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All About Hunting Guides - Hobbies
All About Hunting Guides by Albie Berk
in Hobbies (submitted 2008-11-02)
A qualified professional hunting guide may be the choice option for the urban hunter with little time to scout and investigate hunting prospects. When attempting to hunt unfamiliar territory, a guide can make the difference between a good and a bad hunt. Unless you have thorough knowledge of the land you wish to hunt, you might spend unfruitful days in the bush without the help of a guide. Another name for a guide might be a "scout."
A guide can keep you out of trouble. He can limit frustrations and save you time. A guide can help with retrieving, gutting, and caping trophies. The guide can accurately predict the packing and preparation needs of the hunter, thereby eliminating the need to purchase or pack certain items. He will tell you what you should bring and what will be furnished, what is available locally and what is not.
Most hunters balk at the thought of "pay hunting" and feel no need for someone else to help them with a hunt. These hunters generally think that such setups are for "tin horns" or the corporate executive class. The price of a guide service may appear large at first, but after examining the whole spectrum of things you may find that a guide will even save you money in the long run. It is often the case that a hunter would have come out better if he had hired a guide.
Personal recommendations from other hunters who have used the guide or guide service are the most often used leads.
It is a good idea to do a thorough job of investigating a game ranch or guide service located through a magazine ad before making the leap of employing them. Ask for references, preferably from your area. Get several of them and check each one. The time spent here is worthwhile. In writing to request references, include a self-addressed, stamped envelope and be courteous. If telephoning for a reference, then do so at an appropriate time of day. References should be current. They should be references to hunts the year before and not several years ago. The clients which you locate might pass on pertinent information to you concerning your guide such as that you should pack a can opener because the excellent guide always forgets his.
Any guide worth his oats will guarantee a shot. Other guide services and game ranches charge a set fee to hunt and extra for a kill.
A few phone calls or e-mails prior to the hunting scheduled with a guide could get you in with a hunting partner, not just a guide. It helps to break the ice and form a friendship before the hunt.
If contracting the services of a professional guide service or game ranch is not in the cards for you yet you need the help such an outfit would provide, then you have other options.
Ask a successful hunter of your acquaintance for his assistance in guiding you. Most hunters will enthusiastically help you get your first deer. They remember their first deer and really want to enjoy the experience again through you. Offer to pay for the hunt if they are willing to take you along, and at the very least, split the cost of the gasoline.
Some backwoods types would consider it the opportunity of a lifetime to receive a hundred dollars for leading you to a deer they are familiar with. Paying someone to help locate a nice deer for you does not mean that they will bring it to you on a leash. There will still be plenty of sport involved matching wits with the wily whitetail.
Deer hunting is a sport open to the young, the old, and the handicapped. There is a way for almost every person who desires to hunt deer to do so. Deer hunting is one of the most widely accessible sports.
The blind can participate to a remarkable degree by going with a companion to a hunt and experiencing all but the actual shooting. Many blind people become adept shooters by learning to compensate for their sight loss by increasing their hearing perception. Their marksmanship is usually limited to gun ranges where little bells are attached to targets and pulled by strings. Some blind hunters, with the aid of an assistant with eyesight for obvious safety reasons, may actually take deer.
The wheelchair-bound hunter has an advantage over most hunters in that he will not be able to yield to the itch to get up and walk around when his patience runs thin. Although wheelchairs are not practical for the roughest terrains, the majority of hunting areas are to some degree accessible to them. One of my acquaintances who is without the use of his legs manages to take his deer each season from an adapted ATV.
Determined individuals often overcome physical limitations through improvisation. Their hunting techniques may be creative and grandly satisfying responses to their handicaps. Such hunters are granted special privileges by law-enforcement agencies to allow for their differences and encourage their participation in the sport. Physical limitations might suggest that a person should hunt close to a roadway and not attempt to track or retrieve a deer without assistance. Taking part in drives and risking becoming lost by walking deep into the woods should be avoided.
Hunting with an able-bodied companion may be a must. The companion should be aware of specific physical limitations and of any first aid he might be required to administer.
It is important to consider physical limitations in planning the hunt. Access to the hunting area, the type of stand, the selection of a companion, weapon type, and other matters should be scrutinized in advance.
There are far too many instances of heart attacks in the deer woods.
If you are under medical supervision and using a prescription medicine, be sure not to forget it in the excitement. Not only could forgetting it cause medical problems, but having to go home to get it could foil your hunt.
Where there is a will there is a way for the handicapped who wish to hunt whitetail deer. Disadvantaged hunters derive greater satisfaction from their efforts.
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