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There is different kinds of LAND to hunt on.

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There is different kinds of LAND to hunt on.

Old 05-31-2021, 08:47 AM
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Question There is different kinds of LAND to hunt on.

Each seems to have its own advantages and disadvantages.


Public lands (federal, state, local):

-advantages
*no need to ask, know or pay a private landowner (might have to get some kind of permit or permission from the manager of the land in question), may need special tags for certain public lands
*much cheaper to hunt if you DIY

-disadvantages
*hunting pressue
*increased chances of being shot by another hunter
*no assistance from paid guides, DIY; you have to scout deer; you have to get the bagged deer out of the field yourself; no paid gutting/skinning/quartering services
*in many states public land is sparse compared with private land


Private lands (landowner, leased land, game ranches, public-access programs):

-advantages
*controlled environment
*limited hunting pressure
*safer to hunt
*some private land may be accessible to the public under certain govt. programs
*paid game ranch hunts have many amenities as recovering your game from the field without any sweat off your brow, cleaning/quartering your game, lodging and meals

-disadvantages
*in some (perhaps many) states, land abundant in game is mostly private
*need permission or to know landowner
*may need to pay landowner money or lease land
*paid game ranch hunts can be rather expensive (do you want to pay $1,000's to harvest one, two or three deer?)
*paid game ranch hunts are also often booked out, opportunity can be limited even if you are "just made out of money"


What kinds of land do you like to use and why?
Do you hunt DIY or pay somebody (guide/game ranch/outfitter) for help in your deer harvesting efforts?

Last edited by AlongCameJones; 05-31-2021 at 08:54 AM.
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Old 05-31-2021, 09:11 AM
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I hunt private land because a buddy caretakes a cattle ranch and I'm it behind a locked gate. If I did not have that property to hunt, I would be out on public land (forest, BLM). I almost always hunt alone so I do my own field dressing and game removal. I still have a butcher process my deer and bear but am in the process of switching over to butchering my own (at least for deer). Flags (another member on here) uses a gutless method that is intriguing and will likely become my go to method. For turkeys, I do it all and create my own turkey tail mounts. There's something to be said for "rolling your own" so to speak and a sense of satisfaction in doing DIY hunts.

I am not opposed to hunting with a buddy but they don't always have the same time flexibility, drive for hunting or sometimes even interested in the same game. I am not opposed to using a guide for hunting but prefer to save that money for when I could really use a guide, such as a horse-pack elk hunt in the NF or hound hunting for lions (both on my bucket list). Both of those would be in other states for me and a guide would have the horses or dogs that I don't and access into some scouted area (preferably on public land). I'm not opposed to private land but it usually has an extra cost and limits you in how much ground you have to hunt, such as horse-packing several miles into a forest. As always, YMMV.

Last edited by CalHunter; 05-31-2021 at 09:14 AM.
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Old 05-31-2021, 09:42 AM
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CalHunter, indeed, you have a private land advantage knowing a private landowner. I've had two family members in Georgia tell me years ago that one needs to know people in order to hunt there. Georgia is mostly private land. A young fellow I worked with Idaho told me years back also that you have know people there too to hunt. ID is mostly public land but his personal hunting experience may have been mostly if not solely on private land.

It would be interesting to know what percentage of the total American deer hunters hunt on the private land of known landowners. Perhaps as many as 50% or more?

My first and only deer hunt ever was done on the land of a Trinity Co, NorCal beef rancher in 1996. Zone B-2. He was advertising guided hunts in the classifieds of a hunting magazine in 1996 and I thought this would be my ticket to get in the door. I bagged a little buck but last the hankering to hunt until just recently. I just had to know what it felt like to shoot a deer with my own gun. My heart was pounding as I was aiming at the buck. I now know buck fever. I shirked deer hunting for most of my life believing it was too expensive or I had to know private landowners which I never did growing up in the suburbs of the SF Bay Area and having no hunting mentors among my family and friends. My mother was anti-hunting (though she gladly ate store-bought meat and fish) and my father thought hunting unsafe because of all "the fools" out in the woods. I could only dream of hunting as a boy and was inspired by reading some early 1970's Outdoor Life magazines my grandfather gave me. He gave up deer hunting just before I was born but was an avid coastal fisherman in my boyhood days. My grandfather told me he gave up hunting because of all the walking involved when I asked him why he hunted no more. My grandfather avidly fished for and often caught salmon, rock cod and other sea fish both on party boats and private boats owned by men he knew at work. Fishing on a boat is suitable for tired older men. My mother only wanted me to read the fishing features but I read up mostly on guns and hunting and was also curious about the taxidermy displayed in those pages too.

