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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We experienced some very interesting events while hunting in ND last week. Each day (lunch and sometimes dinner) we would eat in small town cafes.

Over the past 25 years hunting in ND (as a res & NR) we would often eat at the local diners. We would enter in our hunting garb (as clean as possible), sit down, order, eat, and leave. Often we would get a few passing stares in our direction. :shake: Conversations with the locals were rare and only happened if we initiated them.

This last week we were approached in 4 different cafes in three separate towns by locals. Often approached multiple times at one sitting. Sometimes it was grandmas coming up to talk. One even opened up a free jar of home canned pickles to share. Wow. :D

They all asked if we were nonresidents. I always answer yes, but with ND roots. Once they heard yes we were asked to join their tables, told of areas to hunt or places to stay, and some apologized for any organized negative attitudes toward us visiting ND to hunt.

I am serious - it was really, really strange how well we were accepted as strangers in these places. Last year - same cafes - just glancing stares.

Some mention Eddie - and how he used this issue just to stir up his ratings and separate ND people - not to seek resolution.

Most all said they did not see a problem with NR hunters sharing the resource and helping their economy.

When I said plenty of residents help out the small town economies too - they said they buy there gas in the big towns, shells in the big towns, not eating here today are they ??

When I mention - quality of the hunting experience. Most seemed unconcerned or did not believe it. Often they said we are trying to survive out here - not just a ghost town with one or two bars.

Not sure what to make of all this - but next January should be very interesting in Bismarck.
 

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For somebody who just spent 5 days enjoying the outdoors in ND you seem very negative.

I'm a resident and I have also had many conversations with locals this year. I also have nothing but good things to say about the landowners of the state of ND. I haven't heard the negative comments that you seem to pick up in the local cafes. I have had several landowners as well a local business people help to line up lodging and places to hunt.

In reference to "Eddie", it sounds like you're the one trying to stir up negative feelings between residents and non-residents. Enjoy your stay and the hunting that you have but leave the issues to the state of ND and its people.

Your implication that residents buy all their shells, gas and food before they travel to an area really is laughable. You obviously purchase ALL your shells at the local cenex store come on, get real. Do you honestly think that no residents spend money in rural ND. I for one with my sons hunt every weekend in ND. Most mornings the first stop is at the local cenex to purchase water, pop, candy and sandwiches for the day. Oh, forgot the $30 -40 for gas for the day after driving 150-200 miles. Lunch, pizza or burger at local cafe, yes residents do frequent local cafes. If its a 2 day hunt, like many of them are, it's another $50-60 for a hotel room. I know for a fact that every NR that has come to ND has had the majority of shells with them when they arrive.

The majority of residents in ND are happy to see NRs come to the state to hunt waterfowl. Many of them I've met are very gracious and have a genuine love of the outdoors, a few don't. Residents just don't want to see more of the great influxes of hunters as in the past. You talk about the quality of the hunt. You would have to have a blindfold on not to see the increased amount of people hunting waterfowl, both resident and NR. I personally have helped 3 groups of MN hunters this fall in lining up places to stay and hunt. Another is a group from the far south that will be here for 2 weeks upland and waterfowling. So don't lump all the resident hunters into one group of hunters who don't believe there is a place for NR hunters in our state.

I'm sure there are people that are upset with the fact that the resident sportsmen in ND are standing up for their rights. We have let things evolve on their own for too long and its time to have a compromise between landowners and resident sportsman.

I'm fairly sure that most resident hunters from ND could care less what the issues are, legislatively speaking, pertaining to hunting in states other than our own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Stir the pot -- that is what I do on this site don't you know.

Nope no negative feelings at all. Had a fantastic time. The ONLY and I REPEAT ONLY NEGATIVE feelings I have ever seen regarding NR hunters in ND is on these internet sites.

All my interactions with the local people in the cafes were very positive and I enjoyed talking with them. Pickles were great. Simply never had been appoached like that before. We talked with these people like long lost friends. Many had relatives living in the Twin Cities area. I probably could have stayed in their homes if I wanted to.

We joked that the city boy had to vacation in the country and the country people headed to the big cities for vacations.

I have written on this site before that I am often a GHOST NR hunter. By that I mean I travel in trucks with ND plates since much of my hunting is done with local ND friends and family. Now I bring one MN friend with me so he can experience what I grew up with. My ties to ND run very deep. My family owns plenty of farmland in ND. Unfortunately its out of most major waterfowl flyways.

Regarding Eddie ::: seems he needs no help from me stirring up the pot. He does fine on his own.

Growing up in ND, my family spent a lot of money traveling in ND for hunting. We were residents spending money in rural ND. You know the ND hunting season is just starting. All of you residents buying gas in small town ND - talk with the local guys. Stop in the small cafes and by pass the fast food in the nearby bigger towns. Get the word out by your actions and good behavior.

Finally I remain interested in ND politics - because
1) Bloodlines run very deep into ND.
2) I hunt in ND because it is where I grew up (land is familiar as are my family and friends)
3) It is probably where I will retire
4) The number one threat to freelance hunting in ND is not NR numbers but universal posting of all land to hunting.

