Wyoming Mule Deer, Whitetails, Elk, Antelope, Turkeys and Summer Pack Trips- #26
The one word that describes the outfitter’s guiding operation is professional. Their guides are hard-working and very knowledgeable; the accommodations and hospitality are outstanding. The outfitter has access to more than 200,000 acres of private lands and National Forest Service leases that produce exceptional trophies year after year. The operation has thrived on repeat customers and referrals and we are fortunate to be able to work with this fine outfit.
The outfitter hunts mule deer in Weston, Campbell, Crook, Johnson, Bighorn, Washakie and Sheridan counties on 150,000 areas of private property in northern Wyoming. The region is known for producing trophy-class muleys and the outfitter’s success rate over the past 20 years has averaged 80% to 95%. That includes clients who have missed, wounded or turned down animals! The outfitter has managed to average between two to six bucks each season grossing over 180-inch Boone & Crockett. The typical spreads average 23 to 28 inches with thick-horned mature bucks the norm. Butch and Joan have done about 5 or 6 hunts personally with them. All were successful.
Unlike most Wyoming mule deer seasons, the 2013 season produced record snowfall and an early-season freak blizzard. Hunters had to contend with wet, cold, muddy conditions throughout the entire mule deer rifle season. However, even with the poor weather conditions, the hunting was very successful. 45 mule deer hunters harvested 37 good bucks resulting in a 82% success rate. The biggest trophies were a 186-, a 182- and a 181-inch B &C. This percentage is well below the norm for their rifle hunters, but it will mean another year of age and growth for many of those bucks who were not taken.
The archery season for mule deer runs from September 1 to September 30. This is a classic, challenging five-day spot and stalk hunt. It will test your skills as a hunter and an archer. The hunts are guided either 1 x 1 or 2 x 1. Over the past 20 years, the outfitter’s bow hunters have averaged over 85% shooting opportunity. On the ground success rate is near 60%. That is an outstanding percentage for archery trophy-class mule deer! All the hunts include lodging and meals.
The rifle season runs October 1 to 30. The hunts are fully guided, five-day hunts, either 2 x 1 or 1 x 1. Because the hunts are conducted on private property or leased NFS lands, the outfitter is afforded the use of pickups, side-by-side ATVs, and horses to access country. Some of the country is extremely rough and challenging, the kind of places trophies like to take refuge. A lot of hiking and horseback riding is required in these areas. The better physical condition a hunter is in the better chance he’ll have for a successful hunt. However, some areas are much easier and the outfitter will take into account your ability. Proven tactics include glassing for bedded or feeding deer and then using spot and stalk techniques to get within shooting range of these wily, sharp-eyed muleys.
The license draw rates for the non-resident draw in the outfitter’s mule deer areas has been 100% successful the last 14 years. The fee for a license is $326.00 or $566.00 at the special rate (higher odds of drawing).
License fees and dates are subject to change according to Wyoming Game and Fish Department, so please check with us at BMOA. The outfitter will assist hunters with the license application process. Deadline is March 15th.
The outfitter guides antelope hunters on approximately 120,000 acres of private leases in Wyoming. Hunters have very good success on trophy-quality antelope. Combo antelope/deer hunts are also available. Antelope-only hunts are also available with your choice of either bow or rifle. The success rate on antelope with bow or rifle is typically over 95%.
Bow hunts run from August 15 through August 31. Archery antelope hunting utilizes blinds set up near water holes. The chances for a Pope & Young-quality antelope are excellent.
Besides the combination deer hunts, the outfitter offers antelope-only rifle hunts. The hunts take place during the month of October. On the spot and stalk hunt, hunters can expect to see large numbers of antelope. Average bucks harvested range from 13 to 14 inches.
Boone & Crocket-class speed goats are taken each year. In 2013, the outfitter was 12 for 12 with rifle antelope hunters with the biggest measuring 80-inches.
18 hunters that opted for the deer/antelope combo hunt harvested 15 antelope bucks with the largest being an 81-inches B&C.
Whitetails are hunted on approximately 50,000-plus acres of private leases in Crook County, Wyoming. The outfitter has acquired large leases of some of the very best white-tail country in Wyoming. The outfitter has had some of the leases for over 20 years, which allows them to be carefully managed to produce trophy deer. You have seen many of the big name hunting shows featured at this outfitters ranches, and some return every year. Lots of deer and great bow and rifle hunts.
