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Draw probabilities
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Aspen Ghost 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Lost Arra 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
HDE 12-Feb-22
Old School 12-Feb-22
Beendare 12-Feb-22
DonVathome 12-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 12-Feb-22
DonVathome 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
DanaC 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Aubs8 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
Cheesehead Mike 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
Old School 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
bigeasygator 12-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
JohnMC 12-Feb-22
Tilzbow 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
Beendare 12-Feb-22
Tilzbow 12-Feb-22
Medicinemann 12-Feb-22
[email protected] 12-Feb-22
cnelk 12-Feb-22
Lost Arra 13-Feb-22
Jaquomo 13-Feb-22
DonVathome 13-Feb-22
bigeasygator 13-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 13-Feb-22
DonVathome 16-Feb-22
Inshart 16-Feb-22
Jaquomo 16-Feb-22
tkjwonta 16-Feb-22
HDE 16-Feb-22
Darrell 16-Feb-22
wytex 17-Feb-22
TD 17-Feb-22
bigeasygator 17-Feb-22
jordanathome 18-Feb-22
Grey Ghost 18-Feb-22
bigeasygator 18-Feb-22
Goelk 19-Feb-22
HDE 19-Feb-22
From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
For anyone with a background using probabilities, I would like to solicit your input. Let's say that you are trying to calculate the odds of drawing a tag in two different units. In the first unit, the odds of drawing a tag are 1/119. In the second unit, the odds of drawing the tag are 3/182. Many people think that you get to divide the 182 by 3, giving you draw odds of roughly 1/61.....which I'm guessing is incorrect....because after the first 2 of 3 tags are drawn, the odds of drawing the third tag are 1/180. I would like to learn the formula (or locate a chart/table) that would enable me to identify the scenario with better odds. I know, I know.....I could subscribe to Hunting Fool, TopRut, or some other service that breaks the odds down for me.....but I would still like to know how to do it myself. Any help would be appreciated.

From: Aspen Ghost
12-Feb-22
Seems like you're making it more complicated than it is. You aren't entering the second draw 3 times (Initially, after the first tag is removed and after the 2nd tag is removed). You are only entering it once and you will either be one of the 3 who drew or one of the 179 who didn't. On top of that, the 182 figure is fictional, you really have no idea how many applications there will be this year.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
Correct, I don't know how many applications will be submitted this year. The best that I can do is project from last years numbers....which, while not necessarily reflective of this years numbers, are not fictional.

From: Lost Arra
12-Feb-22
182 is historical

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
Agreed.....and usually, unit numbers are "kinda" similar from year to year.

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
Easy enough to realize 1/119 is not near as good 3/182.

If there were 181 people applying for 182 tags that does not mean that after drawing 180 names even though the odds are 1/2 for the remaining tag that odds were not 50% from the beginning.

From: HDE
12-Feb-22
If it's NM you're looking at, there is absolutely no way calculate your "odds"...

From: Old School
12-Feb-22
Actually your scenario which you claim is incorrect is really CORRECT. Your odds are 3/182. It really is that simple.

When you claim that after the first 2 tags are drawn your odds are really 1/180, that is correct, but you also had odds of being one of the first 2 drawn. Using your logic - you could say in your other unit where it is 1/119 that after the first person draws you now have a 0/118 probability, so no use applying…..

It’s simple math - do the division problem and those are your odds.

From: Beendare
12-Feb-22
Doing the math;

You have a snowball in hells chance of drawing.

Seriously, dont beat yourself up. Its a longshot any way you slice it.

.

From: DonVathome
12-Feb-22
Sorry MM but your first post is wrong. Each tag has a 1 in 61 chance which does, literally equal 3/182 (there is actually a VERY slight difference - but very very very slight).

Actually it is a little better. First tag drawn had 1/182 (.0054945), second had 1/181 (.0055248) and 3rd had 1/180 (.0055555) add them together to get .0165748

3/182 = .0164835

Also with the exception of WY applying alone ESPECIALLY in units with only a few tags can make a big difference. Imagine that most guys apply as a group of 2 and there are 3 tags. 2 guys draw. 1 tag left. NO GROUPS OF GUYS CAN DRAW and every app that is group eliminated. if there is 1 tag left and 100 apps your odds look like 1% but if 3/4 of those apps are groups your odds are 25% because the other 75%, if drawn, will be skipped over until an app is pulled with only 1 person.

DonV PE (civil engineer)

From: Grey Ghost
12-Feb-22
1/119 x 100 = 0.84% chances of drawing.

