Having some down time between hunting seasons is a good thing, but then again not so go. We have built Struttin’ Time around you and me going deep into the Everglades to hunt wild boar, or Osceola turkey, to hunting the Rockies out west. Those are exciting times, but when we need to talk about getting ready to go on those trips, not so much fun.
This is one of those weeks.
If you plan to hunt in the West this year, here is your notice to start applying for those hunts, from antelope to turkey, as the draws are online now. Rules have changed from year to year, so make sure you don’t miss your deadline.
We need to talk also about price increases from not only the states but from the outfitters, too. We all have one gene in our body that is just alike — the greed gene. My friend Harry G. Wright told me before his death, “Steve there is coming a time, when if someone thinks you are making a quarter, they want a nickel of it.”
That was in 1978. Was he right? Yes he was. Although a common person has not gotten enough of a raise on their paycheck to keep up with the cost of living, the states and outfitters keep increasing their prices until they have nearly priced the regular hunter out. My long time outfitter in Florida, were I hunted wild boar, will not be seeing me this year, because they raised the price of their hunt from $500 just a couple years ago to $800 when I hunted last year. I don’t remember getting that much of a raise, on my pension. As a matter of fact, I never got any.
I got a message from my turkey hunting outfitter in Florida last week that she has raised her prices to $850 a day, up from $700 last year, although she “grandfathered” me in at $600, up from $250 just three years ago. I must tell the truth here though. She still has the best price in the state. On her Watermelon Pond Plantation you should be able to kill both your long beards at the same time just as fast as you can pull your trigger in one day.
The other outfitters in Florida charge you $1000 for two days for just one turkey. Watermelon Pond is also the best when it comes to telling you were the turkeys are. She has 3,000 acres of turkey heaven. If you plan a Florida turkey hunt I would advise using her.
The season for her area starts March 19. We will be talking about our travels for this year in future Struttin’ Times.