10 Tips for a Successful Group Hunt
Planning group hunts can be stressful with months, maybe years, of planning to find the perfect destination and get everyone’s schedules aligned just so. Don’t let the stress of planning your trip detract from the experience you and your party will have. With a little planning and good communication skills, you can ensure that your group will have a successful and memorable hunt. Here are few tips that will help you make your next group hunt a success.
1) Decide What to Hunt
First, decide the type of game you will be going after. Are you looking to hunt white-tail deer, or would your group rather stroll through the fields chasing upland game birds? What you choose to hunt will affect many of the choices for the rest of the trip.
2) Find a Location
Where does your chosen game live? Once you know the range of your target species, you can begin looking for locations. Make sure that everyone can get there with relative ease. Nothing makes a hunt start off on the wrong foot quicker than travel woes.
3) Find a Guide
Now that you know what and where, find someone in that area that knows the species you are targeting. Whether you are using an individual guide or an outfitter, someone who knows the area and the species you are after will ensure that you don’t waste your time trekking aimlessly through the woods.
4) Check Your Equipment
Get your equipment out and make sure that everything is in working order. Are your base-layers moth-eaten? Are your knives rusty? Are your socks worn through? Perhaps most importantly, is your rifle still sighted in? Does your shotgun pattern properly? Are the sight pins on your bow set to the correct distance? Make sure your equipment is in good working order long before departure day.
Once you know your equipment is in working order, take your hunting tool out and practice with it. Shoot from a variety of positions and at a variety of distances. Practice at different times of day so you understand how changing light conditions affect your ability to see your target. Once you think you’ve practiced enough, practice some more. Don’t let your hunt get ruined because you didn’t practice enough.
6) Know the Rules
Your guide will be able to help you with this, but make sure you understand the rules, regulations, and laws, concerning your location and chosen game. What type of license do you need? Do you need any special endorsements? What are the daily bag limits? How many daily bag limits can you possess? What are legal shooting hours?
7) Pack the Necessities
Best advice here, use a gear list. Gather all of your equipment up in one spot, then double check your list. Be sure that your list coincides with the location you’ve chosen. No need to pack a tent if you will be staying in a lodge.
8) After the Harvest
Once your game is harvested, the high-fives are done, and the pictures are snapped, the real work begins. Your guide will quarter up your harvest and make sure it is transported back to the lodge or camp, but it will be up to you to get your meat home. This means plastic bags and coolers so that your harvest can be transported without spoilage.
9) Making Memories
You definitely don’t want your hunt to be forgotten. Make sure you pack a camera! You forget your camera on your trip to Disney? It can be replaced. Out in the wilderness, camera stores are few and far between. Plan ahead and bring yours.
10) Stay Safe
Above all, make sure that everyone comes home safely. Practice firearms safety. Make sure you know where and when other hunters will be located. You can never be too cautious when it comes to hunter’s safety.
There you have it. Using these 10 guidelines, you can ensure that your group has a safe, successful, and memorable hunt. The only problem – you will be asked to organize another hunt next year.