3/182 x 100 = 1.65% chances of drawing.

Matt

From: DonVathome
12-Feb-22
I agree with Grey Ghost - that simple math will be within 1% of your odds assuming correct data is provided.................. some states NR caps are met and individual units odds might be way of, like Idaho

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
I realize that the odds are very poor. I just wanted to learn the process instead of just throwing up my arms in despair.

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
Better odds = land owner tag. <--- probabilities at their finest.

From: DanaC
12-Feb-22
Your odds from the above would be 1 in 182, then 1 in 181, then 1 in 180 for the three chances. Each draw is its own event.

Graph the number of entries for the past 5 or ten years and you might get a fair idea of the number that will apply this year - if it's a fairly smooth upward trend.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
It's threads like this that make me really appreciate the collective input from Bowsite.....

From: Aubs8
12-Feb-22
And Jake, we really enjoy your posts and thoughts!

Take care! Mike

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
So if you went to the bookstore and saw a book that said how to solve 50% of your problems and bought two would that solve all your probably or just 75%?

I think only 75% because after reading the first one you would have 50% of your problems left. Then after you read the second one you would solve 50% what you have left. That would be 25% of your original problems.

12-Feb-22
You need to read both books at the same time ;-)

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
I received a thought provoking PM from a fellow Bowsiter that asked what species (and state would matter also). I replied Elk and Moose....

Here is his reply....."Ok those are two very different types of draws, as you probably know. For Moose they use weighted points. Odds from the prior year are simple to calculate because CDPW gives us the weighted points of each NR applicant for each hunt code. So for an example lets say for GMU XXX bull moose there were 20 NR applicants and one NR license, and you have 5 weighted points. You merely sum the total weighted points of all applicants and then you divide your 5 points by that total. If that aforementioned sum equals lets say 128, then your draw odds are 5/128 or 3.9%. Forget about all the complexities of how they assign random numbers and all that stuff, because for odds calculations that internal process doesn't matter at all. Of course this won't reflect current upcoming 2022 odds, unless the applicant distribution this year is exactly the same as the prior year. It is still a good guideline though, as demand is usually "kinda" similar from year to year. For elk though, they use a 100% preference point draw. So unless you are on the cusp of drawing a tag based on having "almost enough" points, but rather have less points than required, then your odds will be zero. If you are right on that cusp, you can look at prior year draw data and see what your odds might be. There will be one point level where a random draw occurs, and you can find that in the Hunt Recap reports."

In this particular discussion, the odds aren't "fixed" at 3/182 or 1/119.....there is an element of "float" predicated on the applicants number of weighted points.....or is there more to consider? I like to ruminate on this stuff when in a tree or a blind....

From: Grey Ghost
12-Feb-22

Grey Ghost's Link
Jake,

If you really want a head ache, try to make sense out of Colorado's weighted point system. See link.

Matt

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
If you are talking about CO weight points. The person that PM'ed you is totally wrong.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
John, What part about the CO weighted points is incorrect? Understand, I'm not trying to stir the pot here....I just really enjoy a healthy debate about things that I find interest in..... Matt, I was reading about that process last night. Pretty involved, but hopefully effective at ensuring randomness.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
double post

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
The big part is if you have 5 weighted points you get your name it they hat 5 times. In short everyone in the draw is giving a random number the lowest random number gets the tag. Your random number is divided by your number of weighted points increasing your chance of having the lowest number.

For example if your random number was 100,000 and you have 5 weighted points you new number is 020,000. So you would move a head of anyone who's final number is less than that 020,000. I forget how many digits number they use but you should see the point.

From: Old School
12-Feb-22
In my initial post I had included a bunch of variables - weighted points/avg, NM style draw and then I deleted it before I posted it because your initial post was dealing with a basic simple draw and you appeared to be questioning basic, fundamentals of math.

If you want to get into those other subjects, be prepared for confusion and complex equations.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
John, Based on what I read last night (and what Matt linked), I don't think that it works like that.....unless I am misunderstanding your comment. As I understand it ,the random number that you are assigned is inverted....then converted, using a random number "key" for the digits 0-9....THEN it is divided by your weighted points +1. Old School - LOL....yeah, I kinda "moved the goalposts" on you there.....my bad.

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
That basically what I said just to simplify I left out the inverted then replace with the random number part.

Unless you are referring to my first sentence. That might be confusing. That was answering your question on what guy that PM’ed you got wrong.

