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#6517797 - 10/29/16 08:52 PM Mule Deer Hunt Recommendations
txbobcat Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 06/18/05
Posts: 2468
Loc: TX
Researching mule deer hunts in the US or Canada for 2017. Looking all inclusive for a group of 4-6. Would like to keep the hunt price itself at $7500 or less per person.

Please let me know what areas to be looking and any outfitter recommendations if you have any.

Thanks in advance for any info.

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#6517808 - 10/29/16 09:02 PM Re: Mule Deer Hunt Recommendations [Re: txbobcat]
stxranchman Offline
Obie Juan Kenobi

Registered: 08/04/10
Posts: 52092
Alberta for Canada. Some good units to hunt in with some having really good trophy numbers-180+ gross scores. Some units are managed for trophy quality. You will pay a bit more though nowdays I think. Alberta, when I hunted there as an nonresident you had to use a guide. They outfitters only owned "x" amount of tags per unit and the tags per unit were limited. One of the units I hunted in only had 40 outfitter tags total. One guy had like 24-26 of them, another guy had 12-14 and the guy I hunted with had 2 for that unit and then 2 in another. I took a 180 and 193 gross in the two years I hunted there in 2006 and 2007. They took a 212 and 232 also during those two years along with some 180+ bucks. One buck was under 160 after the guy missed a 190 type buck. This was east of Calgary in one unit and one unit joined Sask. There is some good hunting in the southern part of the state also. I had a buddy who hunted with an outfitter for 4-5 yrs till the outfitter lost his huge acreage lease. He only took 8 hunters per year on just under 200,000 acres. They killed some really big deer but hunts started at $8800 for up to a 200" then IIRC $12,500 for anything over 200". My buddy bought 2 spots for the time he hunted there. They took 190+ all but one time when the hunter took a 180+. Several over 200" were taken. Big mule deer are very sought after and in Alberta you do not have to draw a tag, just use an outfitter.
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#6517821 - 10/29/16 09:10 PM Re: Mule Deer Hunt Recommendations [Re: txbobcat]
txbobcat Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 06/18/05
Posts: 2468
Loc: TX
Yes sir I think I've looked at 20+ outfitter sites that operate in Alberta....starting to get cross eyed!

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#6517837 - 10/29/16 09:27 PM Re: Mule Deer Hunt Recommendations [Re: txbobcat]
stxranchman Offline
Obie Juan Kenobi

Registered: 08/04/10
Posts: 52092
One word of caution- get every reference you can and call them all! I promise you there are some shady ones out there. Ask the outfitter how many tags they own? Ask him if he hunts 2 on 1 or 1 on 1. Ask how many acres he has access to. Ask how many hunters in camp or per week they take? The guy I hunted with average 190 on his 4 mule deer per year over a 15 year period. The landowners up there can not lease or except payment for the right to hunt their land. They either say yes or no. Also you can hunt the county roads and ranch roads. They may have a "road allowance" onto a oil/gas wells site you can hunt(O&G minerals are owned by the province). Those road allowances are public property and can be hunted. As long as you shoot in the ROW and have one foot on the ground you are legal IIRC. If the outfitter has the LO around the roads permission you can shoot over a fence. They have a booklet for township IIRC with all landowners. So if you see a big Mule Deer the outfitter will pull the booklet get the LO name and local phone book and start calling. We found a huge WT buck with 3 other really nice bucks( after I had killed a MD the second year) and made the call to the LO. He denied the access to hunt. We stopped several times to visit with LO at their gate and got permission to check out their land. First year opening morning we hunted a 200"-30" wide buck and had to wait to call the LO to gain permission that opening morning. He said OK but we never found the buck but did see a 180+ type buck. Lot of locals and outfitters just trespass and hunt. The rut is closer to Thanksgiving but the first week the bucks are not pressured. So ask specific questions. I think that if a local gets caught poaching the fine is only $100-150 and you get to keep the buck. They had that happen on the place my buddy hunted two years ago. The outfitter had 2 bucks in the 220" range located and seen for two weeks. Then two days before the season they disappeared. It has been 9 yrs since I went and things have changed some I know. Where we hunted it was more open rolling prairie grassland with coulee's and farm/hayland. Not a lot of thick cover but pockets of it along the river. Up in northern Alberta you can get thicker timber/bush to hunt with farmland. Where I hunted we could only hunt Thursday thru Saturday each week. Now I think they hunt 6 days IIRC per week. They also added a late Oct 2 week ML season IRRC.
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#6517841 - 10/29/16 09:33 PM Re: Mule Deer Hunt Recommendations [Re: txbobcat]
Jkd106 Online   content
Tracker

Registered: 08/20/13
Posts: 904
Loc: Fannin and Hall
New Mexico near the Arizona line produces some good deer. I'm no help on outfitters though.
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#6517850 - 10/29/16 09:50 PM Re: Mule Deer Hunt Recommendations [Re: txbobcat]
stxranchman Offline
Obie Juan Kenobi

Registered: 08/04/10
Posts: 52092
Also ask the outfitter how early he starts to scout for the season. The outfitter I hunted with had a job that allowed him to access many ranches and scout while working. He started scouting in July with his spotting scope while working and then on his days off. He knew were the deer were when opening morning came around. I killed my buck within two hours of hunting. We checked 3 other places out for big deer he had seen. We saw a 200" type wide buck at dark driving in from Calgary as he fed out of a coulee into an alfalfa field at dark with a herd of deer. He found the LO, made the call and we had permission to hunt the next morning. We started their at daylight but did not see a deer but it was on a major highway and a lot of hunter traffic.
Here are 4 bucks. The first two pics are a 211" buck taken the first year.


This buck was taken second year 180"

This buck was taken first year 193"

This buck was taken second year 232"

These next 2 bucks were taken in 2012 and 2015. Don't remember both exact score but IIRC over 190 and one IIRC was just over 200".

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