Google+

Top 10 Tips to Choosing your Outfitter

By Ron Spomer

Top 10 Tips to Choosing your Outfitter

 

My friend Kirby was a heck of a hunter, a Midwest country boy who grew up chasing everything from bunnies to whitetails. He graduated to do-it-yourself elk and bear hunts on public land in the West, got a good job, made some money and discovered he suddenly had more discretionary cash than free time. He decided to hire an outfitter.

This was going to be the big time. Country-bumpkin Kirby was in a position to hire a professional hunter to show him the glories of an Africa safari. They’d rise at dawn to share coffee round the fire as lions roared. They’d follow the trackers into the brush, confer over steaming droppings and select the biggest bull in the herd. Then Kirby would drop it in its tracks with a perfect shot and his PH would slap him on the back. Jolly well done! Except the PH almost slapped Kirby across the face. And Kirby nearly punched him in the nose. Shouting. Recriminations.

It wasn’t pretty. That’s the thing about guided hunts. Just because you pay big money doesn’t mean you’ll get a good guide. And even if you get a good guide in a top area seething with game, you still might have a lousy hunt. Great hunts, even guided ones, require a lot of advance work. I’ve enjoyed some outstanding outfitted hunts — and some outstandingly bad ones.

And they weren’t all the fault of the outfitter. Or his guides. Yup, sometimes we hunters are our own worst enemies. Before you send in a downpayment for an “easy” outfitted hunt, do your homework:

1)      Research the area.

Top 10 Tips to Choosing your Outfitter2It’s up to you to find the best countries, states, game management units, etc. for the sort of hunting you want to do. Don’t dream of snowcapped mountains and book an elk hunt in the sagebrush of Nevada. And don’t expect a 7-point bull from a unit that cranks out 90% raghorns. Your outfitter should tell you this? Sure. But don’t count on it.

2)      Research LOCAL CONDITIONS.

Forest fires, floods, harsh winters, wolves and more can turn the most productive deer area into the worst in a single season. Good outfitters warn you of this, but some, hoping for the best, drag clients along on a hope and a prayer. “Maybe the wolves haven’t driven ALL the elk out yet, Mabel. Let’s book those hunters and see what happens.”

3)      Pick your style of hunting.

Do you want a horseback camp, a backpack marathon, a drive-by shooting or a ranch-lodge, 5-star extravaganza? Want to sit in a blind or walk? It’s all out there. For a price. And even if you can afford a $40,000 posh hunt, you might not like the results. Where game and terrain has been groomed and acclimated to the point that it all looks and feels like a dream, your satisfaction could suffer. Be honest with yourself about the experience you want, because that’s what a hunt really is — it’s a life experience. Filling your tag doesn’t necessarily make the experience any better. (But usually helps!)

4)      PICK THE SEASON.

Don’t go in November expecting bugling elk and golden aspen leaves. 

5)      CHECK THE WEBSITE.

If an outfitter doesn’t have a decent, up-todate website chock full of details, he might not have the most organized operation in the field, either. Dig around. Some superior outfitters are old fashioned, but they should at least have some informative brochures to mail you.

Click Here to view the rest of this article in the Outifitters Guide Magazine!

Entertainment

Blake Lively Shines as Surfer Stranded in Shark-Infested Waters

  The Shallows Blu-ray Review by Kam Williams Blake Lively Shines as Surfer Stranded in Shark-Infested Waters Nancy Adams (Blake Lively) was so shaken by her mother's (Janelle Bailey) untimely death that she's dropped out of med school. In order to feel closer to her dearly departed mom, she's decided to vacation at the same exotic Mexican retreat where she was reportedly conceived back in 1991. An avid surfer, she also plans to search … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

Keep Walking in Prayer… Until You Can\’t Come Back

  Keep Walking in Prayer... Until You Can't Come Back by Reverend Dorothy Scott Boulware Xulon Press Paperback, $10.99 104 pages ISBN: 978-1-4984-7454-2 Book Review by Kam Williams “By way of introduction, I'm a Baptist Methodist Pentecostal Evangelical non-denominational retired pastor, retired newspaper editor, former minister of music, former fingerprint technician, wife of 47 years, mother of four, grandmother of five, … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

More Than a Score

  ACRONYM TO FOLLOW by Peter Brav   Finally Our Day has come There’s a Day for everything For doughnuts, siblings, eight track tapes Grilled cheese, daughters and sons to work Encouragement, Alzheimer’s Coffee, math, chewing gum Blasphemy, yo-yos And now finally One for us Truly a Day to celebrate National Don’t Shoot An Unarmed Brother Doctor King Not Seeing Progress George Orwell Laughing It Is So About the … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

New Home Sales Jump in April

  New Home Sales Jump in April By Burt Carey Sales of new homes hit their highest rate since 2008 in April, according to the Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau. April sales increased 16.6 percent over March figures, which correlates to a seasonally adjusted rate of 619,000 home sales projected for the year. The median price of those new homes was $321,000, the highest median price ever recorded. That’s up 9.7 percent … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

Jahking and I!

  Jahking Guillory The “Kicks” Interview with Kam Williams Jahking and I! An undeniable young talent on the rise, actor and rapper Jahking Guillory is already a veteran in the entertainment business at the age of 14. Born and raised in Long Beach California, ‘King’ started pursuing his dream at 9 years-old, landing jobs in national commercials, music videos and national print campaigns. Graduating to larger roles in film and TV, 'King … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

230 LXF from Tidewater Packs A Punch in a Small Package

  230 LXF from Tidewater Packs A Punch in a Small Package By Ted Lund Are you looking for a family-friendly center console that’s got the luxury of a larger boat in a smaller package? Then look no further than the 230 LXF from Tidewater. The 23-foot, center console has the same features as the rest its large LXF brothers, including comfortable full upholstery, stainless steel cup holders. And a newly-designed console with glove box and … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

The Season Begins

  The Season Begins by Amy Lignor   Yes, it’s finally time to get down to some real business when it comes to the world of sports. (No offense to Serena at the U.S. Open, but her constant winning is not exactly new.) All this rain across the country has assured that lawns will be overgrown come Monday morning, unless citizens decide to use Saturday to mow. Why is that? Because football is back and Sundays are no longer “nothing to … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Scholastic Announces Sales of More Than 3.3 Million Copies of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

  Scholastic Announces Sales of More Than 3.3 Million Copies of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two New York, NY (August 10, 2016) — Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two script book, the eighth Harry Potter story by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne, published in the U.S. and Canada by Scholastic has sold more than 3.3 million copies in North America to date.Scholastic announced a first printing … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Vacation Time Has Turned “Spooky”

  Vacation Time Has Turned “Spooky” by Amy Lignor   Myths and legends, both spooky and surreal, are becoming the subject of many books and newspaper articles lately. And the location of many, oddly enough, happen to be in the Southwest. It used to be that a nice white sandy beach was the one place we yearned to go on vacation to get away from it all. Now, however, people are searching for places to travel where legends still exist, and … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Doing Our Part

  Doing Our Part by Amy Lignor   There are books being published as of late – wonderful books telling the stories of amazing wildlife rescues, as well as neighborhoods and communities across the U.S. that have taken on projects to save the wildlife in their own surrounding areas.   We always talk about these “success stories,” yet never actually give information on exactly how these “problems” turned into “victories.” … [Read More its Good for You...]