Utah Trophy Mule Deer Hunting

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Our #1 recommended destination for 190-220+BC Muleys in North America

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2010 season produced 7 bucks over 200BC; the 2011 season 17 bucks exceeded 200BC, including 8 over 215BC and 3 over 230BC. The overall average for 2011 was 213BC!

Our operator has been in the Paunsaugunt for over 20 years. He has specialized in the highest quality free range mule deer hunting in America. Based in Alton, Utah - located inside the famed 2 million acre Paunsaugunt mule deer unit in south central Utah, he has consistently produced tremendous mule deer year after year. He has exclusive hunting rights on more than 30 private ranches located in arguable the best mule deer hunting area in the west. He extensively manages these ranches for an older age class of deer by having a very limited harvest of trophy deer. We have had 1 client who has taken multiple deer with him over 220BC, including a buck that made Boone & Crockett both as a typical (216BC) and non-typical (240BC).

10% of the Paunsaugunt is private and 90% is public land hunting. He harvests bucks between 185 and 220BC every year on both the public land and private land sections. The 2010 and 2011 seasons were the best in over a decade producing 14+ bucks over 220BC for the seasons combined.

With 2 million acres, and 17 landowner tags, 3-5 conservation tags, and approx. 135 draw tags, the hunting pressure on the Paunsaugunt is very limited to about 1 buck harvested per 13,000 acres + -.

Elevations average about 5000 ft. and this is a very easy physical hunt.

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All accommodations are at the Alton lodge. Located central to the hunting properties, this 10,000 sq ft log-cabin style lodge is fully furnished with TV/SAT, wi-fi access, cell phone service, computer/fax and an office. The lodge has 10 individual bedrooms each complete with an individual bathroom for your privacy.  Full-time cooks will serve three hot meals each day but the kitchen is always open. Our outfitter provides a great family environment where spouses and children are welcome.

3 different Trophy Mule Deer hunts and 2 management Mule Deer hunts are offered and all are accessed from the lodge above.

Trophy Hunt #1

The Paunsaugunt is over 2 million acres and is on the rebound and has been totally restructured.  We hunt east of HWY 89 on both public and private land.  It spans from the summer range high country  all the way to the winter range 40 miles south within a ½ mile of the Arizona border in high desert pinons. Permit numbers have been reduced by 55%-65%  since 2005 and the season dates have been totally re-shuffled.  The number of mature bucks on the Paunsaugunt is higher than it has been in decades.  Most of the hunting on this hunt is on winter range. Realistic chances can be had at bucks in the 185-200" range, with some exceeding 200BC including 3 bucks over 215BC in 2011 on this particular hunt including a 240BC and a 219BC. Multiple bucks over 200BC were taken on the winter range in the Paunsagaugunt in the 2010 season.  With access to private landowners tags (vouchers) , there is no waiting  - you can hunt this year.    We offer 3 types of hunts- Archery, muzzleloader and rifle. 

  • Archery season dates are mid-August thru the second week in September
  • Muzzleloader season dates are September 26 - Oct 1. (Hunt is 6 days) These hunts take place on summer range where bucks can be patterned and viewed beginning in July.
  • Rifle season dates are the last week of October. Oct 23-28. Rifle hunt takes place on winter range, with some pre-rut activity near the end of season. 

How we hunt: Most of the archery hunting is done with tree stand/blinds with some spot/stalk. Muzzleloader hunting is a combination of tree stand/blind and spot/stalk. Rifle hunting is mostly spot/stalk with some stand hunting.

Details: Hunts are 6 days with options for more days. Guiding is 1 on 1.

Rates: Cost of Trophy hunt is $6500 which includes the guide and scouting fee, meals, and lodging in the Alton Lodge. The additional landowner (voucher) tags average $29,000-$39,000 + $350 for the license. Landowner tags are purchased by the outfitter or Riata at auction, who you reimburse and we provide the receipt to you. These tags are purchased anytime beginning Feb 1- June 1 of each year. Deposit is $3250 per person to reserve this hunt.

The management hunt produces 165-185 class deer which usually are 3x3s, 3x4s, and 3x5s. In the 2011 season, two of these bucks were 31" and 33" wide. This hunt takes place in the winter range along the Arizona border near Kanab and is usually out of a 2200 sq. ft. house with a large master bedroom, 60 flat screen TV, and the dining is in local restaurants.

