We have unlined leather scabbards for rifles on horses. You may want to bring your own if you want extra protection.
Bring a Good Sense of Humor, a Positive Attitude, some Patience, and Lots of Luck.
EQUIPMENT LIMITS: Please limit your personal gear to no more than the equivalent of two army sized duffel bags. Please avoid the huge “body bag” size duffels. It helps some if you try to balance the weight of your bags. Make sure that bottles and other breakables are well padded inside your duffel. Items that may potentially leak should be bagged or wrapped in plastic.
CAMP RULES: For yours and others’ safety you are asked to abide by the following rules.
1. Guns are to be unloaded in the chamber while mounted on horses, in vehicles, and when in camp.
2. Alcoholic beverages are not to be used until you are through hunting for the day and guns are put away.
3. Please don’t litter.
4. You are expected to obey all federal and state laws, rules, & regulations.
BE AWARE OF THESE HUNTING REGULATIONS:
1. You must wear 500 square inches of blaze orange combined in a hat and outer garment during firearm seasons.
2. Evidence of sex must be left on a big game carcass. We must quarter animals to pack them out on horses. You must leave a testicle or part of the udder on both hind quarters when field dressing your game. Do not cut off the evidence of sex.
3. An approved hunter education course is compulsory for anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1949, before they can purchase a hunting license in Colorado. Your State’s approved hunter safety course will be honored in Colorado.
4. Bull elk rifle licenses during the second and third rifle seasons must be purchased prior to the opening dates of these seasons. Cow elk, archery elk, 1st & 4th rifle season elk, all deer, and muzzleloader licenses must be applied for in an April drawing. For more complete information contact the Colorado Division of Wildlife, 6060 Broadway, Denver, CO 80216, 303-297-1192 or www.wildlife.state.co.us.
SOME THOUGHTS AND IDEAS:
Don’t scrimp on your sleeping bag. Bring a good one.
The better your physical conditioning the more you will enjoy your hunt. Get in shape.
High altitude adversely affects some people. However, it is rarely very serious. Stay hydrated, control your body temperature, and rest (don’t overdo) are important precautions. Bring headache medicine (sinus headache formulas seem to help), and something for upset stomach. There is a prescription drug called Diamox that you may want to talk to your MD about if you have had past problems and are concerned. It should be started before arriving in Colorado if you decide it is necessary.
Know your rifle/bow. Practice. Try the safety before you get here. Be able to operate it (load, unload, check safety, etc.) even in the dark. Make sure you have the right ammo. You should be able to shoot accurately with a rest from 30 yards out to 300 yards.
TRAVEL TIPS: I recommend that you plan to arrive the day before your pack in day and spend the night in a local motel. This gives you time to recover if you have problems or breakdowns, etc. It also gives time to rest, adjust to the altitude, and prepare for your pack in. Mild altitude sickness (headache, upset stomach) is not uncommon and can be complicated by driving all night then putting in a long day packing into camp. Many hunters don’t sleep well the first night in camp and then will be up very early to put in a hard day of hunting. It can catch up with you during your hunt and cause some uncomfortable times and maybe a hunting day in camp recovering. It’s better to tire yourself out hunting, not getting here.
If you are planning to fly in on the same day that you are to pack into camp, you are taking a chance. Weather delays, missed connections, and misplaced baggage is not uncommon these days. I recommend sending your hunting gear to me by UPS ahead of time. If you do: 1. Use my name and physical address. John Nelson, 1059 Ute Lane, Gunnison, CO 81230. 2. Send it early enough to arrive a week before your pack in day. 3. Make sure that labels are secure. Get the return paperwork forms and fill them out ahead of time and enclose them with your bags. When you take an elk, you can have it processed in Gunnison, put into airline boxes and check it in as baggage on your flight. Then ship your hunting gear home by UPS. Antlers can also be shipped or prepared for airline baggage.
DIRECTIONS: To Gunnison from Denver – West on I-70 to the 470 off ramp (toward Colorado Springs), South on 470 to Hwy. 285 (to Conifer & Bailey), West on 285 to Johnson Village (Buena Vista), South on Hwy. 24 & 285 to Poncha Springs, then West on Hwy. 50 to Gunnison.
To Gunnison from the east on I-70 – West on I-70 to Limon, CO, take Hwy. 24 at Limon to Colorado Springs, then South on Academy Blvd. to Hwy. 115, South on Hwy. 115 to Hwy. 50, then West on Hwy. 50.
From Gunnison to Our Home Base – We are located approximately 1.5 miles east of Gunnison on Hwy. 50. Take Hwy. 50 East from Gunnison to the Affordable Inns Motel and Tomichi Tire & Towing Shop. Continue East past these businesses to the first road you come to (headed North). Turn left/North on this road (Ute Lane), then turn right into the second driveway that you come to. We are very visible from Hwy. 50. We have a brown and white house that sits up on the hillside with brown steel corrals and white sheds at the bottom of the hill. There is a sign on one white shed that says: “The Gunnison Country Guide Service”.
You may leave your vehicle here and we will provide transportation to the trailhead where you will meet the wranglers and horses for the ride to camp. Call when you arrive in Gunnison to confirm your arrival and to get meeting times for your pack in the next day. Generally, drop camp hunters should be early (8:00 AM) on pack in days and Base Camp hunters around Noon.
MOTELS: Make motel reservations early for the night before your pack in day (especially on the Thursday between first and second rifle seasons). There are many good motels in Gunnison. The Affordable Inns Tomichi Village/970-641-1131 is close to our home base and there is a Holiday Inn Express/970-641-1288 in town. The Days Inn/888-641-0608 and the Western Motel/970-641-1722 have lower rates. You may contact our Chamber of Commerce for a more complete listing 970-641-1501 or www.gunnisonchamber.com.
For those flying in, most motels will provide transportation to and from the airport. Make arrangements with them at reservation. We will provide transportation from your motel to camp and back at the end of your hunt.
PACK IN: Dress for the weather on pack in days. Generally it will be colder at the trailhead than in Gunnison. In any case, keep a coat and rain gear (and any other gear you want) out to tie on to your saddle for the one to three hour ride (depending on which camp you are in) into camp. Rifles are best placed in gun cases for the drive to the trailhead. Then we will provide scabbards on your riding horses. Let me know ahead of time if you are bringing an extra rifle. Make sure that your gun cases are marked with your names so that they are easily identified from others since they will be stored at my home base until the end of your hunt.
Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions. Usually evenings and early mornings are the best time to catch me at 970-641-2830 or email to email@example.com. I sincerely hope that you enjoy your time hunting with us.