Hunters looking for information to help with their big game adventure will find plenty of helpful material on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife web site, cpw.state.co.us. The information includes how to apply for a license, where to hunt, tips for hunting elk, detailed maps, how to field dress a big game animal and much more.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife has released a video which provides state and regional hunting condition updates for the 2017 Colorado big-game hunting season.
The nearly 19-minute long video states that hunting conditions will generally be good across the state, with strong elk, deer and antelope populations.
Every hunting season, officers for Colorado Parks and Wildlife hand out hundreds of tickets for violations that cost hunters hundreds of thousands of dollars. While some of those tickets are for flagrant violations of wildlife regulations and hunting laws, many more are for minor violations that could have been avoided.
Hunters are reminded that not only can they be fined for violations, they can also lose their hunting privileges in Colorado and the 44 other states that cooperatively participate in a nationwide wildlife compact agreement.
Hunters who plan to go to the Taylor Park area for the 2017 big-game seasons are reminded that the Cottonwood Pass road is closed west of the summit in Gunnison County.
The road, known locally as Gunnison County Road 209, is being widened and paved from the summit to Taylor Reservoir at the intersection of Gunnison County Road 742. Construction work on the 16-mile section started in May and is scheduled for completion in September of 2018.
Big game hunters in Colorado can get an early start on - from the comfort of their homes. By going on-line to the Colorado Hunting Atlas, a special feature on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website, hunters can do some virtual scouting of areas they want to hunt.
These days, most of us are dependent, to some extent, on our cell phones. While service can be non-existent or, at best, sketchy in remote areas, emergency rescue experts suggest that hunters carry their phones with them in the field.
Camping can cause significant impacts on public lands. You can minimize much of your impact by following these guidelines:
* Hundreds of campsites have been established over the years and are apparent along many forest service and BLM roads. Use established areas as much as possible.
* Camping is limited to 14 consecutive days at all campsites.
* Campsites must be at least 100 feet from streams, lakes or riparian areas.
* Occupy as small of an area as possible. Avoid trampling grass and shrubs.
"Do you know how to shoot straight?"
While some people might take offense at such a question, it is one that big game hunters need to ask themselves every year. Shooting an animal with a high-powered rifle, no matter the distance, is not a natural skill. Hunters must know the capabilities of their rifles, the intricacies of their scopes, the characteristics of their ammunition, the distance of their targets and their own competence for setting up for a fast shot at an animal.
Harvesting a deer or elk in the wrong Game Management Unit is not only illegal, it can be very expensive. Consider the experience of an Oklahoma couple hunting in southwest Colorado.
A Colorado Parks and Wildlife officer drove into their camp late one morning during the first rifle season. When he asked how the hunt was going the husband explained that they had each killed a cow about a mile away from their camp.
The officer congratulated them and then asked to see their licenses. After looking at the licenses he asked exactly where they'd hunted.