Trophy Hunt #2

Alton CWMU Trophy and Management Hunts – summer range 

The Alton CWMU is comprised of 22 private ranches located on the Northwest corner of the famed Paunsaugunt.  Our outfitter has exclusive hunting rights on all of these properties which totals more than 46,000 acres. The properties have been managed by him for more than 15 years for the highest quality trophy deer.  The CWMU has consistently produced 190-210" class trophy deer. It is considered one of the premier trophy mule deer hunts in the west. IN 2011 he took 5 bucks over 220BC on the Alton including a 240BC+.

Our outfitter harvests only 12 trophy deer each year on the Alton CWMU and availability is very limited. 

He offers  6-8 management buck hunts each year. Management hunts target older bucks ranging from 170-185". They are the last 2 weeks of September. Archery hunting, as well as any-weapon hunting is offered. 

Dates: Season dates are flexible from mid-August archery, September rifle thru mid-October with most of the archery hunting in August, most of the any-weapon hunting is in September.

Hunts are 5-days (Tuesday-Saturday). Guiding is generally 2 guides per hunter. We are flexible in hunting styles and try to accommodate each hunter's preferences. Most of the hunting is spot/stalk, accessibility is easy - trucks used to access all areas, elevation 6000-9000'.

Rates: $15,000 - $19,500, depending on weapon and hunt dates. 

Management Hunt: $6500; accommodations, guiding, permits/licenses included in price. Management hunts target older bucks ranging from 170-185".

Trophy Hunt #3

Southern Region General Trophy and management hunts

Our Outfitter has exclusive leases on several parcels of private property in the Southern Region, a Utah general season area west of highway 89. The properties are located only a few miles West of the Alton CWMU. The properties have been managed extensively for trophy deer and have a proven track record of consistently producing 180-195" class deer. However, in the 2011 season a 202BC, 204BC, 206BC and 214BC were taken on this particular hunt.  Licenses/permits for this area can be purchased "over the counter" eliminating the need for expensive landowner tags. However, you must apply between Feb 1 and March 1 for your license. Go to wildlife.utah.gov and enter unit #28. The muzzleloader hunt # is 1576. Application is $10 with a credit card and you must have your hunter safety certificate # ready.

  • Archery hunt is mid-August thru first week of September.  Hunting is mostly done from tree stand/blind with some limited opportunity for spot/stalk.
  • Muzzleloader hunt is last week of September and again most hunting is done from tree stand/blind with some spot/stalk.

Properties are located in the summer range (7000-8500' in elevation) and most of the deer migrate off the properties by mid-October. Consequently, rifle hunting is limited as rifle season is the last week of October.

Cost of trophy hunt: $8500 plus $350 license and tag

Cost of management hunt is under 165" - $3900, 165-175" - $5900, over 175" - $7900. All hunt prices include lodging, meals, guiding, and licenses/permits.

Hunts are 5 days (Tuesday - Saturday). Most guiding is 1 guide for 2 hunters. Accommodations will be at the Alton lodge. Lodge has individual bedroom/bathroom, TV/SAT, telephone, cell service, wi/fi access, full-time cook, etc. Hunting properties are located a 10-minute drive from lodge. Guests are welcome.

Dates:

  • Archery hunt is mid-August thru first week of September. Hunting is mostly done from tree stand/blind with some limited opportunity for spot/stalk.
  • Muzzleloader hunt is September 26-Oct 1. Most hunting is done from tree stand/blind with some spot/stalk.
  • Rifle - no rifle hunts are offered on this particular hunt.

Properties are located in the summer range (7000-8500' in elevation) and most of the deer migrate off the properties by mid-October.

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Deposits are 40% down of the cost of your hunt. Checks and all major credit cards accepted. All photos available on request.

Getting there:  Fly to Las Vegas, rent a car, drive to ranch. 3 hour drive.  Clients can also check flights into Cedar City, Utah where they will fly in on Sky West Airlines from Salt Lake and be met by the outfitter and transferred to camp.

All the bucks below are 2011 season bucks. All over 200 inches. 16 bucks of 25 hunted exceeded 200 inches. 

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