Colorado Hunting License Options and Fees

Colorado offers many different types of big-game licenses and many different options for purchasing them. To get a limited license, hunters must apply for the draw, a process that awards licenses to hunters for specific units and dates. Those who are unsuccessful in the draw process still have many options open for hunting big game throughout the state, either through the left over draw, or with a license available for purchase over-the-counter.

1.  Important Dates

License Drawing     

     Application deadline - April 7th
     Draw Results Posted Online - May 29th
     Licenses in the Mail - June 12th
     Refunds mailed by - June 26th

License Sales Cutoff Dates for Vendors

     Muzzeloading - September 11th
     1st Rifle - October 9th
     2nd Rifle - October 16th
     3rd Rifle - October 30th
     4th Rifle - November 10th

2.  Different License Options for the Draw

Available in the Draw, Application Deadline is April 7

LIMITED LICENSES
To get a limited license or preference points, hunters must apply for the draw in April — this is a process that awards licenses to hunters for specific units and dates. These are distributed through an application and drawing process. They include public-land hunts, private-land-only licenses and Ranching for Wildlife (RFW) licenses.

PRIVATE-LAND-ONLY LICENSES
licenses include private lands within GMUs listed on the licenses as well as State Trust Lands not leased by CPW but which have an active private recreational lease through the State Land Board (hunters should ask the landowner if this applies). Permission from private landowners is always needed before hunting with a private-land-only license. Please get permission before applying.

RANCHING FOR WILDLIFE
licenses are available to all Colorado residents. Resident hunters may apply to hunt a specific ranch. Each ranch has specific rules.

LEFTOVER DRAW OPTIONS — ELK AND DEER APPLICATIONS ONLY
Elk and deer applicants can have the first chance at the limited licenses that are left after the draw by checking the “Leftover Draw” box on the application where it states, “If unsuccessful, send me...” (See below).

3.  Other Licenses

Available Starting July 21

OVER-THE-COUNTER LICENSES WITH CAPS
A preset number of licenses are available on a firstcome, first-served basis for both resident and nonresident hunters. These are called licenses “with caps.” They are sold online, by phone at 1-800-244-5613 or at CPW locations and license agents starting at 9 a.m. (MDT) July 21.

OVER-THE-COUNTER UNLIMITED LICENSES
These are available to both resident and nonresident hunters starting at 9 a.m. (MDT) July 21. They are sold online, by phone at 1-800-244-5613, at license agents and CPW locations around the state. There are an unlimited number of these licenses that may be purchased any time up until the day before your hunting season starts. After the season starts, they are available at CPW offices only, except for archery elk OTC licenses and plains elk OTC licenses, which can be purchased at any license agent.

Available Starting August 4

LEFTOVER LIMITED LICENSES
These are available to both resident and nonresident hunters. They are the limited licenses remaining after the draw and leftover draw processes. They go on sale in person and by phone at 9 a.m. (MDT) on Aug. 4. Call 1-800-244-5613. These licenses are sold by different methods at different license agents on Aug. 4. Contact the license agent you plan to go to for details. They also are available online on the CPW website starting at midnight Aug. 5.

4.  Getting a Hunt Instead of a Refund

RATHER HUNT THAN GET A REFUND?
try these options...

1. CHOOSE THE LEFTOVER DRAW ON YOUR APPLICATION
By checking the “Left over Draw” box on your application where it states, “If unsuccessful, send me...”, deer and elk applicants who do not draw their first license choices will be mailed in June a list of licenses (and an application) that are still available. Mailing back the left over application, you get first choice of any of the left over licenses before they go on sale in August. If you apply online for the limited license draw, you may also apply online for the left over draw.

2. CHOOSE AN ELK OR PRONGHORN OVER-THE-COUNTER LICENSE
If the left over draw isn’t for you because you’d like the flexibility of an over-the-counter license, let us know by choosing the one you want and it will be mailed to you if you are unsuccessful in the draw. There are an unlimited number of licenses for several elk and pronghorn hunts in a variety of units throughout the state. With this type of license, you can hunt more than one unit during the hunting season. Check which units are available by researching the maps in this brochure or talking to a CPW hunt planner at (303) 297-1192.

5.  License Allocations - How are Resident and Non-Resident Licenses Chosen

Nonresident allocations are determined by the average number of preference points a Colorado resident needed to draw a specific license during a 3-year period that ended with the 2009 drawing. (Units with low numbers of available licenses may not have any remaining for nonresidents after resident licenses are drawn.)
    

1. For hunt codes that required six or more points for a Colorado resident to draw an elk or deer license, up to 20   percent may go to nonresidents. These hunts are designated in unit tables by a “+ ” under the “SEX” column of the hunt tables.

2. For hunt codes that required fewer than six points for a Colorado resident to draw an elk or deer license, up to 35 percent may go to nonresidents. 

