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View Full Version : Loaded Handgun While Hunting


ninjatoth
October 30, 2009, 07:10 PM
Here in Michigan,it is a law that you cannot have your gun loaded after dark during hunting season while walking back to your car or cabin.They assume that you are looking for an illegal after hours shot.But what if you either are open carrying,or CCW carrying a handgun for protection?Do you have to unload that gun also?It makes no sense to me if that is the law.Some dude in the woods who just so happens to not possess a hunting license can carry a loaded handgun after dark,but I can't simply because have a hunting license?Seems like there would be a difference to the law,maybe there is,but not that i'm aware of.

Brian Pfleuger
October 30, 2009, 07:11 PM
Do you have the actual text of the law? That will make it easier for someone to interpret.

ninjatoth
October 30, 2009, 07:21 PM
I don't have the actual text,I can look it up if you want,but I heard this law straight from a DNR officer at the hunters ed class.I didn't ask him about handguns,but he siply said that you can't have your gun loaded after dark,and if he sees someone walking like they are stalking after dark,he will stop them and bust them if thier gun is loaded.I am not too worried about being busted,lol.I will be hunting on private land,and Michigan has only like 118 DNR officers for all 83 counties,so I'm not too concerned,but was just more curious than anything.

Brian Pfleuger
October 30, 2009, 07:25 PM
Quite often there are assumptions made when someone is more or less paraphrasing a law for someone else.

The DNR officer may very well be correct, but not totally correct. There are often exceptions, exclusions and references to other laws that get left out of the translation.

I would imagine that the actual meaning and restrictions of the law will be clear to you if you can find the actual text.

I hope for your sake that it's not as hard to find the actual law in Michigan as it sometimes is in NY.

kyle1974
October 30, 2009, 07:56 PM
my God...every time I sign in here, I"m glad I'm fronm Texas...:D

Daryl
October 30, 2009, 10:08 PM
my God...every time I sign in here, I"m glad I'm fronm Texas...

No kidding. Heck, every time I hear about some sort of funky law in Texas (like no open carry), I'm glad I'm from Arizona!

:D

Daryl

koolminx
October 30, 2009, 10:52 PM
WOW, I guess that if one was a CCW holder that you never have to carry unloaded if you don't want to...

I am in the belief that a pistol carried while rifle hunting (Utah back in my youth was like this), is fine to remain loaded. The law there when I has hunting was to have them unloaded after dark as well but it didn't apply to our side arms back then...


It makes no sense to not be able to carry your pistol loaded during rifle season, but then again, it makes no sense not to be able to open carry anywhere.... Not to me anyway... :)

mp4
October 30, 2009, 10:56 PM
and here in WI there is no concealed weapon option...

cornbush
October 30, 2009, 10:59 PM
If your on private property I would do it anyway if your worried about 2 legged critters. "Rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6."

trooper3385
October 31, 2009, 12:04 AM
Your best bet would be calling one of the supervisors for the game wardens in your area. Better to hear it from the bosses mouth than speculating.

shortwave
October 31, 2009, 07:37 AM
trooper3385 has the best idea. In Ohio, all gun hunting laws have stayed the same(with a few minor exceptions) for quite some time. One big difference is at the end of all the gun hunting laws, written in our yearly hunting handbook a statement has been added: see concealed carry. While we are allowed to CC to and from, while hunting we are not allowed to shoot, shoot at or pursue game with our CC weapon. Again, do as trooper suggested as YMMV.

BIGR
October 31, 2009, 09:09 AM
Sorry but my pistol will remain loaded regardless of day or night, when walking back and forth in the woods. I have no intentions of illegal hunting activity but for my protection from critters, two legged and four legged my pistol will be ready. One year I kept everything loaded when I came out of the woods. A woman lived near my hunting camp in a mobile home. Her and her boyfriend would have arguments, he would be drunk and would walk outside and empty high caliber pistols through the woods. We heard bullets zinging from time to time. One evening in particular I was hunting down low in a hollar (hollow for you others) and he started that shooting mess. I stayed on the stand til about dark and eased to camp. I was leaving to go home that nght and was afraid to make any loud noise, because I was just about 125 yards from that madman. I kept all pistols and the rifle loaded and believe me if bullets had come my way I would have took defensive action. Just like my hunting buddies and I figured, time would take care of that situation and it sure did. The man attacked the woman one night and she shot him dead with a pistol. ;) She never was charged with murder because common sense law enforcement saw it as self defense.

langenc
October 31, 2009, 09:11 AM
Dont have direct text.

