View Full Version : Non-Resident Hunting in Arizona?

February 17, 2002, 07:45 PM
Can anyone here bring me up to speed on non-resident hunts in Arizona? Specifically, I'm wondering if the permits are issued by lottery, and I'm curious about the cost. What about application deadlines? I poked around on some web sites but found them more confusing than straightforward.

My best friend has relatives out in AZ, and we've just begun to toy with the idea of going out for some elk or mule deer hunting. I'm wondering what all might be involved.

Bud Helms
February 17, 2002, 07:52 PM
Off to the Hunting Forum.

February 18, 2002, 01:49 AM
Your best bet would be to contact Arizona Game and Fish.

2221 W. Greenway Rd.
Phoenix, Arizona 85023
(602) 942-3000

Or, in this day and age:

www.azgfd.com (http://www.azgfd.com)

The following numbers are for the 2000-2001 season. The new regulations stating rule changes and possible increases in fees will come out shortly with a supplement for other late season species being published in September (javelina, bear). Be sure to request that you be placed on a mailing list to get your copy. Also be sure to request a few applications, in case you goof yours up (I NEVER do that...).

First, each hunter must have the requisite license.

$25.50 - resident general hunting license (Class G)
$ 113.50 - Non-resident general hunting license (Class G).

Tag fees by species (required by each person and for for each species you are drawn to hunt in addition to the license):

Deer - $22.50/$113.50
Deer (Kaibab region) - $27.50/$118.50
Elk - $76.50/$371.00

NOTE: first number is the resident fee, second number is the non-resident fee.

For example, if you want to hunt deer as a non-resident, the total cost would be $227. For a resident, the same hunt would be $48. This is per person, as each are required to have both a hunting license and a tag. Pretty typical.

Hunts are done by lottery via computer drawings.

All fees are refunded (except for a $5.00 processing fee per hunt applied for) if you are not drawn. Up to four people may apply for a hunt on the same application and both the license and tags can be purchased on the same application. You may apply for up to 5 hunts per application. Hunts are numbered and identify the time period and area in addition to the selected game.

Deadline for applications is June 12 (this year, anyway) by 7PM. Only one application per species is permitted. Application may be mailed or hand-delivered only. Postmarks don't count. Get it in on time. They have NO sense of humor on deadlines.

Getting drawn is quite competitive, especially for elk.

Getting drawn as a non-resident seems to be a lot easier than as a resident, anymore.

After a continued unlucky spell, one of my hunting buddies was complaining to his neighbor. The neighbor had been drawn for elk 5 years running without fail. When my buddy quizzed him how that could be possible, the neighbor said he simply applied as a non-resident. My buddy asked him to explain how that was possible. The neighbor said to look at the fees involved, especially for elk.

Can't say there is something afoot, but economics can be tough, especially in a state with such a huge budget shortfall.

I am sure that Arizona Game and Fish can answer your questions better than I can, but if you have any specifics you can always e-mail me.

Good hunting.

February 18, 2002, 11:54 AM
Thanks Jager1. That clears up a lot.

February 18, 2002, 02:41 PM
Tho we do have "Tourist Season", we are not allowed to shoot non-residents.

Jager 1 gave the straight scoop.


February 18, 2002, 10:46 PM
One thing that is difficult is to apply for more than one big game tag without buying a general license. Each tag has to be applied for separately and each application requires a license number. You can buy a license when you apply for a tag and you can even make the license purchase contingent on being successfully drawn, but since each tag must be mailed in separately, so you can't say "I want to apply for these three big game tags but only sell me a general license if I am drawn for at least one of them." You can't even say "I want to apply for these three big game hunts and I included the general license fee with another application." I don't know why, you just can't.

Also, be sure not to buy your hunting license on-line if you want to apply for a big game tag. For some reason, the license number you get when you buy online won't work on big game applications.

For a final point, make sure you realize how low the success rates are out here before you spend a bunch of money and plan a vacation. It's not like most of the US out here. We live in primarily a desert with 'islands' of mountains that contain big game. The deer to human ratio is quite poor out here and getting worse. For a resident, the odds of getting drawn for deer average about 2-1 and the odds of being successful on the hunt are also about 2-1 and remeber, that's for deer. For elk it is much, much worse.

Most of the successfull hunters that I know out here grew up here and know their spots. They have decades of experience in the area and scout a lot. Of course, they are very tight lipped about everything.

Permit durations are very short, from three days to two weeks. That means that there might be 400 hunters in the same small area over a weekend.

Game and Fish publishes the unit by unit draw odds and success rates in the regs every year. I suggest that you don't even bother applying for a low success rate hunt. If you end up on a bad hunt, you could find yourself sitting on a mountain with 400 other hunters, all fighting for the same 30 bucks.

Also, be careful about buying a tag from an indian reservation. They can cost many thousnads of dollars and the people I know that have done it have always had trouble with the reservation authorities. I've heard of people being harasssed, people's tags have been revoked for minor reasons and you don't have any recourse. Just pack up your stuff, get out, and leave your money.