If you’re the kind of person who loves to do things yourself and isn’t afraid to get your hands dirty, then your next big hunting adventure could very well be a DIY hunt. Deciding where to go, what gear to bring, and how to book your own spot on the hunt can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve never done it before.
This guide will help you plan and execute an adventure in which you’re the one doing all the hunting. Here’s everything you need to know about planning a DIY hunt.
8 Things to Know While Planning a DIY Hunt
Here are a few things you need to keep in mind when planning a DIY hunt.
1. Select A Place For Hunting
Ideally, you’ll already have a spot in mind for your hunt. If not, take some time to think about where you’d like to go hunting. When choosing a location consider access points and roads, terrain that will be difficult or impossible to navigate during hunting season, other hunters in your area, and most importantly, permission from any landowners whose property you wish to hunt on! Check to see if you can stay overnight in the location in case you wish to stay there for a few days.
2. Research A Bit!
Do a little research to learn about potential habitats and discuss possible trip locations with friends or family members who might be interested in joining you on your adventure. Remember that certain areas will have different laws and policies regarding hunting and wildlife. In some places, hunters must wear fluorescent safety vests when walking through fields, while in others, they are required to wear blaze orange clothing or put out food at their homes as bait for larger animals.
3. Choose Your Animal
The first step to planning a hunt is selecting your animal. There are six animals that you can hunt for in places like North America: whitetail deer, elk, moose, buffalo, antelope, and mule deer. While each of these animals requires a different type of hunting skill and equipment, they do share one thing in common – you will have an incredible experience hunting any of them! This also extends the second point, which is research. No matter whatever animal you pick, make sure you do extensive research on them. For example, if you choose elk as your prey, get information about how elk tracks differ from moose tracks, when is the best time of the day to find them, etc.
4. Choose Your Equipment and Hunting Gear
Hunting is not limited to guns and bows. There are many different weapons used for hunting, depending on what you’re looking to take down. When choosing which weapon to use for your DIY hunt, consider how big your target is, and whether or not that’s something you want to shoot with a gun! If you have small targets in mind (like squirrels), choose something smaller. On the other hand, plan out your hunting gear ahead according to the weather of the hunting location or the type of animal you are hunting for.
5. Prepare Yourself Physically For Hunting
All that exertion, standing, and walking for hours on end can be tough, especially if you’re not prepared for it. You can do some serious damage to your feet by wearing improper footwear, so make sure you get yourself a pair of sturdy boots. Don’t forget about your knees either; long hunts often involve a lot of sitting or kneeling, which is incredibly hard on these vital joints.
6. Get Your Hunting License
Make sure you have a license if you’re going to be hunting in a state or province where you need one. You can obtain hunting licenses from your local government. When buying your license, don’t forget that many states and provinces require those 16 years of age and older to complete an online Hunter Education course before applying for their first license.
7. Have A Backup Plan
Having a Plan B is the attribute of a professional hunter. Chances are, there will be an emergency that requires you to cancel your hunt; or worse, something happens during your hunt and you can’t continue. It’s vital to have a backup plan in place for both situations so your trip doesn’t go down in flames before it even begins.
8. Consider Your Safety
Whether you’re hunting in your backyard or exploring uncharted territories, it’s important to ensure that everyone on your expedition is safe and aware of potential hazards. Whether you have expert marksmen or beginners on your team, there are safety considerations for every type of hunting party. We don’t recommend bringing inexperienced people along unless they are carefully supervised; even so, it pays to be cautious while out on a hunt. If you’re going to be tracking in dense, unfamiliar woods, without a guide, make sure you let someone know where you are going and when you expect to return. If something goes wrong and you can’t return by your expected time, it’s helpful for searchers to have some sense of where to look.
At its core, hunting is about moving around in wild places and then bringing home meat. While planning a hunt can sometimes feel like it takes as much time as an actual hunt, you need to make the effort to do it right. A well-worked-out plan might make all the difference in making your trip a success or a failure. Hopefully, the tips we mentioned above will guide you in planning your own DIY hunt efficiently. Best of luck with your next hunting expedition.
1. What is a DIY hunt?
A do-it-yourself hunting experience is an arrangement with a local hunter to go out and hunt on his or her property. It differs from a guided hunt in that you find your own trophies and are responsible for arranging and paying for everything.
2. What do I need before starting my own hunt?
Before starting your own hunt, you should start with a good map (preferably an old-fashioned paper map or a GPS device). You should also bring some water with you, as temperatures can vary greatly throughout the year. Some wild game spots may require hikes of several miles; if that’s true for where you’re hunting, make sure to wear comfortable shoes.