The weather here in Colorado will be clearing up soon enough to have some fun outdoors. Are you prepared for the hunting season?

According to Colorado Parks and Wildlife, it's time for Colorado hunters to submit their applications for big game such as Moose, Deer, Elk, Pronghorn, and Bear.

Get our free mobile app

Colorado Big Game Hunting Qualifying Licenses

If you're looking to get into the draw to hunt Big Game in Colorado, then you must have a qualifying license. That means all applicants, including those ages 12-17, must be licensed prior to applying for the Big Game drawing.

Please keep in mind that, "qualifying licenses (other than veteran and first responder lifetime combos) must be valid for the current license year."

Colorado 2022 Big Game Draw Dates

There are a limited amount of licenses available to hunt big game in Colorado. In 2021 alone, Colorado Parks and Wildlife received more than 650,000 big game license applications. Two drawings will be held to select which applicants will receive a license.

Applications for the Big Game drawings began on March 1, 2022. It is recommended that you apply as early as possible in case you run into any issues. Applications are accepted online at cpw.state.co.us or by phone: 1-800-244-5613.

The first draw application's deadline is April 5, 2022, at 8 p.m. MT.

The secondary draw application deadline is July 5, at 8 p.m. MT.

Colorado 2022 Elk Hunting Season Dates

If you're awarded a big game license to hunt elk, then here are the dates you can hunt in 2022 via specific weapon.

  • Archery: Deer/ Elk (west of I-25 and Unit 140)  ​Sept. 2–30*
  • Muzzleloader ​​(by draw only): ​​​​Deer/Elk/Moose ​Sept. 10–18*
  • Rifle: ​Separate limited elk (1st season) ​Oct. 15-19
    ​Combined deer/elk (2nd season) Oct. 29-Nov. 6

Colorado Hunting License Fees

Whether or not you draw a big game license, the big game application fee is still required.

  • The fee for a resident is $7.13
  • The fee for a nonresident is $9.17

Application fees apply per species for the secondary draw as well as the primary draw.

Application Fees for Elk ​ ​ ​

  • Resident cow, bull, or either sex ​$57.90
  • ​Resident youth ​$16.32
  • Nonresident​ cow/fishing combo​​* ​$ 526.17
  • ​Nonresident​ bull or either sex/fishing combo​​* ​​​$ 700.98
  • ​Nonresident​ youth/fishing combo​​* ​$ 107.43

Just because you draw a license, doesn't mean that you can't lose it due to failure to pay. Remember this year, the license payment deadline is June 17, 2022, at midnight MT.

39 Colorado Animals You May Run Into

A large variety of wildlife is just one of the many perks of living in Colorado. Check out this list and count how many of these animals you've seen in person.

Amazing Wildlife Viewing At Colorado Drive-Thru Refuge

The Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge actually isn't all that new, but there are plenty of folks in Colorado who are yet to make the discovery. With more than 15,000 acres of land, it's one of the largest urban wildlife refuges in the country.

Take a Virtual Tour of Colorado’s Wild Animal Sanctuary

Colorado is home to an animal sanctuary filled with lions, bears, camels, and even some of the tigers once owned by Joe Exotic.