Nevada is one of the top states in the West for producing big bulls. Just take a look at the cover of this magazine to see a giant that was taken last year. Every year, there are a number 360-370" bulls harvested in the better units. A lot of Huntin’ Fool Endorsed Outfitters are averaging over 350” on all of their hunts in the better units. Not every unit is producing 350” bulls, but almost every unit has the potential to do so. Nevada is having another mild winter, and hopefully the state continues to get some more late winter and spring storms. The snowpack across most of Nevada is below normal. The areas in the northeast portion of the state are doing better with moisture levels at this time. Even with the drought conditions, we are looking at having another great year as the age class in most units is doing really well. If you are looking for a top end bull, you should stick to our top units.
The archery hunt is typically the best time to put your tag on a giant bull. Most archery hunts in Nevada run August 25-September 16, which doesn’t sound that great for the rut, but elk tend to rut earlier here than other states and these are great rut hunts for mature bulls during September.
The muzzleloader hunts follow the archery hunts, but most don’t start until after the rut in late October. Most of the mature bulls have pulled off the cows and can be difficult to find as they are not moving much at all. Most units have two rifle hunts that run in November and into December, which can make for some cold weather hunting. These rifle hunts can be physically demanding as none of the bulls are in easy spots and have been pushed around and up higher on the mountains from preceding elk and deer hunts. The late hunts typically have a lot of broken bulls, and that was the case for 2020.
The units in the northeast part of the state in areas 6 in Elko County have earlier season dates. These units have archery hunts that run August 16-31. There will be no rutting activity at all, but it is an opportunity to harvest a velvet bull at the beginning of the season. The muzzleloader dates are September 1-16. These hunts are your best chance to harvest the better bulls in the unit. Unit 072 has some season changes for this year. The archery season is August 25-September 16, and the muzzleloader season is September 17-30. The date change gives both archery and muzzleloader hunters more rut hunting opportunities.
For specific units and dates please check the regulations.
Nevada is one of the top elk states in the West, but it comes with very steep draw odds. If there is a downside to Nevada elk, it is the length of time it may take applicants to draw the tag. Anyone who wants a big bull should be applying for elk here, and if you are already applying for other species, it is an absolute must as it is only another $19 application fee. The one thing we emphasize is that you need to be applying in the draw rather than applying for points since Nevada does not have a preference draw and these tags are so difficult to draw.
Nevada elk tags are difficult to draw, and most non-resident hunters will get one Nevada elk tag in their lifetime, if they are lucky. It is a good idea to go with an outfitter if you don’t have the time and/or friends to help you have a good self-guided hunt. If you draw a tag and want to talk about doing the hunt yourself or you want help choosing an outfitter, give us a call. We work with the best elk outfitters in Nevada.
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The Nevada application deadline is May 10, 2021 at 11:00 p.m. (PST).
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|Hunt/Fish Combo License (365-day license)||$156|
|Youth Hunt/Fish Combo License (365-day license)||$16|
|Application Fee (elk)||$19|
|Silver State Tag Application Fee (elk)||$29|
|PIW Application Fee||$11|
|Bonus Point Only Fee||$11|
Nevada Elk Hunting Articles from Huntin' Fool Magazine