Sitka Mountain Gear
Elk hunt around Packwood area 2009
Contributors to this thread:
mnjen 28-Jan-09
Dreaming Big 29-Jan-09
Snapshot 29-Jan-09
Yendor 29-Jan-09
Snapshot 29-Jan-09
mnjen 29-Jan-09
Dreaming Big 30-Jan-09
mnjen 30-Jan-09
stiknstringbow 01-Feb-09
Eagle eye 04-Feb-09
From: mnjen
I was invited to hunt the Packwood area this fall. What can you tell me about elk hunting around there?

Any information you can offer would be much appreciated.

Size of herd.

Access to land.

Accommodations in town, ie motels etc.

Heard it was 3pt or more. Dnr was confused whether a cow can be harvested also. In other words is the out of state license good for either bull or cow.

Thanks in advance!!!!

From: Dreaming Big
No you can not harvest a cow as of 2008 regs; it is 3 point or better for all (resident and non-resident).

From: Snapshot
Maps, maps, maps; start map-hunting now. The Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife web site, on the 'hunting' page, has a "Go Hunt" interactive mapping feature that will be VERY useful to you. Check it out!

If you don't like map-hunting online, then first get a national forest map so you can see where your access is and to familiarize yourself with the general lay of the land, and then eventually get USGS maps to identify where the elk should be. If I were you I'd invest in all the 7-1/2 minute series maps it takes to cover every nook and cranny of the unit. You'll probably spend about $70 on them (because I'm guessing it'll take ten or twelve of them) but they are priceless both for map-hunting and while in the woods.

The WDFW web site will have harvest stats for the Packwood GMU and you should be able to find information on the herd size there, too.

Oh, also go find a flight of a couple of hundred stairs and run those babies every single day between now and then. Oh, and some daily squats will pay dividends, too.

Motels and restaurants in Packwood. A restaurant and grocery in Randle.

From: Yendor
I hunted that area many years ago, and it used to be a real nice area. I hunted just south of Packwood in clear cuts. Saw lots of elk and deer. Then some tribal members slaughtered many animals there and in the Greenwater area, taking only portions of the animals. A couple years ago they slaughtered several animals along the Cowitz river just outside of Packwood. So the area has taken a huge hit, and the numbers are way down. It is also very very brushy. Clear-cuts where I hunted cannot even be walked now. There are some great meadows in the Goat Rocks Wilderness area around Heart Lake that can hold some nice elk. But it is 3 point or better only. Unless of course you're Native American.

From: Snapshot
A friend of mine has property on the Cowlitz downriver from Packwood. A neighbor informed him that recently someone poached two 6x6 bulls off my friend's place from a boat, tied up, took what they wanted and vanished on the river.

From: mnjen
I have a friend of a friend that used to live in Packwood and owns some land in the area. 3 bowhunters each harvested a nice bull last year.

He makes it sound like there are lots of elk. Your comments are interesting.

From: Dreaming Big
It is public land hunting in Washington (one of the worst in the west) so your experience can vary greatly. There are still elk in the unit but you have to know where to find them as it is quite a large area. Sounds like you know people who have some good information. Personally I might try a state that is closer to you. i.e. Montana, Colorado, or Idaho.

From: mnjen
Yea. I have hunted Idaho and Colorado for elk. Had some success. The problem I have is the guys that I know that elk hunt either don't want to go anymore or they are out of shape and 10 years older than I am and just don't hunt with the same enthusiasm that I do. They would rather sit in camp with a glass in their hand if you know what I mean and that is okay.

I have struggled to find bowhunters my own age that can hunt with the same resolve that I do. Not that I am any great hunter or anything but I do okay with 75 harvests of game including elk, moose, bear, whitetail, turkey and wild boar all with bow.

I am getting older but I try and stay in shape to tackle those mountains. It gets harder every year. I figure I have 10 years left before I have to give it up.

Anyway thanks for the help. I haven't decided yet. I am still considering Colorado.

They are having a problem with them in downtown Packwood, They might not be in the hills, but if your friend has a place near town............

From: Eagle eye
Theres elk in evey nook and cranny between Randle and Packwood,but be fore worned that they all have names as thereall the land owners PETS.

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