As one rut starts the downhill slide, the next one is just getting hot
Northwest Colorado saw the peak of the rut come and go about a week ago. There was a lot of excitement coming into Colorado's third rifle season, but midway through the hunt, many hunters were singing the blues with bucks shutting off and starting to keep to themselves. Southern Colorado was singing a different tune. Travis Reed, owner of Western Sky Outfitters and Elk Quest says that warm weather slowed them down a little and gave them a bit of a lull. The bucks started cruising early but then kind of just shut down. Partway through the third rifle season, the bucks turned on — and the fourth rifle season should be really good for anyone lucky enough to have a fourth-season buck tag.
Nevada and Utah are seeing much of the same. Northern parts of the states have had rut activity, whereas the southern parts are just getting going. That overflows right into Arizona and New Mexico with good rut activity in the Kaibab region of Arizona and all along the northern border of New Mexico. The southern areas of New Mexico and Arizona are still a few weeks off from any real rut activity.
California's eastern Sierras are starting to see some rut activity right now as well. In Colorado last week, my good friend and California expert Lucas Paugh (Instagram: @lucas.paugh.805) stopped by to visit me and filled me in on California's latest rut news. Lucas said a few of the G region premium hunts should nail the rut perfectly, with some opening late November and early December.
Texas is an incredibly diverse state when it comes to the rut. With more than 10 major ecological areas, and as many or more sub areas within those, it could nearly be counted as its own region for this report with some type of deer rut happening from October through January. That's not counting axis deer, which have different rut times depending on the herd, some in June, some in December, etc. My current reports have most of the state in good rut activity except for South Texas. The Panhandle and North Texas have been good for a couple of weeks with north-central and central really heating up right now. West Texas is on the same program, with the rut just getting good.
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