Bob, last year even the grouse opener was scramble city. You have never been here for pheasant opener because it is feeding time at the zoo, south of I-94. When you get close to SW ND peole stake out unposted fields and PLOTS the night before. If you pull up to one, you may be told "this one is ours"! Crowded? It's nuts. Anything that is open has been walked an hour after sunrise, by noon it's been walked three times, by Sunday nite it has trails thru the cover.
If I could get the franshise selling burgers between Tschida and Mott opening weekend, I wouldn't have to work the rest of the year. Of course I would want the franshise for NO TRESSPASS signs in the same area for insurance.
Finally someone gets to the bottom of all this. A little history lesson. The majority of this debate began 1 1/2 yrs ago when Gov. Hoeven wanted to open the pheasant season 2 weeks earlier than normal. This was the start of the Freelance hunter vs G/O's. What was the main reason Hoeven wanted to do this? It would benefit the G\O's. I never fully understood why they didn't just tack those two weeks on the end, but then how would that benefit G/O's, it wouldn't.
Anyway I don't want to get off track here. This, what is now known as Pheasant Gate, upset many if not most of the Freelance hunters for many reasons. The G&F and Legistatures saw this and had a series of public forums thoughout the state. They then twisted and manipulated our, the freelance hunters, concern of losing hunting land to the G/O's as it being too overcrowded with NR hunters. How that entered the picture only the G/O's will know. So to stop the losing of huntable land they have passed numerous laws regarding NR hunters and given the G/O's a little slap on the wrist with the updates to HB 1050.
So now after 1 yr of trying to fight the fight the ND legistalature has split the Freelance hunters into Res and NR while the G/O's have remained intact and as strong as ever.
Rem, either do your homework or speak in a less definative tone - like "I think", or "it's my opinion" - because on the facts you are wrong.
Pheasantgate, 1358 (license split), 1050 (g/o), 2048 (waterfowl cap), and 1223 (res only public land) are generally unrelated issues, tied together only by a large dissatisfaction among most (not you and a few others) resident hunters.
1358 got birth in the '01 session, but did not pass that session. It's not uncommon that it takes more than one session to pass some bills.
1050 and 2048 came out of a directive from the '01 legislature that an interim committee (Judiciary B) study hunting pressure and nonresident hunting issues from the close of the '01 session to the open of the '03 session. Judiciary B, from the very beginning in '01 (not following pheasantgate), was specifically looking at g/o provisions and some method for capping nonresident waterfowlers. Versions of 1050 and 2048 were both passed out of judiciary B and introduced as bills.
1223 came out of a desire to have a res. only week for pheasants. One of the sponsors of that bill did not believe that would pass and wished to move forward with what he perceived as a more conservative approach. The ghosts of pheasantgate still loomed, as 1223 also authorized (but did not direct) the Gov to open the pheasant season one week earlier than the traditional opener, but never to coincide with the duck opener. As such, the pheasant opener CAN be one week earlier than the traditional opener in 1/2 of all years. At first, some ND sportspersons balked at 1223 because it seemed like a pheasantgate reincarnation. The kicker, of course, was that 1223 also gave residents some sane pheasant hunting hunting on public ground that once existed but hasn't for several years. At the end, most resident sportspersons embraced 1223, and as I've posted before, I've heard from many who frequent or who will now frequent the higher use areas that they are thrilled with it.
Ironically, pheasantgate and 1223 had their roots even much earlier. During the '01 session, G&F mgmt types approached legislators with thoughts of a one-week earlier opener, tied to the desire of many, mostly hunters but I suppose even some commercial types, to have an additional week of snow-free hunting. Nothing came of it in the '01 session. Timing was not good for the Gov. with the early opener proposal shortly after a fundraiser at Cannonball, but I've been told by many who claim to know that it had more to do with poor timing than any back-room plan.
As such, all of these things, which you attribute to being birthed by pheasantgate, were actually in the works long before pheasantgate, and not particularly affected by it. None of them, however, may have been possible without pheasantgate getting a bunch of people educated in the issues and involved.
