Gordon Ranch Elk Hunting

Terry LaBounty Elk

The Hunting Area

The Gordon Ranch is located in the foothills of the Sacramento Mountains in central New Mexico. It consists of over 25
,000 acres and is entirely free ranging. The surrounding area is not noted for the high populations of elk which exist in the Sacramento Mountains ecosystem. But the area is noted for producing better top-end bulls. Extreme mass is a genetic trait that is prolific in this region.

The Gordon Ranch sits at around 6,000 feet in elevation. The terrain is more of a flat plain with numerous hills and small mountains. Most of the small canyons drain these high points. The ranch has been well managed over the years and contains numerous meadows with interspersed stands of juniper and pinon pine.

Difficulty of the Hunts

On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the easiest place possible to hunt elk and 10 being the toughest terrain on earth to hunt elk, we give this hunt a difficulty rating of 4.

The moderate difficulty rating stems from lower total numbers of elk in this area more than the terrain.  Although these hunts have been highly successful, patience and persistence have been the keys to success.  Some days it seems as if elk are everywhere and some days it seems they have disappeared. Physical brawn is not as important as mental toughness.

If your hunt drags out for several days, it means hunting progressively harder country as well. You must be in a minimum of moderate shape to enjoy this hunt.

All hunts are guided 1 on 1 and there will NEVER be more than two hunters on the ranch at one time.

Todd Shockey Elk

Expectations for the Hunt

Every hunter arrives with high expectations for a hunt, as they should. But, there are many factors that affect the outcome of a hunt.  The first and foremost factor, outside of weather, that will dictate the “success” of this hunt is patience. Although you won’t typically see elk after elk after elk on this hunt,  the chances at finding a 350-class or better bull is probably better on this ranch than any other we hunt.


What are reasonable expectations? Determining actual shot-opportunity percentages are difficult due to the extreme range of hunting abilities, conditioning, expectations, and hunters not sticking with their minimums (i.e. sliding scales). If you are in shape, will hold steadfast on your minimum, and will stick with the hunt for the duration, the following shot-opportunity percentages are what any of our guides feel they can produce for a 1 on 1 hunter, any given week:

Minimum Size Class Chances at a Shot Opportunity Comments
300+ 85% Good 5 & 6 points with high success.
320+ 75% Getting harder, but good minimum for in-shape hunters.
340+ 50% Entering the uppermost class of bulls.
360+ 20% Too high of a minimum. These bulls just seem to happen.
380+ 5% A gift from the gods.

J.D. Cunningham ElkTactics

The early-season dates will allow calling to be a vital part of locating and hunting the bulls. As always in rifle elk hunts, spot and stalk hunting will be an important component of the hunt.

Most days will start with glassing from one of the numerous high points on the ranch. Seeing or hearing a bull is the first step. Once spotted, closing the distance to get the shot will be the next step. Glassing and more glassing can be expected. It’s where the patience issue becomes so important.

The hunting areas will be accessed by vehicle and all hunting will be done on foot. All hunters will be guided 1 on 1.


The accommodations for the Gordon Ranch hunts are in a lodge located on the ranch All the comforts of home are available.

Meals will be provided with breakfast and lunch consisting of easy-to-make items. A full dinner is prepared in the evenings.  

Airport Information

Air service is available by flying into either Albuquerque, NM or El Paso, TX. Our hunting area is located centrally between the two airports. You will need to rent a vehicle and drive to the lodge. The drive time is approximately 2 1/2 hours.

2015 Gordon Ranch Hunt Prices

5-Day Rifle Elk Hunt

$10,500 (1 on 1)

2015 Gordon Ranch Seasons

5-Day Rifle Elk Hunts

Oct 1-5, 2015
Oct 7-11, 2015
Oct 13-17, 2015

2015 Gordon Ranch License Fees

Landowner Permit Elk License – Rifle – $638

Information Links

For policies information  “Click Here”

For rifle equipment information  “Click Here”

For contract and booking information  “Click Here”


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