Residents get out and talk with these people. If possible ask to hunt unposted grain fields just to let the farmer know your there. I ALWAYS TRY TO DO THIS. Ask him along. They will likely refuse, but hey they won't stumble into your field that next morning the anhyd. am. tanks either.

Take nothing for granted.
 

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I don't even know where to start. First of all EDDIE is niether here nor there. That guy is a self inflicted contradiction. Secondly, I am glad you had a good hunt and experience. But come on, residents don't spend money in small towns? what? This last year, I have spent money in Ellendale mutiple, multiple times, Ashley, LaMoure,Edgley,Wishek, Lehr, Milnor , Gwinner, Oakes, Fredonia, and countless other small towns. I am talking from dove opener in Ellendale to until the last good ice fishing around Wishek and Lehr. This is all year, not just 1 or 2 weeks. Like Field Hunter said leave ND buisness to North Dakotans.And some of the things you said sound pretty made up to me. Never been approached before but all of a sudden in FOUR different cafe's, little old grandmas are talking about ND hunting and its politics, and giving you pickles. That is probably the best damn story I have ever heard. :roll:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Really happened -- why -- hard to say. The way we were approached was amazing. Weird -- maybe.

Note now that I did not say residents do not spend money in there own state (some people in the cafes, not all we talked to did) and in fact I defended resident hunters - you.

Again, get out and talk with these ND people as you travel the countryside.

Politics :: Beware of the North Dakotan bank rolled by wealthy outstate interests not some guy talking on an internet BB.

Wingmaster: Know that area well. Grew up hunting SOBs through out much of SE ND.
 

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Prairie hunter, thanks for describing the hospitality you found hunting last week. I will see what we encounter this weekend when we are out in the country.

I know what you mean when you say that small town North Dakota folks often travel several miles away from their small town and spend their money in larger towns. Look at how Devils Lake has changed in the last 10 to 20 years. They have a new Wal Mart and K-Mart and fast food restaurants that they never had before. But, the population in Devils Lake did not increase enough to warrant those new stores. That means, Devils Lake is attracting people from Lakota, Rugby, Minnewaukan, and Cando to their stores. In the mean time those smaller towns have lost hardware stores and grocery stores. The businesses that are left in those towns are more than happy to see hunters in the local cafes.

I like good pickles. Maybe, we will get lucky too.
 

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Perry,
Read you article on the snow geese. I was hunting pheasants that day and I am pretty sure I saw you guys and your decoys set up. You were set up pretty close to a farm on its eastside set up in some corn stubble, and the roost was across the road to the north, a nice slough behind a treeline right off the road. The geese were thick in that area for along time after that. Ended up shooting some of them that year. Funny how you blame local kids for jumping the roost. The only time I see or talk to local kids is during deer hunting. And I hunt that area religiously from septembet 1 until january 1. Anyways nice to see someone took advantage of those geese.
 

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I'm with wingmaster in calling BS on this one. I just don't understand your motive - the pickle bit wasn't even funny. Had you been offered "the farmers daughter" it might have been a good laugh. Are pickles funny to 'sotas?

I had a different conversation with a small town service/merchant only a couple days ago. I asked this kindly gent if business was up with all the non-resident hunters stopping. He guffawed and said he hadn't seen many non-resident hunters this year and went further to mention that hunters don't mean much business to him at all - the local people going about their daily routine all year round are who keep him in business. I thanked him for sharing his thoughts, and left some of my buddy's money in his till.

M.
 

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I live in a small town here in ND,and I agree with MRN,it's the people that keep this place alive.I have no bitterness towards anyone,but I don't like to read that a tourist means more to my hometown than I do.We appreciate all outside business,but if you really care about our town please move or bring your business here.Than you'll really understand how a rural town works.

I think this site is a prime example of what rural ND businesses need.our geographic location is what hurts our business,so more rural businesses need to go online where location means nothing.Hello Mr. Hoeven, are you reading this? that's a hint.
 

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Wingmaster,

I think you are dead right on where we were last year for that great hunt. Your description of the spot sounds pretty accurate. It is a small world isn't it? Did you see anyone else with decoys set up that weekend?

I know it was the local folks that jumped the roost because they drove up to our decoys as we were picking up on Saturday night to chat a little. During the course of the conversation we learned that one of them was just down there for the weekend from Bismarck to visit his folks. During our chat they told us they were going to jump the roost the next day. And, they did. I guess they didn't know any better. I was really stupid. I should have invited them to sit with us the next morning. I know that all of us would have gotten more shooting. I'll know better next time.
 

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At this point, I do have to chime in. I've been to ND 3 of the last 4 years for the duck opener (missed last year due to a Muley hunt in WY). I'm a MN resident, but cheesehead born and bred. I've accepted Prairie Hunter's invite to go to ND for several reasons:

1) To enjoy the abundant game, the liberal access laws, and the good hunting in general.
2) Improve my waterfowling skills, as I grew up a deer hunter.
3) Spend a solid week hunting with my dog - as well as getting good help training my first dog from PH.

Now, I just can't sit here when someone calls BS on those nice old ladies who gave us the pickles. They were on their way to Seattle for vacation, and didn't want them to go to waste. Thus the conversation of "city folk vacation in the country, vice versa..."

