Hunting might be your passion and you might have been hunting in local hunting grounds with little assistance from the professionals but when it comes to make hunting the most memorable experience of your life, or when you decide to hunt some wild animal which is rare to find or is found in an alien land to you, seeking the experts’ advice and guidance is the best thing you can do.
It is always good to have someone who can guide you in any kind of adventure sport and especially when you are to do that for the first time or wish to take it to the next level. Same is the case with hunting. A good hunting outfitter or the guide will not only help you hunt down your wished game but will also help you gain enough experience for the next time. A good hunting outfitter will let you know about the survival tactics, and how to find, locate and make the final move to your prey. But when it comes to searching a good hunting guide or outfitter you can find yourself puzzled enough to handle. There are numerous services and website which claim to be the best and thus choosing among them can be a tedious task.
To make things simple and to help you make up your mind, here are the simple tips. Don’t forget to check these before you make the final deal.
Decide what you want
Before you consult any hunting outfitter agency or guide make your own plans. It should not happen that you get influenced by the plans of the outfitter you meet in order to know about him. Remember that hunting is both adventure and sports. So deciding beforehand what you exactly want always helps. Once you decide the prized game you wish to hunt and do some basic research about the habitat it is found in, go ahead to decide the hunting ground you wish to hunt in. You can do some basic research online or ask some of your friends who also have the passion for hunting.
Once the ground you wish to hunt in is decided, go out to check for the agencies which are based in the area or operate in that area. It is a good idea to check the profiles of the available outfitters and know whether they belong to the area or are experts in it or not. Choose the outfitter who specialises in hunting the game you wish to hunt.
Meet the guy
Most of the hunting guides are decent, have necessary skills, and are expert hunters. However, meeting before hand ensures that you will be going out with the right guy. It is good idea to check the outfitters license for hunting. Remember that a hunting expedition is not just about hunting your wished game; it is also about working in team, building relationships and sharing memories. It is never certain that you will be successful or not, but it is sure that you will be exposed. So before you embark on the final expedition, it is important that you build the relationship of trust with your outfitter.
Ask for the references and meet them
Most of the hunting outfitters and their websites claim big achievements and have photos of hunters with their prized trophy. That is obvious and of course a good sign. Still it is a good idea to ask for references and meet them in person. This will ensure that you get what you exactly want. This will also help you build relationships with the people who share the same passion as yours – hunting.
When you finally meet the references ask them not just the obvious questions about the prey or whether they were able to get what they wanted. You will get positive response in most of the cases. Rather ask them about the trip, camping, duration of stay in the wilds, difficulties they faced and how they overcame it, and what memories they came back with. In short don’t interview the references, rather talk to them about their overall hunting experience with the outfitter.
Talk about the budget involved and facilities
After you make up your mind to hire a professional hunter, guide or outfitter come straight to this final question. Ask them the charges they take, the duration for which they will be available, the plan of the complete trip, things you will need to arrange and the things that will be provided by them.
Also ask about the other expedition packages that may vary with the time of the year or with the hunting grounds. May be you might find some other exciting package that might suit your needs and interest better. It is also a good idea to ask about the licence arrangement. Most of the outfitters have hunting license and also extend it to their clients.
It is also a good idea to check how long the outfitter has been in the business and its track records. Do some basic research about the number of hunters that have trusted the outfitter service before. Usually a good outfitter service will have long years of service and have many hunters, most of them regular, registered with it. This can be a good indicator that the outfitter service you chose is the best in the local area.
At last it should be kept in mind that a good outfitter service or a hunting guide will be responsible for making your expedition memorable and helping you extract the best out of it. A good hunting outfitter will also let you do most of the tasks yourself and let you learn in the process. Doing some basic research about the methodology the outfitters use and the guidance they provide will let you decide whether is it all that you wish to have? Sometimes over guidance can be irritating. So opt for the outfitter who is willing to make some adjustments according to your plans. This will ensure that your hunting expedition is a personalised one and the one you will love to go for again and again.