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Discussion Starter #1
Just a question - one of the Game Lands I hunt is big, being several miles across. The Game Commission is good enough to open several access roads within it for hunting season, but not until the start of early muzzleloader and then continuing through rifle season.

A bunch of us who bowhunt this also like the opening two weeks. We don't mind a walk, but being retired and with weather warmer that time of year it sure would be nice to drive in closer if we get lucky. Deer carts make things better, but still take effort and must be hauled in either before or after a long day.

Curious if anyone knows why this segment of big game season is left out?
 

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Ah, my pet peave with the gameless commission. Only answer I have ever heard that is a good one is....power. We hunters pay for the land but we are only able to access it when the folks WE employ, pay their salaries, give them nice vehicles, retirement, etc. decide to give us access. I have heard a whole list of bullsxxx excuses while they encourage private land owners to open their ground to hunters year around. Now I am ready for the apologists. What say you?
 

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I doubt there is a specific enough answer to your question, but I would say that it has to do with maintenance & illegal activity. Most of the roads near me are open from before archery, but evidently near you they are catering to the masses. I think it's as simple as that...shortest amount of time to benefit the most people.

Longer roads are open = more wear/tear on the surface and more problems with illegal dumping, camping, etc...
 

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I really don't mind them being closed as it keeps allot of people out of there that don't want to hike the distance back in ! plus it cuts back on the road hunting and poaching ! At age 58 I do wish they would allow E-bikes on those roads and trails or at least allow a 4 wheeler to retrieve your game ! If you get caught without any game on your wheeler fine the crap out of them ! I think it would open the door a little for the older people that still want to hunt but just can't drag one out especially during the week when your buddies are working !
 

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Ah, my pet peave with the gameless commission. Only answer I have ever heard that is a good one is....power. We hunters pay for the land but we are only able to access it when the folks WE employ, pay their salaries, give them nice vehicles, retirement, etc. decide to give us access. I have heard a whole list of bullsxxx excuses while they encourage private land owners to open their ground to hunters year around. Now I am ready for the apologists. What say you?
I think you're being a little extreme. You're able to access the land, just not always by motorized means. I know of 0 private land owners that allow the public to drive all over their land year round.
 

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The roads that open have a date that is set by Commission action. If you want additional roads open talking to your Land Manager is the first step then perhaps after six months to a year it can go through all the hoops that are required.

But, I can tell you that for everyone who wants a road opened there are two or three more who don't want it opened. In many cases opening the roads ruins the hunting.

I am probably older than most people who post on this site or who hunt the game lands and I still enjoy having areas where people aren't driving in. I have seen many good hunting areas ruined by opening the roads.

Dick Bodenhorn
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I've read these early comments and can grasp some of their meaning. Also as saying before, not really complaining just asking. Guess what I don't understand is:

(1) The weather is usually better the first two weeks of October, worsening as the season progresses. With the minimal number of early season bowhunters I think increased road damage is a minor concern?

(2) Realize access can degrade the quality of hunting, but for this particular Game Land it's permitted for early muzzleloader, senior/youth anterless rifle, small game, turkey,
peak of the rut bowhunting and the two weeks of regular rifle deer. Even allowing for patrolling, has to be a minimal effect at best.

Appreciate the remarks and with all this said, the explanation regarding Commission Policy in general and contacting the area land manager may be the most viable. Would think their number is listed in the hunting digest?
 

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The roads that open have a date that is set by Commission action. If you want additional roads open talking to your Land Manager is the first step then perhaps after six months to a year it can go through all the hoops that are required.

But, I can tell you that for everyone who wants a road opened there are two or three more who don't want it opened. In many cases opening the roads ruins the hunting.

I am probably older than most people who post on this site or who hunt the game lands and I still enjoy having areas where people aren't driving in. I have seen many good hunting areas ruined by opening the roads.

Dick Bodenhorn
Access improves the hunting opportunities. Those SGL's are not for just those who can walk great distances. Also, the further you can drive in and park, the further hunters will penetrate the interior acreage. I do it, and I know others do also when the gates open. In reality, it doesnt hurt a thing!

The PGC used PR funds ($200,000) to improve a road, complete with new parking lots, for the purpose of improving hunters access. The gates are closed most of the fall. They put all that money into that project and it comes across as being primarily for the image of it. It looks like they open them just enough to justify the expenditure and satisfy PR. Every hunter who goes there paid into that fund. That includes archery and small game.
 

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Ah, my pet peave with the gameless commission. Only answer I have ever heard that is a good one is....power. We hunters pay for the land but we are only able to access it when the folks WE employ, pay their salaries, give them nice vehicles, retirement, etc. decide to give us access. I have heard a whole list of bullsxxx excuses while they encourage private land owners to open their ground to hunters year around. Now I am ready for the apologists. What say you?
What a ridiculous post. You are critical of the PGC working to open more land to hunting. By the way, you do not employ anyone or give them nice vehicles. Now I see why you made the other post in the leasing farm land thread. I suggest you do not hunt the over a million acreas of land open to public hunting under agreement with the PGC if it bothers you so much.
 
