Deer can be found throughout the unit, but better deer hunting is found at the lower elevations. In later seasons, deer will move down toward the town of Buena Vista and along Hwy 24.
Bounded on N by South Fork of Clear Creek and Clear Creek; on E by Arkansas River; on S by Chalk Creek and Tincup Pass Road from St. Elmo; on W by Continental Divide.
The access for this unit is fair. Public roads, trails provide limited access to public lands. Considerable wilderness with trails that are foot or horseback only.
20% Private, 80% Public, 75% USFS, 1% BLM, 4% State
Deer can be found throughout the unit, but better deer hunting is found at the lower elevations. In later seasons, deer will move down toward the town of Buena Vista and along Hwy 24. Most whitetail activity is down along the Arkansas drainage on the east side of these GMUs. Whitetails have been reported in the area on occasion, however they are few and far between.
Primary landownership within this area is private so permission to hunt would be necessary
Public land and private land percentages can sometime be misleading. A unit may have 80% public land, but a particluar species may only occupy 20% on the entire area. And that 20% species distribution may lie 100% within private lands. Does that sound confusing? Just remember that there are always exceptions to the rule, and land ownership is just one piece of the puzzle.
Deer Management Plan
14,419 on Mt. Harvard to 7,710 near Nathrop; Broad, level valley bottom, changing rapidly to steep, rough mountains. The western border of the area is alpine tundra (above 11,500ft) and is
characterized by sedges, forbs and stunted willows. As the elevation drops, the
next ecosystem is subalpine forest (9,000ft-11,500ft) dominated by subalpine fir,
Engelmann spruce, aspen and bristlecone pine.
The montane forest (5,600ft-
9,000), contains primarily ponderosa pine, Douglas-fir, lodgepole pine, and
aspen. The semidesert shrubland areas (7,000ft-8,000ft), support sagebrush,
rabbitbrush, mountain mahogany, grasses and numerous forbs. The piñonjuniper
woodlands (6,800ft-8,000ft), contain primarily piñon pine, juniper,
mountain mahogany, rabbitbrush, forbs and cactus. The riparian ecosystems
extend along all of the drainages and include narrowleaf cottonwood, willow,
cinquefoil, current and forbs and grasses.
Agricultural cropland in the area
consists mainly of native grass and alfalfa hay fields in the Arkansas River valley
bottom and along tributaries
There are 1 OTC hunts in this unit. Go Pro to view the details!
Weather can vary by elevation. See how weather varies by elevation within a unit by selecting an elevation range. Elevation ranges are based on weather stations in or near the unit. Not all weather elements are available within the unit.
Use temperature ranges to plan and prepare for your hunt. Large swings indicate a good layering system should be used.
Be sure to make note of the extreme temperatures as these often pose the greatest risk to hunters.
If you plan on hunting in higher elevation, as a rule of thumb, expect the tempture to decrease roughly 5° for every 1000' in elevation gain.
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Look for deer in the lower elevations on the east and south sides of the unit.
Better areas are in the piñons and junipers in the Chaffee County portion of the unit. Paddock State Wildlife Area provides good hunting in later seasons. Weston Pass is a good access road to public National Forest Land.
Some large bucks found in the alpine areas early in the seasons. Otherwise, concentrate in low elevations in the southern part of the unit. This unit is not the best deer unit because of the high elevation.