John's Journal...

How to Find Deer Land to Hunt

Determine Where to Look First

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Some years ago I almost dropped the telephone receiver when I heard the words, "The landowner has sold the land, and our hunting lease has been cancelled." I'd called the secretary of our hunting club to let him know that I planned to go to our hunting camp three weeks before deer season started to check several of my stand sites and get ready for the opening weekend of bow season. I wanted to scout the areas whereClick to enlarge I'd taken bucks before, cut shooting lanes and make sure that the deer fed on the same nut trees they had in the past. I enjoy scouting for deer because I consider it the true essence of the sport of hunting. Scouting means learning where the deer feed and bed and which trails they travel on and then prepredicting where a deer may appear. When you hunt, you actually climb into your tree stand and wait on the shot. But this year instead of scouting for a place to put my tree stand, I had to scout for new land to hunt.

The search for a place to hunt that season began with my friends and my local sporting-goods dealer. At the store where I bought my hunting and fishing gear, the salesmen knew me, how I liked to hunt, what kinds of places I enjoyed hunting, and which people I'd get along with the best. "If you know anyone who has an opening in a hunting lease, anyone who will lease land or anyone who will take pity onClick to enlarge a hunter without a place to hunt, please call me, and I'll get in contact with them," I told all the salespeople and the owner of the store. I realized I had an almost-impossible task of locating a good hunting lease to join or quality deer land to lease three weeks before deer season arrived. Although the store clerks and my friends failed to come up with a lease option, one of the salesmen suggested that, "You ought to talk to Richard Adkins, the local conservation officer. He knows every piece of property in the county and every other game warden in the state. If anyone can help you, Click to enlargehe can."

Use The Law Solution:
In thinking about my situation, I decided that two types of law-enforcement officers would know almost every landowner in a county – the conservation officer and the sheriff or the deputy sheriff. These law-enforcement officers would understand each landowner's attitude toward hunters and know whether or not I'd have a reasonable chance of gaining permission to hunt any land in the county. Luckily my conservation officer knew another conservation officer in another county who helped me find a place to hunt that season. Because I never wanted to not have a property to hunt during deer season again, I started researching how to find hunting land when I didn't have any.

Tomorrow: Decide Who Knows the Most Land and the Most People

Check back each day this week for more about "How to Find Deer Land to Hunt"

Day 1: Determine Where to Look First
Day 2: Decide Who Knows the Most Land and the Most People
Day 3: Check with the Army
Day 4: Think about Power
Day 5: Search for Maps



Entry 389, Day 1