Outfitters that lease ranches

174in

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Just curious if anyone has an idea of what kind of prices the outfitters in Montana and Wyoming pay per acre to lease private ranches?
 

HighWildFree

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Depends...but for the area I used to guide: deer in the ballpark of $5k-$10k, elk from $50k to over $100k. If you buy an outfitted hunt on private land, safe to say about half of your hunt cost is going to the rancher.
 

174in

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Depends...but for the area I used to guide: deer in the ballpark of $5k-$10k, elk from $50k to over $100k. If you buy an outfitted hunt on private land, safe to say about half of your hunt cost is going to the rancher.
Per acre?
 

antlerradar

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Been a while since I have seen any prices but I would say that a buck an acre is on the low side. Outfitters don't pay by the acre, They calculate how many deer they can take off of a property and pay accordingly. Ten thousand acres of river bottom and near by hills may fetch more money than fifty thousand acres that is mostly sage and prairie grass.
 
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BucksnDucks

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I asked a ranch owner that question last week. His answer was the outfitter offered $1000 per deer harvested. Interesting way of doing things and I guess the honor system would be utilized.
 

npaden

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I've heard of several leases priced that way. They aren't selling the deer, just using the number harvested as a guideline to set the price. It's a lot more common with outfitters and when leasing to a private individual.

Around here you would be doing really good to get something for $5 per acre, most are going for $10+ per acre, some as high as $20+ per acre.
 

JV842

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Welcome to Texas!!! If u aren’t rich, own land, or have friends w land......
Good Luck!!!
I’m fortunate and have good friends n family!!!!
 

406LIFE

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I've not seen it done by acre.
I've seen pricing vary wildly.
Generally, its a flat rate to the ranch owner.
Amount would depend on productivity and species.

I've also seen trespass fees, for the direct to hunter. Those have been as low as $100/day to $1000 for a season.
 

174in

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I've heard of several leases priced that way. They aren't selling the deer, just using the number harvested as a guideline to set the price. It's a lot more common with outfitters and when leasing to a private individual.

Around here you would be doing really good to get something for $5 per acre, most are going for $10+ per acre, some as high as $20+ per acre.
land here is crazy to lease it easily goes for $50 per acre. I was curious about western states because I could not understand how outfitters could make any money leasing thousands of acres, but I am coming to the conclusion they don’t pay squat to the ranchers
 
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nick87

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Everything is
Welcome to Texas!!! If u aren’t rich, own land, or have friends w land......
Good Luck!!!
I’m fortunate and have good friends n family!!!!
Same here in illinois. Everything is leased, newest thing the last couple years is now they are leasing up bare crop fields for waterfowl hunting too. After a couple years the guys in the club who are leasing figure out they are paying big money for shit ground. As soon as they drop out there's a line a mile long of idiots from the suburbs of chicago willing to take there place.
 

HighWildFree

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land here is crazy to lease it easily goes for $50 per acre. I was curious about western states because I could not understand how outfitters could make any money leasing thousands of acres, but I am coming to the conclusion they don’t pay squat to the ranchers

You would be wrong.

I can't imagine making $50,000 a year just by holding my hand out and that's all ranchers have to do when it comes to leasing hunting rights.

I'll give you an example:
a ranch we used to guide we leased for about $30,000 5 years ago, it was about 9 sections (5700 acres) and good for about 8 bull elk a season. We could pay for the lease with 5 hunters When it came time to renew the lease the price had gone up to $60,000. We told them to pound sand and another outfitter snapped it up. So now that outfitter has to run 10 hunters just to pay the lease.

Another lease that I am aware of went for $125,000 a year 3 years ago and that outfitter was running 12 hunters a week on that property.

Most of the ranchers still retain the right to hunt themselves or let their friends hunt, so they have their cake and eat it to.
 

SFC B

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Most of the ranches around where I hunt run their own outfitting business with their ranch staff.....folks they are already paying. Add in the fact that they also get a big chunk of guaranteed tags to do with what they want (including setting their own seasons) if they are enrolled in RFW. With bull hunts going for +-$8k (not to mention the cow and deer hunts on those property) they can pull in BIG money that way.

As for the Midwest, in IN where I used to hunt near my inlaws, those properties have been leased to folks chasing "big deer" from the southeast. They are dropping $2500 plus to lease farms.....one of those farms is only 150ac. Even if I had the money to drop the whole thing just seems to take something out of the experience. It has also made it really tough to try and introduce new hunters or keep hunters who don't have land. The days of asking for permission to hunt in return for farm chores are long gone. With limited public land firearms season can be down right scary.
 

Sytes

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Don't know what price though before the father passed, he kept it open to those of us who gave a day or two work on his ranch. Not a requirement as I offered and found a couple others offered as well. He had us set for the ranch quarters (better than my house!) and filled us with prime time beef steaks, suds, etc. More enjoyable working the couple days each year than dragging my arse around the mtns. Haha!

He passed some 15 years ago. His sons now lease it to outfitters with a contract clause that does not permit me to hunt on nor pass through to the adj public land. $$$.
 

Jt13

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$10-12/acre is the going rate for a deer hunting lease in my area of Pennsylvania. Outfitters leasing a ranch out west and whitetail leases just arent comparable when looking at them at $/acre
 

sbhooper

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I am not real familiar with Wyoming, etc., but my neighbor has tremendous deer habitat and he gets in excess of $45,000 a year, from an outfitter. I don't know what he charges the hunters, but I cannot see how he can make that pay overall. I am fortunate, in that I get to do the depredation work in the summer and get to see some of the nice bucks that are there.

In the neighbor's defense, it is the only way that he can recoup his taxes on 700 acres of river waste land and also a lot of corn damage.
 

antlerradar

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Lease rates are a function of supply and demand. Landowners are the suppliers and the demand comes form hunters that want a better quality hunt. Outfitters may be the ones doing the leasing but the demand comes form their clients. Outfitters started leasing in the early 1980's in SE Montana. My father outfitted in the mid 60's to mid 70's. He never leased any property. He guided on both private and public land right along side other public and private land hunters. There was no need to lease as the hunting was great on both the private and public even with the other hunters. Deer were plentiful and quality was great. It is no coincidences the the first leases started in the early 80's a few years after the devastating winters of the late 70's. Deer numbers plummeted. The law of diminishing returns may have worked back then but at best it works slowly. Outfitters took management in to there own hands so that they could continue to provide the quality hunts there clients demanded. The leasing snow ball started to roll. That snow ball could only get so big though with outfitters because the number of potential outfitter clients is only so big dew to Montana's limits on nonresidents.
Today we have a relatively new player in the market for leases. Individuals or groups of hunters are now leasing land for hunting. This newer demand for leasing is growing and in the future is likely to surpass outfitters in the market for leases. It may have all ready. A large part of this new demand is driven by the result of opportunity management and poor hunting on public land. Hunters form Bozeman or Billings would not be paying thousands of dollars to lease a property in Eastern Montana if they could go up the Gallatin or to Missouri Breaks and have a quality hunt. Hiking in 3 miles and harvesting a fork horn may be a great experience for a youth or a newbie to western hunting but that experience is not going to satisfy many of us for long. That snow ball has the potential to get lots bigger and much of the increase is at the feet of opportunity management.
Landowners lease for two reasons, Money and convenience. The more opportunity the more money a lease will be worth. Liberal bag limits, and ideally timed long seasons increase both the value of a lease and the inconvenience of not leasing. Again opportunity management is working against those that are concerned about the increase in the amount of leasing and the cost of the leases. Hunting in Montana will survive opportunity at all costs management. I have my doubts that the North American Model will.
 
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