
 

Kevin Root

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San Jose, California, United States
Wow Umpqua Hunter, that's a nice Montana speed goat your wife took. Looks like it has some good mass at the base and all. Did you rough score it yet? Just curious if it hit up in the 80's but either way it looks like a wall hanger. Congratulations to you both! Sounds like that time crunch conflict all work out. Awesome!
 
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Umpqua Hunter

Umpqua Hunter

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North fork of the Umpqua, Oregon
Thanks Kevin and BB! I need to score my wife's buck. I taped one horn pretty quickly and it looks around 78. It was 13 1/4 long so when I saw him from the front I was not too excited, but when he turned and I saw the mass and cutters, I told her she really needed to shoot that buck. They took two bucks over 82 on that ranch last year, but apparently the dry year impacted the horn growth and the rancher had not seen any big bucks.

Sunday we leave for my wife's Oregon sheep hunt. She's a tag drawing machine!
 

Kevin Root

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He is a nice looking buck Umpqua Hunter. Hope your wife has a good sheep hunt and you all have a good hunt. You know have you thought about opening up a tag service? If you did I think I'd sign up with you. In reading your all your posts you sure have had a good run and get some nice draws and animals. Hoping you get another soon on that sheep hunt. God bless!
 
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Umpqua Hunter

Umpqua Hunter

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North fork of the Umpqua, Oregon
Kevin, that's a very nice compliment. I got serious about applying for limited entry hunts in the early 80s when I first learned about the "grand slam" from my favorite uncle, and figured I had better learn how to draw sheep tags. He stocked a Ruger M-77 for me using walnut we cut off of our farm. I used that rifle to kill my slam (drew the bighorn and desert tags). I still do waayyyyy too much research...but that's cause I think it's almost more fun than the hunt. I thought about getting into it as a business back when Huntin Fool was getting started but I was blessed with a great career with my family's business. If you ever want to talk about application strategy, drop me a PM.
 
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realunlucky

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That's awesome now you have a real feel for the country I travelcan't wait to see what you hold out this year for.
 
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