Elk Hunting in Colorado GMU 42 - Mesa and Garfield Counties

The elk herd is well distributed with good hunting success expected. Elk are scattered throughout the forest and on private lands. Most elk stay at higher elevations (8500- 10,000ft) in thick timber and oakbrush.

GMU 42 - Mesa and Garfield Counties

Scores


Ease of Drawing
100
 
100
Success
17
 
17
Trophy Potential
46
 
46
Public Access
55
 
55
Ease of Terrain
75
 
75
Room to Breathe
1
 
1
Opportunity
55
 
55
Convenience
2
 
2
Ease of Effort
48
 
48
64
HuntScore

Access Notes


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Bounded on N by Colorado River; on E by S Canyon Creek, the divide between Roaring Fork-Crystal River and Baldy Creek-Divide Creek drainages and common point of Mesa-Pitkin-Gunnison County lines; on S by Divide Creek-Muddy Creek divide, Divide Creek-Plateau Creek divide and Plateau Creek-Colorado River divide; and on W by Colorado River.

Hunters should be prepared to spend time on foot or horseback. Much of the area is public land. Overall, the hunting pressure is heavy.

County

Mesa, Garfield

Size

555 Square Miles (355,506 Acres)

Land Ownership

45% Private, 55% Public, 30% USFS, 22% BLM, 3% State

Latitude/Longitude

39.3988, -107.7396

Amenities

There are 0 hospitals, 1 hotels, 0 campgrounds, and 0 grocery stores within a 20 mile radius.

Elk Notes


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The elk herd is well distributed with good hunting success expected. Elk are scattered throughout the forest and on private lands. Most elk stay at higher elevations (8500- 10,000ft) in thick timber and oakbrush. There is no migration during the season, movement to the more remote areas is in response to hunting pressure.

They will seek classic cover - the heavily wooded, north-facing slopes near water. You will need to get away from the roads. There are lots of legal bulls as the area is managed for quantity of bulls rather than trophy status. Hence, trophy bulls are present but relatively rare.

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

Elk Management Plan

State Agency Website

Visit Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Other Species in Unit

Deer, Shiras Moose, Black Bear, Mountain Lion, Turkey,

Photos and Terrain Notes


Grand Mesa terrain ranges from high elevation (11,000ft) spruce/fir forests to low elevation (4,800ft) piñon-juniper woodlands.

Elk Over The Counter Hunts (2021)


There are 4 OTC hunts in this unit. Go Pro to view the details!

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Elk Drawing Stats (2021)


Total Quota
1,425
Licenses Drawn
1,112
Licenses Surplus
313
Resident Quota
832
Nonresident Quota
280
Landowner Quota
215
Youth Quota
215
100%
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
EF042P5R
F
R
P5
LL
100%
0
EF042O4R
F
R
O4
LL
100%
0
EF042O3R
F
R
O3
LL
100%
0
EF042O2R
F
R
O2
LL
100%
0
HuntScore Tip: For bear, elk, deer and pronghorn, you will accumulate preference points until you are successful in drawing a first-choice license. If you draw your first choice, your preference points drop to zero. There is no ?banking? of preference points.

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Elk Harvest Stats (2020)


Total Hunters
3,047
Total Harvest
548
Harvest Male
247
Harvest Female
267
18%
Average Success
Manner Season Type Sex Hunters Harvest Male Female Youth
A
A
N/A 833 83
54
26
0
ALL
ALL
N/A 3047 548
247
267
0
M
M
N/A 162 12
12
0
0
R
PLO
PLO
N/A 143 36
0
36
0
R
PLO
N/A 233 81
28
44
0
R
O4
LL
M
54 0
0
0
0
R
O4
LL
F
113 61
0
58
0
R
O4
N/A 201 75
10
62
0
R
O3
LL
F
274 89
0
70
0
R
O2
LL
F
240 60
0
60
0
R
O3
N/A 7713 130
41
70
0
R
O2
N/A 779 140
80
60
0
R
O1
LL
M
117 32
32
0
0
R
O1
LL
F
32 4
0
4
0
R
O1
N/A 205 67
50
8
0
R
D
R
N/A 11 5
0
5
0
R
ALL
N/A 143 36
0
36
0
R
R
N/A 2052 453
181
241
0
HuntScore Tip: Ever hunt a unit with a 100% success rate and not see any deer? If you're nodding your head to any of these scenarios then you're one of the people who knows that statistics are a good guide, but they aren't a guarantee.

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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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