Wyoming: 2023 Hunting Application Details

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Home to bountiful public land, fewer than than 600,000 residents, and productive hunting for many sought-after Western big game species, Wyoming is on most hunters’ bucket lists. Whether you’re after mule deer, elk, moose, Bighorn sheep, mountain goat, or antelope, Wyoming is a state worth building points in as a hunter. In Wyoming’s draw, preference point drawing accounts for 75 percent of available licenses in each hunt area. The remaining 25 percent go to a random draw, so it’s worth applying even if you haven’t been building points for years.

Application deadlines for non-resident elk close early on January 31, 2023, and the remaining tags for resident elk as well as other big game species are drawn in April and May (more detailed information below). Wyoming only accepts online applications, you may apply here.

New This Year in Wyoming

Wyoming is facing a number of significant changes for 2023 and beyond. A big cost increase for nonresident tags in the special drawing for elk, deer and antelope is likely in 2024. The recommendation is going to the state legislature for approval and if it passes, Special tags fees will increase:

– Current Elk Special Tag Fee: $1,283- Proposed (for 2024 and beyond): $1,950

– Current Deer/Antelope Special Tag Fee: $662/Deer $614/Antelope – Proposed (for 2024 and beyond): $1,200

It is believed that these price increases will likely pass, and as such may have an impact on nonresident application trends in 2023 (hunters may be more likely to burn accumulated preference points this year to avoid the increase).

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You can find more discussion on the topic in this YouTube video.

Huntin’ Fool’s Wyoming page is an excellent, updated resource for ongoing Wyoming draw changes.

Wyoming Draw Process Basics

Application Dates and Deadlines: Huntin’ Fool lines out Wyoming dates and deadlines.

Free for onX Elite members, Hunt Reminder’s Wyoming page is also an excellent resource for timely application season reminders.

Application and Tag Costs (Resident and Non-Resident)

Hunting license and species costs for tags usually include:

  • Application Fee
  • Hunting License Fee to apply (usually need a qualifying license before you can apply)
  • Species Fee (This is what you pay for the animal you want to hunt. Some you pay upfront at application, some you pay for once you get the tag.)
  • Points-Only fee (fees for people just buying points and not actually applying for a hunt)

Useful Links:

  • Access the onX Complete Package for Western Application Research
  • Look Up Your Wyoming Preference Points Here
  • Log Into Toprut Today to Start Your 2023 Application Season
  • View Wyoming Hunting Regulations Here
  • Apply Here for Your Wyoming Hunting Tags

Toprut’s Top State Application Info

Proposed Nonresident Tag Increases for 2024

We’re going to drive this point home twice, since it’s the biggest change Wyoming hunters will face for the 2023 season. As noted above, Wyoming is eyeing a significant cost increase for nonresident tags in the Special drawing for elk, deer and antelope in 2024. If the recommendation passes the state legislature, Special tags fees will increase as following:

– Current Elk Special Tag Fee: $1,283- Proposed (for 2024 and beyond): $1,950

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– Current Deer/Antelope Special Tag Fee: $662/Deer $614/Antelope – Proposed (for 2024 and beyond): $1,200

Wyoming Wildlife Taskforce Changes

During 2022, The Wyoming Wildlife Taskforce has made a number of significant recommendations and changes for 2023 and beyond; read them here. A couple of the recommendations are particularly important to those hunters who have accumulated preference points for sheep and moose:

Preference Points Transition to Bonus Points

90/10 license allocation for Big 5 species

Changes to Nonresident General Elk Tags

A major shift in how Wyoming distributes nonresident “general” elk permits is likely in 2024 and beyond; read more here.

The Wyoming general elk tag is popular among nonresidents and is generally a great hunt experience (in relation to the number of preference points required to draw the tag). An average of more than 4,200 have been issued annually since 2019; currently a general elk tag is valid in more than 50 GMUs.

The Complete Service for Your Western Application Needs

To maximize your time spent researching and applying—and to help you build your strategy to successfully draw in 2023 and beyond—we’re providing onX Hunt Elite Members with FREE services in one comprehensive package:

Toprut: In-Depth Draw Odds and Application Tools

Huntin’ Fool: Boots-on-the-Ground Research and Insight

HuntReminder: Worry-Free Text and Email Reminder Service

onX Hunt: Map Your Hunt With Application Research Layers

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>