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Use our quick guide to help you figure out what you need to plan ahead in order to have a successful hunting season!


Getting Started

If you were born after January 1, 1985 – You’ll need to have your hunter education certification information before purchasing or applying for a Montana hunting license.

To be certified, Montana residents can take the free in-person class or online course. Completing the course is all that is currently required for certification. You must be 12 years of age by January 16, 2023, or older to register for this course. 


To hunt in Montana, you will need:

  • Conservation License

  • Base Hunting License 

  • Carcass Tag and/or License for the species you are hunting

The new license year opens March 1, which means that is the day you can buy your annual hunting and fishing licenses and begin applying for permits and special licenses. 

In Montana, there are two primary types of licenses:

  • General licenses that can be purchased over the counter

  • Special limited permits and licenses that are available through drawings

The availability of special limited permits and licenses is dependent on the hunting district and/or species you want to hunt, and what you would like to hunt with, such as rifle or archery equipment. Applications for most species – deer, elk, antelope, deer B, elk B, antelope B, moose, sheep, goat, bison, bear, turkey – can be made beginning March 1. The deadline to apply for deer and elk permits is April 1.


Additional Resources:

MT Fish Wildlife and Parks Hunt Planner – The Hunt Planner combines updated maps with hunting regulations and statistics.

Looking for help planning and researching for your deer and elk permits?
Watch this Hunt Planner tutorial, which guides you through the hunt planner map application. FWP created the hunt planner to help hunters in the planning and permit application process.

Hunting Plan Form – Complete this form before departing on a hunt and leave it with a reliable person who can be depended upon to notify the authorities in case you do not return as scheduled.

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