Deadline to apply for special hunt permits is May 18

Deer hunter
Deer hunter

— Hunters have through May 18 to apply for special hunting permits for fall deer, elk, mountain goat, moose, bighorn sheep, and turkey seasons in Washington State.

Permit winners will be selected through a random drawing conducted by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) in June. Special permits qualify hunters to hunt at times and places beyond those authorized by a general hunting license.

To apply for a special permit, hunters planning to hunt for deer or elk must purchase an application and hunting license for those species and submit the application with their preferred hunt choices.

Mick Cope, WDFW game division manager, notes that new hunting opportunities were approved in several categories this year. They include additional buck hunts in Pacific, Grays Harbor, and Benton counties; more antlerless deer hunts throughout the state; and new youth hunts.

Hunters will also find additional hunting opportunities for bull elk in Skagit County (Elk Area 4941) and Teanaway (GMU 335), along with more antlerless permits in various areas.

Applications and licenses are available from license vendors statewide or on WDFW's website at Applications must be submitted on the website or by calling 1-877-945-3492 toll-free.

Most special hunt permit applications cost $7.10 for residents, $110.50 for non-residents, and $3.80 for youth under 16 years of age.

The exception is the cost for residents purchasing applications for mountain goats, any bighorn sheep ram, any moose, and "quality" categories for deer and elk. Those applications cost $13.70.

Instructions and details on applying for special permit hunts are described on pages 12-13 of the 2016 Big Game Hunting Seasons & Regulations pamphlet, available at WDFW offices, license vendors, and online at

Additional information is available at

Cope reminds hunters to update their phone numbers, email, and mailing addresses when purchasing their special hunting permit applications and licenses. Each year, hundreds of special hunting permits are returned due to invalid addresses.

Results of the special-permit drawing will be available online by the end of June at Winners will be notified by mail or email by mid-July.


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