Thankfully, what pheasantgate did start was a gelling of interest and participation by resident sportspersons. It got a lot of people off their hands and involved. In the end, it was probably the single event that ensured the successes of the '03 session and the continued interest today.
You can argue about the efficacy of 1050. Those that understand the old g/o provisions and spoke at length with legislators before and during the session, however, very clearly understand that you can't get from NY to LA in an hour. 1050 brought things a long way from where they were, and will serve as the base for more work. For example, now that g/o's finally have to report the acres on which they operate, we'll finally have some definative info about their affect on the whole deal. Think they'll be tempted to under-report? Maybe, but they need to be careful there too. They under-report, they might get stuck with an erroneously-low industry cap on acres in the future.
Tell you what, in '05 you're in charge of the 1050 updates. See how far you get when you go stomping into the capitol and expect that by snapping your fingers and pounding on the tables that you'll get what you want. It's one thing for nearly everyone of a group of a pretty good size (hunters) to recognize what needs to be done - it's a far different matter to convince a group that generally frowns on controls over small business and is by and large made up of non-hunters. Better yet, draft up, circulate and coordinate the necessary 13,000 signatures to put the issue to the vote of all. You want to punch the outfitters in the nose, that's the route. In any event, quit *****ing and get moving.
Bob, back to your original question, both waterfowl and upland situations have caused much angst to many - just not Rem. And "crowded" is certainly a relative term. If you're used to staking your claim hours before first light, strategically cutting off groups in the same field or walking behind other groups in the same field looking for seconds, even opening day in the prime areas might not seem crowded to you. Or if you're willing to work extreme fringe areas smack dab in the middle of the week, you may find some actual peace. Those of us who have hunted across the state for many years for multiple species certainly feel "crowded" many times for both waterfowl and upland.
My personal sense is that among those that hunt both a lot, waterfowl is seen as the most immediate need, since our effective season for waterfowl is about a third of that compared to upland and at least some progress on the upland was made last session. Also, this increasing pressure is eventually going to prematurely drive more and more waterfowl out of the state - pheasants migrate in hundreds of yards, not miles, when pressured. There is also the Gov's goal to more than double total acres under PLOTS by 2006(?), largely aimed at upland grounds and which will create some additional pheasant opportunites. But, even the G&F will tell you that we can't "public land" our way out of the rate of upland pressure increases. They just won't get enough acres for a myriad of reasons, and the vast majority of pheasant ground will still be private.
Rem, I THINK (notice the qualifier) there's a Paul Harvey rest of the story when in comes to you. Like you're a hunter but have a business you perceive is bennefited by the nonres influx, you work for GNDA or FB, most of your hunting partners come from out of state, you've got all the land you need tied up through family relations or other connections or something else, because your take on these things is almost 180 from nearly every other active and vocal sportsperson, rural and city alike, that doesn't have a direct vested interest in the commercialization process.
Whew! I thought I was asking a simple question. No wonder you guys are goin nuts! Dick, Is this circus you describe because so much land has been "taken off the table" by leasing interests or put another way are their so many people that if all the land was accessible would still be crowded?
The area from Enderlin, Lidgerwood, Hankenson, and Oaks was always a zoo on opening weekend in the 70s and 80s. People would line up at the hot spots well before sunrise. People would run in front of others .... A couple roosters on the road and let the lead fly...
Some eastern ND people went west to escape the hunter density and found more birds - the zoo simply caught up.
This was back when ND was shooting 90K roosters not 400K.
NO BIGGER ******** IN THE HUNTING WORLD THAN THOSE THAT HUNT DITCH PARROTS ONE WEEKEND A YEAR (OPENER). Too many are hungover - or worse still drunk. Rude, desperate, and just plain ********.
WOW--Sounds like hunting in ND isn't much fun!!! If you guys would like to hunt the way its supposed to be why don't you come to MT. I can count on one hand the waterfowl and upland hunters I see in a season and there are plenty of birds. I very rarely go home without a limit, almost nobody denies access, and I have NEVER been crowded. Let me know and I'll show you around. The story is completely different when it comes to elk hunting but like I said thats another story.
