Deer Hunting in Colorado GMU 8 - Larimer County

In this unit, deer summer range generally from elevations of 5,000 to 11,500 feet. The higher range usually becomes available to deer as snowlines recede in mid to late May. The majority of deer winter at elevations below 8,000 feet.

GMU 8 - Larimer County

Scores


Scores
User Scores
Ease of Drawing
87
 
87
Success
29
 
29
Trophy Potential
41
 
41
Public Access
76
 
76
Ease of Terrain
78
 
78
Room to Breathe
4
 
4
Opportunity
57
 
57
Convenience
70
 
70
Ease of Effort
50
 
50
68
HuntScore

Access Notes


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Bounded on N by Wyoming; on E by County Roads 59, 80C (Cherokee Park Road), 179 (Prairie Dirt Road), 74E (Red Feather Lakes Road), 68C (Boy Scout Ranch Road), and 69 (Manhattan Road); on S by County Highway 14; on W by County Road 103 (Laramie River Road).

There are many wilderness areas here that can only be reached by foot or horse., and there is no vehicle access. Hunters must know where they are in this area as there are many public lands locked on all sides by private land. Don't risk access unless you have received permission well in advance of the hunt. Elk habitat is spread across a wide range of land ownership categories.

The largest single land manager is the United States Forest Service (USFS), followed closely by private landowners. The vast majority of USFS land is National Forest or designated wilderness. There are some small areas managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Among state lands, those managed as State Wildlife Areas or State Land Board holdings account for almost all of the total area.

Many of these state properties provide elk hunting opportunities. Outside of private land, USFS, BLM and State Wildlife lands receive almost all elk hunting pressure. Human occupation is limited, particularly in the western (Laramie River valley) and southwestern portions of the area (upper Poudre, Joe Wright Creek).

County

Larimer

Size

438 Square Miles (280,467 Acres)

Land Ownership

24% Private, 76% Public, 66% USFS, 6% BLM, 4% State

Latitude/Longitude

40.8533, -105.7247

Amenities

There are 0 hospitals, 0 hotels, 53 campgrounds, and 0 grocery stores within a 20 mile radius.

Deer Notes


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In this unit, deer summer range generally from elevations of 5,000 to 11,500 feet. The higher range usually becomes available to deer as snowlines recede in mid to late May. The majority of deer winter at elevations below 8,000 feet. Many west and south-facing slopes are typically clear of snow all year, with occasional spring and late winter storms depositing accumulations which quickly melt off.

Weather-related winter deer mortality is usually not a factor in this area. Human occupation is limited, particularly in the western (Laramie River valley) and south-western portions of the area (upper Poudre, Joe Wright Creek). To the east, rural developments are more common. Irrigated hay and ranching form the main landscape use in the western part of the area however, increased fragmentation due to home construction, small acreage pasturing and hobby livestock ranching is occurring, particularly on the eastern side.

Mule deer are by far the predominant species.

However, occasional whitetailed deer have historically been observed in the area for at least the last 30-40 years. In recent years however, localized white-tailed deer herds have become established in the area, most notably in the Laramie River drainage, the area surrounding Fort Collins and in some drainages of the North Fork of the Cache la Poudre River. These small localized herds are currently not a large concern for hybridization or competition with mule deer, but any expansion will be evaluated. Since white-tailed deer are harvested along with mule deer on general deer licenses, harvest pressure and habitat may act together to limit their range.

HuntScore Tip

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.

Management Plan

Deer Management Plan

State Agency Website

Visit Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Photos and Terrain Notes


Elevations range from 12,795 feet at the highest point in the southwestern part of the area to 4,921 feet along the eastern edge near Fort Collins. This area covers much of the northern part of the Arapaho/Roosevelt National Forest. The overall climate in this area is relatively dry with low humidity. Climate varies across the area as a function of elevation.

The higher elevation portions in the west experience a harsher climate, with long, cold winters, abundant snowfall, and short, cool summers.

Deer Drawing Stats (2021)


Total Quota
3,065
Licenses Drawn
3,042
Licenses Surplus
23
Resident Quota
2,773
Nonresident Quota
211
Landowner Quota
860
Youth Quota
248
86.7%
Overall Unit
1st Choice Draw Odds
Choose a hunt below to take a deeper dive into quotas, drawing odds, drawing trends, and harvest data.
Stats Apply For Sex Manner Season Type Draw Odds HuntScore Notes
DM007O4R
M
R
O4
LL
100%
83 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8;
DM007O3R
M
R
O3
LL
88.8%
82 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8;
DM007O2R
M
R
O2
LL
71.6%
80 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8;
DM007O1M
M
M
O1
LL
100%
78 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8, 9, 19, 191;
DF007O3R
F
R
O3
LL
100%
83 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8;
DF007O2R
F
R
O2
LL
65.4%
78 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8;
DF007O1M
F
M
O1
LL
100%
76 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8, 9, 19, 191;
DE007O1A
E
A
O1
LL
93.2%
72 Permit Type A; License Valid for Units: 7, 8, 9, 19, 191;
HuntScore Tip: Preference points are earned when you apply for a limited license but are unsuccessful in drawing a license for your first-choice hunt or when you purchase a point through the application process. Many hunters collect points and also hunt each year. Researching the number of points required for the GMUs you want to hunt is useful before applying.

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Deer Harvest Stats (2019)


Total Hunters
1,236
Total Harvest
218
Harvest Male
103
Harvest Female
111
18%
Average Success
Manner Season Type Sex Deer Species Hunters Harvest Male Female Youth
A
A
LL
N/A N/A 289 27
9
18
0
ALL
ALL
LL
N/A N/A 1236 218
103
111
0
Any
D
LL
N/A N/A 5 3
0
3
0
M
M
LL
N/A N/A 224 58
39
19
0
R
O2
LL
N/A N/A 290 42
9
33
0
R
O3
LL
N/A N/A 293 56
14
38
0
R
O4
LL
N/A N/A 135 32
32
0
0
R
R
LL
N/A N/A 723 133
55
4
0
HuntScore Tip: In some smaller units you may not see any data reported for a season. There are instances where not enough hunters respond to the post-hunt survey inquiries and therefore it isn't possible to report any data.

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  • Harvest trends across multiple years
  • Harvest stats by hunt_code, manner, season, sex, type
  • Average harvest rates
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  • Overall harvest trends

Weather Insights


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.

Average Temps

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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