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Hoping this helps someone in need of an idea.
As hunters we like to show our appreciation to the landowners that grant us access to their land each year. I like to drive around and do my rounds at Christmas time, as the kids are off school and it's something we can do together. I used to drop off portions of roast, sausage, pepperonis etc from my deer, but I often worried that if they didn’t care for the meat, or possibly were even too afraid to try it, a package like that might even be overwhelming. For some a bottle of whisky or wine is nice, but then I’ve found myself worried about what sort of “image” that presents, or then there’s always the concern of perhaps causing someone to stumble who is recovering from addiction and so on.
So, two years ago I started going to an oils and vinegars shop and getting a nice black box with a premium oil and vinegar. I always think it gives off a classy gift vibe. I’ll usually pair this with a fine cheese of some sort, and one ring of garlic sausage. I find this allows them to “try” some deer, and perhaps even in some way feel “connected” to the meat that was taken on their property, but it isn’t overwhelming.
Post up some of your landowner gift ideas!
I had a hundred gallons of gas delivered to a landowner that let me hunt his place for years. This was around 1990.... I don’t remember how much gas was then. He had a big pig for gas in his yard for his tractor.
Walleyes, lots of walleye fillets. They always seem to go over good. Most landowners here have all kinds of meat and meat products from their own livestock. However not many of them find the time they would like to fill the freezer with fish. I am more than happy to oblige!
We always do gift cards to a nice restaurant and it's hand delivered along with a platter of homemade holiday christmas goodies and candy and a heart felt thank you and hug.
Kscatman76, that’s what I’d do. KSU grad, I assume?
I have calendars made with pictures of me for each months. The summer months are always their favorite. July and August I always have picture of myself in one of my speedo's fishing!
On a serious note a few years ago. I bought a dozen or so nice pocket knives and gave them out to landowners I hunted on. They were bokers and a friends wife worked for them at the time so I got them at cost. I think I paid twenty something each for fifty something dollars knives.
I gave a rancher a gift card once for a nice restaurant and he got upset, told me to never do that again, that he didn't expect any payment for letting me hunt and didn't like that I thought I needed to. So I never did again and we became very good friends after that. I helped him with ranch chores for a couple days instead, which he seemed to appreciate more.
Landowners are proud of their property, much of which has been in the family for generations. A nice, framed aerial or topo map of their property with a name placard would be cherished by most
A helping hand goes farther in my area. Most of the farmers here are a one man band. So just simple things like moving equipment or filling a planter are a big help.
One person I hunt on likes venison hamburger so I take them some every year. I have hunting on that property for almost 50 years. On another property I help the landowner by cutting firewood, trimming around the fields, or anything else he wants done. Of course he is a cousin and we often hunt and fish together.
Hmmmm tickets to Alan Jackson after he mentioned he liked him.....a handwoven rug from overseas to another guy......but 99 percent of hunting on public land...
I take my land owner Tuna fishing, we stop at the crab grounds and dump pots for Dungeness crab on the way out as well
Being on both sides of this, I give gift cards to local restaurants with a thank you card. Some that are short handed, I did their chores while they were gone on holidays or vacation. Some wanted some summer sausage or deer dogs or fish. Some just wanted a thank you! Get to know your land owner and it really isn't to hard to figure out what they would like.
I do the walleyes also and a visa gift card at Christmas.
Hookers! Haha seriously I usually give a bottle of booze.
Jaquomo X2, except I still buy many things for them even though I get scolded for it, I just keep telling them that I am so far behind with them I could never catch up. Also help move cattle, drive grain truck, branding, fixing fence, handy man things around the house etc.
Some labor and a bulk pack of work gloves is usually appreciated.
Here is a funny story for a guy in NE we turkey hunted on. He was a older guy who's wife had passed away. He always enjoyed company and liked to visit. We would always take him to breakfast/lunch at a little diner that was about 10-15 mins from his house. Well it got to the point that when he knew we were out there. He would start driving through his river bottom and stumble up on us. I am talking like 7:30 or 8:00 in morning. He would always say something to the effect of "oh I didn't know you guys where out here, hope I did mess up your hunt, but since I am here you guys want to go get breakfast?" We would say sure and off to breakfast we went. Got to the point we did not tell him we were coming and after the first morning hunt we would go over to his house and take him to lunch at lunch time.
My daughter and buddies son both killed several turkeys out there over the year. We would send him a picture of them with their kill. He always would have the pictures hung up the next year when we showed up.
