The Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IFGS) expects the 2017 elk hunt to be productive. Recent trends show the potential for promising results. The 2016 hunting season yielded the second-highest elk harvest in the last 20 years trailing only 2015 (see graphic).
Elk hunters in 2016 had 21 percent success statewide, including 39 percent for controlled hunts and 17 percent for general hunts, but general hunts accounted for 62 percent of the harvest.
“This is the good-old days of elk hunting,” said Craig White, IDGF Magic Valley regional supervisor. “There was only one period when Idaho hunters were harvesting as many elk as they are now.”
Record harvests took place in the 1990s. Central Idaho’s backcountry and wilderness areas were major contributors. Even though elk populations are ailing there, other areas of the state picked up production.
(Photo/graphic source: Idaho Department of Fish and Game)