Outfitter Dilemma
General Topic
Contributors to this thread:
echozarn 13-Sep-23
Brotsky 13-Sep-23
StickFlicker 13-Sep-23
Bob H in NH 13-Sep-23
Buckdeer 13-Sep-23
fdp 13-Sep-23
RK 13-Sep-23
jdbbowhunter 13-Sep-23
Buckdeer 13-Sep-23
KY EyeBow 13-Sep-23
Straight Shooter 13-Sep-23
air leak 13-Sep-23
Grey Ghost 13-Sep-23
Missouribreaks 13-Sep-23
Bou’bound 13-Sep-23
RK 13-Sep-23
MA-PAdeerslayer 13-Sep-23
Matt 13-Sep-23
Bowfinatic 13-Sep-23
Glunt@work 13-Sep-23
Tilzbow 14-Sep-23
echozarn 14-Sep-23
woodguy65 14-Sep-23
Slate 14-Sep-23
Rut Nut 14-Sep-23
RK 14-Sep-23
APauls 14-Sep-23
Bou'bound 15-Sep-23
Thornton 15-Sep-23
bghunter 15-Sep-23
SteveB 15-Sep-23
Bou'bound 15-Sep-23
Mule Power 15-Sep-23
RK 15-Sep-23
Thornton 15-Sep-23
APauls 16-Sep-23
DanaC 16-Sep-23
Nyati 16-Sep-23
Genesis 16-Sep-23
Candor 18-Sep-23
Matt 18-Sep-23
Thornton 18-Sep-23
echozarn 01-Dec-23
Woody 01-Dec-23
Woody 01-Dec-23
echozarn 01-Dec-23
APauls 01-Dec-23
echozarn 01-Dec-23
RK 01-Dec-23
echozarn 01-Dec-23
WV Mountaineer 01-Dec-23
TMac 01-Dec-23
fuzzy 01-Dec-23
KHNC 01-Dec-23
sitO 01-Dec-23
drycreek 01-Dec-23
SteveB 01-Dec-23
WV Mountaineer 01-Dec-23
KY EyeBow 01-Dec-23
echozarn 01-Dec-23
WV Mountaineer 01-Dec-23
Jethro 01-Dec-23
bigswivle 01-Dec-23
LBshooter 01-Dec-23
Glunt@work 01-Dec-23
Bou'bound 01-Dec-23
WV Mountaineer 01-Dec-23
echozarn 01-Dec-23
scentman 01-Dec-23
ILbowhntr 01-Dec-23
Pop-r 01-Dec-23
fuzzy 01-Dec-23
Thornton 01-Dec-23
Glunt@work 02-Dec-23
Don K 02-Dec-23
echozarn 02-Dec-23
Hunts_with_stick 02-Dec-23
Old School 02-Dec-23
Hunts_with_stick 02-Dec-23
echozarn 04-Feb-24
BlacktailBob 04-Feb-24
TMac 04-Feb-24
BlacktailBob 04-Feb-24
Jethro 04-Feb-24
BlacktailBob 04-Feb-24
csalem 04-Feb-24
Iowa booner hunter 04-Feb-24
BlacktailBob 04-Feb-24
deserthunter 04-Feb-24
BlacktailBob 04-Feb-24
Trial153 04-Feb-24
Timex? 04-Feb-24
spike buck 04-Feb-24
Woody 04-Feb-24
spike buck 05-Feb-24
KHNC 07-Feb-24
grizzley21 07-Feb-24
Bou'bound 07-Feb-24
From: echozarn
13-Sep-23
First time paying for a Whitetail hunt. I'm looking for some input on the predicament that I have myself in. I narrowed things down to one particular outfitter for whitetails this fall(Illinois). He fit my style of hunting and was allowing some freedom in stand choices. I sent the complete payment in June, but should of just sent the deposit. My mistake. As August rolled around I was seeing that with my schedule would not allow me to be able to join them this fall. I asked if he would have some one who would want to take my place, I even said I would take $500 less on payment if I could get someone to take my spot and get some of my money back. I also asked if I could try to also fill my spot on my own. He said Go for it. I found some one to take my spot as long as I offered a discount. I had this person reach out to the outfitter so he could get all the details. Apparently when he contacted him the the outfitter said he filled my spot with someone else. I thought great now at least I could get some of my money back. No he filled my spot and said I couldn't get a refund until he fills all his spots as he is short on his lease payments. So now he has given up my spot so I have nothing to try and fill and I will also not see a refund. What should I do to try and get at least part of my investment back? He is not communicating with me anymore and the limited communication there is isn't friendly. I haven't signed a contract yet that I can remember. The only proof I have is a check for payment.

