John’s Note: If you live in suburbia like I do, less than 15 minutes from metropolitan Birmingham, Alabama, that homes more than 1/2 million folks, you’ll often hear reports of big deer spotted within walking distance of your house. But everyone knows you can’t hunt bucks downtown or in your own backyard, or can you? This past year, I’ve been interviewing and writing a new book about “How to Find and Take Big Bucks on Small Properties” that will be published on Kindle as an ebook the middle of October, 2014. I’ve learned from these folks that you may find a trophy-buck hot spot right in your own backyard or less than 30 minutes from your home where no one else hunts or has permission to hunt.
Often large corporations own vast wooded areas close to highly-populated regions.
However, they don’t allow hunting and post these areas because of liability. But, most companies have some kind of customer-entertainment programs, which may eat heavily into corporate budgets. With downsizing and belt tightening, many companies look for ways to host their customers without spending large amounts of money. Think about approaching the marketing director and/or president of a company, and offer your services as a hunting guide on their lands to hunt with their customers at low or no cost. If you’ll scout the land, set-up the tree stands and guide clients to spots where they can take big bucks, a corporation may permit you to hunt the land when you’re not guiding its clients. Show the company how you can save them thousands of dollars.
Show the company how you can save them thousands of dollars.
I had a friend in Demopolis, Alabama, who worked for a major timber company. Across the street from the company’s headquarters, 3,000 acres of the company’s land went unused. Sportsmen couldn’t hunt there because of the land’s proximity to the plant. My friend went to the company president’s office and explained how he could plant green fields, clear the roads and provide productive hunting opportunities at a low cost to entertain the timber company’s clients. Not only did the timber company grant him permission to hunt that land anytime he wanted with one or two friends, but the company also gave him time off from work to clear the roads, plant the green fields and build the shooting houses. A few times each year, my friend takes the company’s customers out on the land, assists them in getting into the shooting houses and then picks up the customers and their deer. The rest of the year, he hunts this posted property for free.
Check Out Universities’ Lands:
Many colleges and universities have huge land holdings bequeathed to them when loyal alumni die. These land holdings, often too small to lease or utilize, sometimes are in prime deer-hunting areas. Go to colleges. Learn where they own woods land, the location of those lands and the requirements for hunting those properties. Consider offering these services in exchange for hunting rights:
* organize a benefit hunt on the land with all tax-deductible proceeds going to the college or university;
* teach a mini-course in outdoor skills or identifying edible plants for the P.E. department, the recreation department and/or the biology department;
* patrol the land, keep the roads open and pick up litter; and/or
* take important alumni, potential athletes or other supporters of the school deer hunting on that property.
If you can learn what landowners want or need, you’ll find very few sanctuaries that you absolutely cannot hunt. Even when you really can’t hunt a sanctuary, you may have the opportunity to bag its big bucks by studying the property adjacent to the sanctuary, and getting permission to hunt it. The creation of most sanctuaries and the posting of property usually has its beginnings in some problem the landowner has experienced involving hunters on his land. If you develop an easy and equitable way to solve the problem, you often can acquire permission to hunt a trophy-buck hot spot. You even may find that trophy sanctuary right at your own back door.
To learn more about deer hunting, you can get John E. Phillips’ Kindle eBooks, “How to Hunt Deer Up Close: With Bows, Rifles, Muzzleloaders and Crossbows,” “PhD Whitetails: How to Hunt and Take the Smartest Deer on Any Property,” “How to Take Monster Bucks,” and “How to Hunt Deer Like a Pro,” or to prepare venison, get “Deer & Fixings.” Click here to get these books.
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About the Author
John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors.