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 Post subject: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 10th, 2012, 2:29 pm 
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We are looking for suggestions on where to live next. Dianne and I are moving west this summer. Elk are high on the list. Whitetails would be good too. And bears. Maybe sheep. Don't care much about an antelope. Is there any place left out there that has not been adversely impacted by top tier predators?

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 10th, 2012, 7:04 pm 
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Dan,

There is some impact from something everywhere outwest. Whether it is predators in WY, MT, or ID, development in CO, and UT, or gas and oil development in all of the above, there is some sort of "negative" impact on game herds and hunting in all western states in my opinion. I have lived in both WY and UT so I will give you my opinion.

Obviously your wife's opinion counts and she may or may not put hunting at the top of her priority list so some factors other than hunting may be involved in the decision. In my opinion Utah was the greatest place I have ever lived. But not necessarily because of the hunting opportunities. I enjoy general outdoor activities and Utah has it all. The general tag/general unit Utah opportunities are ok, but the great thing is you can be in ID or CO in a matter of hours and be doubling up on your elk hunting opportunities each year. Also, the Utah archery season is very early and you can be all wrapped up in Utah and head off to other states for the last two weeks of September. Whitetail hunting in UT is basically non-existant but again a few hour drive and you could be hunting Whitetails in ID or MT. The trophies you see and hear about in UT are primarily from limited entry areas. Fantastice hunting if you draw. If you focus on the SLC or Ogden areas you will find a fantastic dry climate, shopping, shows, sports, golf, skiing, whatever else you could want and still be in the mountains in an hour. Taxes are low and general quality of living is high. Probably one of the best states to live in from what I have seen.

Wyoming in general will be a bit more remote, which, if that is what you are looking for it would suit you fine. Housing in many areas is quite expensive, mostly because many "populated" areas are either full of ridiculously rich people (Jackson) or moderately rich people (Pinedale, Sheridan, Cody). Add to that gas and oil development that pays pretty good money and people come from all around to find work. An "average" (3 bedroom, 1400sq ft, no basement) home in the city of Pinedale Wyoming will probably cost $250,000. The benefit is no state income tax and low property taxes. Fairly high cost of living though. The bright side is access to some of the least pressured hunting areas in the lower 48. Millions of acres of public land, some very remote, some very easy to access. Fantastic fly fishing as well if that appeals to you. If "remote" is what you want I would say it is hard to beat Wyoming. Too many people in CO in my opinion, so many in fact they all come to Wyoming to recreate and get "away".

The SW may appeal to you more but I cannot speak much to states such as NV, NM, or AZ.

Like I said, I really enjoyed living in Utah, I keep telling my wife we are going to retire there...she thinks I am kidding :D

Nathan


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 10:41 am 
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Thanks Nathan. Great feedback. I haven't looked at Utah much because property seems very expensive. I'll take another look. Our basic requirements are remote and adjacent to public ground. My wife likes to hunt as much or more than I do and fly fishing is a requirement. As long as we use the stock for some of it she is very happy.
Not on the list of requirements is anything that does not require boots or a horse as principal mode of transportation, so we are not concerned about skydiving, golf or anything that requires a parking lot or a pro shop. Not necessarily in order elk, bear and whitetails are foremost on the list of species to hunt. And moose. And turks. And ....well almost everything else.

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 11:37 am 
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Would be hard to beat Wyoming Dan. Hey "Wyoming Dan" that even sounds good.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 1:01 pm 
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Dan -
I lived on the central Oregon Coast for several years near Yachats...had Roosevelt elk in my yard almost daily - ask John Stockman about how many elk were around where I lived!! I have been in a lot of places that had elk, but never like the Oregon coast! You can also ask Norm Johnson about the coastal Roosevelts! I lived adjacent to National Forest lands, like 300 yards away..public land with lots of elk. Larry D. Jones of Bowhunter Magazine likes this area to hunt as well, and was my house guest chasing those "ghosts of the coast"

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Last edited by Dave Watson on March 12th, 2012, 1:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 1:11 pm 
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Here are Roosevelt bulls relaxing in the meadows near the banks of the Alsea River, 3 miles east of Waldport, Oregon. Locally known as the "Boys of Summer". This adjacent to National Forrest land.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 2:53 pm 
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In my younger days I always thought I wanted to live in Colorado. I never realized how short the bow season is. You have elk, mule deer in the mountains, and antelope opening in late August and closing at the end of September. It appears most of your big game hunting there has to be condensed into about 5 weeks. Montana lets you extend your hunting season through November with their whitetail season so you can do the mountain game in September and then spend October and November concentrating on whitetails.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 5:39 pm 
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Dan based on your last post I would suggest you focus hard on South Central Montana, or North Central Wyoming. I would think you would really like Sheridan, Powell, Buffalo, etc. The housing won't be any cheaper than Utah though. Gas and Oil development has really driven up the prices. I don't think you will find any land "steals" out there, those days might be over.

