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 Post subject: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2010 10:25 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 9:42 am
Posts: 50
Location: SE FL & SW CO
Howdy,

Been hunting in SW CO for 3 seasons now. The pickings are few and far between. Will usually hunt at the 8,000 ft levels +/- 1,000, where the aspen meet the pines. Not unusual to walk 4 mi each morning and 4 mi each afternoon for three or four days straight. So far I've bagged one bird per season. That is, after all that walking, (a lot of it with my GSP), I've actually seen only one bird, shot it, cleaned and ate it per season.

I'm in the Durango area and hunted: Missionary Ridge, Lemon Reservoir, Cascade, behind (northwest) of DMR, DMR itself and Lime creek road. Any local knowledge would be appreciated. There's got to be more grouse out here. I get lots of reports of sightings but during season, poor shows. Nothing like the grand Bois du Nord in the New Hampshire and Maine areas. They have slightly smaller birds but much more of them. If you know the area and think I should just hang it up and go elsewhere, I would like to know that too. BTW, I'm just one guy with a twenty ga and my dog.

Many thanks,

Ed :?



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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 11:26 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:10 pm
Posts: 339
I hunt the other side of the rockies in Utah and it's the same here. Grouse are wily and few in number (relative to places like minnesota and maine). I love grouse hunting but only get out about 3 times a season (the season's short here). I basically consider grouse hunting "hiking with a gun". I enjoy the scenery and the walk; any birds I see are merely a bonus. 8) I've only been out for the past couple of years, though, since I have a friend with a dog. Numbers haven't been huge lately by any reports.


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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Tue Feb 09, 2010 1:14 pm 
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Look for areas with thick growths of lupine in the fall, the birds love the seeds. Here in AZ I find them a bit higher in the spruce-fir forests (9000 ft). Our grouse are spruce grouse and I will often find them a bit lower during spring turkey season (8000ft), in the ponderosa-aspen areas. Once I called in a "tom" grouse to my hen call. He was all fanned out and had his throat patch blown up. Really neat, but I would have liked to see him service a hen turkey!!! GJ


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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 9:14 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2008 5:01 pm
Posts: 128
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Hey Fast Eddie;

Look for Spruce, Douglas Fir and Aspen trees with a good understory of brush and forbs. A slight knowledge of what Dusky Grouse east is good, too - Choke Cherries, wild rose hips, dandelion flowers. They won't venture too far from water sources; seeps, creeks and depressions. Grouse like to use ridge lines, draws and valley floors to travel up and down the mountain slope. Here in NM, we start hunting at 8,500 feet altitude; earlier in the season, there are grouse a little lower (usually hens with broods) and start migrating up as the season progresses. I frequently go to Platoro to fly fish but next year I am thinking of trying out the grouse there (with a shot at ptarmigan). I hunt with a Labrador. Here is a photo of some grouse my buddy and I took last season; the hail forced us off the mountain early (see the water drops on the SXS's).

Image


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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 9:23 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2008 5:01 pm
Posts: 128
Location: Albuquerque, NM
The link from this site didn't work on the jpg. So, here another try.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2010 2:09 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:10 pm
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Nice pic!


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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Thu Feb 11, 2010 2:03 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 10:03 pm
Posts: 937
Location: way upstate ny
don't know about the Derango area, but when we fish the Yampa I see them all over the place in Stagecoach. Don't know if you are willing to travel.

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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Tue Feb 16, 2010 1:50 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 9:42 am
Posts: 50
Location: SE FL & SW CO
Many thanks for all the info!!

Great pics Escopeton!!

Good hunting!!!

Ed

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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:17 pm 
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Location: Wyoming
We always used to see them when we were elk hunting in the archery season. Had more fun chasing grouse and taking them with a bow than the elk.

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 Post subject: Re: SOUTHWEST COLORADO GROUSE
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2008 5:01 pm
Posts: 128
Location: Albuquerque, NM
[quote="Chaco1"Had more fun chasing grouse and taking them with a bow.[/quote]

When I used to bow hunt, I used to carry a flu-flu arrow with a judo point on it just for grouse.




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