Contributors to this thread:
Costs of Turkey Hunts
We had another turkey go down today, and I had some time to kill, and we were talking about, going out of state next year, even though, we have great turkeys and multiple tags here in Wis.....
I will do a DIY for Merriam, but I have to say, I looked at some Nebraska outfitters...... they want almost a thousand dollars for a hunt, and 200 for each additional bird, up to 3, .....
that's some serious cash, for a turkey, wow I had no idea hunters pay out this much cash to hunt turkeys.....
is this the norm?
Michael, no need for a guide unless you have very limited time to hunt. There are plenty of turkeys in Nebraska and many on SWA so just do a little research. I live in Colorado and only hunt SWA in Nebraska and get lots of opportunites each year.
Paul I agree, I just was stunned what someone would pay to kill a turkey,,,,,,,,
Personally I'd never go on a guided turkey hunt but $1,000 for 3 days of guiding and lodging does not seem out of line.
What are you expecting to pay? Is someone's time and overhead and private property access not worth $300 per day?? Realistically what do you think an outfitter nets at the end if the day?
Even if operating at a30% profit margin that's only 300 bucks. Most deer outfitters offer turkey hunts to promote their fall buck hunts and get clients through the door plus help with overhead.
I guess your right, never thought of it that way, shows how lucky I am, to live in the country that I do
$1,000 for 3 days does not seem that bad when you compare it to a guided hunt in Mexico for either a Gould's or an Oscillated.
One of the top outfitters is charging around $3,000 for Goulds and almost $4,000 for Oscillated..... Add on flights to get there, licence fee's, tips, etc...and permits to bring the bird home and you are up around $5000 for Goulds and $6000 for the Oscillated.
That is real dollars (U.S.).....do the almost 30% bank exchange rate on Canadian $$$ and you are now at $6500 or $7800 Canadian.
On a 25 lb. Gould's that works out to about $260 a pound and on a 12 lb. Oscillated about $650 a pound!
My wife figures that is about 4 All inclusive trips to a nice beach for her (With or without me)!
Is the $1,000 for a three day hunt?
May just be me, but I can't believe folks would pay an extraordinary sum of money to kill a turkey.....and I've certainly enjoyed hunting them over the years. We get a fall and spring bird tag standard with a general license purchase here in PA. I think for about another $20 they'll give you a second spring tag, although I never bother really
Spring turkey hunting is my thing. I enjoy it more than anything I've hunted except elk. I'll give it a tie. I hunt them the same way. Covering lts f ground until i find them then stay with them until the foul up. I've done it in quite a few states and never sent more than $40-$500 doing so. 5 to share gas, licence cost, rustic camping equal cheap. God Bless.
I went on a guided turkey hunt once in South Dakota. Hunt was incredible and the guide worked incredibly hard to get me a Tom. Killed a 3-bearded Merriam's on the 2nd day of the hunt.
Flying home from my 18th and 19th states as I type this. I have never paid to shoot a turkey and have made incredible friends along the way and gotten numerous offers to return and hunt deer. I have been incredibly blessed and also work hard to network when I can. Killed in Wisconsin on Thursday and Minnesota on Saturday. Incredible landscape and the people were all very generous.
When anyone pays anyone remember you are buying a hunt, a hunt for hopefully an opp on a animal or turkey in this case. You are not paying a thousand dollars for a turkey, or a turkey kill. You are buying a hunt experience. Any sort of vacation anywhere will cost whoever money, it's just the way the world goes around.
You have to sit back and look at what the guide provides for his fee...pre-season scouting for how many days before the hunter arrives...does he pay any hunt lease costs...trespass fees...truck fuel...wear and tear on truck...misc unseen overhead expenses... insurance liability cost...some provide lodging included so you don't have to foot a motel bill each night...some provide meals...a guide could be up at 4 am, out at dark thirty, hunt or entertain the hunter for a half or full day...probably scouting at roost time until 8:00 pm, minimal sleep and then repeat the same scenario the next day, etc.
After all this yes he is entitled to making a profit.
...a matter of priorities.
A lot of guys have to rush out and buy the newest Mathews setup when they can't shoot any better than what they could get for a Bass Pro Combo for $1,000 less.
Some drive $50,000 trucks when the one I just sold for $1,000 would get them down the road, too
A lot of people have more money than time. That's not an insult, just a fact. If they're making $4-$5,000 per week, and sooooooo many are, , the guided turkey hunt is a pretty cheap deal to make sure they get into birds.
Most turkey hunts canbe done pretty cheap, but if you want your grand slam it may cost you a bit for an Osceola. Most of the cost is good private land access. I know there are a few WMA's you can hunt. I've never done a DIY for osceolas but I hear the pressure is high. May need to drop a few bucks for Rio in TX because it's mostly private land too.
"...a matter of priorities."
Plenty of merriams to be had on public land north of Spokane WA for cheap. Would never pay that much for a turkey hunt when you can have a fun diy for way less.
You may be able to wheel and deal on Craiglist...but buyer beware! If you have lots of time possibly knock on doors later in the season if public isn't working out. Some ranches may be leased out to outfitters but you never know unless you try. The going rate for most turkey hunts I've seen in the Midwest and Colo run around $800+ with meals and a lodge. You may get cheaper rates on smaller properties or ones that don't include food/lodging. Many don't offer nonguided but some may for a little cheaper.
I have to agree with writer, some guys just do not have the time to scout and spend a lot of time in the woods. They work a lot of hours and may make a lot of money. I do not blame them for doing what they need to do to get a quality hunt. I myself don't believe I would ever pay to turkey hunt, but if things in my life changed I may just have too. I see hunts here in NY go for $750 to a grand for 3 day hunts and two bird limit. Hell if someone really wants to kill a bird that bad they can come hunt a couple days with me and stay at the house for free. After all they are just a dumb bird :) Shawn
That's what I mean, Roger.
I just paid $800 to shoot an osceola. 2 day hunt included accommodations and transportation, hell the guide even bought me breakfast.
The whole hunt was short notice, end of the season when a person really had no business trying to kill a turkey after they'd been chased around and shot at for a month. The idea of going to South Florida and doing that DIY wasn't really an option. Given the only people I know in Florida are in the Northern part of the state where the turkeys are Easterns, only made the choice to go guided for osceola a lot easier.
It was a good experience and a tough hunt, but we got a bird in the final minutes of the hunt. So I've checked the box for Osceola and as far as I'm concerned it was money well spent and I don't need to do it again.
Would I pay $800 to shoot a Rio? ...or an Eastern? ..or a Merriam's? ...uhhhhhhh, NO!
muskeg 's Link
I know of private land in Neb that charge $200 for access for 5 days of hunting.
Add your $117 NR turkey tag and go hunt
Tejon Ranch is getting $1400 now-a-days ...
and probably has a wait list ...