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7 things you need to know about landowner tags

 

Mountains of Colorado
Colorado, a state that many believe has the best landowner voucher program in the West. Photo credit: Getty Images

Draw odds getting you down? We know, it can be tough. Fortunately, there is a way to forego the draw altogether — they are called landowner tags, or vouchers. These give you the opportunity to hunt some of the nicest units that are otherwise hard to come by. 

However, just like the tag system, they ae not the easiest thing in the world to understand, since it varies greatly by state. I have been working with landowner tags for years, and with the number of misunderstandings I have heard, I could probably write a book. Instead, here are just some debunked myths about the landowner tag system.

1. In Colorado, your landowner tag will let you hunt on public land too

Colorado issues two types of landowner tags: unit-wide and private-land only. The unit-wide tag gives the hunter access to hunt on the private property for which the tag was issued, but also allows the hunter the privilege of hunting all public land in that unit. 

These landowner tags must be drawn by landowners through a special landowner lottery draw which takes place each year. However, landowners are not guaranteed a set number of tags each year, the luck of the draw applies to them just as much as hunters in the Colorado general draw. Also, the qualifications are more strict: landowners must have at least 160 continuous deeded acres that are also used by wildlife or must posses an agricultural cropland.

Wide mule deer buck

A happy hunter poses with a wide mule deer buck harvested with a landowner tag.

2. In Nevada there is no limit on landowner tag purchases

The biggest advantage to Nevada’s landowner tag program is that you are allowed to purchase as many landowner tags as you want — there are no restrictions. Another big positive is that all tags are unit-wide, though rules vary by species: 

  • Deer: Once you purchase a unit-wide landowner tag for deer, you can hunt all available deer seasons in the unit. For example, if you buy a Nevada 051 landowner tag, you can hunt the archery AND muzzleloader AND rifle seasons. 
  • Elk: Those who purchase a landowner elk tag have to pick a season from archery, muzzleloader or rifle season, but can only hunt one season. 
  • Antelope: Just like Nevada deer landowner tags, antelope tags allow you to hunt all available antelope seasons in the unit.
     
Lorenzo's mule deer
goHUNT team member Lorenzo Sartini utilized a landowner tag voucher to harvest this mule deer in Nevada.

3. There are no landowner tags in Arizona

Sorry, Arizona currently does not have a landowner voucher program in place, and no plans to create one in the foreseeable future. 

4. Utah’s system is complicated, but once you master it, opportunities are everywhere

There are unit wide landowner tags available in general season units for landowners that have at least 640 continuous acres. These tags are good for the landowner's private ranch along with any public land within the unit. However, these tags can ONLY be given to family members of the landowner. 

There are also unit wide landowner tags available in limited entry units. These tags are good for the landowner's private ranch along with any public land within the unit. These tags CAN be sold to non family members.  

The second kind are called Cooperative Wildlife Management Unit (CWMU) tags. Ranches must have at least 5,000 continuous acres to qualify for deer and 10,000 continuous acres to qualify for elk tags. These vouchers are only good for the specific CWMU ranch they were issued for. Utah-resident hunters can apply for these tags via Utah limited-entry draw or directly from the CWMU ranch operator. 

Utah also offers conservation permits that allow hunters who purchase them from conservation groups to hunt some of the state’s popular and limited entry units.

5. Here is how you can hunt multiple ranches with just one tag

Similar to Colorado, New Mexico has two types of two landowner vouchers. The most common is the unit wide landowner voucher that allows hunters to hunt public land as well as any private land of a landowner who is issued any unit-wide landowner vouchers that year — which if you are in Unit 15, is a huge opportunity. The second is a ranch-only tag which only allows hunters to hunt the specific ranch for which the tag was issued. 

Velvet mule deer taken with landowner tag

Another great buck taken by utilizing a landowner tag.

6. Don’t forget about Oregon

Oregon has private-land only tags and vouchers for elk and deer. It also has outfitter vouchers for elk and deer. There are a limited supply of Oregon landowner tags, so make sure you plan ahead. We sold out of our Oregon landowner tags in March.

7. In addition to buying a landowner tag, the states require fees as well

When you buy a pack of gum, you expect to pay sales tax, right? It’s similar here. When buying a landowner tag, you must submit the voucher to the state and pay a validation fee. Each state handles this differently so make sure you check with the appropriate wildlife agency. 

Interested in purchasing a landowner tag? You can view our inventory and purchase landowner tags here: www.gohunt.com/landowner-tags

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