13-Sep-23
the way i see it...if he filled your spot...he owes you a full refund...or at least what he got for your spot. the fact that he is short on lease payments is none of your concern.

From: Brotsky
13-Sep-23
The only return you're going to get on this investment unfortunately is a lesson in vetting outfitters better up front.

From: StickFlicker
13-Sep-23
Make sure you have proof that he admits that he has filled your spot. Communicate by email, recorded line (if legal in your state) and make sure you start building evidence. Non-confrontational emails to try to get him to verify that you've paid in full, that you've offered a replacement hunter (and that he has said the spot was filled) are all things you need to try to get documented in writing before things turn confrontational and he clams up. If you paid by credit card, you often have a couple of months to challenge a charge. Perhaps start that process if all else fails or it is getting to be a lengthy amount of time since you paid him (check with your credit card to see how long the challenge perioed is for them)?

From: Bob H in NH
13-Sep-23
Sound slike he filled another open slot,not yours, u less he did it at a discount. Suggest sending the person you found, even at full price and you eat the $500 discount between you and your friend

From: Buckdeer
13-Sep-23
If you didn't sign a contract than I would doubt he can keep anything?

From: fdp
13-Sep-23
"If you didn't sign a contract than I would doubt he can keep anything?"...that's the key. What were the conditions of the original agreement in the event that you would have to cancel? Typically, you just lose a deposit, but that isn't always the case, and were required to cancel by a certain time ?

From: RK
13-Sep-23
James

My first piece of advice to you is be very careful what you post on this open forum from now going forward

Brotsky may very well be right but then again maybe not

All a contract would be good for is court. That's not what you want. You just want a full or partial refund

The advice for keeping it all written or recorded if legal is great advice

What I would do now is send him a non confrontational email asking him if he in fact has room for the guy you found to fill your spot or is he completely booked. Request a for a prompt answer

Two questions. What was the price of the hunt and in what county?

One other thing. I'll bet this is not the first time he has done this

From: jdbbowhunter
13-Sep-23
The Internet is a powerful tool. You may not get your money back. But social media can cost this guy a lot of money.

From: Buckdeer
13-Sep-23
Does Illinois regulate their outfitters at all?Have you looked to see if they are in the Bowsite outfitter report?All the info you have if they have done before may help

From: KY EyeBow
13-Sep-23
From what you describe, I'm sure this isn't the first or last time that this outfitter has done this. Reputable outfitters always have contracts and sending money without one is not wise. I would recommend you have an attorney write him a letter in the hope that it would allow the outfitter a chance "to see the light" and refund your money but I'd say your chance of getting any money back is very slim. Good luck and I hope you do a bunch more research the next time around.

13-Sep-23
First if you have no contract did you have any correspondence in text or emails? If so you may have some recourse. You could always tell him things have changed and you’re going to show up for your hunt since it’s paid in full, but I would do this in writing this time.

If all fails you need to make everyone within the sound of your voice and keypad the situation. Let us know the outcome.

From: air leak
13-Sep-23
I ask this respectfully.

What could possibly change your schedule that much in August, that wasn't there in June, and you have to cancel 3 months in advance?

From: Grey Ghost
13-Sep-23
Just another example of why the outfitting business is not honorable.

Matt

13-Sep-23
There are plenty of good outfitters. As in any business, there are a few crooks.

From: Bou’bound
13-Sep-23
there is no requirement that a filled cancelled spot entitles anyone to anything. I have seen many agreements where you lose the deposit regardless of if the outfitter fills or not.

From: RK
13-Sep-23
Matt. Not Honorable? Really Like Missouri said there are bad people in all professions.

How about the building , construction business. I bet you know plenty.

The outfitting business was not for you. Stop acting like an alter boy that got abused by the outfitter priest.

13-Sep-23
Plenty of bad contractors. I see it every day.

Unfortunately I’m in Brostkys camp with this one…. Tough spot man..

From: Matt
13-Sep-23
“ The outfitting business was not for you. Stop acting like an alter boy that got abused by the outfitter priest.”

;-)

13-Sep-23
"Just another example of why the outfitting business is not honorable." Matt

Just an ignorant stupid statement

Echozarn that's a tough spot to be in. If he will not communicate with you look at what legal options you have

From: Glunt@work
13-Sep-23
Really good chance you aren't getting your money back.

