The Best Places to Hunt Mule Deer
Choosing where to hunt can be daunting, but here are the best places to hunt mule deer in our opinion.
Choosing where to hunt mule deer is a tough process. Muleys are one of the most in demand critters in the hunting world. It’s a supply and demand thing, especially if you are looking at booking a mule deer hunt for 170+ inch muley’s. If you’re serious about taking a trophy mule deer buck, you need to hunt where they live. Here are the places that, in our opinion offer you the best chance at that monster muley.
Colorado is the clear-cut leader for producing trophy mule deer bucks. It’s the first state we recommend to our hunters if they want a true giant. The Colorado landowner tags that are available through outfitters often run from $1,500-$4,000 just for the tag. There are also some Colorado hunting units that are almost totally privately held and with just a preference point or two you can draw a tag and go hunting on some good ground with chances at bucks in the 180″+ category for $6-$7,000 fully guided.
You can always tell a Sonora buck…they just have a look.
The mule deer hunting in Sonora, Mexico is the best in the world IF you hunt with the right outfitter. DO NOT book with an outfitter without consulting us first. Mexico can be a disaster or it can be the best hunt of your life.
Alberta holds some truly jaw-dropping mule deer, but the only problem with a muley hunt in Alberta is you need to be prepared to book at least a year, more likely two in advance to hunt there. It’s expensive and still going up, but it is a place where you have a legitimate chance at a 200″ inch deer. Another neat thing about Alberta is that you can combo your hunt with a trophy whitetail.
The prices are lower on average in Idaho when compared to other states. A guy can come out with a really nice deer on remote public ground, or through outfitter acquisitioned tags in a premier unit. Booking a mule deer hunt in Idaho should average $5-$7k, and trophy quality will probably be a solid 160-170 with a few gaggers here and there.
Info coming soon…
Want to Thank Outdoors International for hooking me up on this Utah muley hunt. It was EPIC. We saw 30 to 40 Bucks a day.
You can’t forget about Utah and their CWMU program. Your cost to hunt in Utah is generally going to be $6-$8k. Drawing a tag or taking advantage of their CWMU program gives the opportunity at a monster muley. You’ll likely need to be pretty fit, but Utah can be a really fun place to hunt.
Luckily there are still a few places where you can escape the crowds and pit yourself and your hunting skills against nature as opposed to other hunters. One of those places is Wyoming. If you’re not applying for mule deer in Wyoming, you’re missing out…but we have some options for you with little or no points. Our backcountry outfitter has solid success year over year on good bucks at an affordable price. If you want a more plush experience, we have a beautiful Wyoming lodge hunt.
Arizona has some excellent hunts, even good over-the-counter archery options. The Arizona Strip on the Kaibab Plateau (Units 12, 13A and 13B) immediately comes to mind. Gigantic bucks come out of this area every season, but it’s very hard to pull a tag. If you’re lucky enough to draw, don’t take that tag for granted and contact us quickly to book. We know from experience that “The Strip” can be difficult to hunt due to very low deer density, so hiring an outfitter is highly advised.
As we go south, there are some good archery hunts in Arizona on a over-the-counter tags that can be affordable on public ground. You’ll need to be OK with a buck in the 160-170’s but the hunts can be affordable in the $4-$5k range. There are also some private ground opportunities down there but the cost will go up into the $6-$7k range, but so will the trophy quality where bucks in the 180’s get taken every year.
New Mexico can also be another really good place for high quality bucks but the landowner tags drive the hunt costs up in the $7-$12k area. I like these hunts and for the most part don’t require high physical fitness.
Don’t’ forget West Texas
The Davis Mountains of West Texas can produce some very good muley bucks. Mule deer hunts in Texas run in the $8-$10k range and generally the bucks will average, especially since the drought, in the 170’s. Nice part about hunting there is usually they don’t require a lot of physical condition and it’s just a neat hunt for a desert muley.
I hope this helps. We can get you hunting in all these areas mentioned, so if booking a mule deer hunt is on your bucket list, give us a call.