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2019 Montana nonresident surplus elk licenses available May 6

2019 Montana surplus elk licenses

Photo credit: Dreamstime

Draw results for the 2019 Montana elk season came out on Monday. You can see your results here if you haven't checked them already. If you're one of the unlucky hunters that didn't draw a nonresident general elk tag, you better get ready to act fast!

According to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, there are 393 surplus nonresident elk licenses available for the 2019 season. Surplus elk only licenses will be available on Monday, May 6 at 5 a.m. MDT online only. These licenses will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. No phone sales will be taken.

The price for a nonresident elk combination tag is $905. On May 6, you can attempt to pick up a tag through the link below:

Access FWP License section here

Other information

Alternates list

The alternate list sign up period for returned nonresident deer combination licenses will be from May 15 to June 30 and is available entirely online. 

Points purchase

If you did not apply in the main draw, you will be able to purchase bonus points and nonresident preference points from July 1 to September 30. 

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Benjamin P. - posted 9 months ago on 08-05-2019 06:30:36 pm

Hey Brady. I’m really diggin’ all your videos. Thanks so much for putting those out. My question for you is can I buy just a non-res deer tag or do I have to buy the combo elk/deer tags? Thanks!

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 05-06-2019 09:39:45 am
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

@Adam - Sorry I was out all weekend. The surplus and turned back tags (potential for more later this summer) are for all general hunt districts and for the most part, you can hunt archery and then turn around and hunt rifle.

@Brad - these are only general hunting licenses and not permits for the special draw districts. So in your case you either need to pick up a leftover/surplus Elk Combo (elk only) or a big game combo (elk and deer) if you want to hunt elk with a general license in Montana.

Happy to help with any and all questions about Montana.

Brad D. - posted 1 year ago on 05-04-2019 11:00:17 am
Brentwood, TN

I didn't apply for the draw but am a little confused about the license vs permit piece for the surplus tags, since you have to draw for both in the regular draw. If I go online on May 6 and get the surplus elk permit does it guarantee that I'll be able to get the correct elk license as well? BTW I want to hunt elk only. Thanks gents.

Ryan G. - posted 1 year ago on 05-03-2019 08:56:21 pm

Applied as a group through outfitter, specifies to be put into the same group, outfitter wanted to run the application process so we didn’t mess up our application. One guy ends up getting put into Elk only instead of Elk Combo, and the rest of us didn’t draw but now have pref points. Is FWP reasonable in these situations (turn in tag for pref point) or are we SOL?

Adam C. - posted 1 year ago on 05-02-2019 01:46:30 pm

Is the tag archery only or is it any weapon? The filter that was posted is set for archery so I wanted to double check.

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 05-01-2019 08:04:04 am
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

@Joe - They mentioned there are no leftover general deer licenses for 2019. But they will have an alternate list signup for deer that begins on May 15 to June 30 that you sign up for on your MyFWP account. Then they randomly assign people numbers and they offer up tags to the people with the lowest number if there are any turned back in.

@Kelsey - These elk tags are valid for all of the general elk districts in the state which is roughly 131 different hunting districts. You can quickly view those general elk districts on our Filtering 2.0 tool. You can jump right to those filter results here:

Kelsey M. - posted 1 year ago on 05-01-2019 06:28:46 am
hot springs, ar

What units will these tags apply to?

Joe S. - posted 1 year ago on 05-01-2019 05:13:30 am
Cheyenne, WY

Brady... have they posted if there are any leftover general deer licenses?

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 04-30-2019 04:57:12 pm
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

@Kevin - If you did not apply in the main draw, then you should be able to still pick up a preference point later on in the points only period. But... I am not 100% positive on this case being if you pick up a surplus, could you still buy a preference point as when I talked to them, they only mentioned that current preference points are not impacted when you get a surplus or a turned back leftover tag later in the year. I will find out this information for you before May 6. I was able to do so in the past when I picked up a surplus tag... but I want to confirm that is still true as they might have slightly changed things since then.

@Richard - Yes. You can attempt to pick up a leftover tag, even if you did not apply for any tags in Montana during the main draw.

Best of luck next week!

Richard B. - posted 1 year ago on 04-30-2019 03:55:55 pm

I did not apply for any tags in Montana this year. Can I purchase a leftover tag?Thanks1

Kevin Y. - posted 1 year ago on 04-30-2019 03:30:59 pm
Glendale AZ

Can a nonresident still purchase a preference point later in the year if a surplus tag is purchased this year?

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 04-30-2019 01:42:45 pm
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

Hey Chris. Yes, that would be 100% possible. If you are lucky enough to pick up one of these surplus elk tags, then you can hunt HD 121 for elk as that hunting district is a general unit.

Chris T. - posted 1 year ago on 04-30-2019 01:23:33 pm

I did not apply for any tag in Montana this year but would like to capitalze on one of these elk tags for archery in zone 121. Is that possible with this?

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 04-28-2019 10:17:43 pm
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

@Joshua - I just wanted to jump on here and mention that Christopher S. nailed it. I'm one of those folks that turns back in my general elk tag each year when I don't draw my limited entry tag.

Also, Montana typically does get more elk tags turned in later in the year. I will once again be updating everyone when those tags become available.

@Eric P. - I also called FWP the morning I wrote this article to confirm everything. Best of luck this season!

Christopher S. - posted 1 year ago on 04-27-2019 12:07:24 pm

@Joshua K they have leftover elk tags because these were returned when applicants checked the box on their application to return the general elk tag if they didn't draw their LE permit. It's pretty clear in the regulations. It isn't ridiculous that there are elk tags left, when more people are applying for the combo tag instead of elk only.

Joshua K. - posted 1 year ago on 04-26-2019 08:48:54 pm

Can someone help me understand why they do this? It is ridiculous that a bunch of people didn't draw the big game combo tag, yet they have left over elk tags. It is time they just split the deer and elk tags. If people want to hunt both, apply for both. At least that way you wouldn't have to try and guess at which tag to apply for.

Chris N.
Chris N. - posted 1 year ago on 04-26-2019 10:26:51 am
goHUNT Team

@Eric P. They posted an announcement on their Facebook page yesterday. Here is a link to their Facebook page:

Eric P. - posted 1 year ago on 04-26-2019 05:10:59 am
Peterborough Ontario

Can you please provide a link to where you got this news from. I cant find anything on the Montana Fish and Game website. Thanks