If the relationship isnt totally soured, maybe see if you can go next year. If it has soured too much or you feel the hunt would be no fun, getting a refund will likely be tough. You can't get blood from a stone.

You made mistakes but aren't in the wrong expecting a fair resolution.

From: Tilzbow
14-Sep-23
I’m sure there’s a little more to the story…. Two sides and the truth…..

From: echozarn
14-Sep-23
I have decided that I'm not going to waste anymore time on this. I'm going to learn from my mistake and be more cautious in the future. Who knows I may hear something from him and we can salvage something. Thanks again for all the tips and advise.

From: woodguy65
14-Sep-23
I would have told him that things have changed and you will be showing up as planned and then see what he says - you'll know if he's lying about having other positions filled.

For cripes sake make him famous if your version is the truth. Do a Bowsite outfitter report (tab at top of this page). There are quite a few Illinois deer hunting groups on Facebook - spread the word. It will surely make it back to him if he lives here - if he does other unscrupulous deeds you may help someone else out.

From: Slate
14-Sep-23
More like a Hunter dilemma

From: Rut Nut
14-Sep-23
I sure hope you report him and not just lick your wounds and say nothing. People should know IF he is a shady outfitter!

From: RK
14-Sep-23
Echozarn

You should honestly let your fellow bow hunters know who this is. Probably save many of them from going through what you went through. Laying down and playing dead is NOT the way to handle this

From: APauls
14-Sep-23
Assuming your story is the way you told it you're actually in the driver's seat now. If you've sent full payment you are owed a hunt, up until the point that you come to some other agreement. At this point you have not come to a different agreement.

Assuming your booked hunt time frame is in the future I would call/email him and tell him "GOOD NEWS" I can make it after all. At this point he will have to deal with you as he has now sold the spot to someone else and will have a problem. If he has no problem, then he hasn't sold the spot. If you are willing to just lose the money, you have no problem paying for the spot and not showing up.

Again, nothing against you, but this is with the assumption the story is as you say. If the agreement was you can sell the spot to someone, and you go to do it and he reneges that's plain wrong. But we only have one side of the story.

From: Bou'bound
15-Sep-23
Saying you can go and him not flinching does not mean he didn’t sell it. He could have sold it AND will absorb you in camp as an incremental hunter if you show up.

From: Thornton
15-Sep-23
We hear these stories every year. When I was a guide, I watched an outfitter from TX do this to a guy from NC. The NC hunter flew to KS, rented a Jeep Cherokee, a motel, and when he arrived, I was told to tell him he had to buy another hunt from a different outfitter if he wanted to hunt because his spot had been filled. The hunter from NC was so mad, he offered to pay me to come to TX to testify against the outfitter who ended up not paying me either. He got his day in court and won without me, and I removed the amount of deerstands and equipment that he owed me from the outfitter's ranch. His hunters found out I wasn't paid, and 5 of them came back to hunt with me the next two years. My impression of whitetail outfitting after that is that it is greed driven.

From: bghunter
15-Sep-23
I agree with RK, nothing wrong with saying who the outfitter is.

It is stories like this, and the cost of hunting is getting more and more expensive, which makes me second guess guided hunting trips more and more.

From: SteveB
15-Sep-23
I’d contact the state Attorney General’s office immediately.

From: Bou'bound
15-Sep-23
Not sharing the name is irresponsible at this point. You want help from others but won’t help others from being taken advantage of. Ridiculous

From: Mule Power
15-Sep-23
Your best bet is to ask if you can reschedule. But he sounds very by the book so you might be out of luck.

From: RK
15-Sep-23
Sad. I could have his money to him in two or three weeks

Everyone please read Thortons review several times and read it several times and then please explain it to.

From: Thornton
15-Sep-23
RK- a guy that shoots people's dogs such as yourself would certainly have difficulty with reading comprehension.

16-Sep-23
"Everyone please read Thortons review several times and read it several times and then please explain it to."

makes sense to me.

1...thornton worked for an outfitter out of texas.

2...outfitter screwed a customer and expected thornton to tell the hunter that his spot was filled and to go find (and pay) another outfitter if he wanted to hunt after laying out money for all his travel expenses.

3...hunter was pissed and offered to pay thornton to travel to texas to testify in court against outfitter.

4...hunter won case without thornton.

5...outfitter ended up screwing thornton out of pay also.