Bow season runs September 1–30. The bow hunts are classic tree-stand hunts using over 140 portable, lock-on type stands. The outfitter scouts all summer long, placing stands well in advance of the opening of the season. As the season progresses, the outfitter continues to scout every day to change stand locations as needed. The preparation gives bow hunters an excellent chance at Pope & Young-class bucks. Over the past 20 years, bow hunters average around 65% success. The shooting opportunity at P&Y-class deer is about 90%.
The 2013 whitetail bow season was very successful season. 38 hunters harvested 27 bucks for a 71% success rate. That is an awesome success rate! The average buck taken was approximately 123 P&Y. These hunters were 31 for 38 shooting, for 81%. This includes 13 misses and 8 cripples! The largest buck taken was a 151 P&Y.
Rifle season takes place during the month of November, which usually coincides with the peak of the rut. Guided hunts are either 2 x 1 or 1 x 1. Several different methods of hunting are used including tree stands, box blinds, still hunting, rattling, and spot and stalk. White-tail hunters average 80% to 100% success during a typical year.
The 2013 rifle season was better than anticipated. 40 hunters harvested 36 mature bucks for a 90% success rate. However, the hunters were 40 for 40 on shooting opportunities. This also includes seven misses and four cripples. The largest buck taken was a 160 B&C, with the average buck taken around 135 B&C. Many of the older, bigger bucks that were seen in the summer and in both bow and rifle seasons are still out there. 2014 looks very promising!
The outfitter offers fully guided 2 x 1 and 1 x 1 elk hunts with both a bow and rifle. All the hunts include lodging and meals. The outfitter operates in four separate elk areas (45, 34, 116 and 123) as described below.
Areas 45 and 34 are within the outfitter’s NFS Special Use Outfitting permit in the Bighorn Mountains of northern Wyoming. This 250 square mile region is known to be one of the best elk areas in the Bighorn Mountains and also one of the top five elk areas in the state. The Bighorn Mountains with plenty of rough, remote public land to hunt, and having no wolves and no grizzlies, means bulls can get serious age and growth here, and we expect this area will become one of the best elk areas in the state of Wyoming. Hunts here require a minimum of five or six points to draw.
This is a huge area that holds a large population of elk and is known for its high-quality, wide-racked bulls. You hunt with highly experienced, accomplished guides, top-notch equipment and comfortable camps. The outfitter uses horses, four-wheel drive pickups and side by side ATV’s to access the hunting country. About 30,000 acres lies in the Cloud Peak Wilderness Area where no motorized vehicles are allowed. Non-resident hunters must be accompanied by a licensed guide in wilderness areas in Wyoming.
Hunters looking to secure an Area 45, type 1 (any weapon) tag will need a minimum of five preference points to draw the Non-Resident Elk Tag. To draw an Area 45, type 9 (archery only) tag will require three preference points. About 30,000 acres of this permitted area lies within elk Area 34. Area 34, type 1 (any weapon) will need only one point with good odds with no points. The bulls in Area 45 average from 300- to 340-inches. The bulls in Area 34 average 260- to 300-inches. Both produce higher quality bulls, but we like to give a client a reasonable expectation and hope they exceed it.
Area 116 is a general license area. This area is encompassed by the Bear Lodge Mountains where the outfitter hunts both private leases and National Forest permitted areas. Trophy-quality bulls in this area are from 280– to 320-inches with some larger bulls taken. Success rate in this area with a bow has been approximately 50% harvest and 75% shooting. Success with a rifle has been 75% harvest and around 85% shooting.
Area 123 is a very limited quota area. The outfitter hunts a 82,000-acre private lease in Weston County, south of Upton, WY. This area holds exceptional quality bulls ranging from 320-360 class and larger. 85% harvest with 100% shooting opportunity. This hunt is conducted every other year. This area is a very hard to draw. A few hunters are lucky enough to buy Commissioner’s tags for this area.
Areas 116 and 123 are accessed with 4 x 4 pickups. Hunting is done on foot along with the use of ATV’s and horses. Lodging in these areas is typically hunted from the Smith Lodge. The outfitter assists hunters with the licensing and preference point applications.
The outfitter had an exceptional elk-hunting season in 2013. 11 elk archery hunters harvested four bulls and of the 11 hunters, eight had shots for a 72% shooting opportunity. The 11 hunters also had six misses and two crippled animals. The largest bull taken was a 355 P&Y. 24 rifle elk hunters harvested 18 mature bulls resulting in a 75% success rate. 20 of the 24 hunters took shots and had three misses for a very respectable 83% shooting opportunity. The largest bull taken was a 365 B&C. Average on the bulls taken was around 310 B&C.