That wasn't all that funny, John. :)
Whocares what you think is funny! ;0-
I tap several hundred Maple trees every spring, I end up with 50 to 75 gallons of pure Maple syrup. The ranchers I give it to look forward to it every year. If I don't draw a tag and cant hunt there property that year I always mail them some at Christmas time.
Hickory Farms meat and cheese tray, with gift card. Never had any say I can’t come back next year, although I know a few that would like Scoots idea!
We deliver Honey Baked Hams. They seem to be real popular. It gives them a quick easy meal and the ladies of the house love it. We always bring a bag of dinner rolls too with a fancy mustard so they can make sandwiches. Usually the ranches/farms we hunt have some hired hands so the landowner always has something to feed everyone especially at harvest time.
I'd say Big Bear and Bou'bound Are the win so far
Landowners whether they are ranchers or farmers have the same issues in life as all of us. They worry about bills, taxes, schools for their kids etc etc
Cheese trays and fish are awesome but maybe not the total win win. Who knows though as everybody is different
Free labor.....and hopefully being a good neighbor/friend.
I just finished four days of cowboying out on my deer spot. He appreciates that more than any gift I could give. When we go out to dinner with our girlfriends after New Years, he will insist on paying, for the help I provide. He thinks getting four days of semi-skilled labor is a great deal for what he considers not much on his part. I consider it a bargain for the great privilege of bowhunting big deer for a month with the run of the place, electric hookup for my camper. Truly a sembiotic relationship.
For those hunting mostly public land what do you give uncle Sam the landowner? Tax money, slave labor, tears of pain, etc ...
My wife crochets,so she made them a thick blanket,,for the frozen tundra of Nebraska ...,i too offered some ranch help prior to next years hunt...
Redoak said: "I tap several hundred Maple trees every spring, I end up with 50 to 75 gallons of pure Maple syrup. " Hmmmmmmmm.... :)
I share the take with the landowner, which usually turns out to be my wife, and I pay county, state, and federal taxes to hunt those lands. I once got permission to hunt geese on a farm, and got my limit. I came back to thank the landowner and share the bounty. His gorgeous daughter answered the door and I was like a deer in the headlights, handed her a goose, said "Tell your dad, 'Thanks!' I wish he was my father-in-law". She smiled, and I left speechless, but I never went back. Stupid, youthful missed opportunity that was.
Free labor on the farms and properties I've hunted has always been appreciated. A case of beer, a couple packs of venison "goodies" or both is usually welcome as well depending on the land owner's tastes.
I most years get a shipment of Alto cheese from WI it’s a big hit down here in TN !
I distribute meat to a few who I know enjoy it.
MPauls, I like that. I've done the local restaurant gift card option, and more recently done a really nice gift basket from a local country store - it included things like oil/vinegar, fancy crackers, fruit, nice cookies and gourmet hot cocoa etc. They really enjoy it. That said, I only have one private land spot at this point so I dont have to buy for multiple folks.
One year we did a "monthly" box of citrus from Florida. They liked it the first month, when they were home... But they opted to spend the rest of the winter in AZ (they are artists and sometimes go places to paint), so most of the boxes were eaten by the house sitter. Keep that in mind if you get folks something - may be best to just get a one time nice thing vs a "subscription" in case they travel.
It's awesome to see everyone thinking of this stuff!
I am pretty much settled on Gift cards. One of my landowners asked me to stop - they are rich and they didn't need it. Another is a farmer who gives me coyote permission - I give him a gift card to TSC. Besides those two, I am the landowner and I give myself gifts all the time.
I've helped landowners preg-check cattle, mend fences, plowed their drives after heavy snow storms, rototilled their horse arena, and repaired rotting decks on their house. I think all of those things were more appreciated than any gift I could buy them.
That's pretty funny, Trapper. I do similar to Jaq with a cattle rancher friend of mine where I stay in North Dakota for pheasant hunting. He and his wife kind of adopted me years ago and I stay right with them like family. And occassionally Janet manages to invite one of her single friends over, just by chance, to meet their pheasant hunter. But I manage to outsmart her. Anyway, I help Henry with the chores everyday when done hunting. I've helped with weaning hundreds of calves, fixed fence, rounded up and moved cows by horseback, sorted heifers for shipping, etc. Came in one day and he was doing pregnancy tests on bred heifers to ship. He said, come here, this is something new you can learn to do. That's where I drew the line. No way! Offered to go pick rocks! But it sure is fun going there and helping out. Pheasant hunting is great.
