The tradition of hunting on Wyoming's public lands began more than a century ago and that tradition continues to thrive today. Many of Wyoming's residents are avid hunters who enjoy sharing the experience with family and friends. In addition, people from across the country travel to Wyoming each fall to experience the thrill of hunting Wyoming's big game species.
Sweetwater County’s high desert environment offers a unique experience for hunters. The Red Desert supports an abundance of wildlife, despite its scarcity of water and vegetation. The largest migratory herd of pronghorn antelope in the lower 48 states and a rare desert elk herd, said to be the world's largest, live in the desert.
Hunters in Sweetwater County can also find mule deer, moose and sage grouse in the areas of Little Mountain, Pine Mountain and Aspen Mountain. As the largest county in the state, Sweetwater County offers something for every hunter, whether using a rifle or bow and arrow.
Sweetwater County features a large amount of public land available to hunters. In addition, private land owners are very good about allowing access to hunters. Quality big game herds are plentiful in Sweetwater County; however, there is a high demand. It can be difficult to obtain a license with the state’s limited draw.
License applications may be submitted singly or in party groups of 2 to 6 people. The legal age for hunting big game is 12. A hunter safety card is required by law for anyone born after January 1, 1966. Out of state hunter safety cards are honored. The card must be in hunter’s possession at all times.
The Wyoming Game and Fish Department Regulations are revised periodically and hunters are encouraged to check for updates on a regular basis. Future season dates may change from year to year, so plan far in advance. Visit www.wgfd.wyo.govfor more information.
Wyoming’s Top Ten Hunting Violations
- TAGGING VIOLATIONS
These violations range from forgetting to sign your license in the excitement of having just bagged a big game animal to a “slick license” where the hunter intentionally omits all the tagging procedure with the hope of using the license again. Hunters are reminded detailed tagging instructions are printed on each big game license.
- SHOOTING FROM A PUBLIC ROAD
It is illegal to shoot from or across a public road when hunting or target shooting. Two-track roads on public lands are not public roads. The road surface, the area between the fences on fenced public road or highway and an area thirty feet perpendicular to the edge of the road surface on an unfenced public road or highway shall be considered public road or highway.
- FAILURE TO RETAIN EVIDENCE OF GENDER ON A BIG GAME ANIMAL
Some licenses and hunt areas require a specific gender be harvested. When there are gender restrictions, either the visible external sex organs, head or antlers shall accompany the animal as a whole.
- HUNTING IN THE WRONG AREA
For example, a general license is only valid in general license areas and cannot be legally used in limited quota areas. A limited quota license is only valid for the area or areas listed and no others.
- HUNTING WITHOUT HUNTER EDUCATION
Wyoming law requires all hunters born on or after Jan. 1, 1966 to have passed a certified hunter education course. Hunters must carry their hunter education card with them.
- FALSE OATH
When a non-resident purchases resident licenses or a person purchases resident licenses without having resided in and been domiciled in the state for one full year immediately preceding the date of purchase of the license.
Hunters must have permission to enter private land in Wyoming, even if the intent is to just cross the private land to reach public land. In Wyoming, private property does not have to be posted to deny access.
- WANTON DESTRUCTION
Shooting an animal and leaving it to waste. The most common occurrence of this is a hunter who “high grades” or abandons a big game animal wanting one with larger antlers.
- FAILURE TO WEAR FLOURESCENT ORANGE
For whatever reason, some big game hunters still refuse to wear fluorescent orange. Wyoming has a flexible hunter orange law compared to many states. In Wyoming, hunters must visibly wear a fluorescent orange vest/coat, hat or both.
- FAILURE TO PURCHASE CONSERVATION STAMP
In addition to the license, all hunters, except Pioneer License holders who are exercising hunting or fishing privileges under a pioneer license, must purchase a $12.50 Conservation Stamp. If the pioneer is hunting on a non-pioneer license, a conservation stamp is required.
Hunting, Boating, Camping Checklists
2012 Nonresident Hunting Information and Application Booklet
2012 Wyoming Resident Hunting Information and Applications Booklet
Specials & Packages
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