I like how PA has public access. They have purchase many tracks of land for State Game Lands. Some small and some big. All with equal opportunity access. No quotas. Gates may be closed most of the year and then they open some for hunting season. Year round access to all. Some smaller tracks will just have pull offs for parking. Over years the hunters figure it out. Small tracks are not limited to draws.
If a landowner wants to apply for a doe tag for his land they need to have agreed to allow public access for hunting. No special access to person just because they are large land owners.
Go figure, many timber companies open their gates and allow hunting to occur on their lands free of charge. Hunters remove many pesky tree eating deer. Win win.
If someone's primary passion was hunting, what would be the best state to move to from a regulatory perspective? What states have the best model for access/recreation on public lands? Which are the least restrictive with the most opportunities?
Hate to get this started again but I will - in your search pick States that have tag and report for both deer and turkey. At least they will have a "clue" how many hunt and the approximate number of game animals killed every year. Before moving to FL lived in both OH and KY. OH does have a long bow/crossbow season that takes place during the peak of the rut. If you bow hunt and avoid weekends you can find some decent public deer hunting. Not enough public land and a crappy climate. Few quota hunts. The short deer gun season on public and private land is a true circus. KY's deer gun season takes place during the peak of the rut. Decent amount of public land but as usual gets crowded especially since they open both deer and turkey seasons on Saturdays. A few quota hunts but most public land is "romp and stomp". Neither State gives free, unknown numbers of "exempt old geezer" hunting licenses and have telecheck systems in place. IMO KY's is the model system.
I'll start with this: I'm a bird hunter so my experience is limited to turkeys, upland birds and duck hunting. I've hunted WA state and was surprised with how much private land was available to hunt. They have a program there that with certain signage, hunters don't need to go find the owner to get permission you automatically have permission. I hunted mostly private land out there but also in some of the national forests and so there seemed like a lot of land available to hunt.
I've also hunted MT and they have incredible access to hunting land: they have BLM, National Forests, state lands, school trust land, block management and upland game bird management program properties. Block management and the UGB properties are all private properties that allow hunting. Some you need to contact the landowner to get permission, many of the properties you just sign in at the sign in boxes, keep your permit for that property on you and enjoy your hunt. On top of that, people that aren't enrolled in any of those properties if you take the time to track down the owners of private property, most people have been quite open to allowing bird hunters to hunt their lands.
I can't figure out how to edit. If I could stand cold winters, I would seriously consider moving to Montana just because of the variety of game to be hunted, the access to property and the seasons are long.
Edit is the circular/flower lookin icon to the left of your avatar on your post.
I may end up out in that area out West someday. Lots of opportunity especially if your a bird hunter.
Great stuff guys! Thanks so much, it is really helpful.I'm pretty interested in programs for large private land owners to open their properties to public hunting. I've seen that in a few places now. That's quite admirable on the land owners part. And great that some states put that into place. Would that ever go in Florida? Are there even enough landowners here, that would be open to it, to make it worth it? Somehow I doubt it.