Desert Bull Scouting and Map Services
2017 Arizona Elk Hunting Forecast
Most of those in the know, guides, elk fanatics and residents of areas in Arizona's elk country are of the opinion that the Arizona Elk hunting should be, at the very least above average again for 2017 as it was last season.. Many are predicting another GREAT season. We had great rain and snow levels this year and the elk went into the winter healthy and well fed.
We had some good storms early in the winter that filled tanks and saturated the ground. This will provide good, early green up when the elk are needing quality feed the most.
Arizona elk are dependent on winter and spring moisture to produce abundant feed. We have not had record amounts of snow or rain, but what we did get came at just the right times.
We should not only have very good antler growth, but the calf production should be very good also. It has been good for the last several years. Lots of tall grasses to hide newborns, nutritious feed and plentiful drinking water all combine to ensure a large percentage of newborn calves make it through the summer and go into their first winter with good fat stores and strong bodies.
The typical "trophy" units in Arizona - 9 and 10 in Northern Arizona, unit 23 in central Arizona and 1,27, 3C in Eastern Arizona all had timely moisture during 2015 and 2017 winter and spring and mild to moderate snow depths. A great combination for antler growth. If you were lucky enough to draw a tag this year you should have a great hunt.
These are not the only units that can produce great bulls though. Units 5A, 5B, 7W and 8 all have their share of big bulls and 2017 is shaping up well for these areas too.
The late hunts in units 1, 10, 27 and 23 are always good but should be really good this year. Units 1 and 27 are set to explode as the Wallow fire is now entering its "prime time" Hunting the edges of the burned areas where there are some patches of thick, living timber (mostly ponderosa pines) is the ticket for late season hunts. Bulls like to live in small areas with food, water and cover in close proximity. Find a canyon in which one side has burned and the other side was left stading and you should have a honey hole. The more remote and steeper the canyon, the better. Steep canyons not only deter other hunters, but have a better chance of holding water in the bottoms.
If you have a tag, good luck. Make sure to do as much scouting and planning as possible. use google earth to locate remote areas that look promising, down load the locations into your GPS and go check them out during mid and late summer.
IF you need help in the form of scouting services, maps, GPS etc, please give us a call or send an email. We can help!
If you did not draw a tag, you can still hunt. We love to scout for the fall bear hunts and tags are over the counter. It takes a lot of time and effort to find areas where bears are. Give us call if interested. We only take one bear scouting client per year.