Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A couple of really great suggestions!

I got a couple of really great suggestions from Bill Durnan today. Bill has spent many many years as a booking agent for one of the great booking agents out there Butch Manasse Outdoor Adventures. There are a few really great booking agents out there, there are a handful of really good booking agents and there are hundreds of horrible booking agents out there. I personally have used Bill and he is one of the greats.

Bill told me a couple of friends he hunts with told him that on their trip up to Saskatchewan they hunted in below zero weather from tree stands and froze. He stated that all hunters should ask whether they are hunting from blinds or from tree stands? I want to add that in northern climates you should definitely ask whether those stands or blinds are heated.

Bill also added that we should always ask about success rate but that opportunity rate should also be discussed. If the opportunity rate is really very high the area has the animals and may just have a problem with hunters passing on animals looking for larger trophies or the hunters may just have missed the shot. I can definitely confirm this observation. While I was an outfitter we had a bear camp that went two weeks with each and every hunter getting a clear opportunity and we went 2 for 16 with 4 missed archery shots and 7 missed rifle shots and one hunter that passed up 3 bears in one day. So always ask about success rate, and always ask about opportunity rate and put your real weight behind what the opportunity percentage is for the outfitter.

Bill also had the following to add:

A thought about booking agents. If we send you on a bad hunt you won't book with us again. I have been on more bad hunts than good ones. We don't book for the bad ones. We have been told many times by clients about bad hunts they found on the Web. (there are good ones out there) We try to find the good ones. Some of our clients that have been on good hunts call and tell us we may want to look at an outfitter and we also get calls about outfitters we should not hook up with. My feeling is I don't want someone to spend several thousand dollars on my say so and then end up with a bad hunt. Repeat business is a must for us. What most people don't know is the price is the same if you book with us or go straight to the outfitter so why not let us eliminate the bad operations. Also, we have a little pull with the outfitters if something goes wrong. We can help the hunter make it right. Thoughts from Bill.

Bill thank you for your wonderful compliments and I will add them to my article!