New Mexico Unit 16C Hunting Information

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Overview of NM GMU 16C Hunting Facts

Located in Western New Mexico’s Catron and Sierra counties, Unit 16C is a premier hunting destination for mule deer, elk and antelope. The Gila/Apache National Forest takes up the majority of acreage in this unit, contributing to the 83% public land percentage. This trophy elk unit is in high demand every year. Mule deer and antelope hunting is of great success in this unit, as well. For more New Mexico Unit 16C hunting information, check out the Info for Cities Near Unit 16C section on the right.

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NM Unit 16C Species Hunting Info

INFO: Mule Deer Hunting in New Mexico Unit 16C
Mule deer tags that are drawn for Unit 16C are valid in other units, as well. There are some monster bucks taken from this unit every year primarily using spot and stalk hunting methods. The terrain offers a natural vantage point for glassing deer from above before moving in on them. Hunters that take the time to scout and find sign ahead of their hunt are way more likely to narrow down the areas where the deer are actively inhabiting.

SUCCESS RATES for Mule Deer Hunting in New Mexico Unit 16C
5 Year Estimated Average for Deer
Archery 20.00%
Late Archery 25.00%
Muzzleloader 28.00%
Rifle 1 27.00%
Rifle 2 25.00%
Mule Deer TROPHY QUALITY for Unit 16C New Mexico
Average Deer Quality 140″ – 160″
Trophy Deer Potential 160″+
New Mexico Unit 16C Mule Deer Hunting FORUM Coming Soon!

INFO: Elk Hunting in New Mexico Unit 16C
Unit 16C has a high quality potential that is sure to please trophy hunters. In addition to the high quality, this unit holds a lot of elk. The southern portion of the unit is more reflective of “elk country” that you would expect to hunt, rather than the northern half. The Gila National Forest is famous for its big bulls, especially in the southwestern portion of the unit, particularly Black Mountain. However, expect increased hunting pressure from guides and other hunters, as this is a well-known “honey hole.” The southeastern portion of the unit holds good size bulls and is only accessible by horseback or foot traffic. Thus, this area has lower pressure than its western counterpart.

SUCCESS RATES for Elk Hunting in New Mexico Unit 16C
5 Year Estimated Average for Elk
Archery 1 17.00%
Archery 2 19.00%
Rifle 1 35.00%
Rifle 2 20.00%
Elk TROPHY QUALITY for Unit 16C New Mexico
Average Elk Quality 320″ – 350″
NM Area 16C Trophy Elk Potential 360″+
GMU 16C Bull to Cow Ratio 34:100
New Mexico Unit 16C Elk Hunting FORUM Coming Soon!

INFO: Antelope Hunting in New Mexico Unit 16C
The northern half of the unit is, undoubtedly, the most sensible location to focus your efforts in hunting antelope. The terrain consists of rolling, shrub-covered hills and limited water sources. High success rates drive the desire of hunters for antelope tags in Unit 16C.

SUCCESS RATES for Antelope Hunting in New Mexico Unit 16C
5 Year Estimated Average for Antelope
Archery 40.00%
Rifle 1 100.00%
Rifle 2 88.00%
Rifle 3 70.00%
Antelope TROPHY QUALITY for Unit 16C New Mexico
Average Antelope Size 70″ – 80″
NM Area 2A Trophy Antelope Potential 80″+
New Mexico Unit 16C Antelope Hunting FORUM Coming Soon!

Available Hunts for New Mexico Unit 16C

No Available Hunts

Unit 16C Hunting Information Video


Cities Near NM Unit 16C


New Mexico Unit 16C Topo Map

Total Acreage: 307,000 acres over 480 square miles

Total Public Land: 250,000 acres or 83%

Land Ownership Mix: 7% Private; 83% Public; USFS: 236,544 acres; USFS Wilderness: 24,256 acres; BLM: 1,216 acres; State: 17,792 acres

Species: Elk, Mule Deer, Pronghorn, Sheep

Elevation Variances: 6,000 ft. to 9,000 ft.

Terrain Difficulty Overall: Mild to Moderate

Land Coverage/Vegetation: 67% evergreen forest, 17% grassland/herbaceous and 16% shrub/scrub

Unit 16C Boundaries: The portion of Game Management Unit 16 beginning at the road junction of FR 150 and FR 30 in Railroad Canyon, then northeast along FR 150 to its junction with NM 163/FR 150, then northeast along NM 163 to the Continental Divide, then south along the Continental Divide to FT 42, then south along FT 42 to FT 40, then west on FT 40 to and across FR 150 to FR 225 (old FR 19), then southwest along FR 225 (old FR 19) to FR 18, then northwest along FR 18 to FR 704, then west along FR 704 to FT 772, then northwest along FT 772 to FT 812 on Black Mountain, then northwest along FT 812 to south fork of Christie Canyon, then north and west along south fork of Christie Canyon to FR 142C, then north along FR 142C to FR 142, then northeast along FR 142 to its junction with FR 30, then east along FR 30 to its junction with FR 150 in Railroad Canyon.


Lay of the Land in NM Unit 16C


Terrain in GMU 16C NM

Depending on what area of Unit 16C you will be hunting, the terrain will be substantially different. The southern part of the unit is densely-forested by the Gila National Forest and contains rugged mountains and gorges set aside for the most adventurous of hunters. The northern landscape of the unit is most accurately described as mild to moderate. The foothills and valleys are much more easily maneuvered through by hunters than in the southern territory of the unit.

Vegetation in GMU Unit 16C NM

The vegetation of Unit 16C varies depending on the elevation in which you are hunting. The higher altitudes contain groves of Pinyon and Ponderosa pines, which can be dense in some areas, impeding your ability to glass successfully. Riparian vegetation such as willows and cottonwoods can be found along riverbanks. The low elevations contain a rich blend of shrubbery, such as oak brush and sagebrush.

Access Points in NM GMU 16C

Unit 16C is substantially covered in access roads guiding hunters to locations throughout. The roads are notorious for being affected negatively by wet weather conditions. Four-wheel drive is recommended, if not required for some areas. Be sure that you are well-aware of which areas permit motorized vehicles and which do not. A Motor Vehicle Use Map is available from Forest Service offices and online. If you are planning on driving a motorized vehicle on New Mexico public land, you must obtain a non-resident OHV (Off-Highway Vehicle) registration decal or purchase one through your home state. It is the responsibility of the hunter to be familiar with the regulations of the state regarding motor vehicle use.