Those areas in North Central WY will have the remoteness and terrain that you are looking for. Utah, and SW Wyoming offer very few whitetail opportunities, but the areas in WY around the bighorn mountains are full of whitetails in the river bottoms. John brings up a good point on the shortness of bow seasons, which is certainly the case in Wyoming. However, especially for the whitetail hunts, the general season (rifle) extends into November and in Wyoming you just have to wear a blaze orange hat and you can continue to bowhunt. Depending on finances I would look really hard at being close to another state to expand elk opportunities. That said, if your wife is going to have an elk tag, filling two elk tags in one year would likely keep you busy without going to another state.

You could also look at South Central Wyoming around the Medicine Bow mountains. I have not been there, but everyone I knew in Wyoming said Saratoga Springs was a great area. Might be worth looking into. Then Colorado would be your "backup" state.

Montana is a great place but taxes will be much less in Wyoming since there is no state income tax and sales tax was only 4% when I lived there. To my knowledge Montana's tax rates are a bit higher than that.

Just some more thoughts to muddy your decision :D

Nathan


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 7:50 pm 
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Dan, the real estate guides should be out soon. Will send it ASAP when it arrives.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 12th, 2012, 10:34 pm 
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I'm partial to Central Montana sence I am from there. I will move back there someday. There is every game animal that Montana has to offer with in a hours drive. Tags are easy to get except Moose, Sheep and goat. Thouse take a little time to get for most people.

The down fall to Montana is low paying jobs and taxes. There isn't a sales tax but there is a state tax.

Oh how I miss Montana


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 13th, 2012, 1:58 am 
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I think the hunting opportunities where I live in North Idaho near Moscow are about as good as anywhere in the country. Hunting seasons for deer and elk opens Sept 1st and runs nearly 3 months (part of that is modern rifle or muzzleloader season, but you can still bowhunt during those seasons if you don't mind wearing blaze orange). Tags for elk, deer, bear, and turkeys can all be purchased over-the-counter, unlike many other western states mentioned by other members where many species - or at least prime areas - are "draw only."

I can hunt big whitetails, elk, bears, and turkeys all within a 20 minute drive from my house. Best of all, Idaho has more public land that virtually any other state in the lower 48, and much of it is very remote. Housing prices outside of the major metropolitan areas are very affordable (avoid Coeur D'Alene or Post Falls).

Weather is generally fairly dry and mild. We definitely have 4-seasons, but the winters aren't super cold nor are the summers super hot.

I have to be honest an admit that the wolves have affected the quality of the hunting over the past 5 years. On the other hand, Idaho is aggressively promoting wolf tags to both resident and non-res hunters and I expect to see wolf numbers reduced significantly in the next few years to levels that will allow big game populations to rebound to pre-wolf numbers.

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 13th, 2012, 3:39 am 
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Dan

Looks like you have received many great suggestions for areas to live out west. I have lived in Montana for close to 40 years and although not the place for everyone I still enjoy the values. There are always negatives and positives to each part of the west, but I would say that Montana has a lot of appeal for the outdoorsman. I must say though that I venture to Idaho for steelhead fishing and chuckar hunting and to Oregon for bird hunting each year. I have personally thought of other places to live, but I don't like the short big game hunting seasons in some of the other States. Idaho would probably be my first choice, but I only live an hour away so it fits well with getting additional tags and chasing fish that can't quite make it over the hill.

Tim


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 13th, 2012, 10:47 am 
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I'd think you would want to spend a little time in an area you might want to move to.

That being said, we moved to SE Idaho in 1978 without ever having been here. The elk hunting is still not bad, fly fishing is OK, with both the South Fork and Henry's Fork of the snake right here, and Silver creek a little to the west. Whitetails and mule tails are both here. As well as grizzly bears and black bears and cats and wolverines.

