The following is for Southern Utah:
Unit 20 - Southwest Desert, Unit 29 - Zion, and Unit 30 - Pine Valley
The archery hunt on the Pine Valley, Zion and Southwest Desert units should be good this year. Most of the deer survived this past winter, and the populations on all three units should have lots of yearling bucks in them. The overall number of deer on the Southwest Desert unit is still very low. The overall number of deer on both the Zion and Pine Valley units is at objective on each unit.
This spring and early summer were very dry, and water was becoming hard to find. Recent monsoonal rains have improved water and range conditions slightly, however, allowing deer to range farther from their water sources.
Unit 21A - Fillmore, Oak Creek
Thanks to mild conditions, more fawns made it through this past winter. Expect to see more young bucks this fall. Also, because the summer has been so dry, expect to find the deer near water.
A large fire burned this summer on U.S. Forest Service land near the unit. (The land that burned is open only to hunters who have a limited-entry permit for the area.) Some of the deer may have redistributed themselves because of the fire. You might want to look for deer in places you haven't seen them before. Expect a fair to good hunt.
Unit 21B - Fillmore, Pahvant
The buck-to-doe ratio on this unit has slowly increased over the last few years. Last year, spring and summer rains provided excellent forage and water. The forage and water, coupled with a mild winter, helped most of the fawns make it through the winter. Overall, the number of bucks on the unit has increased slightly over the past two years. Expect a fair to good hunt in 2012. You can also expect to see more young bucks this year.
Unit 22 - Beaver
The buck-to-doe ratio on the Beaver unit is 18 bucks per 100 does. The overall number of deer on the unit is also strong.
This summer has been very dry, so expect to find deer concentrated near and around water sources. You can anticipate a good hunt on the Beaver unit. With a mild winter, the survival of fawns and mature bucks was higher than normal. Expect to see more young bucks on the unit.
Unit 23 - Monroe, and Unit 25A - Plateau, Fishlake
Although the overall number of deer is still below the units' objectives, the deer herds on both the Monroe and Fishlake units are showing improvement over last year. The combined effect of good fawn production in 2011, followed by a mild winter, means good numbers of yearling bucks should be available to you this fall.
The buck-to-doe ratios on both the Monroe and the Fishlake units have also improved. After the hunts were over last fall, the ratio on the Monroe unit was 14 bucks per 100 does. The Fishlake unit had a buck-to-doe ratio of 19 bucks per 100 does. Because this past winter was so mild, most of these bucks made it through the winter. And that means more bucks with large antlers should be available on these units this fall.
During the spring and early summer, both units experienced very dry conditions. The dry conditions reduced plant growth on lower and mid elevation ranges and dried some of the plants out. Fortunately, summer monsoons have hit hard in recent weeks. The rain has kept forage green at higher elevations.
During the archery hunt, focus your efforts in areas that have the greenest forage. The deer will be concentrated in these areas. These areas include north-facing slopes and areas that are partially shaded by aspen trees and oak brush.
Please remember that you may hunt only in the unit you drew a permit for.