New Mexico Unit 6A Hunting Information

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Overview of NM GMU 6A Hunting Facts

Game Management 6A in New Mexico is a thrilling and oftentimes successful hunting destination! Located in the northern New Mexico counties of Sandoval and Rio Arriba, Unit 6A will not disappoint. This unit is managed for quality, meaning that the numbers may be lower, but the quality of deer or elk that will step out in front of you is much greater than other units with higher herd populations. In addition to being bounded by the Jicarilla Reservation on the northwest and the Valles Caldera National Preserve on the east, Unit 6A contains portions of the Santa Fe National Forest. For more New Mexico Unit 6A hunting information, check out the Info for Cities Near Unit 6A section on the right.

Table of Contents

NM Unit 6A Species Hunting Info

INFO: Mule Deer Hunting in New Mexico Unit 6A
The weather in Unit 6A is the major factor when planning your hunting trip to New Mexico. The early season can best be approached by still-hunting near the multiple water sources where the deer will be attempting to beat the heat. In addition to considering the heat for water leading you to the deer, the heat also affects their movements. The bucks will be more active at first and last light and will bed down in the shade during the majority of the warmest days. The multiple roads winding throughout the unit allow for accessible hunting areas. However, if you are physically capable, our advice would be to hike away from the crowds into the more remote areas to find the less pressured deer. Big bucks are taken from Unit 6A every year and yours is waiting on you!

SUCCESS RATES for Mule Deer Hunting in New Mexico Unit 6A
5 Year Estimated Average for Deer
Archery 25.00%
Muzzleloader 45.00%
Rifle 40.00%

Mule Deer TROPHY QUALITY for Unit 6A New Mexico
Average Deer Quality 130″ – 150″
Trophy Deer Potential 160″+
New Mexico Unit 6A Mule Deer Hunting FORUM Coming Soon!

INFO: Elk Hunting in New Mexico Unit 6A
The most densely populated elk herd in New Mexico inhabits this unit, according to the New Mexico Game and Fish Department. The versatile terrain of Unit 6A is beneficial for glassing elk from a distance and stalking them to firing range. Elk are notorious for sneaking into the nooks and crannies of the forest to remain hidden. The elk are especially vocal in this unit during the late archery season. If not bugling for a cow, you can find the bulls foraging near adjacent crop fields.

SUCCESS RATES for Elk Hunting in New Mexico Unit 6A
5 Year Estimated Average for Elk
Archery 1 25.00%
Archery 2 30.00%
Muzzleloader 35.00%
Rifle 1 35.00%
Rifle 2 25.00%
Elk TROPHY QUALITY for Unit 6A New Mexico
Average Elk Quality 280″ – 320″
NM Area 6A Trophy Elk Potential 320″+
GMU 6A Bull to Cow Ratio 33:100
New Mexico Unit 6A Elk Hunting FORUM Coming Soon!

Unit 6A Hunting Information Video


New Mexic Unit 6A Topo Map

Total Acreage: 845,000 acres over 1,320 square miles

Total Public Land: 407,000 acres or 48%

Land Ownership Mix: 52% Private; 48% Public; US Forest Service: 365,952 acres; USFS Wilderness: 41,280 acres; BLM: 36,160 acres; State: 3,200 acres; Other Govt Owned: 361,856 acres

Species: Elk, Mule Deer, Sheep

Elevation Variances: 5,000 ft. – 10,000 ft.

Terrain Difficulty Overall: Mild to Moderate

Land Coverage/Vegetation: 42% shrub/scrub, 40% evergreen forest and 10% grassland/herbaceous

Unit 6A Boundaries: Starting at the junction of interstate 25 and US 550 at Bernalillo and running northwest and west along US 550 past San Ysidro to its intersection with the boundary of the Zia Indian Reservation, then south, west, and north along the Zia Reservation boundary of the Jemez Indian Reservation, then west, north, and east along Jemez Indian Reservation boundary to its intersection with US 550 near La Ventana, then north and west along US 550 to its intersection with the south boundary of the Jicarilla Apache Indian Reservation, then east along the south boundary of the Jicarilla Apache Indian Reservation and north along its east boundary to its intersection with NM 595, then east along NM 595 to it’s junction with NM 96, then east along NM 96 to it’s junction with forest road (FR) 103, then south along FR 103 to it’s junction with FR 117, then south along FR 117 to it’s junction with FR 527 (Pipeline road), then east along FR 527 to it’s junction with the west boundary of the Valles Caldera National Preserve, then south and east along the boundary of the preserve to it’s junction with FR 280 and NM 4, then south along FR 280 to it’s junction with forest trail (FT) 140, then south along FT 140 to Peralta creek, then south and east along Peralta creek to it’s junction with FR 266, then south and east along FR 266 to it’s junction with NM 16, then along NM 16 to it’s junction with I-25, then south and west along I-25 to it’s junction with US 550 at Bernalillo.


Lay of the Land in NM Unit 6A


Terrain in GMU 6A NM

New Mexico Unit 6A’s terrain has a blend of geographic features and landscape that is fit for hunters of all physical capabilities. The presence of the Santa Fe National Forest helps to preserve the area to its natural state. The majority of the unit is forested, but with good access points. Although the altitude is elevated, it does not mean that the hiking is all at an incline. There are open areas with near-flat terrain that is much easier to maneuver than the ridges.

Vegetation in GMU Unit 6A NM

The high elevation evergreen forests are populated with various species of spruces, firs and pines. Aspen is prevalent, as well, in the high and mid-elevations of Unit 6A. The lower elevations have a landscape covered in shrubbery consisting of sage, various grass varieties and pinyon-juniper woodlands.

Access Points in NM GMU 6A

Generally speaking, the accessibility in Unit 6A New Mexico is very good. There are several roads, big and small, that carve their way throughout the unit, providing hunters a way to travel to hunting locations. However, the smaller roads are not well-maintained and become almost impassable, following wet weather. Four-wheel drive vehicles are closer to being required, not just recommended, when driving through some of the small roads in Unit 6A. Be prepared with chains, in case you need them. Better to be prepared than sorry!