Remind me to put on my Kevlar next time I post anything.
Dan If you read my reply to Bobm it was basically just a summerized version of yours. I did not think that I needed to get so indepth. Was I wrong in saying theat the Majority of the dabate started with pheasantgate? Or that this was the start of the Freelance hunter vs G/O's? Or that this eventually is what pitted tht Res vs NR fight? Did not the Judiciary B committees set up the public forums that I talked about? And if I remember properly the first push was a pheasant opener 2weeks early?
The reeeest of the story-- I do not own my own business, nor do I work for GNDA or FB. I work for a major company in Bismarck. You are right 50% of my hunting partners come from out of state, MN to be exact, that would be my 70 yr old father. We have hunted together for many years and I take it personal 'you guys' limiting 'our time'. And No I don't own land in ND, I have a cabin in MN and now this whole bunch of crap is even going to affect that. Yes I have all the land I have ever wanted to hunt on here in ND, because I have gone out and made the connections, created relationships and formed friendships. The reason "you" may think I come at this from almost 180' from nearly everyother active sportsman is becase I don't always agree with the opions of everytoher acctive sportsmen. I am about the most unbiased bipartisan person you'll meet. I have my views but I don't push them onto others and I don't think people are wrong because they disagree with me. I makes me puke to think about the comercialization of hunting, but isn't that pretty much what the state is doing? Commercializing hunting? Not that they are the first state to do it but is it right?
Rem I guess you could call license fee's and public land access commerializtion to some degree, but the main difference is that the actions of the G&F are intended to manage the wildlife resources of the state. They are not looking to take the short profit on the public trust resource. Heck just look at the number of enforcement officers we have for the size of the state vs others. I guess I just do not see the parrelell of the two.
I respect your view and right to be different than mine, as from different views come new idea's.
Rem, Kevlar vest? Give me a break - aren't you being a little "thenthitive." Go back and read your dozen or so posts, including those directed at me. I'll even make it easy for you: http://www.nodakoutdoors.com/members/ph ... file&u=998. Then either (a) change your posting style to something a little less aggressive/snotty, or (b) quit belly aching for getting what you give.
Why do you dad and other hunting partners come this way to hunt birds rather than vice-versa. What's your priority - outstanding hunting or time with family friends? If the latter, what does any of this ND stuff have to do with you? Can't you travel East and spend some quality time with them in some birdless WPA in MN?
Don't peg me or anyone else for limiting your time with them. Fact is, you're after the same thing we are, quality, it's just that to get the "what' with the "who" for the "when", nonresident restrictions don't exactly fit into your plan.
For a lot of us, we face the same trade-offs, but if we want this hunting thing to be any different than any other quality/affordable resource that's been pushed to the brink through excessive demand, something has to give.
And no, I don't think we were saying the same thing. To me, it sounded as if you attributed pheasantgate as the event that started all of the analysis, debate and search for answers. In fact, as to almost every issue, that started and was well in progress (including Judiciary B and its meetings around the state) long before pheasantgate, but that event did get many more involved in the ongoing process that may otherwise have remained on the side lines. To that extent, pheasantgate was a very positive event.
Look the pot is calling the kettle black! I am not any more agressive than anyone else in NDakOutdoors I have just been stating my views and or beliefs you can call it what you want but it is far from belly aching I think we have all seen enuf of that from both sides. I started reading the posts on this site because I liked the fact that it gave people a place to discuss their views on subjects that they were all interested in, the one down fall was that there was always a big know it all bully that seemed to jump on someone for not seeing things the same way. Everyone has the right to state their own opinions or to disagree fortunately that is the American way.
I do go East (as well as South and West) to fish and hunt, spending very wonderful quality time with family and friends. Sorry Dan, I have never seen a 'birdless' WPA in MN. There may not be the quantity but there is still the quality.
What does any of this ND stuff have to do with me--Why does any one come out here to hunt? I would be willing to bet that it is not because they can come out and kill a sh't loads of birds but to experience hunting out of state. Why do people go to MT to hunt Muleys/Antelope/Elk? We have them here. They go for the hunting trip and to spend time with family and/or friends. Same reason why my father comes here to hunt to spend time with his son and grandson.
