American Indian Reservations Offer Additional Chance to Draw a Hunting Tag
by Kate Nation
After three failed attempts at drawing an antelope hunting tag in Wyoming and Montana, long-time Brotherhood Outdoors videographer Jamieson Crast, drew a tag the first time he applied through the Standing Rock Indian Reservation, which spans the North and South Dakota borders.
Hunting Reservation Land
The vast reservation he hunted is home to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, comprised of the Lakota and Dakota nations. Its Tribal Game and Fish agency made 75 pronghorn tags available to non-member hunters in 2021, and Crast was fortunate enough to be selected in the lottery to claim one of them.
“Hunters are blessed to have access to so much public land—BLM, state and national forest land, wildlife management areas, wilderness areas—but you often still have to be lucky to get drawn for a tag,” Crast said. “Reservation land just offers a whole new possibility in many states. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box.”
Things to Know to Start Planning Your Own Reservation Hunt
There isn’t a one-stop shop for information on hunting on reservation land. You have to do your homework and perhaps a little more digging but doing so, “can open another opportunity to draw a tag that many people don’t even think about,” Crast said.
A good starting point is to do a Google search of reservations in a particular state, or start with this MAP to get an idea of where they are located.
Each reservation has its own game and fish department, which you may be able to find with a Google search, such as “Standing Rock Indian Reservation Game and Fish,” or by searching the reservation’s main website under categories like “programs” or “government.”
Some reservations require a guide, while some do not. However, most of them don’t have digital maps, and plat maps can be confusing. A guide can be a huge asset for navigating between pubic and private land on the reservation.
The draw process is the same or similar to non-tribal land, but reservations limit the number of non-tribal hunters. Still, applying for a tag through the state and a reservation increase your odds of drawing that coveted tag and making your dream hunt a reality.