6...thornton removed stands and equipment from outfitters land equal to the amount he was owed.

7...5 other hunters found out thornton wasnt paid by the outfitter and ended up working him instead of outfitter.

8...this experience left thornton with the feeling that the outfitting business is all driven by money.

From: APauls
16-Sep-23
I understand that Thornton posts his bad idea of outfitters on every single outfitter thread but it’s like he doesn’t realize that the outfitter business is no different than any other business. Profits are a huge part of all business because without them the business doesn’t exist in the future. As a consumer, I WANT companies I buy from to be profitable because otherwise they won’t be there to service me post-purchase. Do I want Pat to be profitable with Bowsite? Yes, because then it doesn’t disappear. The minute a business earns less than 5-10% profits it has become less profitable than the average index fund and certainly worse than most real estate investments and is therefore a bad investment for any business owner as his/her money is better off in the market or real estate with a smidgen of the responsibility, stress, risk and hassle of running a business. So unless you’ve never bought a thing in your life and are 100% self sufficient or you’re a total communist you rely on some business people earning a profit to make your life easy.

Do some businesses put money in front of morality? For sure, the same as people, because it’s a person driving the business. In todays day and age it could never be easier to support good, ethical businessmen and women so do your part in that realm and we can hear more good stories than bad.

Rant Over :)

From: DanaC
16-Sep-23
Of course it's 'driven by money' - it's a business. That doesn't automatically make the outfitter a *good* businessman. If he doesn't start with enough capital to get his business up and running, and cover all expenses while building up his business (and reputation) then he'll fall behind on expenses and sink. Probably take down customers as he goes down.

From the OP >>> "...as he is short on his lease payments."

From: Nyati
16-Sep-23
Unless I had a prior relationship with outfitter I wouldn’t send money unless I had a contract first

From: Genesis
16-Sep-23
Reschedule your schedule and call him back and say as fate would have it your schedule opened back up like skin over an eye and you will be coming on the original date and bringing gear and cancelled check.

17-Sep-23
"Of course it's 'driven by money' - it's a business."

good point.

i always laugh when people say "its all about money"...as if we all dont expect to paid for the work we do...the products we make or sell... or the services that we provide. when that becomes a problem...were doomed.

From: Candor
18-Sep-23
To the OP - I think a fair way of handling it is that you let the outfitter know you do not feel this is ethical. However you sought the advice of hunters nationwide, on a very respectable and leading nationwide bowhunting forum to help you gain perspective so you were not unfairly misjudging him. I would then let him know that you have been implored to post his outfitting business name. However, because you recognize there are two sides to every event (really three, but that's another story)...you want him to have the chance to reply and provide his side of the story. I would then let him know you will be updating the post at 3:00 (or whenever) on Wednesday with his name so that he may post the first reply so that people do not misjudge him without hearing his side of the story. I think that is a very fair way of compelling him to tell his story or rectify the wrong.

From: Matt
18-Sep-23

Matt's Link
Why is it every time I read one of Thornton’s posts it makes me think of the Shatterstar interview from Deadpool 2?

Fast forward to 1:00 (through 1:19).

From: Thornton
18-Sep-23
I got a crash course in bad outfitters Apaul. I had procured 6,000 acres of prime whitetail ranch and farmland for a friend who wanted me to guide his hunters in KS. We did not have any clients at the time, so he allowed another outfitter from TX to temporarily pay for the lease with the agreement we would get it back. Turns out the outfitter from TX was simply a scammer. He didn't pay me, the ranch wives that cooked excellent meals for the hunters, nor did he pay the landowners in full. He pissed off one wealthy client, and the client simply bought the ranch and kicked him off. When I was married, I bought quite a few hunts myself from various other outfitters and I found most embellished, or flat out lied about the situation. I will say Craig McCarthy of North Mt Adventures put in more effort to get me my bucks than I'd ever seen before and I always recommend him. Four years of guiding and I had enough. Best decision I ever made, and I enjoy hunting with friends and family more than I ever did guiding. I own another business, and if the work is not done, the customer doesn't pay or they get a refund. That's how business should work.

