|The autumn plans of 120,000 big game hunters in Wyoming and across the country came into sharper focus June 23 with the completion of both resident and nonresident deer and antelope license drawings and the resident elk drawing. All 90,100 licenses and 50,800 refunds should be mailed by July 5, reports Tom Rowe, license draw manager for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
Area 113 type 1 between Douglas and Gillette, dethroned area 31 south of Rock Springs as Wyoming's toughest elk draw at 3.7 percent. This year's most difficult antelope license to draw was area 116 east of Greybull at 8.3 percent drawing success. For the fourth year, the late season license near Baggs, area 82 type 1 (4.3 percent), was Wyoming's most uphill deer drawing.
Rowe credits the early drawing to his staff working 10- to 12-hour days since June 3. "We receive nearly 70 percent of the resident applications the last week (May 25-31) of the month-long application period, which makes the drawing preparation tough because most of the work comes all at one time," he said.
"To the extent practical, we contact applicants who submit invalid applications," Rowe said. "But with the increased number of late resident applications this year, to try and reach everyone we would have had to delay the draws several days. So, a greater number of applicants who submitted invalid applications did not have a good opportunity to draw."
Ninety-four different types of elk licenses are leftover in 72 areas. The majority of the licenses are for antlerless elk, although nine areas are offering "any elk tags" and 13 areas with archery-only antlered tags.
Twelve areas and three nonresident regions (B, C and J) have leftover deer licenses. "Any antelope" licenses are available in 32 hunt areas.
Rowe alerts hunters that leftover licenses for both residents and nonresidents except doe/fawn deer and antelope, and cow/calf elk will be issued in a second drawing. The application period for the second drawing is July 10-20 and the drawing is scheduled for July 31. Applications are being sent with refunds and are available at license agents and G&F offices.
Any licenses remaining after the second drawing will be sold "as processed" through the G&F's Cheyenne office.
Doe/fawn deer and antelope licenses were initially issued by drawing for the fourth year. Rowe reports that demand increased slightly, but is still very light compared to the supply. "I think most hunters want to know if they have buck licenses before they commit to a doe/fawn tag," Rowe said.
Leftover doe/fawn antelope and deer, and cow/calf elk licenses will be sold first-come, first-served, at license agents in or near the respective hunt areas beginning August 15.
For more information about 2001 big game licenses, call the G&F at 800+842-1934 or (307) 777-4600 outside Wyoming.
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