Purchasing new hunting property, it’s something I’ve dreamed about since I was a boy and I think almost every hunter has. Unfortunately for most of us it just isn’t feasible, at least not all by ourselves. To get a piece of land large enough to hunt and even think about trying to manage the deer you’ll probably need at least two people if not three, four, or even five. Land prices never seem to fall which is great if you already own but for those of us trying to buy, it can be pretty rough.
As stated, most of us will need to partner up to purchase land but that in itself can be risky. You may like someone and agree with them now but people change, goals change. When partnering with someone in a land purchase for hunting, it’s a good idea to set up some sort of ground rules, a few basic principles that will remain unchanged unless agreed upon by both/all of you. This seems obvious but it something that needs to be done and something that should be done on a semi-regular schedule. It keeps everyone up to date and issues can be discussed, and any changes can be made with everyone present and in agreement. Here are a few things that I plan to implement when I buy land in the hopefully not-so-distant future.
- We all pitch in equally over the course of the year, physically and financially.
- Immediate family can always hunt, anyone else needs group approval every time they come.
- No unnecessary ATV riding right before or during hunting season. Less is Best.
- Any permanent stands need to be moved either every year or every other year, it keeps the deer from knowing where we are.
- Practice Quality Deer Management, it helps not only with bigger bucks but it helps create a stronger deer population as a whole.
- Any food plots or habitat enrichment ideas should be discussed as a group.
- No stands right on top of each other; the further apart from each other, the better.
- Take care of your trash at the cabin and at your stand. If you can take it into the woods, you can take it out. We only get 1 planet, we need to take care of it.
- Take care of your gear, leave the cabin as clean or cleaner than when you got there. We’re adults, pick up after yourself, I’m not your mom. If you leave gear out time after time, it will become mine since you clearly don’t care about it.
- If you break it, you fix it.
- Lock up when you leave.
I’ve hunted a couple of different properties since I started hunting, some big and some small, but very few had set rules. They seemed to be more of a dictatorship. “It’s my land and what I say goes, I don’t need to discuss with anyone.” Even when it wasn’t just one persons land. I’ve seen some really good small properties and some properties with amazing potential go to waste because of poor management, no set rules and one person running the show without any additional input. I don’t care how good the land is, if you don’t manage it, it will eventually start to suck.
This in itself it the reason I am purchasing my own land, likely with my father and my best friend of over 22 years (that’s saying something since I’m only 26) . We have similar values and we’re sick of people not managing good properties that we’ve hunted. I hope that if you are in the market to purchase some land that I gave you at least one good idea. These are the most important things I know of to take an average hunting land with a buddy, to the best hunting land you’ve ever had. These are really pretty simple and can have a huge impact on your success rates. Good luck out there!