From: Grey Ghost
12-Feb-22
That's correct, Jake.

More weighted points do increase you odds *slightly*, but it still boils down to the random number that is assigned to your application, after it is inverted and converted. I don't think there is any way to accurately calculate your odds of drawing in that system.

Matt

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22

JohnMC's Link
The best way to calculate (better put get a feeling of) odds is to pull up several years of draw results for unit you are looking at. From the stats on CPW pages I will attach link. See what happen for folks with similar weighted points as you inn past years. But you will never be this is my year to draw like you can with true preference points.

From: bigeasygator
12-Feb-22
Jake, another way to approach the problem is from the odds of you not being drawn and subtract from one. Therefore, the odds of your name not being pulled first would be 181/182, on the second go it would be 180/181, and the third and final chance would be 179/180. Your odds of drawing would be:

1-(181/182)*(180/181)*(179/180)

1-.984 = 1.6%

In this problem, this also happens to be 1-179/182 = 3/182.

The method above is how you would approach the problem if, say, your name was in the hat more than once, if you could win more than once, etc.

From: Grey Ghost
12-Feb-22
I have 15 weighted points for Colorado moose. Last year, there were 12 resident bull moose tags issued in the unit I want to hunt. 4 of those tags were drawn by applicants with 3-6 weighted points. 1 was drawn with 13 weighted points. The remaining 7 tags were drawn with 15 or higher weighted points. Nada for me.

It is kinda irritating that 5 out of the 12 tags were drawn by applicants with fewer weighted points than me, and 4 of those tags were drawn with less than half as many weighted points as I have. It's a FUBAR system.

Matt

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
Matt, Look at the bright side....with that number of weighted points, you are well positioned to draw in the next few years.....and as more of the most "senior" weighted point holders continue to draw (7 of the 12 that drew last year are now out of consideration), you continue to improve your odds....albeit ever so slightly. For the unit that you hope to draw, you can approximate how much longer it will take you to draw, as there hopefully aren't THAT many point holders with more points than you....and if that number is reduced by "about" 50% each year (7/12, etc), you're already close to being a shorttimer. This might be YOUR year!!

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
Double post....again

From: JohnMC
12-Feb-22
I kind of like the system. The longer you have been in the better chance you have of drawing. But after 3 years you have a small chance. Can you imagine a pure preference point system? You would have nothing a bunch of 80's something trying to hunt sheep and goats above treeline. And you would be telling the new guys if you are 18 years old if you keep putting in for the next 60 years you ought to get a tag if point creep doesn't get any worse. I understand guys like you Matt that only looking at the world in terms that are best for you. However for a product there is never going to be enough supply to go around it as good as any.

From: Tilzbow
12-Feb-22
It gives me headache just thinking about because it takes a ton of time to figure out the draw rules and math for the first state you’re applying in. On top of that you’ve then somehow got to compile the data from that state’s website and hope all the information needed is available and it often times isn’t readily available once you know the information needed after figuring the first state’s draw rules and unique math model. Assuming you’re able to create an accurate math model for said state and compile all the data you’ve then got to repeat the days long exercise for the next state you’re applying in.

Once that’s all done, you’re left with some very depressing data on how horrible your draw odds truly are. So at the end of the day I skip all the work, pay the small annual fee to subscribe to Top Rut, skip all the hard work of calculating myself and go right into a depression that subsides a few days after my application is submitted, turns into optimism, only to be crushed once again due to my lack of luck. The great thing is this cycle is only limited by the number of states you’re willing to apply in!

Damn, that gave me a headache just writing it! By the way, for what it’s worth I believe that Top Rut’s odds are more accurate than Go Hunt’s odds. At least it was that way a few years ago but Go Hunt might’ve modified their math models.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
Tilzbow, You are the second person today that I have read that has come out in favor of TopRut's "product".

From: Grey Ghost
12-Feb-22
Jake,

Thanks for your optimism. Last year there were 99 applicants with equal or more weighted points than me in the unit I applied for. 7 of those applicants drew tags. So, now there are only 92 with equal or more points than me. Assuming the number of applicants and tag allocations remain about the same, that gives me a 7/92, or 7.6%, chance of drawing. So, you're saying I have a chance? ;-)

John, I do see your point. It is nice to know that my 35 year old best friend and hunting buddy actually stands a chance to draw a moose, sheep, or goat tag before he's too old to enjoy the hunts. I doubt he'll ever catch up to point creep in the best elk units, unless major changes are made.

