Arizona Mule Deer Hunting


arizona strip guidesARIZONA MULE DEER HUNTING

The Arizona Strip.

The Kaibab Plateau.

Hey, I drew an Arizona strip tag or hey I drew a late season Kaibab mule deer tag.

Mention either one of these places or phrases around a group of serious trophy mule deer hunters and you are guaranteed to get a very quick and probably a very jealous response.

The world famous Arizona Strip and the Kaibab Plateau have long been hailed as the world’s premier areas to hunt for trophy mule deer and they boast an impressive track record of continuously producing giant mule deer bucks for the lucky hunters that are able to draw tags in these hallowed mule deer hunting areas. Just mentioning “The Arizona Strip” or “The Kaibab” immediately brings images to your minds eye of giant mule deer bucks with massive non-typical racks that have giant typical frames, numerous extra points, and enormous spreads. Many giant mule deer bucks have been taken from the Arizona strip and the Kaibab Plateau and both of these world famous trophy mule deer areas will continue to produce monster mule deer bucks for the lucky tag holders for many years to come.

We frequently get asked by many trophy mule deer hunters about why the Arizona Strip and Kaibab Plateau always seem to produce trophy mule deer bucks. Why is the Arizona mule deer hunting so good in these two areas? We believe that it is a combination of three very important things: Genetics, high desert Arizona plant life, and low hunting pressure.

We have already touched on the subject of genetics and hunt pressure on an earlier Arizona mule deer post but we will reiterate our thoughts on them in this post and how they apply to Arizona mule deer hunting.

We believe that the Arizona strip and Kaibab trophy mule deer genetics and the hardy, stout, Arizona plant life are the 2 main ingredients in the monster mule deer recipe that is found on the Kaibab Plateau and Arizona Strip. Couple this with low hunting pressure that allows the bucks to get to a ripe old age and you have got yourself a bonafide trophy mule deer producing factory.

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Genetics always come first. Period. No matter how good the feed, habitat, and water situation is, the trophy mule deer bucks on the Kaibab and Arizona strip will never grow giant antlers without first having the genetics to do so.

For example, you can get a teacup poodle and feed it a high protein diet, vitamins, amino acids, heck even give it steroids, and it will always be a smaller sized dog. It is genetically programmed before birth to always be small. Sure, with a super diet and careful mangement it will grow much larger than most teacup poodles but it will never be a giant sized dog.

If you are looking to harvest giant mule deer bucks then you need to start hunting in an area that already has a long history of proven trophy mule deer genetics like the Arizona Strip or Kaibab Plateau. The trophy mule deer bucks that are found in these two trophy mule deer regions of Arizona are genetically programmed from birth to always grow large antlers.

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Feed is next. Next to genes, what trophy mule deer bucks consume for feed is extremely vital to it’s growth and antler development. This subject is interesting because there are areas on the Kaibab and the Arizona strip that look like they wouldn’t support a lizard, much less a herd of giant sized mule deer bucks with record book antlers on their heads. The Kaibab and Arizona Strip mule deer country looks like a nuclear wasteland in some places and is the polar opposite of the lush green country that one envisions when thinking of prime trophy mule deer habitat.

Don’t let looks fool you though. It’s what is in the feed and not how it looks that is the most important to promote giant antler growth in trophy mule deer. A lot of the Kaibab Plateau and Arizona strip mule deer country is arid high desert habitat and it takes very tough and hardy plant life just to survive here.

We firmly believe that these super tough high desert forbs, as ugly and dead as they may look, are nutritionally superior trophy mule deer feed. These plants need to be very high powered and extremely drought resistant just to survive in this extremely harsh high desert environment. These tough plants combined with the strong minerals that are found in the soil of the Kaibab and Arizona strip ensures that the trophy mule deer bucks that live there have a super charged diet that supports their massive antler growth.

arizona mule deer outfitters


Low hunting pressure. A trophy mule deer buck has to be able to reach full maturity to really develop a world class set of antlers and let it’s trophy genetics to bloom into their full potential. In mule deer this occurs at around 7 to 8 years of age.

If hunting pressure is very heavy and hunters are harvesting younger age class mule deer bucks, you are cutting the legs out from under the trophy growth of your mule deer herd. Age is what lets trophy genetics blossom to their full potential and trophy mule deer bucks must be managed carefully to allow them to reach these older age classes and pass their genes on to the does that they will be breeding during the rut.

The Kaibab Plateau and the Arizona Strip mule deer bucks benefit from a strict trophy hunting management program from the Arizona Game and Fish Department. This careful management allows the trophy mule deer bucks that live in these two incredible hunting areas to reach old age and grow their antlers to their full potential. Tags are very limited in numbers and both regions are limited entry draw units where hunters must apply for and draw any permits to hunt mule deer in these areas.

arizona mule deer outfitters

This is a double edged sword to trophy mule deer hunters because on one hand you may have to wait for years and years, maybe even decades, to draw a tag. On the other hand, when you finally receive an Arizona strip or Kaibab mule deer tag, you will get to enjoy one of the finest trophy mule deer hunts in the world.

Contact us today if you are interested in pursuing giant Arizona strip bucks or giant Kaibab mule deer bucks. We are constantly scouting our trophy mule deer bucks and working hard all year round to be one of your top choices in Arizona mule deer outfitters and Arizona mule deer guides. Our team can also help you fill out and submit your Kaibab and Arizona Strip mule deer tag applications every. Who knows, the next Arizona strip or Kaibab mule deer tag may have your name on it. Contact us today to see how we can help you to harvest a giant mule deer buck on the Arizona Strip and Kaibab Plateau.



Yavapai Outfitters LLC has recently joined forces with some of the finest Big Game Hunting Outfitters in the state of Arizona to form two new professional Big Game outfitting companies: Arizona Strip Guides LLC and Arizona Elk Outfitters LLC. Log on to and for more pictures and information on our two new Arizona Big Game Outfitting companies.