3. Nonresident allocations may increase if licenses remain after all Colorado resident fi rst choices have been drawn for that hunt code.

4. License allocations do not apply to private-land-only and Ranching For Wildlife licenses.

5. In a group of applications made up of both residents and nonresidents, all nonresidents in the group will count against the nonresident allocation.

6.  License Fees

LICENSE TYPE ...........................................FEE
Habitat Stamp (required)............................$10
If you have not yet purchased a 2015 Habitat Stamp.
DEER
DRAW (LIMITED)
 Resident adult..........................................$34
 Resident youth......................................$13.75
 Nonresident adult/fishing combo*.................$374
 Nonresident youth/fishing combo*.............$103.75
OVER-THE-COUNTER & LEFTOVER
 Resident adult...........................................$31
 Resident youth......................................$10.75
 Nonresident adult/fishing combo*..................$371
 Nonresident youth/fishing combo*.............$100.75
ELK
DRAW (LIMITED)
Resident adult............................................$49
Resident youth.......................................$13.75
Nonresident bull/fishing combo*.....................$619
Nonresident either-sex/fishing combo*............$619
Nonresident cow/fishing combo*....................$464
Nonresident youth/fishing combo*..............$103.75
OVER-THE-COUNTER & LEFTOVER
Resident adult.............................................$46
Resident youth........................................$10.75
Nonresident bull/fishing combo*.....................$616
Nonresident either-sex/fishing combo*.............$616
Nonresident cow/fishing combo*.....................$461
Nonresident youth/fishing combo*...............$100.75
PRONGHORN
DRAW (LIMITED)
Resident adult..............................................$34
Resident youth.........................................$13.75
Nonresident adult/fishing combo*....................$374
Nonresident youth/fishing combo*...............$103.75
OVER-THE-COUNTER & LEFTOVER
Resident adult .............................................$31
Resident youth.........................................$10.75
Nonresident adult/fishing combo*.....................$371
Nonresident youth /fishing combo*...............$100.75

7.  What you need before you Apply

     1. Current and valid photo ID
     2. Proof of hunter education (see requirements below)
     3. For residents, proof of residency (see page 14)
     4. Habitat Stamp (see requirements below)
     5. Social Security Number is required for new customers ages 12 and older

8.  License Requirements

1. Hunters must have a license to hunt. Sign it and carry the original with you while hunting.

2. A hunter may hunt only the animal, sex, season, units and method of take authorized by the license. Complete season dates may not be printed on the license because of space constraints. Check the details in this brochure for your specific license.

3. It is illegal to give false information to obtain a license. It also is illegal to alter a license or to loan, transfer, sell or give your license to someone else.

4. If you lose or destroy your license, a duplicate is available for half the price of the original license, but not more than $25. You can get a duplicate before the season opens from any license agent. After the season begins, duplicate licenses are available only at CPW locations.

5. Licenses expire on the expiration date printed on the license

6.Nonresidents can continue to use their combo fishing license after harvesting a biggame animal, as long as the carcass tag is the only part of the license that has been detached. The rest of the license must remain intact.

9.  Hunter Education (Safety) Requirements

1. Anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1949, must have a hunter education card to hunt in Colorado.

2. A hunter education card is needed to apply for or buy a license. It must be carried while hunting (unless previously verified — marked with a “V” as shown at right). • To get verified, take your hunter education card to a CPW office.

3. CPW honors hunter education cards from other states and provinces.

4. For information, go to www.bit.ly/COHunterEd.

5. Hunter education course schedules are online at cpw.state.co.us/learn/Pages/ HE-InternetBasedCourses.aspx.

10. Habitat Stamp

1. Anyone ages 18-64 MUST purchase a Habitat Stamp in order to buy or apply for a preference point or for a hunting or fishing license.

2. Habitat Stamps are $10 and are nonrefundable. One is required per person per year, valid April 1-March 31. A lifetime stamp is $300.25.

3. Hunters ages 18-64 applying for a limited license must purchase a 2015 Habitat Stamp to apply in the drawing process. To purchase a stamp with your draw application, include $10 in addition to your license fee when sending your application. If applying online, it will be added automatically, if needed. Paper applications submitted for hunters who do not have a Habitat Stamp will be disqualified from the draw.

4. EXEMPTIONS: Anyone with a free lifetime fishing license, a veteran’s lifetime combination small-game hunting and fishing license, or those approved for the Big-Game Mobility Impaired Hunting Program are exempt. See cpw.state.co.us/aboutus/pages/ accessibility.aspx for details.

11. Felonies and Hunting

Colorado and federal laws prohibit people convicted of certain crimes, such as domestic violence, from possessing weapons even for hunting. If you’ve been convicted of a crime, check with the appropriate law enforcement authority to find out how these laws apply to you.