From: echozarn
01-Dec-23
First time paying for a Whitetail hunt. I'm looking for some input on the predicament that I have myself in. I narrowed things down to one particular outfitter for whitetails this fall(Illinois). He fit my style of hunting and was allowing some freedom in stand choices. I sent the complete payment in June, but should of just sent the deposit. My mistake. As August rolled around I was seeing that with my schedule would not allow me to be able to join them this fall. I asked if he would have some one who would want to take my place, I even said I would take $500 less on payment if I could get someone to take my spot and get some of my money back. I also asked if I could try to also fill my spot on my own. He said Go for it. I found some one to take my spot as long as I offered a discount. I had this person reach out to the outfitter so he could get all the details. Apparently when he contacted him the the outfitter said he filled my spot with someone else. I thought great now at least I could get some of my money back. No he filled my spot and said I couldn't get a refund until he fills all his spots as he is short on his lease payments. So now he has given up my spot so I have nothing to try and fill and I will also not see a refund. What should I do to try and get at least part of my investment back? He is not communicating with me anymore and the limited communication there is isn't friendly. I haven't signed a contract yet that I can remember. The only proof I have is a check for payment.

12/01/2023

Sorry for the delay in adding to this post. I have been reading the posts and I appreciate all the input. I was hoping this issue would resolve itself so I thought it would be more productive if I stayed quiet and be professional with the outfitter. Not the case. I have been waiting for a refund as he mentioned if he filled all the spots I would get one. Unfortunately he was just leading me on. His last correspondence is he doesn't do refunds. I'm very disappointed in this person and how he handled things. I think it's partly my fault for getting myself in this mess as I should of just sent 1k instead of 3250 from the start. So we are at the point where he will not respond to me. At one point he said that I could come in 2024 but after all this I'm not comfortable doing that. So I reached out to him to see if we could work something out for a hunter to take my spot in 2024 as I tried to do in 2023. I will offer a discount. No response. I have now contacted the Illinois attorney general and the local conservation officer. What else should I do? I have very little experience with outfitters and I think the thing that makes me the most angry aside from him having my money is the fact that I have tried to work with him on my replacement which would not interfere with him at all and he will not work with me on that. Any input would be great.

From: Woody
01-Dec-23
One poster asked, but didn't get a response. What circumstances caused you to cancel the hunt? I think that could have a bearing on a refund or partial refund. Personally, when I commit to something, it has to be something damn serious for me not to fulfill my commitment.

From: Woody
01-Dec-23
One poster asked, but didn't get a response. What circumstances caused you to cancel the hunt? I think that could have a bearing on a refund or partial refund. Personally, when I commit to something, it has to be something damn serious for me not to fulfill my commitment.

From: echozarn
01-Dec-23
Yeah I should of worked it out with my employer for more time off and just went on the hunt, but my dad decided to fly up from Arizona to hunt with me in MN during the shotgun season and I wanted to make that happen for him and be here.

From: APauls
01-Dec-23
If you believe you are in the right take it to small claims court.

From: echozarn
01-Dec-23
Yeah I think that may be an option. I started with the Illinois attorney general and then may go to the courts. I plan to see this through so I will go through all options.

From: RK
01-Dec-23
What did the Attorney General tell you

From: echozarn
01-Dec-23
I filled out the paperwork on the 13th of Nov and it said it could be a few weeks

01-Dec-23
Here’s my opinion. Deciding not to go is pretty ridiculous. The outfitter has costs. Fixed costs that are the same whether he books one or one hundred clients.

Leases aren’t free either. And, must be paid in advance before a hunter ever shows up. Do you truly expect him to refund you money knowing that he is going to have to work harder simply because you changed your mind? Is that fair to him? And, how much do you feel he deserves to keep.

I am being serious when I ask these things. I’m also in agreement he should refund you minus the deposit I’m certain he requires to hold your spot. However, it isn’t really fair to expect to miss out on potential money simply because you decided you’d rather do something else. At least that’s how I feel about it. And, I’m guessing if you had to look at it through his eyes the untold times other hunters have done him this way, you’d feel the same.

There’s nothing more frustrating then having argogant people change their minds on commitments they’ve made. That you depend on.

I hope you get it worked out. However, I hope you both get what’s deserved. His time is his money. Pay for it because canceling late just because you decided to do so has cost him money to try and replace you.

From: TMac
01-Dec-23
Thanks for the follow up…..keep us posted on end result whatever that may be.

From: fuzzy
01-Dec-23
You booked a hunt and then decided not to go. That's on you.

From: KHNC
01-Dec-23
Well, WV Mountaineer, did you miss the part about how the outfitter FILLED all his spots and still "does not offer refunds"? So , you think he should just keep the extra money he got from the guy? Just because he didnt hunt , but the outfitter actually collected for TWO same outfitted spots and only fulfilled one of them?

