There are only a few days left before the coveted Arizona Pronghorn and Elk applications are due. I imagine many of you have already done your planning and are anxiously anticipating the draw results. There are also those like myself who are holding out until the last minute and still weighing our options. For those of you who are still sitting on the fence, I pose a question to you, is it worth holding out for one of Arizona’s Coveted Trophy Tags?
The Blessings of a Resident
For those of us lucky enough to be a resident in the great state of Arizona, we know that this state offers some of the highest caliber of trophy animals in the entire country, possibly the world. We also offer an extremely wide variety of animals to hunt, there are a total of 13 huntable big game species in Arizona. Many of which require a large amount of bonus points to draw a permit.
Why Would I Wait?
Why would anyone wait 10..15….even 20 years plus to hunt one single animal?!? The answer is the incredible value you are given in this state. The “Average Joe” would never have the chance of hunting a 350″ – 400″ Class Bull on public land for the tag price of $148. Arizona residents and even non-residents who are willing to wait the many years to pull a tag could certainly have that opportunity. But is it worth the wait?
Is the wait worth it?
Working in a hunting pro shop for the last 8 years, I have had the pleasure of meeting countless incredible hunters who far surpass my skill, as well as many hunters who are just starting their journey. I see many new hunters make the mistake of wanting to hold out for a “Trophy Tag” when they have never even been on an Elk hunt. I have also seen hunters hold out many years for their coveted tag and come home with a once in a lifetime animal. Does the experience of going on several “average hunts” over the course of 10 years outweigh the experience of going on one “Trophy Hunt” per decade if you are lucky?
Is there a right answer?
The correct answer to this question requires some serious reflection. Are you a hunter that has harvested many animals and are trying to reach a new benchmark of trophy quality such as a 350″ bull, or do you just want to go hunting? Maybe you have been trying for average units for a few years and haven’t been drawn so now you have enough points that you don’t want to “waste” them on an average hunt. The good news is that even lesser quality units in this state still hold the potential for giant critters. I don’t believe there is a right answer, but we can all agree that we want to get drawn and go hunting in 2020. Good luck in the draw this year, I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic!
Written by Josiah Richards of Ross Outdoors @bowsiah Email: Josiah@RossOutdoors.com