Last edited by AlongCameJones; 06-01-2021 at 05:42 AM.
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Old 05-31-2021, 11:17 AM
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I'd guess that a majority hunt on public land since most western states have more public than private land and you can't hunt on most private land (cities, towns, etc.). Your old hunting zone (B-2) in California for instance has 74% public land (over 1.8 million acres).
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Old 05-31-2021, 12:34 PM
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I hunt both public and private land(as well as land I own)

I have to dis agree with one thing you said, that your more likely to get SHOT on Public land
as I really don;t think so
I also know for a fact
that just cause land is private and posted
DOESN"T mean people stay off WITHOUT permission
as a land owner and a person that has managed private lands for decades
I have had thousands of encounters with trespassers, and many times they get VERY heated when being asked to leave or authorities are called in to have them arrested
I have had guns pulled on me and folks wanting to fist fight over this, not to mention all the arguments and bad words I have been called over folks breaking the law and THINKING there right or have rights to be some place they don't!


SO< private lands being safer??
NO Not really
bullets can travel from far and wide, and when you confront trespassers law breakers, your already one strike against you with a conflict happening, add in law breakers armed worth weapons many times and well??

in an ideal world maybe things would be different, but then again in an ideal world every where would be just as safe!

odds of getting shot IMO are the same , since hunting is a rather very safe sport if were being honest! and an accident can happen any where!
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Old 05-31-2021, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by CalHunter View Post
Flags (another member on here) uses a gutless method that is intriguing and will likely become my go to method.
I can tell you for dead certain that if you learn the gutless method you will NEVER waste time packing out bones and skin again. It takes an animal or 2 to get good at it (I practiced on mule deer does) but once you get it down it is faster and cleaner than gutting the animal and then fooling around with it. I can completely piece down a deer in less than 45 minutes and all I take out is edible meat, I no longer care about antlers and leave them in the field with the bones and guts or just shoot females to begin with. However it must be stressed that the method isn't legal everywhere. Here in TX I can't legally break them down into anything smaller than quarters and I have to bring out the head. I still do the gutless method but in TX I end up bringing out bones and the head. To me that is a dumb law since I would rather leave them for the coyotes and it sure irritates me to pack out the head of a doe just to toss it in the trash when I get home. But the law is what the law is and I'll follow it to the letter.
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Old 06-02-2021, 04:49 AM
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The gutless method is a fantastic way to get a large animal out of the woods. Champlain Islander and myself have used this method on many elk to prepare them to be packed out and back to our truck. It also keeps the meat very clean if you do it right. Many videos on YouTube showing the process.
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Old 06-07-2021, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by AlongCameJones View Post
I've had two family members in Georgia tell me years ago that one needs to know people in order to hunt there. Georgia is mostly private land. A young fellow I worked with Idaho told me years back also that you have know people there too to hunt.
I would correct these statements to read “to be able to hunt private land, you have to be willing to get to know people who own private land.”

I have hunted private land in more than 20 states, none of it exclusively owned by myself or family, and the majority of it owned by someone I met with the specific interest of requesting permission to hunt on their land.

For someone who doesn’t do and has not done much hunting, this OP oddly seems quite willing to instruct others on how to go about it.
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Old 06-07-2021, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Nomercy448 View Post
I would correct these statements to read “to be able to hunt private land, you have to be willing to get to know people who own private land.”

I have hunted private land in more than 20 states, none of it exclusively owned by myself or family, and the majority of it owned by someone I met with the specific interest of requesting permission to hunt on their land.

For someone who doesn’t do and has not done much hunting, this OP oddly seems quite willing to instruct others on how to go about it.
That is very odd indeed, it is a strange way to start a conversation or have people eager to assist them and it is also quite off putting..
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