Revisiting Bucks and Bulls Guides and Outfitters


Published: September - 2012

It has been far too long since I reported on Bucks & Bulls Guides and Outfitters and owner, Kim Bonnett, who offers some of the best free-range mule deer, pronghorn and elk hunts available out West. Dedicated trophy hunters know that you must hunt areas with proven genetics and older age-class animals. Bonnett's formula for success is simple: lease carefully selected ranches with a track record for genetics and then implement careful wildlife management for trophy animals under the guidance of biologists. His properties are all gated, with exclusive, long-term leases, so these ranches produce results year after year. Finally, many of his guides have been with him for decades, so they not only know the country, but they also are experienced in finding and judging animals. While Bonnett consistently produces record-book animals for all of the big game he hunts, it is no secret that his real passion is big mule deer! I first met him over 30 years ago, not as an outfitter, but because he had killed some very big bucks himself. Now, he has five leases covering well over 300,000 acres in northern Utah, many that he has hunted for years. One advantage to hunting with Bucks and Bulls is the guaranteed permits under Utah's Cooperative Wildlife Management Units (CWMU) program. Although the property permit applications are due in mid-June, it is really a formality, and there is no drawing. The CWMU program requires a state-approved wildlife management program to be in place for each ranch, assuring clients that it is carefully managed. Hunts can be scheduled from mid-August to November 10. Several ranches are at lower elevations and benefit from deer migrations late in the season, while others have both good resident populations AND deer migrations. Bonnett offers 1x1, five- or six-day hunts for mule deer, depending on the ranch. The pricing varies by ranch from $6,900 to $13,500, reflecting the average trophy quality (B&C) that each ranch consistently produces. However, each ranch has the potential to produce that "buck of your dreams." Bonnett has averaged above the B&C minimum of 190 points on many of his ranches, and if averages........(continued)
 
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