Matt

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
If the number of hunters continues to fall (as it is reported), then the mortality of Baby Boomers, coupled with successful applicants being removed from future high point considerations bodes well for your friend...

From: Beendare
12-Feb-22
Jake, pardon my negativity.

I used to get bogged down in analyzing these draws trying to eek out slightly better odds…now I m just pleasantly surprised if I draw.

From: Tilzbow
12-Feb-22
Jake,

Years ago there was a thread on another forum in which the guys from Top Rut and GoHunt were arguing about their models, specifically for Nevada. I thought GoHunt was wrong and actually discussed the topic with my non-hunting but highly educated and extremely smart boss who was essentially the COO of the company I worked for. The guy had a PHd in mathematics and taught complex math at the university level before getting an MBA and getting into business. He’s still the smartest person I’ve ever known, although his social skills weren’t that great. He does math competitions to solve complex formulas on the internet to pass the time. Think Matt Damon’s character in “Good Will Hunting” smart, true genius. Anyway, he took an interest and looked into it and agreed Top Rut had the more accurate model, at least for Nevada, and that GoHunt had some very basic math flaws in their model. This led me to trust Top Rut more although I did keep my GoHunt membership for a few years because of the other information they have that TopRut doesn’t.

From: Medicinemann
12-Feb-22
Understood. I enjoy the analysis...it helps to pass the time while waiting for various states to open up for their draw, or better yet, post their draw results.

12-Feb-22
When Colorado went to credit cards charged after drawing instead of fronting the tag fee before the draw, it dramatically decreased odds. It was easy for guys to jump in the game that weren't before.

Those new folks are now hitting their 3 points which means they have a chance at moose, goat and ram tags. Their odds aren't as good as someone with a bunch of weighted points but the pool of folks at the bottom is huge so that group hits a bunch of really low random numbers and that uses up tags.

As an example, in 2020 with rough numbers there were 2700 moose applicants at the bottom of actually having a chance (3 points and zero weighted). In 2021 there were 8000 with 3+0. Those extra 5300 folks eligible to draw chew up a bunch of tags, there is another big group that is a year behind them that will also be eligible this year, and so on.

From: cnelk
12-Feb-22
IMO - anything less than a 10% chance is nothing more than random luck.

From: Lost Arra
13-Feb-22
In a ten year period I drew 2 tags that were under 2% each. Definitely random luck. When I drew the second one I had 9 points but was still at least 3 years from a PP chance. I still hunted each of those other 8 years, just no antlers.

From: Jaquomo
13-Feb-22
Cypher me this - I'm a right-brainer so math is not my strong suit.

If two individuals apply for tags with 50% draw odds, (not as a group), does that mean there is a 75% chance that one of the two will draw?

If a train leaves St. Louis....

From: DonVathome
13-Feb-22
One thing to consider with pure points systems. Long term about 3% of people drop out or die, this ignores people who draw. Statistically speaking in 33 years you WILL get a tag. Even it if, your first year, there were 1000 people at the same level as you or higher.

Yes it is a 33 years. Yes that stinks. BUT yes you will get a tag. If that sounds bad how does 1000:1 odds after 33 years of applying and no tag sound? That is what a no point system is. I see pros and cons to both. My favorite is NV, squared points. Man it makes a difference after a decade. After 20 years, squared points plus the 3% attrition rate your odds are always pretty good.

I actually enjoy the math, stats and studying them. It is fun for me. The crazy high costs combined with lower and lower odds and states figuring out how to attract more apps have made it crazy for new NR applying. Really crazy. I doubt many even truly understand jsut how bad it is AND where it is headed. Do you think app fees are going to level off? I do not. When a state triples it's apps fees less then half the apps drop out. Less work more money. WY will switch to bonus points and stick it to thousands of NR who have been applying got a decade or 2.

In WY I spend over $800 a year in fees, no tag, no license, nothing but a slim chance & points. I love WY and it has been good to me but I will never agree this is fair. And the logic of "everyone else is doing it" is silly.

From: bigeasygator
13-Feb-22
If two individuals apply for tags with 50% draw odds, (not as a group), does that mean there is a 75% chance that one of the two will draw?

If there are two people in a draw for one tag, the probability that one of them will be picked is 50%. But with only two people, it’s 100% that one of the two will be picked. In this case, you would add their individual probabilities together to get a combined probability. 50%+50%=100%.

