Deer Hunting in Montana
Wilderness Deer Hunts
Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks (MFWP) hunting regulations and dates are released in March of each year. Please check the MFWP website for confirmation of season dates.
Early season wilderness deer hunts
We offer two early season wilderness hunts; one from our backcountry camp in Hellroaring, and one from our backcountry camp, Independence. Early season hunts are primary target elk. However, if you have a deer license or bear permit they are fair game with no extra charge. These hunts book very early. The early season begins September 15th.
During the early rifle season, we offer deer hunts from our backcountry camp at Independence. The early season begins September 15th. These early season rifle wilderness hunts are 7-day hunts (day in, 5 days hunting, day out). We hunt 1 guide to 2 hunters and take 4-8 hunters on these hunts.
Both camps have comfortable accommodations consisting of roomy, carpeted wall tents with wood stoves, cots with foam pads, a hot shower (Hellroaring only), a roaring campfire, and first class meals prepared by our cook.
General season wilderness deer hunts
During the general season we offer several deer hunting options. General season rifle deer wilderness hunts are run out of our backcountry camp at Independence or out of a private lodge bordering the wilderness.
The Independence/Boulder drainage hunt is a 7-day hunt (day in, 5 days hunting, day out). We hunt 1 guide to 2 hunters and take 4-8 hunters on a hunt. Wilderness hunts from the backcountry camp typically take place during the first week of the general season, but can extend another week or two, weather permitting. We have the use of a cabin and a lodge near the wilderness hunting area as additional accommodation options.
Accommodations at Independence include comfortable, carpeted wall tents with wood stoves, cots with foam pads, a roaring campfire, and first-class meals prepared by our camp cook. Lodge accommodations include comfortable rooms with all bedding provided, bathrooms and hot showers, and hearty meals.
Private Land General Season Deer Hunts
Hunting on the Divide Ranch
For the archery and rifle hunter focused on trophy mule deer and whitetail deer, we have a special trophy opportunity ranch that is hunted with a general license.
We have been guiding and outfitting for twenty years and the topography of the landscape of this ranch provides the most unique combination of land management, wildlife conservation and trophy hunting opportunity with a general tag that we have ever encountered. We use a combination of 4 wheelers, hiking and horses for this hunt.
Big Timber Ranch Hunts
The Big Timber Ranch hunts cover thousands of acres of rolling hills with flowing creeks just minutes outside of Big Timber, MT. Elk, deer and antelope primarily populate these ranches, All the ranches on which we deer hunt can be hunted with a general deer license. These hunts are 6 days (arrival day, 4 days hunting, departure day). We take 4-8 hunters, and hunt 1 guide to 2 hunters.
Non-residents must apply for a general big game combination or deer combination license through the Montana drawing system.
Yellowstone Ranches – Big Timber, MTThis unique hunting and fishing opportunity provides a venue for you to plan your own combination hunting and fishing adventure.Five miles of Yellowstone riverfront with brush and cottonwood trees, lots of water and channels provides great habitat for deer, turkey and waterfowl.
- 5 minutes from Big Timber
- Phenomenal Fishing
- Combination Hunts Available: Deer, Turkey, Duck & Geese
- Archery or Rifle
- Seasonal Custom Hunts
Fulfill Your Sense of Adventure.
General licensing information
Important Information for Resident and Non-Resident Hunters before applying for hunting licenses
If you were born after January 1, 1985, you are required to show proof of completing a Montana hunter safety and education course or an approved hunter safety course from any other state or province prior to applying for or purchasing a hunting license whether the hunting license is for rifle or archery.
All first time bow and arrow license purchasers must enter their bowhunter education certificate number (NBEF) or a previous years archery license number from any state or province.
If you intend to purchase a black bear license for the first time, you need to have passed the FWP Bear Identification test. It can be found online at FWP’s website. Click on Education, then Hunter Education. Choose Bear Identification Program.
All licenses requiring a kill tag such as deer, elk, wolf, mountain lion, mountain goat, antelope, etc. will be mailed to you from MFWP. Make sure the address you used when you applied for or purchased your license is the address to which you want your license mailed. If your purchase included a combination license, then the conservation & fishing portion of that will also be mailed to you. Always print a copy of your application and receipt. This is your proof of application. Once the draws are posted you will want to be checking your mail to be sure you receive your license. If you do not receive your license within 3 weeks of the posted draw, call MFWP and let them know. Licenses purchased online not requiring a kill tag must be printed from your home printer. These licenses which are now in your physical possession are valid for immediate use.
If you need to purchase licenses for yourself and immediate family members, you must do so in separate transactions and provide the appropriate identification required for each individual.
Non-residents who do not have an ALS number established and are purchasing a conservation license for the first time must be prepared to provide the last 4 digits of their social security number per Montana Code Annotated to comply with the Federal Welfare Reform Law. A conservation license is required when purchasing a hunting or fishing license.
Hunting Deposit & Payment Policy
A partial deposit of $1000 is required to book your hunt. If you do not draw a license, the $1000 partial deposit will be rolled over to the following year, if space is available, or refunded. The drawing takes place in mid-April. The remainder of the deposit (50% of the cost of the hunt) is due when the draw is posted and is non-refundable. The balance of the hunt is due 30 days prior to your hunt and is non-refundable. Hunts not fully paid by this date will be considered cancelled. We recommend Trip Cancellation Insurance. Montana Outfitters & Guides Association suggests Global Rescue Travel Insurance.
All hunts will include an additional fee of $50 for the Hunter/Angler Defense Fund. This fund was set up by Montana Outfitters & Guides Association for the purpose of defending non-resident hunting and fishing rights in the State of Montana. (Information on HADF can be found in the General Hunting Information Packet.)
We accept Credit Cards (Visa/MasterCard only) and Checks. Make Checks Payable to: Absaroka-Beartooth Outfitters, Inc.