Brotsky....Are you and Kia coming turkey hunting again this year??!! ;-)
Similar to Grey Ghost and others, I had a few landowners in Oklahoma that I helped build fence, chore for them when they went somewhere, vaccinate/brand cattle, general repairs, pour concrete, etc. I would also keep them well stocked in fish fillets. MPauls brought up a good point about the alcohol thing.
I’m very fortunate in that, like Pat, I’m the landowner now, but I do have one other landowner that I have permission to walk across his field to access the backside of my property. I give him and his wife venison salami/sticks/ brats/etc every year.
One of my landowners likes Grey Goose L'orange Vodka, so I bring a bottle when he signs my permission. Then I bring or send a gift card to him and his wife to a restaurant at end of season.
Another is a Convent, and the Sisters are all great. They love the venison, cakes, or anything else I bring. I also take care of any wildlife problems they have throughout the year (I do wildlife control for a living).
I picked up a great property this season and don't really know the owner very well, so it'll be gift cards to him until I know more of his personal life, along with wildlife control as needed.
It's easier getting gifts for my landowners than it is for my wife. Lol.
We own a Frazier fir tree farm here in East Tenn and we always take a Christmas tree and wreath to landowners in Ohio and Illinois
when I hauled seafood to NYC & Boston I could get 1# lobsters for for 60$ a dozen I never got nothing but big smiles & thanks when I gave landowners a box of lobsters before x mas. these days there's a good seafood restaurant by my house all the locals go to & I give out gift certificates from the restaurant. another great gift especially for a working farmer is a carhartt jacket with the farm name embroideryed on it what makes this such a great thank you gift is EVERY time they put it on they'll think of the gift you gave
I have given a monetary token to help toward land tax payments. I have also given gift cards for land owner favorite restaurants. This token allow the landowner to share with his family members.
Both seem to have been appreciated
We do tractor work as needed(older retired couple),cards/flowers on the holidays and some walleye's for sure.We are the caretakers when they are away; usually six months of the year.Last of all were are good friends;go to dinner ect.
We normally do a gift card to a nice staek house as we know the property owners like a certain place and we accompany that with a couple bottles of fine wine. I have bow hunted the same place since 1992. This year we are gonna do cash and put a little note in that says "some standing corn would be nice next year!! LOL!! Shawn
On the Ranch I pig hunt on, I always bring the Landowner elk and venison. Even though the Landowner doesn't hunt anymore, his Wife was brought up in a hunting family, and knows how to prepare it.
They are always very happy to get it.
Yup gift cards from Fleet Stores.Just bought 6 today.The 'right' Fleet chains have things that suit any family member.I know 2 of guys I give to,turn them over to their kids.
Several land owners with different taste One likes fine wine , another farmer friend and his wife recent sold there cows and have more time on there hands They love basketball so we get them a pack of tickets for 10 games to the local boys and girls college games (UWGB) Anther gift I give is paper products (toilet paper ,napkins, toweling and heavy wipes ) my wife and I both work for a paper mill
Weed eating lots and lots of weed eating in the summer...That’s plenty, but I help with anything I can do for them if asked .
I keep bees so I always set aside a couple of dozen quarts of honey to give to my neighbors who let me roam around on their land and I also help with chores when I can.
I knew a guy who had his son marry the farmers daughter in exchange for long term hunting rights. She was uglier than his old bull so it really was a win win for the hunter and farmer and daughter but the son was the loser in that show of gratitude
Me and my wife make a bunch of food for harvest meals every year. I usually smoke some pork or brisket and she makes salads and desserts. I bring a folding table and chairs for a meal right in the field.
If I had to guess, I'd say that the guys I hunt on would just as well prefer I stop by for some conversation, rather than get a gift. I used to do that a little more, but these days it seems I don't get by as much as I'd like. Offering to help hasn't really worked for me; they usually decline the help. A small gift that shows you thought a little about what they might like is what I try to go for when I get gifts, but we also usually try to bring them some goodies like cookies at Christmas, etc. If a landowner is expecting you help with the taxes or get him several hundred in gift cards a year, you might as well get ready to look for another spot or pony up for the lease, imo. Although, I suppose that could be considered a small "gift" if you are hunting thousands of acres.
A handwritten letter of appreciation along with some green. In the letter, I like to explain how the time on their land is a gift to me, and perhaps something they might not fully understand. I always tell them that I know you never ask, or expect anything, but here is something you can use to either buy yourself something, or gift it forward. I always do two nice fish fries with them, and they always get summer sausage and jerky. When giving cash, I give it to them a solid week before Christmas comes, so they can use it when it might be most needed.