9.18.17 #16

"In wilderness is the preservation of the  world."

Henry David Thoreau

Piedra Primitive Area

The Piedra Primitive Area hunts are 5 day hunts, with a total of 7 days out. You'll begin your trip with an 8 mile (2-1/2 hour) horse pack to one of our wilderness camps; located at elevations between 8500-9500'. Each of our camps features 25-30 square miles of aspen, spruce, and meadow covered terrain. From camp, our guides will take you by horse to the hunting areas. Our camps are designed to accommodate a maximum of 6 hunters, and the hunts are generally tailored to most everyone's ability. 

When bow or muzzleload hunting, we primarily utilize bugling and cow calling, however in some cases we engage in stalking or tree stand methods. In the event of rifle hunting, we employ stalking, still, and stand hunting tactics. Depending on the rifle hunt and conditions, we'll also bugle and cow call.


We provide guides for each hunt, generally at a 1:1 or 1:2 guide to hunter ratio. You'll have game sightings on nearly 100% of our hunts. Bow hunters tend to see a 20-30% success rate, while rifle hunters experience an average 50-60% success rate. While weather, and other factors are variable, our experienced guides find continued success on their hunts.

Our camps feature wall tents equipped with wood burning stoves and cots (with foam mats). All meals are provided, and prepared by our cooks stationed at the site. Our guides will handle trophy care, including the preparations for packing out. Our staff brings years of knowledge, and is committed to a comfortable and successful hunt. Our camps are prepared with radio and cell phone communication, in the event of any emergencies (including those at home).

For more info about your accommodations at our base camps, please see the camps page.


-Archery - guaranteed for elk, bear available over the counter (with limits), mule deer by drawing only

-Muzzleload - elk and deer by drawing only, bear available over the counter (with limits)

-Rifle Hunt #1 - either sex elk license by drawing only, bear available over the counter (with limits)

-Rifle Hunts #2 and Hunt #3 - guaranteed bull elk licenses, cow elk and deer by drawing, bear available over the counter (with limits)

For more info about licenses, please visit the licenses page.

Applications for Big Game Limited Licenses begin March 1, 2020. Deadline to apply for all drawing licenses is April 1, 2020. Hunters who have preference points for elk and deer have an advantage and generally draw their licenses. Hunters without preference points for elk and deer still have very high odds to draw their licenses. See our booking policy for further information.

open/close - 9/2 to 9/30

1 guide, 2 hunters


pack-in/out - 9/24 to 9/30

Elk and/or Mule Deer & Bear

open/close - 9/12 to 9/20

1 guide, 2 hunters


pack-in/out - 9/11 to 9/17

Elk and/or Mule Deer & Bear

open/close - 10/10 to 10/14

1 guide, 2 hunters


pack-in/out - 10/9 to 10/15

Elk & Bear

open/close - 10/24 to 11/1

1 guide, 2 hunters


pack-in/out - 10/23 to 10/29

Elk and/or Mule Deer & Bear

open/close - 11/7 to 11/13

1 guide, 2 hunters


pack-in/out - 11/6 to 11/12

Elk and/or Mule Deer & Bear

additional 1 guide, 1 hunter for any of these hunts 


Hwy 160 & Piedra River
180 County Rd 166

PO Box 4190
Pagosa Springs CO 81157


Colorado License No. 102

Big Game Unit 77


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© 2020 backcountry outfitters

Backcountry Outfitters Inc is an equal opportunity provider/employer operating under a special use permit in the San Juan National Forest, Weminuche Wilderness, and Piedra Primitive Area. Backcountry Outfitters Inc is licensed, bonded, and insured.