As for PH's observations, I don't disagree with a single one. He calls them as he seems 'em, and that is what we experienced.

Yes, PH talked politics w/ the little old ladies. I didn't because I don't keep up on ND politics. I don't find it strange, though, as I keep up politics in WI. And I have a deposit slip from a gentleman that is renovating part of his house to accomodate NR hunters. He wanted to give me his information for place to stay for next year. He has a boat that he keeps for a group of NR's from WI. He depends on this for part of his income.

You'll hear more from me...<grin>
 

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I have to agree with PH and this probably is what he experienced. I have heard from several people in small towns who were very friendly and "nawed" my ears off. They didn't distinguish between NR & resident hunters, however they wanted me to know how important hunters are to their local economies. One guy seemed like he was trying to convince me-but I agreed with him from the start??? The only bad deal is that I didn't get any pickles-and I love homemade "granny" pickles! Glad you had a good hunt PH! There was no doubt to these folks that we "Bismarckers" spend money in their local communities-our bar tab/pizza/buffola wings was well over $100 and that was the first night!
 

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Perry,
I have hunted that area since I could carry a gun, my uncle owns land around there, and I know pretty much every field. To answer your question, I didn't see anybody else with decoys out. I don't own snow goose decoys, so I resorted to pass shooting them as they flew blind over a treeline into corn stubble. It was still a good time. I had seen your article on the home page but never got around to reading it until recently. As I was reading it I could picture the exact roost and field you were set up on. It gave me chills down my back. Your right, pretty small world. Sucks that someone had to jump the roost, and kick to birds out of there for ya. But there were so many geese around that another flock found its way there. :D
 

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Some how I think all the love you resident freelancers were talking about a few weeks ago for the freelance non-res hunter has died now that they have shown up in your backyard. :withstupid:
 

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This is the calmest forum when it comes to these issues.Stereotyping gets way out of hand at sites like waterfowler.No reason to stir up the pot zogman, nobody here is attacking NR, and it appears that everyone hunts with NR.At least this site works towards solutions.:poke:
 

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Miller,
You are right. I posted the above comment on the wrong thread. I should of posted it under the heading "Freelancers or something else". Sorry about the mix up.
 

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TimR,

Welcome to the site - since I don't have good reason to doubt you (although cheese head, non-resi, & knowing PH makes it a close call) I'll back off on the BS call (The BS call was on PH - not the old ladies). Of course, the farmers daughter is still much funnier than pickles...

Now I'm sure you're gonna tell us that the halloween decorations we've been seeing were put up by the "towns folks" to scare away resident hunters...

Moreover - you have one heck of a dilema in front of you: do you crusade for unlimited non-resident hunters next year because you have a deposit slip, or do you work to preseve the quality hunting in north dakota that you came for in the first place. Values or $$$? Hope we hear from you.

M.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hey I am on record on this site for capping the licenses at 22K. Would have been fine with me. Those that wanted a license would have got one.

Now TR and I did not see very many NR hunters where we hunted (sorry Fetch - still a secret). See my post in DUCKS. I believe that the peak NR influx is between October 10 and October 20 - so I can not speak of "too high pressure" even where we hunt since I am not there at that point in time. I can tell you that the end of October is not bad there either - when I return.

I was born and raised North Dakotan. Much of my family and some of my friends remain in ND. I am tied to this state (ND) tighter than many that live there now. Family still farms in ND. Some of my work (here in MN) actually helps keep good jobs in ND and a good chunck of money flowing to NDSU.

Regarding 2003. Not worrying yet. Have many back-up plans including SD (lottery), MB, SK, or using some business connections to grab an allocated license or two. Kidding ? Sell your soul ? We will see.
 

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-Would I rather have a limited amount of licenses or continue the good hunting?

In my limited experience, I haven't seen the legions of NR hunters that others have reported. If someone can prove to me that there has been a decline in the resource due to the numbers of NR hunters, I would support a cap. But you are going to need to prove to me that it is the total number, and not the distribution that is at fault, as well as demonstrating that the resource is being harmed.

A question for you - Why both an early opener week for Residents, as well as a NR cap? What do you contribute to waterfowl production that I don't? I buy a MN and ND (and some years WI) waterfowl license, Fed stamp, state stamps, support DU, etc. You live in ND, so I can understand wanting to protect your hunting, but we are talking about migratory birds. Now don't get all pissy, but give it some thought. I'm very open to listening to a logical, reasoned answer.

IMO, an early opener for residents is fine. Or, a lower (22k) cap on the number of NR hunters is fine. Or, the situation this year was fine. If you really wanted a NR ND waterfowl license, you got one. It took how many months to sell out? I bought mine the first day they were available.
 

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TimR,
You bought one the first day they were out. Good for you. So why all the whining, and complaining. Minnesota had a chance for a week early duck hunt.You should of took it. And we don't have to prove anything to you or anyother NR because you have no part in the decision making process, only the people of ND are. AND like I have said a MILLION times,North Dakotans aren't trying to change your state hunting laws and bothering you constantly,so why are you? GET OVER IT!!!
 
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