From: Grey Ghost
13-Feb-22
I just put down a $40 bet on a 6 pick parlay for the Super Bowl. It pays out $6800 if I win. Seems like a better way to throw away money, to me. ;-)

Matt

From: DonVathome
16-Feb-22
hhahaa! GG

From: Inshart
16-Feb-22
I'm with Lou on this one . Who's on first.........

From: Jaquomo
16-Feb-22
BEG, I hope you didn't lose any sleep figuring that out! ;-) My question was about odds in a broader pool. Say there are 200 tags and historically 400 applicants. 50% straight up odds. No preference points involved. If my wife and I both apply, what is the probability that at least one of us will draw? It isn't 50% + 50% = 100%. That much I do know.

From: tkjwonta
16-Feb-22
Lou, 25% chance neither draws. So 75% chance at least one of you draws (25% chance you both draw).

From: HDE
16-Feb-22
On a 2:1 ratio, the probability that one of the two will get chosen is 100%. If there are 200 tags and 400 applicants, the probability that 200 will be chosen is 100%. The probability that two people under the same roof will get chosen varies. There is an equal chance that both or neither will be chosen, but a 50% that one will be chosen and the other not and only if there is an equal successful and non-successful applicant each time up until you get your turn.

Everyone in the pool gets a chance to "pull a marble out of a bag". There are 200 red marbles and 200 green marbles. A green marble is a tag, a red marble is a too bad, so sad. The chances of you getting a green marble goes down significantly if too many green marbles are pulled out of the bag before you get your turn. If you're number 201 in the line, you may not get the chance to pull a green marble. Each time a green marble is chosen, your probability goes down of getting one. On the flip side, it goes up each time a red marble is chosen.

This is why you cannot figure your true odds in a state like NM. First, you get randomly placed in line. Then you have to wait your turn hoping all the green marbles don't get chose by the time they come to you.

From: Darrell
16-Feb-22
What I wish states would do is give you your draw number when you get your results. I.e. your app was #6785 drawn. Then they could also post what app # each hunt drew out on. Of course then it would really suck if the hunt you wanted filled up on app #6784. :)

From: wytex
17-Feb-22
DV if 1 license is left for a NR draw and a group app is pulled they all get their licenses, even if it puts the area over quota. It can skew the odds for that area by putting it over the quota. This is for Wyoming.

From: TD
17-Feb-22
My odds are always 50/50. Either I was screwed over or I'm just unlucky......

"One time" event odds for an individual (of which each draw is every year) are always theoretical. Technically, flipping a coin is 50/50. Reality is it can also come up heads 5 times in a row. (Depending on if you chose tails or not usually.....) Yet are always 50/50 each toss, you odds don't improve each toss. Yeah, over time blah blah.... But then I'm talking to a guy who pulled a bighorn tag out of his.... ahhh never mind.....

But, the only thing 100% is you will never draw if you never apply. Well, OK.... death, taxes....

Soooo, what I'm sayin' is..... you have a chance.... =D

From: bigeasygator
17-Feb-22
Say there are 200 tags and historically 400 applicants. 50% straight up odds.

Using the numbers above...starting with the first name pulled, the odds that neither person would be picked are 398/400. Play that out to 200 tags and multiply the odds from each time a name is pulled and you will get something very close to 25%. Essentially...

(398/400)*(397/399)*(396/398)*....*(199/201)*(198/200)

this reduces to

(199*198)/(400*399)

which equals .2469 or 25%.

This is the odds that neither person would be drawn...so to get the odds that the opposite even happens it would be 1-.2469...or basically 75%. With the first hypothetical where there is two people and one tag, the odds that neither person gets picked are none (0/2)...so the odds would be 1-0=100%

Now that approach doesn't account for if you're cursed, have bad luck, or any other factors that are keeping you from drawing a tag :)

From: jordanathome
18-Feb-22
I always liked the Magic 8 Ball myself..........

From: Grey Ghost
18-Feb-22
I always liked either black or red on the roulette wheel. No specific number, just a bet on the color. 47.4% odds with a 1:1 payout. I hit on black 7 times in a row the last time I was in a casino. Each spin, I picked my winnings off of the table, and let my original $100 bet ride. When I finally lost that $100 on the 8th spin, I pocketed my $700 of winnings, and bought a new fly rod with it. ;-)

Matt

From: bigeasygator
18-Feb-22
Basically a 1 in 200 chance of that happening, Matt.

From: Goelk
19-Feb-22
How much does land owner tags cost? Where do you find list of land owners tags

From: HDE
19-Feb-22
^^^ the game and fish webpage for the state of interest.

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