From: sitO
01-Dec-23
The outfitters word should mean something, and he said you could find someone to take the hunt. He then did the opposite. Pretty cut and dry imo, hope the AG can help.

From: drycreek
01-Dec-23
I read all of this the first time this thread came up but didn’t comment because I felt that there wasn’t enough information. Now that I’ve heard the reason for the cancellation, I agree with WV. Wanting to hunt with your Dad is admirable, but I think I would have told him about the conflict and honored my commitment. Maybe Dad could have rescheduled.

From: SteveB
01-Dec-23
No doubt I would follow up asap with the State Atty General and I'll bet his opinions might change once he hears from the state. I would also report him to the state outfitters association. I have no problem with him wanting to keep a deposit, but not after you found someone to fill it, especially after he told you that would be ok. If no satisfaction with state AG, I would file small claims court and force him to face the music.

01-Dec-23
Hey fellas, no one said anything about how long it took him to find someone to fill the spot. If it took him three days I see your point. What if it took him three weeks? Guess where that’s at? Deer season.

I’m all for fairness. But, in today’s world everyone just does what suits them. With no regard to how that affects other people. Canceling a hunt that close requires the outfitter to invest even more work to try to fill this spot. Should he charge that hunter for his time or, the guy who planned poorly and decided the heck with what he agreed to?

How would you feel if your boss tells you tomorrow he’s only working you part time until Christmas is past. Most of you probably would be fine with that. What if he tells you he’s only paying for those hours worked? See how that works?

Kenny, where did you get that idea? I can’t help but ask if you missed the part where I said the outfitter should refund all but the deposit? How do you know he filled it? How much effort did it take him to fill it? Etc…. Businesses focusing on servicing public wants instead of public needs gets hammered by people who change their mind. Over and over, and over again. Why, because no one thinks about it fairly.

Listen, I’m all about fair. But, fair is fair. And, if you think it’s ok to cancel a commitment you’ve made to someone, because you just want to, we are not the same. Nor, are we the same when you realize that cancellation is going to cost that other person and not you, yet still do it.

I’m not arguing one way or the other. I’m saying there is another side. There is a reason this hasn’t worked as fairly as it sounds. And, decisions have consequences. When did it become other people’s responsibility to eat that?

From: KY EyeBow
01-Dec-23
Depending on what the AG office tells you, if they(outfitters) are licensed to operate in that state, you may be able to file a compliant with the appropriate licensing entity. Good luck but i wouldn't hold my breath thinking you are going to get a remedy to this unfortunately.

From: echozarn
01-Dec-23
Why is my decision to not go ridiculous? I don’t think the reason for my decision not to go is really an issue. I notified him early August and did find my replacement within a reasonable time but he had already filled my spot so I had to tell the person no when the out fitter said to go ahead and find someone. I was hoping that the resolution would be for 2024 and I could find a replacement if he is indeed offer me an additional year. but he won’t respond to me. He’s probably sick of me texting him. Thanks for all the input and I will just move ahead as planned.

01-Dec-23
It’s hard to say what I said without sounding like a horses rearend. And, it sounds like I’m on the outfitters side. I’m not. Im hoping you get a fair resolution.

From: Jethro
01-Dec-23
Regardless of why you cancelled you are owed a refund minus the deposit. That’s the whole purpose of the deposit. That said why did you send in the whole amount rather than just the deposit? Really, who gets a bill for 1k and sends 3+k? Had you just followed the agreement, everyone would be all square. Good luck to you. Hope you can get it resolved.

From: bigswivle
01-Dec-23
Give us a name

From: LBshooter
01-Dec-23
Well next time don't send in full pYment. Second , tell him that your going to spread your story over the net to the hunting community and let him know he just plain ripped you off. Put his name and outfitting name out there to save another hunter the same fate. As the outfitter mentioned , he was short on his lease payment, that says something.

From: Glunt@work
01-Dec-23
Plenty of mistakes to go around. Too late to change yours but the Outfitter still has an opportunity to be fair.

I would send a letter from an attorney before actually taking legal action. My time and my desire to minimize drama in my life would weigh heavily before I actually dove into a court case.

I don't doubt anything but without hearing the outfitters side I can't say what's fair. Keeping all the money would require a very different set of facts to be a reasonable path for him.

From: Bou'bound
01-Dec-23
You paid $3,200 to hunt with your Dad. Most guys on this site are at an age and family situation that they would pay 10 times that to have one more trip with Dad. You got a bargain.

