Hunting for pronghorn isn't easy to just go out and do, but we've got the info you need to make it happen.
Whether you are looking to cross off another species on your North American Super Slam list, or simply looking for one of the most exciting and challenging big game hunts in the world, you'll need to put the North American Pronghorn on your radar.
These super-fast creatures of the western plains, usually referred to as "antelope," are not antelope at all. They are actually their own unique species, more closely related to giraffes and okapis than antelope.
The fastest land animal in North America, the Pronghorn comes in second worldwide only to the cheetah, and have been clocked at over 60 mph in short sprints, and at an average of 50 mph over the course of a mile. They inhabit the high desert steppe of the Rocky Mountain west, with the largest population in Wyoming. There are more pronghorn in Wyoming than people.
They live in habitats where they can see any approaching danger from miles away and have the speed to quickly distance themselves from that danger. They are definitely a challenge to harvest, but incredibly satisfying when it is accomplished.
As an added bonus, pronghorn meat, when cared for properly, is one of the most delicious of any in North America.
Although the entire state of Wyoming, save for the high mountain regions, could be considered prime pronghorn country, larger herds congregate in just a few prime locations. One of the best regions in Wyoming to find big herds of pronghorn is in Campbell County, in the northeast corner of the state, near Devils Tower National Monument.
Campbell County, where the City of Gillette and the Town of Wright are located, has the perfect habitat for pronghorn with miles and miles of rolling hills covered with native grasses, plants and sagebrush. Some of the largest pronghorn recorded have been taken from Campbell County.
Access to public hunting land in Campbell County is one of the main reasons there are a lot of large pronghorn in the area. There simply isn't a whole lot of public access areas, so the pronghorn tend to stay on the large areas of private land. So, if you are serious about bagging a large North American Pronghorn, the best avenue is to hire a local hunting guide in Campbell County who has permission and access to private land.
Plus, the local outfitter & guide services in Campbell County specialize in pronghorn hunts and making sure your hunt is legal and ethical, so you can spend your time, energy and money on harvesting an animal, not staring at your GPS the entire time worrying whether you're on private or public land.
The Campbell County Convention & Visitors Bureau, in partnership with the local outfitters and guides, recommend that all out-of-state hunters first apply for the appropriate pronghorn antelope tag within the county. Hunt areas in the county include areas 17, 18, 19, 23, 24, 26 or 27. You can call an outfitter or guide to help determine the best area for you to apply in. If you are drawn to harvest a pronghorn in early June, it is recommended to plan a scout trip during the summer to meet your outfitter or guide and become familiar with the area you will be hunting. Then, in the fall, return to hunt.
A complete list of Campbell County outfitters and guides is available at https://www.visitgillettewright.com/activities/hunting-outfitters/.
So, whether you are a Super Slammer or just a hunter looking for a new adventure, be sure to consider Campbell County, Wyoming, as your absolute best destination to cross that North American Pronghorn off of your list.
For more information, log onto VisitGilletteWright.com or call 1-307-686-0040.