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What a ridiculous post. You are critical of the PGC working to open more land to hunting. By the way, you do not employ anyone or give them nice vehicles. Now I see why you made the other post in the leasing farm land thread. I suggest you do not hunt the over a million acreas of land open to public hunting under agreement with the PGC if it bothers you so much.
Agree 100%. Game wardens or whatever we are calling them these days are spread thin, too thin. There's not enough of them and they are not paid well at all.

As for the roads being closed, it's a pain for sure. I just hiked 8 miles last Thursday to hang two trail cams where I hunt, literally, 8 full miles. It's really a double edged sword. Keeps the weekend warriors out, keeps the meth cooks out, and allows for the deer to relax. It's a lot to hike, but I love it and it's very rewarding when the season comes in and I see deer every sit while the rest of the guys on the game lands cry that they dont see any deer. Then they stop hunting the game lands and I get it all to myself!!!!

I can understand being older and not wanting to hike and walk that far.
 

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As as a 59 yr license holder I do pay for the things you mention. Yes, a lot of money comes from timber sales, oil leases etc. but it all stems from the hunters in the beginning. State game ground has always been a large part of my hunting, about 50 50 with private ground. When I was younger I enjoyed hiking back several miles to get away from those to lazy to do so. I said nothing about opening additional roads or roads that are never open. Those that are opened could remain open all or most of the year to allow us to enjoy the available ground. Impose strict fines and license revoking for those that miss use privileges. Hunting numbers are declining . Youngsters as a group, even those from families with a hunting tradition are not interested. Older hunters are dropping out and one of the reasons is limited access to game land. I doubt if there are many on this forum that have walked the miles on game land that I have over a life time. Hunting has always been a 12 month endeavor for me. I hear a lot of hunters with the same thoughts I have. Well WW, I do and have hunted game lands all my life and it's time hunters are allowed more access, it is not the Game Commissions private sandbox, it is for us the hunters who have supported our sport for a lifetime.I am sure your a good man, but I also think your stance on this is wrong and a disservice to our sport. We will have to agree to disagree, have a great 2019 fall hunting season.
 

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Keep em all closed!!! Place I use to hunt had a gate that was never opened. I would walk .8 to 1.2 miles in. There would be 8 -10 vehicles parked at the gate. I would never see any one. Then the next year half of those cars wouldn’t be there cause it was to far to walk I heard some say. I would have friends say I went by there and there were truck everywhere, how can you hunt like that. I would laugh and say I don’t see any other hunters. We killed lots of deer in there.
Then a farmer on the other end of the property logged off and put a road up there. People started showing up then cause they could drive their 4 wheelers up. I would hear the 4 wheelers putting all the time. Time to move on.
 

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To those complaining about access;

Be happy there is a road to WALK on at all. Appreciate the fact that you can use (walk) the road and dont have to brush bust for miles.

Instead of complaining about the times that you can not drive on the road, appreciate the time when you can drive on it.

The PGC is not required to give any of us easy access to any SGL and/or spot on a SGL. Appreciate what is available instead of complaining about what is not always available.

Good luck, Tony
 

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I hunt a area with a lot of gates and I am glad they are there. Hardly find any litter or old tree stands in the woods and it’s nice to not have vehicles driving up and down the roads all day. Also allows for some good hunting for those willing to hike back in. I imagine if they opened the gates to my hunting area the solitude and quality of hunting would decrease significantly. Hiking way back in and killing something also gives me a greater sense of accomplishment compared to parking my vehicle and only waking a couple hundred yards into the woods.
 

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A couple areas around here on SGL170 have gates. They open them from beginning of archery till the end of the late seasons.
They give access to additional parking lots a little further in. Then there's the punks with mudder trucks, who open gates and enjoy destroying nice waterholes, while trashing the mountain. I've helped my warden nail some of them.
 

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I would love a program or permit system that would allow backpacking access for hunters to some of the larger SLG's. I realize it would be a logistics nightmare to administer those legally participating in the program.
 

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The Game Lands I hunt on are open roads from September 15 to January 15.. Which is great access for most of the hunting seasons... Some of the State Forests have open roads year round and poachers are a major problem.... I think they should allow E bike access for the older hunters... They make very little noise and damage the environment very little...
 

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As as a 59 yr license holder I do pay for the things you mention. Yes, a lot of money comes from timber sales, oil leases etc. but it all stems from the hunters in the beginning. State game ground has always been a large part of my hunting, about 50 50 with private ground. When I was younger I enjoyed hiking back several miles to get away from those to lazy to do so. I said nothing about opening additional roads or roads that are never open. Those that are opened could remain open all or most of the year to allow us to enjoy the available ground. Impose strict fines and license revoking for those that miss use privileges. Hunting numbers are declining . Youngsters as a group, even those from families with a hunting tradition are not interested. Older hunters are dropping out and one of the reasons is limited access to game land. I doubt if there are many on this forum that have walked the miles on game land that I have over a life time. Hunting has always been a 12 month endeavor for me. I hear a lot of hunters with the same thoughts I have. Well WW, I do and have hunted game lands all my life and it's time hunters are allowed more access, it is not the Game Commissions private sandbox, it is for us the hunters who have supported our sport for a lifetime.I am sure your a good man, but I also think your stance on this is wrong and a disservice to our sport. We will have to agree to disagree, have a great 2019 fall hunting season.
Do you want a little food with that whine?
 
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