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Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? #8329387 07/23/21 04:30 PM
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Howdy! I'm a long time lurker and enjoy the threads, but rarely comment. However, I'd like to tap into the knowledge of this group. My son and I got invited to go to Colorado with some of his buds and their dads on a hunt this fall. We didn't draw any elk tags but did draw mule deer tags. I'm a longtime Texas whitetail hunter with an average shot of +/-150 yards. However, I'm curious as to what anybody has to say about average shooting distance in Colorado for mule deer, in the southern area near Pagosa Springs. We are planning on taking our 30.06 rifles and are thinking that we ought to sight them in at 200 yards. Any comments?
Thanks!

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8329419 07/23/21 04:59 PM
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I hunt same area, your distance is fine. What I would do is shoot your rifle to 300 yards so you know actual drop.
It's going to change some with altitude, but you will be a lot more comfortable with any shot you take.

What season are you going? Later season dates put third and fourth into rut.

Don't forget your Hunter ed card and orange.

Two ways to hunt -walk it out and walk it out and glass. Try to make the glass part a priority or majority effort. Bipod or tripod works well. Bog pog sticks and bino adaptor is my favorite way to roll.

Good luck




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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8329438 07/23/21 05:12 PM
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I have shot them as close as 50 ft. and as far as 250 yds.

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: don k] #8329531 07/23/21 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by don k
I have shot them as close as 50 ft. and as far as 250 yds.



I've seen two giant Mule Deer in Colorado....one at 30 yards and one at 294 yards.....the latter in which I watched for an hour, but alas had no tag.


I would practice shooting and be prepared for a shot up to 400 yards, but realistically the distance is going to be closer strictly due to terrain and line of sight.


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8329608 07/23/21 08:00 PM
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Like posted above your rifle is good to go if you just shoot at longer distances to see where it hits. I would not suggest changing the zero point at this time since it could be a mistake if you are in rush to make a shot. You may fall back on your old zero sight in range causing a misplaced or missed shot. Just because a deer is 400 yards away does not mean you can't stalk in closer in the right terrain. That is the fun part after you find one.


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: stxranchman] #8329884 07/24/21 01:08 AM
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Everything said so far has been pretty much spot on. Use the same ammo you use for whitetail and your good up to 250 yards dead on. If it pushes 300 or a tad more, then hold for the top of the shoulder. As stated above, anything more than that, you should be able to close the distance for a comfortable shot. Good glass is must and a shooting stick or bi pod has saved more hunts than most are wiling to admit ! Good luck and by all means, post the results on here! Jealous hunters like me want to ogle at the pics!

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8329994 07/24/21 04:21 AM
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I have only hunted Colorado once. I saw several deer, but none presented a shot opportunity that was in my comfort zone. One of the guys in our party took at nice mule deer buck, at about 200 yards. Some sort of shooting rest is a must, as are quality binoculars. I suggest knowing how far you can shoot, and sticking to it. I have shot targets at 200 yards, and taken a deer at 237 yards. For me, around 250 yards is my limit. I have my rifle sighted in for 2" high, at 100 yards. Good luck. You will see many TX hunters.

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8330419 07/24/21 09:17 PM
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I have hunted that area. Both conditions exist. Lots of timber, and fairly close shots. As well as meadows, and likes of sight through timber that can get out to 500 yards, though that is the minority.

Go ahead and zero it for 200 yards, if it's a duplex reticle.

That will put it also zeroed at 50 yards, and around 1 3/4" high at 100 yards.

Go shoot it out to 300 yards after that. From center of duplex scope, going down you've got the fine line, then the heavy post. Figure out your hold for 300 yards. Is it halfway down, 3/4 down, or all the way to the heavy post?

Then you're covered from 50 yards to 300 yards.


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8330579 07/25/21 12:13 AM
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I grew up in CO hunting mulies. I have shot them as close as 25 feet and as far as 400 yards but if I had to guess the average distance for a shot it would probably be 150 yards give or take. The one at 25 feet just stepped out from behind a bush and the longer shots always happened when I was shooting across a canyon. All my mulies fell to a 7mm Mag. Sight in for 200 and then shoot it at 50 yards, 100 yards and 300 yards and go get your buck.


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8330627 07/25/21 01:21 AM
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Fireman and Qmc summed it up.

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8330846 07/25/21 02:43 PM
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Agree with QMC, sight in at 200 yards.

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8331762 07/26/21 03:40 PM
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I didnt read all this closely but most seems good advise to me. As a rule of thumb for most deer rifles a 200 yard zero should be pretty good. Its important to know what it does at ranges closer than that as well as farther. My 3006 is zeroed at about 215 and its about 2.25 high at 100. Once I get beyond about 250(which I rarely will attempt) I have to start holding up a little and at 300 Im just about out of my comfort zone even if I knew the exact hold. Others eyes and shooting ability may vary.


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8331802 07/26/21 04:13 PM
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I would make sure to have a range finder as well. Knowing where your rifle shoots at any given distance does little good if you dont know the range to your target.


It's hell eatin em live
Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: redchevy] #8331840 07/26/21 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by redchevy
I would make sure to have a range finder as well. Knowing where your rifle shoots at any given distance does little good if you dont know the range to your target.