He owes you nothing, you owe him nothing. Move on and hug Dad. You got a bargain on this thing.

01-Dec-23
Boy’, you truly got that right. Great way of looking at it. Well said.

From: echozarn
01-Dec-23
I hear what everyone is saying and agree with a lot of it. Just looking at the cashed check and thinking that someone took 3250 of my own money really pisses me off. I should never of sent the full amount. I got caught up in the moment. Just so everyone knows I spoke to him twice on the phone and really liked what he offered. After sending the check I heard nothing from him until I reached out to him a month later. I never saw any polices, rules or contracts. I think before I throw his name out there I’m going to take glunt@works suggestions and have an attorney send a letter. I guess I learned a good lesson on how some outfitters works.

From: scentman
01-Dec-23
James 3250 in this economy is a huge amount for anyone to lose... as far as I can see is your only mistake was not researching if Lee and Tiffany used or endorsed this whitetail outfitter... lesson learned. Hope this helps.

From: ILbowhntr
01-Dec-23
No matter what you decide to do, you should put his name out there. If he’s done it to you, he’ll do it to others.

From: Pop-r
01-Dec-23
He sounds like a crook. Anyone who disagrees is an idiot! You should be more careful on paying for things before you know that's what you want to do.

From: fuzzy
01-Dec-23
Pop-r guilty as charged. I have often been called an idiot so I'll own it.

From: Thornton
01-Dec-23
It's a greed driven business based on killing things. Not sure what else sums it up. I have purchased guided hunts, been a guide myself, and have seen the dark side of both. Best thing I ever did was get out of it after 4 years and get a college degree that gave me a job that allows me to hunt almost anywhere without a guide.

From: Glunt@work
02-Dec-23
Outfitters are just people. They aren't any better or worse than any other. It's no more or less driven by greed than any other industry.

From: Don K
02-Dec-23
Did you or do you have a contract?

From: echozarn
02-Dec-23
I was never offered a contract from the outfitter. Or any other paperwork. Is a contract a common practice? Do you sign the contract before sending a deposit? At this point I would be very happy if the outfitter held on to the deposit and returned the rest.

I think my biggest issue with all this is- When I asked if I could find a replacement he said I quote ( go for it). I did just that and when the potential replacement called for details he said he already filled my spot.

02-Dec-23
Unfortunately I imagine this isn’t that uncommon, paying for a hunt, then as it gets close realizing how much it costs and getting cold feet. I bet the outfitter feels the same way, this is my livlyhood, I had this guy commit to me and now he wants me to give his 3250 back that I need to pay bills.

From: Old School
02-Dec-23
Outfitter deserves to keep the amount of the deposit, the rest should be refunded. It’s honestly that simple.

To keep it all indicates he is a crook.

Literally what a deposit is for - protection for both parties. Hold my spot as a hunter and protects the outfitter if you change your mind.

02-Dec-23
I think there are probably two sides to this story and the truth is somewhere in the middle.

02-Dec-23
in my opinion...the fact that you got to hunt with your dad is nice...but it isnt the point. you got shafted by an unscrupulous outfitter. if you walk away and do nothing he is free to keep doing business like that. i doubt if this is the first time...the question is will it be the last.

From: echozarn
04-Feb-24
2/4/2024 I wanted to give an update on this post. I was going to let it be but feel I owe it to all that shared there thoughts and advise. First off if your wondering about the details I posted that at the beginning of this post. Through this whole ordeal my biggest complaint has been that the outfitter will not allow me to send a replacement. He originally said I could find someone but when I did he told this person that my spot was already filled with someone else. No reimbursement was sent to me. Now for 2024 I have reached out to him and he will not communicate with me. I was going to see if I could again send someone in my place for this year. I was offering someone a discounted hunt in my place. I feel because he filled my spot I should be owed something. I contacted and attorney and was advised that trying to get anything from this outfitter will be almost impossible and not worth my time. This outfitter is in Pike County Illinois so I contacted the conservation officer. Unfortunately he can't do much but did inform me that his old partner was arrested this year for operating with out an outfitter license. He also said that he would keep my info and is aware of my situation and the outfitter. Lastly I'm trying to work with the Illinois attorney generals office to get something resolved. At this point I would like to get part of the 2nd half payment or to be able to send someone as a replacement. There is no judge here so I'm guessing nothing will get resolved. I'm going to make sure that I spread the word to others that if you decide to go with this outfitter you need to be positive that your going and not to count on a replacement or refund. S & P Outdoors out of Pike County Illinois is the business name.