It is not that my what with the who for the when doesn't fit into my plan. It is that you don't want to here that there is actually a few residents that actually feel the same way I do. Do you think that Joe farmer who has two sons in MN, or a brother in WI is actually going to allow open hunting or give permission to a Res to hunt when there own family can not? Things are going to change I believe for the 'bad' for everyone except the wealthy and the G/O's. I agree we all face the same trade-offs. I went to southern SD this spring. There are hunting lodges going up all over, the local from Dallas or Gregory SD who has lived there for 40 yrs can't even get on his own family's land anymore because they have leased it to these big hunting outfits. That is where ND is heading with all this.
And I still disagree with you on the pheasnatgate issue, to some extent. I believe that the majority of the Res. hunters - myself included- did not pay much attention until pheasantgate. I do attribute the the start of the RES vs NR debate to the situation. If it was not for this would the judiciary B committe have been set up? would they have had the public hearings throughout the state? Would we be fighting the NR's now or would we be unified and fighting the G/O's?
Thanks Ron, It was just something that I have been thinking about. I know the G&F does have a budget to meet. They are not intentionaly looking to take advantage of the public trust doctrine, but are they comercializing on a resource that is not ours to comercialize on?
Rem, there is plenty of room on this site for different views, and many of these issues have been debated time and again. They often get heated, and that's okay, as long as they stay civil. When it gets personal, you better be prepared to get what you give and not whine about it.
People don't come to ND for something different or purely out of a sense of adventure. If they did, those from out east would shortstop ND and hang in MN, WI or somewhere else in between that has plenty of readily accessible public land that is relatively birdless to that what is found in ND. It is quality and number of critters (not necessarily, but also for most, number of "kills") that bring folks here. ND's and others go to Mont for mulies or CO for elk only in part for the adventure - but for the presence of good numbers of animals, a place to hunt them and the availability of tags, they'd stay home or go somewhere else.
I'm perfectly willing to accept that some resident sportspersons don't agree with the majority. Most of the time, however, when you auger down into their rational, there's a very personal reason untied to the general declining state of affairs that motivates that differing opinion. So too with you.
If it's just hunting with family that matters, not quality hunting, you've got lots of options that are in no way impacted with anything going on here. If it is quality hunting, we're only going to get this thing to where it needs to be, realistically, by a little here and a little there. Unless someone picks up and runs with the referral, at best we're going to check the g/o's. For a host of reasons, we'll only get so much public land and public land will only be so helpful. The remainder of the necessary advancements must be made by controlling demand through caps, time restrictions, possibly zones and other means. No easy problems, no easy solutions.
On pheasantgate, you are mostly wrong - go back and look at the dates. The '01 legislature didn't have a crystal ball and know that pheasantgate would be coming some time in the future. Judiciary B was formed and started its meetings on g/o and nonresident issues long b/4 the term pheasantgate was known to anyone, as a result of much "nonresident" legislation that was introduced and largely not passed in the '01 session. There were rumblings among resident sportspersons in the late '90's that turned to a din by '01 and the general level and volume of dissatisfaction has rapidly increased since then. Pheasantgate wasn't the "alpha" for anything, other than the lightning rod that got a bunch more people involved in the ongoing process that, like yourself, hadn't until then been closely following or involved.
Ron for some reason I always want to call you "Dan" everytime I start to respond I type dan. Anyway I just wanted to respond that the number of kills is not what I come for. I hunt the less traveled areas hence my ignorance about the crowding issues until I started reading this stuff. I like the free access and wide open spaces. If I hunted waterfowl from what I'm hearing I wouldn't drive 50 yards to hunt in ND it just sounds like one big confrontation. I could go to pay hunting areas here in georgia and spend less money in total and kill more birds. Read the posts in the goose hunting threads and see who focuses on the kill numbers ect. I'm not faulting them just pointing out that while some percentage of hunters focus on the kill I like to think many see it for what it should be. Especially us with a few miles on us. I do enjoy your posts though I don't always agree with your positions but you are well informed and I appreciate that.
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