Evidently, by the number of Utah plates I see on cars around here, especially in the summer, they like it here better than there. Nathan must like crowds. A lot of the Jackson Hole middle class shop here a lot.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 13th, 2012, 6:38 pm 
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I wouldn't say I like crowds, I have a wife who does so Utah was a great comprimise for us. Outdoor stuff for me and "city" stuff for her. :D

Utahns definately like to hit the neighboring states.

Nathan


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 12:02 pm 
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Great effort here. Thanks from both Dianne and I. The house is sold and we are stuffing boxes and selling off the extras. I have some (over 80 boards) really nice, rough sawn, full dimension 2x6x12 oak lumber if anybody on this coast wants it, I'll make you a deal you can't refuse.
Dianne hunts. We will be hunting multiple states, so all the info related to that issue is on target. I am painfully aware of the tax situation, so I like Wy but so far Mt seems to have more available that fits our criteria.
Dianne has hunted Co and Mt. I have hunted and/or fished Id, Wa, Nm and Mt. The theme that has been repeated here several times reenforces our impressions; MT seems to be a good choice with Id a close second. I'm not counting Wy out, but except for Jackson Hole, it all looks like the moon! :?
A couple of questions on specific areas:
1. Why not Northwest Mt around Libby, south to Thompson falls. Sort of around the Cabinet Mt/ Scotchman's Peak Wilderness, Bull river?
2. How about the Black Hills in NE Wy and W SD? Dianne hunted turks in SD there a few years back and she thought it seemed pretty good.
Please keep the ideas and impressions coming though, and any leads on property you may be aware of. Again, a house with acerage that is 1. adjacent to quality public land 2. proper ground for horses 3. remote/private but not "off grid" and no "fishbowls".
Again; Thank you, Thank you! Thank you!

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 2:15 pm 
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Dan:

Check out Story, Wyoming and Sealy Lake, MT. I was hoping to go to the Wyoming Blackhills at retirement BUT Wifey is from Wyoming and she says "did that once"..... ugggh. That area is well served by Rapid City airport/hospital.

You will both be in Portland right? Wifey (Donnie) will be able top goive you some good feedback as she has lived in CO, WY, MT until she moved to AK. She knows horses, houses, property, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 2:26 pm 
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Dan,

You guys might want to post something on this thread like, "Dianne and I will be in the ______________ from 12:00 to 2:00 on Friday if anybody wants to come by and chew the fat about good places to live and hunt in WY, CO, MT, or UT." It would give you some good face time to get some back and forth about different places.

Larry


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 3:01 pm 
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Steve, We have boot tracks all over "The Swan" and Ovando/Lincoln. I could live anywhere around the Bob all the way from Big Fork through Condon around to Augusta. I will check out Story though. Thanks!
In keeping with Larry's suggestion, Dianne and I will get to Portland Wed so we can meet any of the days. How about Thurs for the early birds and Sat for the stragglers for lunch at noon. Where is good? In the hotel restaurant? Bar? I will trade adult libation for intel. Open to suggestions or alternative ideas.

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 3:03 pm 
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Wow - a guy doesn't visit the board in a few weeks and all kinds of things happen. Congrats Dan and Dianne! I hope this works out great for you two.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 3:48 pm 
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Hey Dan, I know a secret spot in western Montana that has bears, lions, wolves, moose, deer, elk, and turkeys, where you can drive to UT, ID, and WY in a few short hours. It might take more than one root beer in Portland to loosen me up enough to disclose that location.......

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 6:23 pm 
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Dan:

Donnie and I will be there in TWO days! Wednesday could be good, right before things go nuts!


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 15th, 2012, 8:04 pm 
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Dan and Dianne this is all good ..Though we will miss you at the eastern odd year gathering. Good Luck


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 16th, 2012, 1:14 pm 
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Dan,
Congrats on the start of your new adventure. I live half way between Trout Crick and T. Falls in NW Montana. Much good info above. Hunting anywhere in the West is not what it used to be.

Saw about 20 elk this morning. We have bears (Griz and Black), lions, coyotes, wolves, elk, deer (most WT but some MD), turkeys, moose, sheep, 3 kinds of grouse. Everything but moose, sheep and goat is over the counter.

Fishing is ok, trout, bass (SM & LM), Northerns. A few high lakes that are worthwhile.

We are planning to put our place on the market within the next year. 30 acres, with stream, older home, 54' x 24' shop/office/studio, large garden, fruit trees. In the last year I have seen lion, bears, coyotes, deer, elk, turkeys on the property.

