Contributors to this thread:
Bailed on the Point Creep
So I wasn't going to catch up to premier elk units and even with averaging my 16 points with my two elk partners contribution to points, we wouldn't catch up to the good mid tier units as NR's. It would be different if we were residents, but alas and a lack, we can't have our cake and eat it too.
So I went solo this year and burned all of my 16 points on Sled Springs and will let others vie for Oregon's limited elk tags. This may be my last elk hunt in OR, but have had by fun in Mt. Emily, cascades and Alsea units, oh and not to forget W.Beatty's for antelope - what a nice time that was. Misadventures sometimes make the best memories. And Metolious and Whitehorse for deer.
So as usual I am doing my GE scouting, map acquisition, and phone calls to get the strategy figured out. I am hopeful since I took 4 weeks off of work and that will have to do in place of boots on the ground scouting. If you are in Sled Springs and see a Big Brown Burb stop by for a beer. Cheers, Ed
Good luck. I would have probably put in for a point saver or one of the big 3 with that many points and if you didn't draw looked at Catherine Creek or the Starkey. Good luck. I struck out as a resident for everything this year except Antelope.
Being that I don't get to hunt NE Oregon much, except when we get a special tag I only know a bit about Sled Springs. I also have a connection who has some intel on that unit. I did the math and it is very unlikely that I would have ever gotten a Wenaha, Mt Emily or Wallowa tag in my life time (62). With only 5% of the tags for NRs I wasnt willing to wait. I hunted Mt Emily 17 years ago, and then again 4 years ago to help my brother on his tag, and who has failing health. I called in a bull that would have made him happy, but he got a bit flustered and undershot him. That was a fun hunt except for the motorcyclists riding the rim trail back and forth... right outside our camp and were we dropped into the canyon.
If I approach Sled like I normally approach a unit that I haven't hunted, I should have a good time and have some chances. I don't always get a bull but I try to have fun. I don't mind burning my points in OR and putting my resources in other states that are more friendly, because I have a stack in AZ and NV and also have some units in other states that I can meat hunt until drawn in AZ or NV. Also, I want to hunt more mule deer and elk season overlaps with the places I want to deer hunt. Just saying I am not regretting using up my 16 points. Cheers, Ed
You made the correct choice.
The TMA is no longer open until 3 days before archery, Hancock closes their roads and no longer allows camping at fire danger level 2, which will be in July. They close their lands to all access at level 3. There will be no camping on their land during archery season unless we get freak rain. You will need to camp on forest or in town at the Kiwanis park. If you hunt the east side, camping on forest works fine. If hunting the TMA, camping in town is the way to go, and a 40 ish minute drive. Elk are not everywhere but are easily found. Get a good full suspension bike, two pair of upper level bike shorts, and start riding if hunting the tma. We road 20 miles on our morning hunts last year. When I had the tag a few years back I only needed to ride a few miles. It all depends on where they are.
Thanks for the encouragement and the pointers about where to camp. I have heard about the forest closures but not the specifics. Also, I have an older full suspension and a non-suspension bike and was reading up on the E-bikes on the elk board. I may decide to get an E-bike if I really think I'll cover 20 miles in a morning. Again, thanks for the info.
You'll get a ticked if you're in the TMA on an e-bike.
Good to know, thanks for the info. I plan on calling the NF office tomorrow and get the maps and find out what their rules are too.
Only a small sliver of Forest land is within the TMA, the rest is open to vehicle travel. The TMA is private property, with the above exception, and they make their own rules along with ODFW.
Thanks for the pointers. I'm sure I'll learn more as the season approaches.