Hunters must have an elk tag to hunt elk legally in Colorado. Hunters can choose to hunt elk during archery, muzzleloader or rifle seasons. The state sells over-the-counter licenses, leftover limited licenses and limited licenses for elk, depending on the hunter's desired game management unit.
The Colorado Big Game hunting manual contains information about hunting elk, as well as deer, bear, moose and pronghorn. The elk-hunting application allows hunters to choose up to four hunt codes for their elk hunts. Elk hunting applicants have first choice to purchase limited leftover licenses if they mark the Leftover Draw box on the application. This gives them four additional chances to draw limited licenses before the limited licenses become available to the general public.