The dream hunt awaits and the best places to hunt are those you have dreamed of. Instead of having to wait for the perfect hunt, start planning for it yourself. There are several things to consider when planning a DIY hunt. There are a bunch of little details to keep in mind, but when you do a DIY hunt the right way, you will immediately see the benefits and it will be the first of many DIY hunts to come.
Do Your Homework
There are plenty of things that a DIY hunt takes into consideration. You need to know where you plan on going, what you plan on hunting, and the supplies needed. For example, just as important as deciding on if you are going to use either a bow or a rifle is the decision to choose a GPS tracker for hunting and the specific type of camo. One of the best things to do is build a checklist for your DIY hunt. Understanding that things such as licenses and other permit issues can be costly helps you budget your time and go in search of game that is both a proper challenge and not overly costly.
Here are the questions you should ask:
- What type of species are you looking to hunt? This question is important because it affects so many things like permits, weapons, bait, and all other types of gear.
- Where is the ideal place for you to have this hunt? Think about the different natural areas that pique your interest, these are the areas where you want to check the local ordinances along with the allowable hunting styles.
- Public land is also important. For example, if you decide that you want to hunt in northern Nevada, what are the public areas where hunting is allowed? Hunting on public land is always preferable to private land as then you are not subject to the vagaries of what private landowners want to impose.
Once you have this information, a great idea may be to look at an outfitter. These are people who specialize in helping you do a DIY hunt and sometimes working with an outfitter is cheaper than doing everything on your own. Sometimes this is the proper method to learn about a different species and different land considerations if you are not from nearby and do not know too much, don’t dismiss the outfitter because you have a desire to do everything yourself. Getting help does not make the hunt any less DIY.
Use Resources to Learn More
Reading is the best way to make sure that the information you are getting is the best. There are plenty of magazines and guidebooks that are available for free or for a modest yearly subscription price. These guides give you a bunch of options for figuring out what you want to do and how you want to do it. You can learn about terrain, game, and so much more thanks to these guides.
Some great services that can help you are Worldwide Trophy Adventures, Cabela’s TAGS service helps with your applications and fees as well. Huntin’ Fool has a massive database of the best outfitters across North America. And Rolling Bones Outfitters is something that will definitely help you get the type of hunt you need. There is also a lot of good information in “Hunt the West” and they have also vetted some outfitters too.
If you prefer to get your information from the internet, there are plenty of great DIY forums along with online magazines. However, as with anything online, make sure that you are verifying it. There are a ton of blogs out there that seem like they are informative but the truth is they are filled with Make sure you find good resources online including YouTube channels and verify them and their information. If it crosschecks, then it works for you.
DIY and Species Differences
When you are hunting different species, there are a lot of different considerations. For example, anyone who has hunted hogs in the South knows that it is much different than deer hunting in Michigan. When you choose the species you are hunting, this makes your hunt much more focused. Sometimes you can’t hunt a certain species in a certain area, so if you are interested in hunting in a specific area, you have to be open to hunt some different species with different methods. Same if you are interested in hunting a certain species, you must be willing to try different areas than what you originally planned on sometimes.
Once you lock in with what you want to do, you need to get the appropriate supplies. There are some species requiring a different caliber of rifle while some can effectively be hunted with a bow. Whatever you choose, it is important that you also have the right supplies for the weather as well. If it is cold, you need the appropriate gear and if it is warm, you do not want to have multiple layers on because you will sweat and be uncomfortable. Also, how long are you planning on being out in the bush? You have to plan for hygiene as well and bring products that do not have an aroma otherwise the animals will pick up on your scent and make the hunt that much less successful
Getting the Paperwork
There are different regulations in every state and even in every locality. You want to use the tools described above to get a handle on the permitting issues where you wish to hunt. Some states like Alaska require applications a year in advance while other states such as Wyoming have different regulations for non-residents. There are others requiring a full fee. For example, Colorado recently change their fee procedures and now all you need to do is pay a small application fee up front and then the license fee when you are approved.
A DIY hunt is something that is a lot of fun and a true once in a lifetime experience. Get your paperwork and homework done so you can take in the great outdoors in a truly special way.