A Real Hurry-Up Deer Opportunity!


Published: October - 1998

Most people have their fall hunting plans mapped out by now, but if you have an opening between mid-October and early January, a new deer hunting operation in southwestern Virginia might be worth checking out. If you can't make it this year, it might not be a bad idea to lock up a slot for next season. Why the urgency? Because space might be tight in 1999 after ESPN comes in next month and films a segment here for their popular television show, Under Wild Skies. The property I'm talking was privately owned until recently and has not been hunted in 50 years. The owner died recently and left the property to an entity called Wilderness Conservancy at Mountain Lake, which has a mandate to manage the land for wildlife. Problem is, the 2,600-acre tract has too many deer on it, so the conservancy has decided to allow a limited amount of hunting.

The emphasis will be on harvesting older bucks and does, with penalty fees added if a person chooses to shoot a young buck and the price lowered slightly if a hunter takes a doe. The program is just getting started this fall, so bookings are light and openings are available in the bow, muzzleloader and modern rifle seasons. I'll be visiting this location myself next month and will have an update on the situation and what caliber of bucks are being taken. Early word is there should be some excellent deer available.

A maximum of 10 hunters will be allowed on the property at one time, and the number of hunters this year is expected to total about 20 to 25. The current price for a three-day bowhunt here with food, lodging, guide service, game processing and pick up at the Roanoke, Virginia, airport (about 55 miles away) all included is $875. Muzzleloader and gun hunts are set at $1,095 for three days. All funds from the hunting will be used to manage the property for game and non-game species. The deer herd will be managed for production of trophy bucks.........(continued)

 
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