CPW proposes eliminating Colorado OTC elk archery hunts starting in 2025

Published On: February 27th, 2024
Share this article
Colorado OTC Elk

In a significant shift for elk hunters across the state, Colorado is set to review proposals that could end over-the-counter (OTC) archery elk hunts for both nonresidents and residents starting in 2025. The move, aimed at reducing overcrowding, enhancing the hunting experience, and improving wildlife management marks a pivotal moment for hunters accustomed to the current system.


OTC elk tags have long been a cornerstone of Colorado’s hunting landscape, offering archers the flexibility to hunt in various units without the need for a draw. The available hunts have grown in popularity in recent years, leading to increased pressure on elk populations and concerns about overcrowding in hunting areas.

The Recommended Proposal for OTC Archery Elk Hunts

The Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) has recommended eliminating OTC archery elk licenses in response to these challenges, and moving all the current OTC units to limited entry units managed through the annual draw. The proposal seeks to address key issues including overcrowding, the need for standardized management across game units, and the desire for more effective elk distribution and local herd management.

Public feedback has played a crucial role in shaping this proposal, with recent surveys indicating strong support for measures that would improve the quality of the archery elk hunting experience in Colorado.

Alternate Proposals for Archery OTC Tags

Alternative Proposal: In addition to the proposal to convert all OTC units into draw units for both nonresidents and residents, CPW also considered the proposal of converting only nonresident tags in OTC units to the draw, and keeping those units OTC for residents.

Status Quo: Maintaining the current OTC system was evaluated, but concerns about long-term sustainability and hunter satisfaction have prompted the move towards change.

Next Steps

The proposals are set to undergo an extensive review process, involving public hearings and stakeholder engagement to ensure a wide range of perspectives are considered. CPW aims to finalize decisions in the coming months, with a view to implementing changes by the 2025 hunting season.

From the Blog

Get the OnPoint app!

Get the OnPoint app!

Get every application, details, deadlines, and more at your fingertips with the OnPoint mobile app!

Go to Top