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Old May 2, 2012, 08:41 PM   #1
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Just lost my hunting lease. Know the feeling?

Just got word today that we lost our 4,200 acre riverbottom lease in East Texas. For many years it has been owned for some years by a government wildlife agency, but my father in law has leased the land for 35 years. It has been an every-weekend destination for me and my family for a very long time.
I'm sick about it. I was looking forward to my children experiencing the outdoors there. Anyone else know the feeling?
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Old May 2, 2012, 09:46 PM   #2
Art Eatman
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Oh, yeah. A bunch of us had a 7,000-acre ranch leased not too far north of Uvalde, a good number of years ago. Then three morticians from Houston offered four times the money we'd been paying. Couldn't blame the rancher, for sure.
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Old May 2, 2012, 10:43 PM   #3
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Land loss

Twice this has been my experience--both times because of immature actions of some members.
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Old May 3, 2012, 12:17 PM   #4
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Over the years I've lost or left 4 leases. Only the first one was really a decent lease, and it was a terrible loss. From there we went to less decent leases that were no great loss, but I still got tired of having to find a new lease and relocate. Finally, at the urging of my wife, we bought a place of our own that isn't real big, but has decent hunting. Central Texas, though it's east of the Hill Country, is a good place to live and hunt. Land is still reasonable, but prices are rising.
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Old May 3, 2012, 01:44 PM   #5
Brian Pfleuger
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Wasn't a lease but I hunted/wandered in the off-season a few thousand acres around my dads house from when I was about 7 into my mid-20s. We knew it inside and out. Just 2 or 3 of us would kill 8-10 deer every year (a lot for these parts).
Then the farmer sold it. My dad could only afford a small piece of land in another county. Fortunately the farmer there let us hunt his land too. The hunting was ok but not like land you've known for 20 years. We've learned the land now and do just fine but it sure took a few years of tag soup before we figured it out.
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Old May 3, 2012, 04:32 PM   #6
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Been there and yes, it hurts !!!

Twice this has been my experience--both times because of immature actions of some members.
Once and for this same reason. Ya know, the typical story about a member asking a one of his buddies and pretty soon you are out there and don't even know who these strangers are. Of course, they all have permission. Landowner did not give a reason, just didn't renew. ....

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Old May 3, 2012, 08:58 PM   #7
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Such a bummer. We have had our lease for 13 years and I have always feared that the land owner is going to run us off. However last year he said even if he passes away his son will continue to lease the land to us. Guess we will see.
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Old May 4, 2012, 03:33 AM   #8
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We had a club for 15 yrs, Indian Bluff Hunt Club, in NW Alabama, that was about 4000 acres at its largest. We had to steadily take on more members to meet the rising rates. About 10 years ago, the state bought it as part of a WMA. My thought, then and now, was, better public access than no access. It was about to the point that average working fellas could not afford it and the only folks that could were docs and lawyers. But it will never be the equal of what it was in the old days.

My curent lease, The 6-Pt Club, has been logged and lost a large portion of what was once fantastic hardwood ridges. They cut down a lot of memories, and that place too will never be the same.
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Old May 5, 2012, 02:29 PM   #9
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Be glad you aren't in Ohio where no one will lease to begin with.
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Old May 5, 2012, 02:43 PM   #10
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Over the years I have had the privilege to hunt many places that I did not own. Some were for only a year or two, some I am still hunting. I feel bad whenever I lose that privilege, not because of opportunities that I will miss out on, but because I cannot go back to those beautiful spots that still have a fond place in my memories. One of my favorite places to hunt is on a large tract of public land that I have hunted with my family since I was big enough to keep up with my dad. Nowadays, most of my family hunts somewhere else or they are gone. The hunting isn't the best, but then it never was. Sometimes I only make it back there once a year, but I still mange to make it to my dad's favorite stand and the place where I shot my first buck. The woods has changed much in those 45 years, but when I go back, and lean back against that old oak(if it's still there)for a brief moment they are just like they used to be......and at least I can go back and remember. For those places I cannot go back to, at least I still have those fond memories, and for that I am grateful.
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Old May 5, 2012, 04:33 PM   #11
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I have always realized that some day I won't be able to hunt the area that I have been, people retire, sell out and pass away.

The advantage to hunting hogs and vermin is if you show good results, willing to take any animal that is requested of you, show responsibility, demonstrate reliability your name will get passed to others. There's nothing better than hunting for free. The biggest factor to free hunting is.... don't be a"fair weather hunter" show a pictures of kills after work, during the crappiest weather you can find. Show that you are willing to actually help and not just a free ride on the weekend. Volunteer to feed or water since you were going out anyways.
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Old May 7, 2012, 11:08 AM   #12
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A lot of people can't really relate to that. I have been around a bit and understand. Up where I live there is thousands and thousands of acres of public land. I see a lot of the posters are from the south where public land is almost non existent. It can really cramp your hunting when there are no other options.
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Old May 7, 2012, 05:35 PM   #13
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As an aside, here in the West there are thousands of acres of public land. back in the 60s, I think, there was a movement named the Sagebrush Rebellion which sought to have the Federal lands given to the states. It had a lot of supporters, but it then dawned on many ranchers and hunters that the small ranchers could not afford the land that the states would sell to the highest bidder, and the hunters would no longer have access to those lands.

Every now and then it raises its head, but consider the states where there is little federal land, and the problems on having a place to hunt or for recreation.
In NM the state owned lands are not open to recreation except for hunters when the Game Commission leases the hunting rights during the hunting seasons. Otherwise the lessee controls access to the land.

Accordingly, if we want continued hunting and recreational access to land we must prevent it being taken out of Federal control
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Old May 7, 2012, 08:14 PM   #14
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I have long thought it would be best for there to be a dedicated group that bought up hunting land and made it available to the public outside government control. I am actually working on starting such a group in Ohio.
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Old May 7, 2012, 08:34 PM   #15
Deja vu
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I mostly hunt on private land any more, fortunately between me my brother and my father we have lots of places to hunt.

I have hunted a little on public land as well.
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Old May 8, 2012, 01:47 AM   #16
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Sadly, yes and not by choice...

The guys running our lease for goose hunting were skimming money off of other members' fees and doing some other shady business. My father and I bailed on the lease. I'm still sore about it as the location is prime. I'm not sure if they still have the lease...I sure hope not.
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Old May 10, 2012, 05:27 PM   #17
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All too well. Family farm that I grew up on, hunting, fishing... Soon to be sold. Most likely will end up stripped of all trees and turned into a horse farm. After my grandfather died at the young age of 97, my uncles pretty much let it go. Grandmother died a few years later, and the kids LLC'd it and agreed to lease it for local farmers for 11 years. Inheritance tax break. Got the for sale sign up right now.

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Old May 10, 2012, 06:13 PM   #18
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I hate it when that happens man. About 5 years ago, we lost a 1500 acre farm. It was a honey hole. I knew when and where the dear would come out and what time they would come out. All I had to do was get in the stand by 4 pm. It was way off the beaten path and when you drove in the deer would be jumpin all over the place getting back to the woods. It was amazing and I don't think I will ever, ever get another piece like that. The family didn't pay the taxes, someone else bought it, and timbered it. I get sick thinking about it.
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