The first step in choosing a western outfitter is to make sure they are a licensed in the state you are hunting in. This can usually be done by going to the state’s web site. In most states where an outfitter is required to be licensed, the hunter will be fined if caught using an unlicensed outfitter.
Then you need to decide what kind of hunt do you want – Wilderness horseback, drive to horseback camp, from town using a motel, camp hunt using 4×4 vehicles, tents or cabins. Find out what the terrain is like and determine whether or not you are physically prepared for the hunt. Perhaps your first western hunt should be a 3-day antelope hunt rather than a 20 mile horseback ride to camp for an elk.
Once you narrow down potential outfitters, it’s critical to talk to them a lot. While the actual hunts may only vary a little in terms of the services offered, the personalities of outfitters can be drastically different. Is this someone you start to like over the phone? Do they return phone calls and send correspondence on time? Ask for references and don’t hesitate to give them a call.
Picking an outfitter for the first time is a huge decision, so do your research and make sure you feel comfortable with the person you have chosen.
Okee VonSeggern is a guide with SNS Outfitters, which is proud to offer USA members a 10% discount on any hunts. Click HERE for details.