October – November
Muzzleloader elk hunting is probably the most overlooked and underrated elk season in the West. It typically takes place before the rifle season and when bulls are still bugling. Most states have restrictions on their muzzleloaders such as open sights or one power scopes. New Mexico has no restrictions, and with the capability of today’s muzzleloaders, harvesting a bull out to 200 yards is very realistic. This outfitter operates on several different private ranches in New Mexico’s primitive weapon only units where no rifle hunting is allowed. This usually means you’ll be hunting bulls that have reached maturity and their maximum trophy potential. Several hunts are offered on properties ranging in size from 8,000 to 30,000 private acres, all with guaranteed landowner tags. Bulls up to 340″ plus have been harvested on past hunts with most bulls scoring between 290″-320″. Methods of hunting will be spot and stalk with lots of glassing to even some tree stand and ground blind hunting around water holes. Elevations range from 7,000-9,500 ft. The terrain consists mostly of cedar and pinion trees and the gently rolling hills and ranch roads (on the private) make it easy to get around. Unit wide hunts are also available.
Starting at $7,000 (2×1) to $10,000 (1×1) depending on the unit. Plus tax and license. 5-day hunt.
Guaranteed elk license, $700, purchase through outfitter.
Fly to Albuquerque, rent a vehicle, and drive to camp.
Easy: Somewhat easy walking when it comes to physicality. Minimal walking or hiking and terrain is very accessible. Mostly hunting from blinds or tree stands.
Moderate: Physicality is somewhat moderate to advanced. Spot and stalk method of hunting as well as some hunting from blinds. Terrain can vary from prairies to mountains at higher elevations.
Difficult: Requires an advanced degree of physical endurance. Terrain is typically more mountainous and hunting can take place at higher elevation.
Extreme: Most difficult and physically demanding hunts. Requires advanced to extreme endurance and terrain or game pursued may involve dangerous situations.