From: BlacktailBob
04-Feb-24
Was there anything in your agreement that referred to a nonrefundable deposit? Personally, I'm always amazed at how difficult it is for hunters to understand the meaning of those two words.

From: TMac
04-Feb-24
Thanks for coming on to update. Bob I believe he’s willing to forfeit the deposit and just wants but wants to fill the spot as he paid in full or reimbursed minus deposit.

From: BlacktailBob
04-Feb-24
My experience is that more hunters want to reschedule for one reason or another than not. I've never said no, but that is one of two primary reasons why my cabins will no longer be available for rent. I think a few folks at least have had a good time, but its simply not worth the headache of dealing with it in the future.

From: Jethro
04-Feb-24
In this case it seems like it is the outfitter that doesn't understand the meaning of the word deposit.

From: BlacktailBob
04-Feb-24
"a sum payable as a first installment on the purchase of something or as a pledge for a contract, the balance being payable later"

From: csalem
04-Feb-24
Exactly but this guy sent the WHOLE payment. What does he do now Bob, or better yet how does one define Whole payment.

04-Feb-24
Why would you even want to hunt with this scammer, now that you know how he operates? To be an outfitter in Illinois, the only two requirements are fill out an application and pay a fee. The requirements to be a guide are drivers license. The state is full of scammers who rely on hunters who only want a chance at a nice whitetail. With what you pay an outfitter for that 5 day hunt you could pay a landowner for the whole month of November and have enough left over for the hotel.

From: BlacktailBob
04-Feb-24
I'd do what Iowa Booner Hunter suggested. I wouldn't wine about a prior bad decision.

From: deserthunter
04-Feb-24
Why would you send someone you know into a mess like this ? Possibly to hunt with a unlicensed outfitter ?

From: BlacktailBob
04-Feb-24
I think folks should take responsibility for their actions. I made a bad decision to offer my cabins for rent. I take responsibility for that bad decision and have elected to take them off the market because of it.

When hunters abuse outfitters and expect the outfitter to take responsibility for their bad decisions, don't be surprised when fewer options for outfitted hunts are available. Likewise, don't be surprised when the cost of outfitted hunts rises as the result of a reduced supply.

From: Trial153
04-Feb-24
One thing I am sure about. I know I wouldn’t want to be in business where i have to deal with hunters as my clientele.

From: Timex?
04-Feb-24
Unrelated.......but a story of a standup gent..... 4 friends of mine left this morning headed to Guatemala for a week of sailfishing. One of the original 4 had something come up at work that he couldn't get out of,

He dropped off 2500 cash to my buddy on Friday for his share of the charter for the week,,,the only thing his replacement had to pay for was the airfare.

Now that's a standup guy right there. Very admirable indeed.

From: spike buck
04-Feb-24
One reason I don't take full payment before they arrive. I'll refund full payment not including deposit. Never enjoy refunds.

From: Woody
04-Feb-24
"First time paying for a Whitetail hunt. I'm looking for some input on the predicament that I have myself in. I narrowed things down to one particular outfitter for whitetails this fall(Illinois). He fit my style of hunting and was allowing some freedom in stand choices. I sent the complete payment in June, but should of just sent the deposit. My mistake. As August rolled around I was seeing that with my schedule would not allow me to be able to join them this fall." "Yeah I should of worked it out with my employer for more time off and just went on the hunt, but my dad decided to fly up from Arizona to hunt with me in MN during the shotgun season and I wanted to make that happen for him and be here."

If I was an outfitter, that excuse for cancelling a hunt wouldn't sit well with me. Shame on you for paying in full if you can use an excuse like that to cancel a hunt.

From: spike buck
05-Feb-24
If all that was required at time of booking was the deposit with balance due upon arrival.... then all but deposit should be refunded. No reason to keep beyond deposit. Also no excuse needed by client for refund minus deposit. Client has a win on this one. If Outfitter who only requires deposit does not like to refund then don't take full payment. Premature payment of balance should be put in layaway account for instances like this.

From: KHNC
07-Feb-24
Not sure why you wont name the outfitter. Sounds like something Hadley Creek would do. I assume that is who the outfitter is.

From: grizzley21
07-Feb-24
he did name the outfitter,,

From: Bou'bound
07-Feb-24
S & P Outdoors out of Pike County Illinois

  • Sitka Gear