Yes rifle must be unloaded if after shooting hours-no if you are heading in early. Arrow may not be on string if bow hunting and probably now crossbow, as they are legal at times.
CCW gun is legal-loaded- so long as it is not used to "attempt to take game" while enroute to camp (cabin) or truck.

I dont know about open carry which is gaining in popularity. I have attended OC meetings but OCing while hunting was not discussed.

James R. Burke
November 1, 2009, 01:54 PM
In Michigan when hunting after dark you need to be unloaded that is the law. If you have a concealed carry permit for a pistol that would cover this, and most do you can carry it concealed hunting or not. With or without a license.

L_Killkenny
November 1, 2009, 04:28 PM
Does Michigan have any critters that you can hunt at night? Coyote? Coon? Etc Etc?

If so there's your answer. Example: Here in Iowa you are only allowed to carry without a CC while hunting. Even in the open, you can't while fishing, can't while hiking. But Iowa has open season on yotes with no shooting hours. I'll just tell em I'm on a multi-purpose day including coyote hunting and if they ask me to prove it I pull out a freebie hand call and start blowing. Only restriction is you have to be or private land at that point or public land legal for hunting. Never been checked though.

LK

kyle1974
November 1, 2009, 05:16 PM
No kidding. Heck, every time I hear about some sort of funky law in Texas (like no open carry), I'm glad I'm from Arizona!



Daryl

heck.. you guys in arizona can't even hunt iwth a suppressor, or shoot guns drunk... what kind of place is that? :D:D:D

also, just looking through the gun laws there, you guys actually have a law that is "no shooting wildlife within 1/4 mile of a farm house or occupied residence without permission from that person"

that seems like it could cause some problems.

444
November 2, 2009, 02:59 PM
trooper3385 has the best idea. In Ohio, all gun hunting laws have stayed the same(with a few minor exceptions) for quite some time. One big difference is at the end of all the gun hunting laws, written in our yearly hunting handbook a statement has been added: see concealed carry. While we are allowed to CC to and from, while hunting we are not allowed to shoot, shoot at or pursue game with our CC weapon. Again, do as trooper suggested as YMMV.


Huh
That's interesting. Ohio seems to have some really crazy laws. I am assuming the point is that if you are hunting with a handgun, it is not supposed to be concealed ? If so, I wonder why ?
FWIW: this isn't in Ohio, but I have gone coyote calling many times here in Nevada and simply used my concelaed carry pistol, carrying it concealed in my concealed carry holster. Called in coyotes, drew and shot them. Why would this be an issue ?


NOTE: I am from Ohio (Jefferson County), still go there for 3-6 weeks a year, hunt while I am there, and intend to retire there in a couple years: so, I always take note of Ohio laws regarding hunting and firearms.

shortwave
November 2, 2009, 08:48 PM
thats interesting. Ohio seems to have some really crazy laws. I am assuming... Think the laws are crazy, search ODNR, go to deer hunting regulations then to 'Allowable hunting equipment . When referring to handguns it will state: Handgun with 5" minimum length barrel, using straight walled cartridges .357 cal. or larger. If you scroll down to the bottom of that section it states: Hunters cannot carry more than one firearm while hunting deer. See concealed carry information. Now when you click on concealed carry info it states: A person possessing a valid Ohio issued concealed carry license may carry their concealed weapon but it may not be used to shoot, shoot at or kill any wild animal. Soooo, not only are there screwed up laws, the way the regs. are written is screwed up. I can`t find anywhere where it states you can`t/can conceal a hunting handgun with the above legal for hunting description. Also, the way this is written, the concealed carry license has to be an Ohio issued one to be within the law cc`ing here during deer gun season.:rolleyes: Another screwed up law here is the fact you have to plug your shotgun allowing it to only hold 3 total shells(wouldn`t care if they limited it to two) but there`s no 3 shot limit on handguns. Go figure. 444, you sure you want to retire here.:D

taylorce1
November 2, 2009, 09:49 PM
Does unloaded mean an empty magazine? I jack a round pretty fast when I have to as long as I have a round in the mag of my rifle.

Crankylove
November 2, 2009, 10:41 PM
While hunting in Utah, I can carry a loaded pistol anytime, day or night, "legal shooting hours" don't apply, thanks to my concealed carry permit. The permit also allows me to carry a loaded firearm (must be concealed to comply with the permit) during the Archery and Muzzleloader hunts.


heck.. you guys in arizona can't even hunt with a suppressor

I can use a supressor in Utah :D ...........just can't hunt with a full auto/selective fire.......