A rangefinder is a must when hunting. They are too affordable not to have one


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: txtrophy85] #8331892 07/26/21 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by redchevy
I would make sure to have a range finder as well. Knowing where your rifle shoots at any given distance does little good if you dont know the range to your target.


A rangefinder is a must when hunting. They are too affordable not to have one

That seems like a "given", but some may not know, so always good to reiterate the basics. Somes may need to take a back up......


Keep your gratitude higher than your expectations. RWH
Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: freerange] #8332030 07/26/21 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by freerange
Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by redchevy
I would make sure to have a range finder as well. Knowing where your rifle shoots at any given distance does little good if you dont know the range to your target.


A rangefinder is a must when hunting. They are too affordable not to have one

That seems like a "given", but some may not know, so always good to reiterate the basics. Somes may need to take a back up......


I know a lot of guys who for whatever reason don’t use one. Over a feeder or oat field where you can know the given range it’s one thing, but in the unknowns it can be the difference between walking out of the woods with a punched tag or going home empty handed.

A rangefinder is an invaluable tool


For it is not the quarry that we truly seek, but the adventure.
Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: txtrophy85] #8332059 07/26/21 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by freerange
Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by redchevy
I would make sure to have a range finder as well. Knowing where your rifle shoots at any given distance does little good if you dont know the range to your target.


A rangefinder is a must when hunting. They are too affordable not to have one

That seems like a "given", but some may not know, so always good to reiterate the basics. Somes may need to take a back up......


I know a lot of guys who for whatever reason don’t use one. Over a feeder or oat field where you can know the given range it’s one thing, but in the unknowns it can be the difference between walking out of the woods with a punched tag or going home empty handed.

A rangefinder is an invaluable tool



Rangefinders are reason I have no use for 8x bino. 7x is easily attainable in a range finder. In fact for archery elk I don’t even carry bino’s anymore


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: BOBO the Clown] #8332098 07/26/21 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Originally Posted by txtrophy85
Originally Posted by freerange
Originally Posted by txtrophy85

A rangefinder is a must when hunting. They are too affordable not to have one

That seems like a "given", but some may not know, so always good to reiterate the basics. Somes may need to take a back up......


I know a lot of guys who for whatever reason don’t use one. Over a feeder or oat field where you can know the given range it’s one thing, but in the unknowns it can be the difference between walking out of the woods with a punched tag or going home empty handed.

A rangefinder is an invaluable tool



Rangefinders are reason I have no use for 8x bino. 7x is easily attainable in a range finder. In fact for archery elk I don’t even carry bino’s anymore

Well .....grin it seems you own a rangefinder and don't even take it on archery elk hunts either. You are SOL then without binos or a rangefinder. roflmao


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8332105 07/26/21 08:46 PM
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Hell, BOBO doesn't even have a tag for the game he is seeing half the time, no need for a rangefinder 99% of his hunt grin

Last edited by Western; 07/26/21 08:47 PM.

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Dennis

Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: AeroAggie] #8332107 07/26/21 08:48 PM
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But he is kind of a big deal, so there’s that…


Keep your gratitude higher than your expectations. RWH
Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: Western] #8332141 07/26/21 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Western
Hell, BOBO doesn't even have a tag for the game he is seeing half the time, no need for a rangefinder 99% of his hunt grin



I really need new friends. Didn’t range one bull, and misplaced my rangefinder on another hunting trip and I’ll never hear the end of it..

I’m loaded with tags this years elk/bear hunt, 3 for sure maybe four mule deer hunts.


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: BOBO the Clown] #8332149 07/26/21 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Originally Posted by Western
Hell, BOBO doesn't even have a tag for the game he is seeing half the time, no need for a rangefinder 99% of his hunt grin



I really need new friends. Didn’t range one bull, and misplaced my rangefinder on another hunting trip and I’ll never hear the end of it..

I’m loaded with tags this years elk/bear hunt, 3 for sure maybe four mule deer hunts.

I know where this a rangefinder you lost.......just saying.


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: freerange] #8332169 07/26/21 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by freerange
But he is kind of a big deal, so there’s that…


I am pretty damn good looking.

Op if you want some advice on the unit PM


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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: stxranchman] #8332172 07/26/21 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by stxranchman
Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Originally Posted by Western
Hell, BOBO doesn't even have a tag for the game he is seeing half the time, no need for a rangefinder 99% of his hunt grin



I really need new friends. Didn’t range one bull, and misplaced my rangefinder on another hunting trip and I’ll never hear the end of it..

I’m loaded with tags this years elk/bear hunt, 3 for sure maybe four mule deer hunts.

I know where this a rangefinder you lost.......just saying.


It’s not lost, i just decided to keep it at the lease grin


Donate to TX Youth hunting program.... better to donate then to waste it in taxes

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Re: Colorado Mule Deer - Shooting Distances? [Re: BOBO the Clown] #8332219 07/26/21 09:59 PM
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Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Originally Posted by stxranchman
Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Originally Posted by Western
Hell, BOBO doesn't even have a tag for the game he is seeing half the time, no need for a rangefinder 99% of his hunt grin



I really need new friends. Didn’t range one bull, and misplaced my rangefinder on another hunting trip and I’ll never hear the end of it..

I’m loaded with tags this years elk/bear hunt, 3 for sure maybe four mule deer hunts.

I know where this a rangefinder you lost.......just saying.


It’s not lost, i just decided to keep it at the lease grin

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