1.When is the best time to hunt?
All of our hunts offer a little something different as far as expected weather, degree of rut you will experience, and season availability of different species. I will give you a short look at our seasons and what your expectations might be.
Archery - Archery combo hunts run in September with our 5 day hunts. Early in September there will probably be some velvet on the deer horns. This can work to our advantage on the mature mule deer bucks as they will bed in spots where the insects aren't bothering them as much. For spot and stalk this can be an advantage for us. The antelope rut begins in early September and peaks mid-month. For decoying antelope we need at least some degree of rut. Most other archery antelope is in water hold blinds so hot and dry is best. The elk begin rut in September and they generally continue through early October. All archery hunts have some things like these I have pointed out and all these variables hinge at least partly on the weather. In general, it should be warm to hot early in September and gradually cooling as the fall progresses.
Rifle deer/antelope combo - Our first four hunts are 5 day hunts that begin late in October and run through early November. These hunts are deer hunts with the hunters who apply and draw the antelope license, combine the hunt with deer and antelope. Our last three hunts are later in November and are for deer only as antelope season has ended. Mule deer rut normally starts fairly early in November and peaks around mid-month. Whitetail rut is generally 5-10 days later than the mule deer.
2. What kind of camp do you have?
Our camps are comfortable ranch style camps. Each camp has heated cabins with running water, toilets and showers. You will eat family style meals in the cookhouse both morning and night. Your guide will pack a lunch to eat in the field. Camps are easily accessible with rental cars. We have several cabins at the camps and can accommodate single hunters as well as larger groups. Couples will have their own room and we generally don't have to combine hunters from different groups in the same cabins.
3. How many hunters will be in camp each week?
We can comfortably hold 14 hunters in camp each hunt. We generally try to book 12 per hunt but if we have 10 booked for the week and have a group of 4 needing to book, we will have 14 that week. Our average week is 12 hunters, although we have had more than 14 on rare occasions.
4. How do I get licensed?
You need to put in for the draw, either a a Big Game Combo or Deer/Elk Combo and the dealine is March 15, see DNR for more info here. All bow hunters must purchase an archery stamp before hunting. These are available here in Broadus or from the State of Montana. Montana licensing information phone number is (406)444-2950.
NEW LICENSE CHANGES: Antelope archery tags are now on a draw basis and may or may not be unlimited. Archery elk hunters are now required to draw for an archery elk permit.
We will try to keep all our clients abreast of licensing changes. We have very limited input and absolutely NO control of cost and availability of Montana hunting licenses. All our clients must have proper licenses for the hunt. Archery Antelope is in unit 900.
5. What are other costs involved?
Our hunters are responsible for transportation to camp. People flying will need to rent a car to drive to camp. We skin and cape all the animals, but meat processing and taxidermy is your responsibility. Meals are provided as is transportation during the hunt. We have a meat processor in Broadus and we will take carcasses there but the processing cost is your responsibility. In Broadus there are currently three taxidermy businesses and our hunters are encouraged to look at their work and make arrangements with them if they desire. Meat processing or the fee for donating the meat along with taxidermy and shipping is your responsibility
Tips for the guide and cook are certainly encouraged although not mandatory. The vast majority of our past clients have shown an appreciation of their hard work and dedication by leaving tips. There are several taxidermists in Broadus as well as a couple others within MT that we recommend.
6. What caliber of gun should I bring?
Easy - the one you shoot the best! Most hunters use mid-caliber (.257 to .338) with good scopes. Average shot is around 150-200 yds.
7. What will the weather be like?
Old timers always said that only newcomers and fools predict the weather in Montana. Early archery will probably be hot. As the season progresses we expect cooler to cold weather. Rain or snow is apt to happen at any time and the wind will probably blow. Come prepared for the worst and hope for the best. We have archery hunted when the daytime high has hit 100 degrees for 2 straight weeks. We have also archery hunted the same two weeks in a different year when we experience freezing nights and rain turning to snow.
Our rifle hunts begin in October and we expect middle range temperatures during the days and freezing nights. As the season progresses, the chance of colder, snowy weather increases. As an example, Thanksgiving at camp has had temperature extremes from 65 degrees in 1992 to 45 degrees below zero in 1981.
8. Can I bring a non-hunting companion?
Yes, you may bring your non-hunting companion for $150/day.