Post By: pfurs3 Posted: 8/11/2012 4:53:27 PM Points: 0
I realize this is a fishing forum, but I know most of you are outdoorsmen and hunters as well. That being said, I am wondering if any of you have had success hunting Dusky/Blue grouse. I have hunted pheasant, quail and ruffed grouse all of my life and would like to try my hand with the Dusky grouse. I live in Colorado Springs and hunt behind a pointing dog. Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.
If you know of other forums where this post would be more appropriate I would be glad to know about them.
The Grouse are all over in the high country in Colorado. Some areas of course are better than others. The best I have found is the Southern San Juans. The reason I answered you is because of the dog. Be very careful to check the Colorado Hunting Regulations about hunting in the mountains with any dog.
I have had luck up Cottonwood Pass and up by the old ghost town of Hancock. I have three shorthairs and a weimeriener. I am not sure of the previous post why the concern of the dog hunting in the mountains. They are higher up in elevation then what I would have expected. About 100 yards from timberline.
The reverse migrate, they start low in September and migrate up as the season wears on. Lots of info availabe on the web...but I caution you...they are like elk. If you don't have a gun, the are everywhere, have a gun, they are in the next county (ha ha ha)
Rabbit Ears Pass and south of Sylvan Lake are good areas, you just need to find the right elevation and they'll be there. Watch out for porkies when hunting with your dogs in the high country! Be prepared to deal with quills if you need to.
Reply by: PANMAN Posted: 8/12/2012 6:11:34 AM Points: 506
Sorry, below timberline. I have hunted blues for many years. I use to think it was a mythical bird.Where I am finding them there is water somewhat close by and berries. When I have checked their crop they usually have berries in them. In particular a dark berry a little smaller then a pea, it is sweet smelling. That is what I have found where I have hunted them. I am anxious for the birdin season to begin. I have a one and a half year old shorthair that looks like he's ready. I dealt with some gunshyness last year, but after a few trips to a bird ranch he seems to be doing fine. We have gone scouting for ptarmigan a few times this summer and he has found them and is pointing stong. WHOOOO. And yes I plan on hunting grouse this year. It is like a holiday.
They will be down lower this time of year with grasshoppers the food source. They seem to hold up when it is hot, but wait for some rain and they start coming out. But first you have to find the type of areas they like. Look for berry bushes at the base of evergreens in broken meadows.
Thank you for all of the advice. I am planning to hunt the first week of September and think I will try the San Isabel NF. If anyone else is going that weekend and wouldn't mind some company let me know. email@example.com
Reply by: catchn Posted: 8/14/2012 11:00:25 AM Points: 215
as mentioned befoere they are all over in the san juans, I saw them all the time when out hiking around telluride when I lived there. Have also seen them in summit county several times when alpine fishing. Funny though I have seen hundreds if not thousands of them in my 12 years + in this state and have NEVER seen one below tree line. Maybe cuz I wasn't looking for them and above tree line and low veg areas ther is no where to hide?
We spent the weekend at Steamboat lake and took a couple drives while we were there. We drove up to Hahn's peak lake (which is not actually on Hahn's peak) and from there took another FS road for a few miles. While driving we came across 8 blue grouse just hanging around the road. We almost had to get out of the vehicle to get them off the road as they just stuck around and let us take pictures.
@ Catchn are you sure those above timberline were not ptarmigan? @ pfurs3 I as well will be hunting the San Isabel NF. I think my bro might be going as well. I've got your email. I will get a hold of you closer to the opener.