Friday, February 15, 2013

It's a Hog Hunt

Ever since my good friend Joni went down to Texas and shot a really nice big wild hog, I kept thinking about a trip of my own.  Then when I got the report of the excellent meat that went with the kill, I knew it was time to start planning and researching in ernest.
This lady does it all, plus she shot this one with a 9 MM up close and personal.

There was no deer hunting to do as the midge disease had taken it's toll, plus my freezer was full of elk, duck, goose, pheasant, chukar,  and wild turkey.  So with idle time, the planning went into motion. 

The first thing was to research the type of pigs, hogs or whatever is out there.  Feral pigs are domesticated pigs that have escaped captivity and learn to live in the wild.  This is what Texas and some of the southern states have in abundance.  They are very prolific and that is the problem.  Ranchers and farmers are having a problem with the wild Feral pigs as they tear up the ground and have several litters per year.  The razorback hog is one whose line came from a domesticated pig that escaped and learned to live in the wild.  They are also in abundance.  The Russian Wild Boar was originally imported from Russia by large ranchers, turned loose and were then hunted.  The Russian Wild Boar can get extremely large and will weigh up to 500 pounds with tusks up to five inches long.   All of the wild hogs have one thing in common.  They have a really bad attitude and are extremely aggressive. 

Razorback Wild Hog
Gathering up information about hunting this beast was easy.  The internet is full of information and the search was made to find a spot that would fulfill my requirements, and these are many.  On a trip like this I will be a long way from home. There are several things needed to meet my requirements:  1. A private room with a full bath.  The older I get the more privacy I require and when on hunting or fishing trips, I am just not into roughing it anymore.  2. An experienced guide that will put me on the animal hunted and after the shot, field dress the beast out.  I always help, but again it is called service.  3. Then I want the lodge or outfitter to make sure the meat is taken to a  processor.  There are excellent processors in the Omaha/Council Bluffs area, but I do not like transporting a carcas all the way home in the back of the pickup truck.  Most outfitters have a favorite processor that will prepare the meat for shipping, sharp freeze it, and you can put it in your own cooler.  4. All meals furnished. Going on a hunt and doing the meals takes the enjoyment out of the trip for me.  Having someone else prepare the food, serve it up, then clean up after is an absolute must.  If they serve Tusker Beer, that makes it a first class lodge.   All of the above lead to what is known as "Gentleman Hunting," and that is for me.

Russian Wild Boar
Searching the internet there are an abundance of outfitters and ranchers in Texas that want you to come to Texas and kill hogs.  In addition, they must have a predator problem because there was also opportunity to shoot a variety of predators.  There was one firm that was really advertising this opportunity to round out your hunt. Many of the outfitters and ranchers advertised "NO LIMITS."  Prices were all about the same, but the drive for me would be a long one, and I wanted to stay closer to home.  Searching Oklahoma, there again are a lot of spots to kill a big hog, and the prices were all similar.  Service in both states ran from "here is my land and go get em cowboy, you are on your own", all the way up to a first class hunt and being pampered like royalty.  Royalty is what I am looking for and that's for me.

Moving closer to home, I researched Kansas, and found there was no season, so I headed east on the internet to Missouri.  Here was opportunity. High Adventure Ranch near St Louis was the type of operation I was looking for to get out of town, enjoy the smell of gun powder in the morning, and have a new adventure.  (  All the services required are within a days drive, and they process the animal themselves right on their property.  I spent some time on the phone and listened to the description of how business is handled and I knew this was the right place for me.   At the end of the hunt, all you have to do is load up and head for home on the final day.  Stay tuned.  This will be interesting.

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Good hunting, good fishing and good luck. Hank.


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