Available Colorado Pronghorn Antelope Hunts – Search HF Aventures
Colorado is not the first state you think of when hunting antelope comes to mind. Where it may not have the antelope population of its neighbor to the north or the trophy quality of bucks in the states south of it, Colorado has some good antelope hunting options. Whether you are a hunter who has been building points for years or you are just thinking of starting to apply, there are many units to choose from, especially if you’re handy with multiple weapons. The eastern side of the state is definitely fairing a little better than the western side as of lately with some quality bucks being harvested the last few years. This is mostly due to the terrain on the eastern side being more suitable habitat with more moderate winters. This is not to say that Western Colorado doesn’t have a decent population, but most of those areas are more susceptible to heavy winter snowfall that can cause higher winter mortality and populations to fluctuate more. The upside of Western Colorado is that the amount of public land often outweighs private land and gives hunters more room to roam without having to hire a guide or pay a trespass fee.
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If a trophy antelope is what you are seeking, Colorado is probably not the place for you. Trophy quality here is more similar to Utah than Wyoming, Arizona, and New Mexico with mostly 70-75″ bucks being the top end; however, the hunting is very good and most rifle hunts average close to 100% harvest. Antelope in this state should definitely be looked at as more of an opportunity species that only costs $9.17 to build points if you are already applying for other species. Looking through the tables, you will notice that the amount of points required for a rifle tag are considerably higher than an archery or muzzleloader tag. This is the biggest advantage of being able to put the gun down and pick up an open sight muzzleloader and go hunting every four to five years in units that otherwise would have taken 12+ years to draw. Archery hunters have opportunities to draw antelope tags every other year in some units if you love the challenge of hunting antelope with a stick and string.
Colorado Antelope Draw
Traditionally, antelope units 2/201 have been the go-to area for hunters with the most points, but with the population decline in these units over the last decade, they are struggling to produce many quality bucks. Antelope numbers in the northwest portion of the state are definitely down from what they once were, but they seem to have stabilized and will hopefully start to rebound.Units 6, 11, and 161 have been producing some of the best bucks in the northern part of the state, and populations are holding steady if not slightly increasing. Winters have been very mild the last four to five years and the antelope have benefitted from it. Units 3/301 continue to improve their population and have one of the highest buck to doe ratios in the state. This is an area to look at if you are one of the mid-range point holders looking for a good antelope hunt. Overflow from Wyoming’s southern border can help unit 3, and the occasional 80″ buck is harvested here. Private land can limit some access in this area, but there is plenty of public land to hunt and find a quality buck. Although population isn’t as high in units in the southwest portion, quality seems to be holding its own. Permits can be tough to draw as there are not many tags given out, but mid to upper 70s class bucks are very obtainable in units 79, 80, and 81.
The Eastern Plains are outperforming Western Colorado in both population and quality, and we are seeing more and more trophy class animals coming from this part of the state. Units 87 and 88 have the best public access by way of the Pawnee National Grasslands, which encompass close to 200,000 acres of land. These are not contiguous acres of land, so hunters will need to pay attention to private land boundaries. Archery and muzzleloader hunters will have the best hunts on public land as antelope have not been run around onto private land yet. Some 75″+ bucks have been harvested off this range, and even a few 80″ bucks have been harvested in and around private land. Units 95 and 105 have good trophy potential, but most of these units are private land and require an outfitter or trespass fee to gain access. Other units worth noting on this side of the state are found in the southeast corner, such as 136, 137, 138, 143, and 144. These units have a good population but not quite the trophy potential that is found in the northern part of the state with mostly 65-70″ bucks. There is a good amount of public land by way of the Comanche National Grasslands that will aid the public land hunter.
Like we mentioned before, with the $9 application fee and hunts only requiring a few points to draw on some occasions, everyone already applying for other species in Colorado should be building points for antelope as well to help round out their western application strategy.
Self Guided DIY Colorado Antelope Hunts
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Private Land, Semi-Guided, and Guided Antelope Hunts in Colorado
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Colorado Antelope Application Deadline
The Colorado big game application deadline is April 4, 2023 at 8 p.m. MDT.
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2023 Colorado Antelope Non-Resident Hunting Fees 2023-24 Colorado Non-Resident Fees Annual Small Game Hunt License (required to apply) $93.78 Youth Annual Small Game Hunt License (under age 18, required to apply) $1.40 Habitat Stamp (required for adults to apply) $11.50 Draw Application (per species) $10 Youth Point Fee (all species) $NONE Post Draw Fees (if successful) Antelope $456.14 Youth Big Game (Elk, Deer, or Antelope) $116.50 CO Antelope Hunting Articles from Huntin’ Fool Magazine
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