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Idaho Elk, Mule Deer and Black Bear Blog

Here you will find information about our Idaho Elk, Mule Deer and Black Bear hunts. We will also blog about our area, as special offers, issues that affect us or are important to us.

Idaho Controlled-Hunt Application Period for Elk, Deer, Antelope, and Fall Bear Opens May 1st

OMule Deer Buck and DoeThe tag application period for Idaho controlled-hunt elk, deer, pronghorn, and fall bear tags opens May 1 and runs to June 5. Idaho does not use a bonus/preference point system for controlled hunts. As a result, hunters have the same odds of drawing a tag the first year they apply as they do any other year.

To apply, residents and nonresidents must have a general hunting license, and pay an application fee of $6.25 for residents and $14.75 for nonresidents—per species. Unlike many other states, the cost of the tag is not paid for upfront in Idaho, instead they are purchased after the applicant has drawn. Successful applicants are notified by July 10, and tags must be purchased by August 1. Any tags that are not purchased by August 1 will be forfeited to a second application period, which runs from August 5 to August 15. Hunters who have already applied for a moose, bighorn sheep or mountain goat controlled hunt this year may not apply for any other controlled hunt (during the same year).

Castle Creek Outfitters operates in Unit 28, where there is an excellent, late-season, controlled-hunt for mule deer, which runs from October 10, all the way through the rut, to November 30 (Hunt 1018). This hunt has produced some outstanding bucks in the past. There are only 5 tags available however, and competition is fierce. (In controlled hunts with 10 or fewer tags, not more than one nonresident tag is issued). Castle Creek Outfitters also receives 1 “outfitter allocation tag” for this hunt, which is in high demand. There are no controlled-hunt, elk tags or bear tags for Unit 28, as they are all sold over the counter. Nonresident deer and elk tags are also valid to take black bear, mountain lion, or gray wolf instead of a deer or elk, if a general season is open for that species.

For detailed information and statistics on Idaho controlled hunts click on this link: https://idfg.idaho.gov/rules/big-game

The Wyoming deer and pronghorn tag application period closes June 1 and results come out June 18. The state of Wyoming allows you to purchase preference points only for deer, pronghorn, elk, moose and sheep from July 1 to November 2.

Good hunting,

Joe Cavanaugh

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