Remote and secluded are relative terms. To me remote means 10 miles from the nearest road and secluded is 10 miles from the nearest neighbor. I have family that thinks secluded is 10 miles from the mall.

We have few neighbors only one close (200 yds), excellent delivery services, all utilities, no sales tax, Prop tax is just over $1K a year, no stop lights in the county, no parking meters, malls, etc. T.Falls has most necessities and we go to Missoula once or twice a year for things we can't get here. Very friendly folks with a few buttheads for balance I guess.

There are other nice properties for sale in the area also and although interest is picking up many of the nicest places are not yet selling because they are not inexpensive.

You should plan a trip to scout your preferred areas. Perhaps something will click with one location or you might find paradise in a most unexpected place. We have plenty of camping area if you make it this far. Sandpoint Idaho is about 70 miles.

A pic from the place.

Chad


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 16th, 2012, 1:22 pm 
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Good morels and huckleberries. Here is a pic of the crick. It is in a steep canyon and does have some trout.
Chad


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 17th, 2012, 5:23 am 
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Dan,

Sounds like you have narrowed it down a bit. Here are a few things that might be of help.

If you (or Dianne) need to be close to shopping then Bozeman, Missoula/Hamilton, Great Falls, Kalispell, Billings, Butte (I'm sorry if anyone reading this is from there) and Helena are the main hubs.

If you like big game hunting then all these areas (and the entire rest of the state) offer a bit of everything. If you are looking for big whitetails then the river bottoms are the place. In recent years there has been more ag ground developed in certain areas and we are seeing more 150" class bucks. Big die-off last year in the eastern portion. For big elk (ask Greg Munther) look to the Idaho/Montana border and Missouri Breaks. For pheasants, huns and sharpies look to the grasslands of central Montana and for grouse, dusky, blues etc. look to the mountains in the west. Sage grouse are on the rebound down around us.

If you like to fly fish then it's Missoula, Bozeman, Ennis, Dillon (this is where my wife and I live) Hamilton, Ft. Smith (out in the boondocks), Twin Bridges, West Jellystone, Craig, Ananconda, Deerlodge, Livingston, Three Forks, Lewistown and anywhere else in Southwest Montana. For the best in the state - the Missouri, Big Horn, Yellowstone, Madison, Beaverhead, Big Hole, Clarksfork, Blackfoot, Gallatin and Bitterroot Rivers.

Weather - the west side of the Divide is warmer. I know Bob Burton doesn't wear as many clothes as I do in the winter.

I could go on but will be in Portland on Thursday if you would like to meet up. And if you haven't guessed it by now I sell real estate.

Tim


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 17th, 2012, 3:00 pm 
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Steve, Tim T, Chad, PMs sent. Thanks again for all the info.

Tim D,

We will miss the OYG too! We ahve family there though so maybe it works out that we get to another one anyhow.

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 17th, 2012, 3:55 pm 
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Dan,
I answered you PM but not sure it went through, acted strange. Let me know if you got it.
Chad

This pic was taken a few miles from the house, Deep Creek Headwaters.


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 17th, 2012, 8:43 pm 
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Nice pix Chad. Thanks. Keep 'em coming. Yup I got the PMs and replied. I was out side packing stuff from my garage and getting the horse trailers ready for the long haul west.
If anyone knows where we can aprk a couple of big horse trailers and board three horses please pass that along. I am going to hve to baord them while we are reconoitering so I might as well pay someone "in he family". Nothing fancy just a palce whre they will be safe. They are trail horses and not pampered.....too much.
Jeff, I owe you some rootbeer anyhow. When can we meet up? I will bring your book! Bring your Utah stuff too.

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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 18th, 2012, 11:09 am 
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Dan, Tim is in a great area near Dillon and should be able to offer much insight to his part of Montana. Trout fishing is better there and elk hunting too I have a hunch. Montana is a big state with a variety of wildlife, habitat, topography and climate. We are in the "Banana Belt" and are often warmer than other parts of the state but we also have periods of time with overcast. Avg. rainfall is about 20" so despite all the water and trees around it is a fairly dry climate.

I will ask around about horse boarding for 3.
Jeff, you should tell me where that spot in MT is so I can go there and make sure there are not outsiders messin with it.

Yall have fun in Portland.

Chad


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 Post subject: Re: Go west.......
PostPosted: March 22nd, 2012, 7:31 am 
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Hi Dan, I am in Sandpoint. About 20 minuetes from Scotchman and 40 from Bull River. I'll PM my phone number. Drive safe

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