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  1. Default Colorado Squirrels... rabbit?

    I grew up here and have never squirrel hunted, other than with pellet guns in the suburban back yard - which I'm thinking my be the best bet still. I want to get out soon with my winter boredom and see what I can come up with, but honestly am at a loss as to where to go. I'd be fine to just go tromping in to most any of the national forest along the foothills and check it out. But I'd like to at least start somewhere that is, at the very least, known to not be sucky, and I get the feeling that most places just aren't good to go for squirrels. I've heard Rampart Range and Red Feather might be places to go, what about anywhere closer to Denver? Any particular SWA's that are good for this? Right now I'm thinking if all else fails I'll either go wandering about Bergen or Ralston to see what's what. Similar question for rabbits.

  2. #2

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    Best of luck. I know nothing about Colorado so I can't help, but I hope you find a couple of those tasty morsels for your pot!
    Old Milwaukee Pro Staff

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    @ 7500' Colorado
    Posts
    223

    Default

    Just pick a spot and go. Things are most everywhere unless you go too high. That said I get mostly pine squirrels. Eat good just small. More of a social thing for me. Hike around B.S. and enjoy it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by vanish View Post
    Try heading East.
    You have good places to go within an hour and a half of Denver? I'm generally not trying to drive several hours for the like 1 acre of public land that exists east of i25. If there were some SWA's closer to Denver on the east side open to small game - I think Jumping Cow is the closest but it's permit use only for dove and some big game - I'd be interested in heading east.

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    I actually just had the thought of Waterton Canyon. Probably won't be much different than some of the foothills SWA's, but it's a pretty good chunk of national forest close to town. Any thoughts on this?

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    I moved to Colorado from Texas in 2005 and immediately started looking for squirrel hunting options. I tried a few of the SWAs northeast of Longmont, but they were loaded with waterfowl hunters are the time and I haven't been back. I'm actually headed out to South Republic SWA this weekend to hunt around the old Bonny Reservoir for squirrels and whatever else I can find. I had that ara recommended to me for fox squirrels several year ago, but am only now making the trip.

    Thus far, all of my fox squirrel hunting has been on local farms and orchards. Squirrels are an agricultural pest to those folks and they are happy to have someone come in and thin them out. Just go ask for permission, shop from those places when you can, and build friendships. Might ultimately land you a place to also hunt deer or bear.

    I've also done a fair amount of pine squirrel hunting in the mountains. Pine squirrels are generally thick in the lodgepole pine areas and they are noisy, so finding them isn't too hard. This is a fun hunt to do in the snow. You could also look for Abert's squirrels in Ponderosa pine forests, but that season closed already.

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    I'd pick Red Feather even if there weren't any squirrels! Beautiful up there.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Sedalia, Colorado
    Posts
    845

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOGIEGOAT View Post
    I actually just had the thought of Waterton Canyon. Probably won't be much different than some of the foothills SWA's, but it's a pretty good chunk of national forest close to town. Any thoughts on this?
    You might want to doublecheck the regs for Waterton before you go, not sure you can go carrying a firearm around in there...

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    TOGIEGOAT did you have any luck in your search for squirrels and rabbits? I am new to hunting and am in the same boat you were in. Ready and willing to scout but would love a general area that's known to have rabbits and squirrels.

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    Quote Originally Posted by provin1327 View Post
    TOGIEGOAT did you have any luck in your search for squirrels and rabbits? I am new to hunting and am in the same boat you were in. Ready and willing to scout but would love a general area that's known to have rabbits and squirrels.
    I did find a decent public spot for rabbits along the front range. Not yet for squirrels. Though I have a few areas I'm gonna try for squirrels this fall or winter so we'll see how those go. I'd be happy to give some details over PM if you like.

  12. #12

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    Not sure if it's truly an area-by-area thing or year-by-year thing but I have found some areas in the mountains to be just loaded with tree rats and others almost devoid of them.

    This year in the sangres I got into them thick scouting. Hoping they don't blow any stalks this year.
    Signatures confuse me.

  13. #13

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    Rabbits and the occasional Whitetail Jack are abundant around Tarryall Reservoir. Tons of public land to explore in the area. Literally from Kenosha pass all the way to 11 mile and I’m sure beyond that. Edge cover is key. Hunted here for years and never saw another small game hunter.

    Snowshoe hare are worth chasing too up higher. Jefferson lake, brainard lakes, vail pass etc. They are great in the pot.

    One other tip...rabbits in the mountains love rocks.

    One warnning. Once in a blue moon guys have caught the plague from rabbits in this area of CO (Tarryall). I always wore gloves while cleaning them and I’m still here. Google it for more info

    Can’t help on squirrel

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