Went for a long run yesterday, did a loop on the new bike trails that were put in on the BLM and ran back to my mom/childhood house. This used to be the way I would walk to friends houses, walk into town before I could drive, etc.Ahh no worriee I'm just worried about where it is going as a whole for all of our kids. I'm afraid it going to be the "kings deer" before
I ever thought it would be. Sad to watch it unfold.
I’ve worked shift work for years. I’ve been in a leasing situation so that I could easily hunt before or after work, and so that I could hunt with my son after school and also on weekends when I had to work. We trophy hunted and filled the freezer with does. It’s called management and it’s the best of both worlds. I was happy to pay the landowner for the opportunity for quality deer and turkey hunting.I feel your pain. I grew up in a nasty part of Indy, nobody in my family lived outside the city or had any land and I didn't start hunting until I was in my 30s. While in the Army my wife and I thought about and wanted to buy some land and be by her family in N IN .......with land prices it became clear that would only end up being a couple of acres (the county they live in is basically owned by about 20 farm families and property pricing borders on monopoly). Through a fraternity brother I was able to garner access to a little 150ac farm where my boy shot his first deer. It is a sweet little place where the owner leases the tillable and house while keeping 10 or so head of cattle for himself. The fields are split between corn and beans.....if you can't shoot a deer on the cut corn you just aren't trying. About 5 years ago now the "leasers" came knocking offering to pay $2500 to $3000 just to hang 2 stands per season. Owner apologized when he told me but I understand his position. I also got to hunt with another fraternity brother on a small group of farms that he and 6-7 families worth of guys had formed a bit of a coop on in another IN county. One of the guys had a nice pole building with a walk in cooler, processing equipment and a kitchen that they had a bit of a clubhouse in and the farms they hunted (beside whatever land they owned amongst themselves) were generally owned by elderly folks with no kids around. The guys would help with the farms and keep deer numbers from destroying crops. About the same time as the other.....in came the leasers with the same types of offers........everything leased out.
While it sucks to me to see not just the access, but the subculture of locally oriented hunting friends and the help they offer owners in cooperation disappearing for straight $$$$$$$. I understand the allure of the $$$ to the owners. What I DON'T understand are straight WT trophy hunters. I don't understand offering thousands of dollars a year just because you want a "big rack" to put on the wall. I feel it is a symptom of a glory killing movement that is more worried about the "insta gram" photo ops than having a camp and filling the freezer.
I think I have found a way to own some land and try to carve out a piece for my family in the future but it will be about a LOT of compromises and changes.