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Info on DIY bowhunting on Big Island, HI
Does anyone have any experience bowhunting on the Big Island, Hawaii? I am going in July and the bow and a handful of arrows are coming with me. I have contacted a few guides but they seem unreliable and uninterested. I have seen several videos of DIY guys getting it done with a bow and I need some advice. Anyone? Thanks in advance!
I’m FAR from an expert, but in my research it seemed that the big island was almost entirely private land. Maybe I just didn’t look in the right places, but seemed pretty slim for public DIY to me. Several Huge cattle ranches take up a lot of it. I hunted with a guide when I was there, super good guy, not sure if he is still doing hunts or not though.
I bet there are guys on here with better info on it than me though. Good luck.
Very nice Big Island Billy
Very nice Big Island Billy
It's possible, though not as easy to figure out as other islands. I hunted the Kona side once on public but was extremely fortunate to connect with a local bowhunter who let me tag along. I would target goats since they are generally easier and more abundant than the sheep. Pigs would be a bonus but they are smart and harder to spot. Talk to as many locals, Divison FW people to figure it out. The area I hunted was limited to weekends only and 1 billy tag so there are regulations. Avoid areas with recent culling activity.
There is the guided way but they can be very expensive on the Big Island, maybe that's why they aren't interested...
It's been a few years (3 yrs I think), but I was over there just after the majority of state land had been wiped clean to save that poor little native bird (looked like an ugly sparrow to me). The military base up on the saddle road was the only place I knew of that still hadn't been eradicated. Some hoops to jump through to get on, but I could see goats and even some mouflon from the road. Unfortunately, by the time I figured it out there wasn't enough time to jump through the hoops, but next time I go i will certainly jump through those hoops to hunt on the base.
"I've contacted a few guides, but they seem unreliable or uninterested."
My thoughts exactly! I've written a few and exactly ZERO have replied to my emails. If you gather any reliable information please post it here. Thanks!
i was advised once to have my bowhunter's ed and hunters' ed certificates before I even ask for a license. that's all the advise I can give.
Thanks all for the feedback! Going to review my OnxMaps and contact the wildlife dept to get some more info! Will reply to this post with any new info I can gather to share!
You won't need a bowhunting cert anywhere I'm aware of. But you'll need a hunters safety cert. I think now you can go online and apply for what they call an exemption number using your hunters safety card. With that number you can get and print your hunting license inline. Residents can use their HI hunters safety card number and don't need the exemption #. Once in the system you are pretty much set to go for life..... or at least until they upgrade to their next computer system...... But get it done well BEFORE your trip to make sure no issues come up. It's a much friendlier system now than the PITA it used to be.
I'm not real up to speed on the Big Isle, it's been a real long time since I've hunted there and things have changed quite a bit. But I believe the Big Isle still has more public land to hunt than any other island. Far more than Maui County (Maui, Molokai, Lanai)
Contact the DLNR there about public hunting areas. If I recall they had a somewhat decent map online. Used to be pick a place and go, but I've heard a good many more restrictions and regulations in areas.
I know a couple guys that "guide" on the side over there. PM me if you have any questions.
Good luck, have a great hunt!