The outfitter hunts mountain lions in northeast Wyoming. With the abundant number of deer, elk, and turkey in the area, this part of Wyoming is a perfect habitat for mountain lions.
These five-day hunts are the classic lion hunts. They begin with locating fresh tracks or a fresh kill, then turning out the well-trained hounds to tree the lion. The outfitter uses pickups and side-by-side ATVs to access the area. However, when in the pursuit of the lion, a lot of hiking and climbing is often required.
Hunts are conducted in fall either by reserving five days in advance, or preferably on a will-call basis when they have fresh snow. Success rates extremely high with this exhilarating hunt. Licenses may be purchased over the counter for $360.00 for a non-resident.
The outfitter hunts the spring gobblers on over 60,000 acres of private leases in northeast Wyoming and also has access to hunting properties in South Dakota. This allows the outfitter to offer a two-bird hunt.
The season runs from the second Saturday in April through May 20. Hunts are three days for single-bird hunts and four days for two-bird hunts. Licenses in Wyoming can be purchased over the counter (no drawing). The South Dakota licenses are unlimited, but must be purchased over the Internet or by mail. We will assist you with the processes of obtaining tags. Over the past 19 years hunters have had excellent success on long-bearded birds. The big leases hold excellent numbers of Merriam’s. Combined with little hunting pressure, this makes for excellent calling opportunities on mature gobblers.
2013 was an extremely hard, cold, and snowy spring. The conditions made the birds very quiet and they never really responded to calling. Despite the poor weather conditions, the season was still fairly productive. 60 hunters harvested 50 birds in Wyoming for an 83% harvest percentage. Hunters were 55 for 60 on shooting opportunities. 30 hunters chose the two-bird hunt. Hunting the additional bird in South Dakota, they were 12 for 30. Although this spring saw tough weather conditions, there were a large number of jakes around. This should make the 2014 spring season very exciting!
Smith Lodge is a scenic, quiet location at the base of the beautiful Bear Lodge Mountains. The lodge is located on four miles west of Sundance, off Interstate 90. Just five minutes from Forest Service biking, hiking, skiing, and snowmobile trails. From the lodge you are only thirty minutes from Devils Tower and the Black Hills of South Dakota. The 4,500 square-foot lodge has seven bedrooms and five bathrooms. Expansive decks offer a picturesque view of beautiful Sundance Mountain. The lodge offers a large dining and recreation room to relax and enjoy your visit.
Smith Lodge is a non-smoking, quiet facility welcoming adult guests only. It is also a unique facility to accommodate group meetings and retreats.
2016 Rates (incomplete- only the muley/antelope combo is a 2016 price)
Trophy Rifle Hunts
5 Day Whitetail Deer Hunt $3,650.00
5 Day Whitetail/Antelope Combo Hunt $4,650.00
5 Day Mule Deer Hunt $4,650.00
5 Day Mule Deer/Antelope Combo Hunt $5,650.00
3 Day Antelope Hunt $2,250.00
5 Day Elk Hunt: Area 34 Bighorn Mtn. Camp $4,750.00
5 Day Elk Hunt: Area 36 Bighorn Mtn. Camp $4,750.00
5 Day Elk Hunt: Area 45 Bighorn Mtn. Camp $5,750.00
5 Day Elk Hunt: Area 116 – Lodge $6,550.00
5 Day Elk/Deer Combo Starting At $6,250.00
3 Day Cow Elk – Bighorn Mountain Camp $1,650.00
3 Day Cow Elk – Lodge $2,150.00
Trophy Bow Hunts
5 Day Whitetail Deer Hunt $2,950.00
5 Day Mule Deer Hunt $3,850.00
3 Day Antelope Hunt (4×1 Guided) $1,950.00
6 Day Elk Hunt Area 34 Bighorn Mtn. Camp $4,550.00
6 Day Elk Hunt Area 36 Bighorn Mtn. Camp $4,550.00
6 Day Elk Hunt Area 45 Bighorn Mtn. Camp $5,550.00
5 Day Elk Hunt Area 116 – Lodge $5,750.00
Spring Turkey Hunt
3 Day – 1 Merriam Gobbler $1,350.00
4 Day – 2 Merriam Gobbler $1,950.00
5 Day $4,250.00
All hunts include lodging and meals
All hunts are 2×1 guided (Unless otherwise stated above)
1×1 – Guided are an additional $750.00
We require a 50% deposit to secure all hunts- Balance due 30 days prior to hunt
Non Hunters – $150.00 per day
For antelope muley combos: Oct. 1-5, 8-12, or 15-19
PHONE: 1-307-637-5495 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org