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Finding The Right Hunting Leases

Aug 18, 2007
For some of us, investing in an additional property, particularly when paired with the ongoing expense of hunting equipment, maintenance and upkeep of the land, is simply cost-prohibitive. Some will opt to save carefully and pay for a guided or semi-guided package hunt that includes hunting supplies, in an area they've wanted to hunt for years.

Others have figured out that a more cost-effective option is finding land to lease, sometimes the land is leased in its entirety, sometimes the rights to hunt on the land are leased independently and sometimes, groups lease the land together, sharing the right to hunt in various seasons. A tremendous industry has sprung up in land leasing for the express purpose of hunting during the last decade. This trend for leasing hunt land follows the rise in hunting numbers, particularly among women, across the US.

Today, there are a number of agencies that operate across North America, and even around the world, offering lease packages for individuals and parties interested in getting temporary access to a piece of land with a dash of hunting promise.

There are different kinds of hunting leases, some are seasonal, some are annual, some run for years at a time and others are effectively operated as time-shares. The first step in finding a hunting lease that suits your needs is defining those needs. Important things you should think about before leasing a piece of land include where you would like to hunt, when you would do it and what animal you are interested in hunting.

The piece of land you choose will depend on which type of game you like to hunt and where your land is located. Something to keep in mind is that you might find yourself less likely to reap the full benefit of your investment if the land is more than two hours from your full-time residence.

Another thing to consider is if you're only interested in a onetime hunt, leasing might not be the best idea. However, if you want to hunt off and on throughout the season or year, a lease could prove ideal. You will also want to think about the price of the land and how much you are willing to pay. This is a big consideration.

You will already have the expense of hunting gear and supplies and depending on the game you seek and the popularity of the hunt, leasing land can be quite expensive. Some leases will include clauses requiring you to maintain the land you're hunting on by keeping access roads clear and so forth.

Other leases will have an option where you're able to provide services to the land owner as partial payment for your access and hunting rights. Consider whether you're able, and willing, to take part in such a lease as this can save you money, or cost you your dream lease. Once you've considered these questions, speak to an agent and start scouring the ads posted online by clubs, land agencies and private organizations.

If you're living far from the area you're interested in, aim to work with an agency as you're more likely to find land that suits your needs quickly. If you're looking for a lease in your area, don't be shy about charging around the outlying areas scanning the roads for 'to let' and 'lease available' signs, often a good deal to lease private land will disappear before the ad makes it to a printed publication.

Another thing to bear in mind, regardless of the lease term you're negotiating is that seeing the land with your own eyes is a must, don't just take someone else's word for it that you're bound to find a huge trophy elk on their property. Visit, explore and evaluate the situation for yourself. Following these steps will give you the confidence of knowing how to find great land and hunting leases.
About the Author
Craig Chambers is a hunting enthusiast who enjoys sharing hunting leases tips and offers extensive free hunting guides, resources and a hunting handbook on his website www.huntingyourbest.com
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