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Three or four guys looking to hunt deer in southern Ohio, and looking for a good outfitter. I’ve checked a lot online and am looking for some first hand knowledge. Any recommendations would be appreciated.
 

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I've hunted with Southern ohio outfitters. I would recommend hunting with them. Dave raised his prices since I was there and I don't want to spend that much so I probably won't go back during the prime dates. I would recommend calling and talking to him, he's very easy to get ahold of and wants to talk to his hunters to answer any questions. I haven't been on many guided hunts to compare against but they work hard for you and expect you to hunt hard also. I went early October and we were in our stand 2 hour before daylight and hunted till noon. In for lunch and back in our stand by 3:00. If you go during the rut they'll want you to hunt all day. I think he's already pretty much booked up for next season too. Food was excellent, lodging was better than I expected, treestands and ground blinds where comfortable. The guides bring you too your stand and pick you up. Success rates are not great but the opportunity rate is high. They do have a good success rate with there gun hunters tho. Dave does run a lot of hunters so expect to hunt in spots that have already been hunted. Keep in mind he's doing a lot of 3 days hunts now and I the weather isn't good you may not see much. Some guys will hunt pubic land after there hunt is over also so that's a option too. You can also check out Sunfish valley outfitters too they might have availability. Both outfitters have huge amount of land they hunt. I would call some references too to get some opinions both good and bad. Hope this helps ya in making a decision.
 

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I've hunted with Southern ohio outfitters. I would recommend hunting with them. Dave raised his prices since I was there and I don't want to spend that much so I probably won't go back during the prime dates. I would recommend calling and talking to him, he's very easy to get ahold of and wants to talk to his hunters to answer any questions. I haven't been on many guided hunts to compare against but they work hard for you and expect you to hunt hard also. I went early October and we were in our stand 2 hour before daylight and hunted till noon. In for lunch and back in our stand by 3:00. If you go during the rut they'll want you to hunt all day. I think he's already pretty much booked up for next season too. Food was excellent, lodging was better than I expected, treestands and ground blinds where comfortable. The guides bring you too your stand and pick you up. Success rates are not great but the opportunity rate is high. They do have a good success rate with there gun hunters tho. Dave does run a lot of hunters so expect to hunt in spots that have already been hunted. Keep in mind he's doing a lot of 3 days hunts now and I the weather isn't good you may not see much. Some guys will hunt pubic land after there hunt is over also so that's a option too. You can also check out Sunfish valley outfitters too they might have availability. Both outfitters have huge amount of land they hunt. I would call some references too to get some opinions both good and bad. Hope this helps ya in making a decision.
I've hunted with Southern ohio outfitters. I would recommend hunting with them. Dave raised his prices since I was there and I don't want to spend that much so I probably won't go back during the prime dates. I would recommend calling and talking to him, he's very easy to get ahold of and wants to talk to his hunters to answer any questions. I haven't been on many guided hunts to compare against but they work hard for you and expect you to hunt hard also. I went early October and we were in our stand 2 hour before daylight and hunted till noon. In for lunch and back in our stand by 3:00. If you go during the rut they'll want you to hunt all day. I think he's already pretty much booked up for next season too. Food was excellent, lodging was better than I expected, treestands and ground blinds where comfortable. The guides bring you too your stand and pick you up. Success rates are not great but the opportunity rate is high. They do have a good success rate with there gun hunters tho. Dave does run a lot of hunters so expect to hunt in spots that have already been hunted. Keep in mind he's doing a lot of 3 days hunts now and I the weather isn't good you may not see much. Some guys will hunt pubic land after there hunt is over also so that's a option too. You can also check out Sunfish valley outfitters too they might have availability. Both outfitters have huge amount of land they hunt. I would call some references too to get some opinions both good and bad. Hope this helps ya in making a decision.
Thanks a lot! They were on my radar, but it’s nice to hear from someone who was there. Sounds like a quality outfit.
 

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My two cents - the above post stated "Success rates are not great but the opportunity rate is high. They do have a good success rate with there gun hunters tho. Dave does run a lot of hunters so expect to hunt in spots that have already been hunted." alone would keep me away.

You are paying good money for a hunt, and how often do you hear of a bruiser buck being shot from a way over hunted stand? It happens, sure, but i would rather spend my money at some place with lower pressure and overall higher success rates. If you are using gun, maybe things are a little different as you can reach 200 yards out where the deer have not been busted repeatedly out of the area of the stand by previous hunters.

Doing my own research on the place, sure seems like pump A LOT of hunters through the camp, and with the low success rates it seems more like a money grabbing business and not a true hunting outfitter.

Again, just my .02 cents.
 

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My two cents - the above post stated "Success rates are not great but the opportunity rate is high. They do have a good success rate with there gun hunters tho. Dave does run a lot of hunters so expect to hunt in spots that have already been hunted." alone would keep me away.

You are paying good money for a hunt, and how often do you hear of a bruiser buck being shot from a way over hunted stand? It happens, sure, but i would rather spend my money at some place with lower pressure and overall higher success rates. If you are using gun, maybe things are a little different as you can reach 200 yards out where the deer have not been busted repeatedly out of the area of the stand by previous hunters.

Doing my own research on the place, sure seems like pump A LOT of hunters through the camp, and with the low success rates it seems more like a money grabbing business and not a true hunting outfitter.

Again, just my .02 cents.
When I went there the guides have over 15,000 acres to choose from and many,many stands to choose from. There were three guys that my guide was in charge of every day. We hunted on a thousand acre farm. I let them know I like to hunt a stand once or twice and move to a different one which is what they had me do. The other two guys primarily hunted the same couple of stands every day. But they both saw shooter bucks too. I did not. Way to many variables can effect success ratio most outfitters don't even give out a number but if I had to guess with SOO I'd say 25 to 30% shot opportunity. Some guys miss, some guys wound and some kill. Best bet is to call and talk to him about the week you want to go. Obviously they kill more during the peak of the rut verses late season archery in January. As far as hunting a stand someone else has hunted. It probably is in a good area and if you don't like it tell your guide and he'll move you to a spot nobody has hunted but it may not be in a good spot. One other thing is that they bait with corn a lot and check trail cams daily, so the deer are used to seeing human activity every day so I don't know if that matters. Keep in mind your paying for the opportunity to hunt those big whitetails not kill them. If you want a guarantee kill go to a high fence.
 

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Beware of outfits that run a large number of hunters through camp, and do discounted/sale hunts. When an outfitter leases massive acres of land quantity ( of hunters) precedes quality of bucks.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I should have said in the original post we would be gun hunting. There’s just a lot to wade through, so I definitely appreciate all the help!
 

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We don’t have any specific area. We are open to anywhere, just looking for a quality outfitter.
I have a ton of relatives south central ohio. (Gallipolis area. South of Jackson, Vinton, crown city, Mercerville. I believe the Wayne Federal forest is in the area too., Miles of reclaimed strip jobs around there (Just follow 35 until it crosses the Ohio. ) Columbus hosts some kind of a deer hunting show, similar to outdoor rama. For some years I hunted a family owned commercial orchard, right off of 35, between Rio Grande and Jackson. Put a pop up camper in their parking lot. Ate breakfast and dinner with them, had bathroom shower privileges. Escorted to blind every morning. Grandma even packed me lunch. Man I drank a lot of cedar that week. Payment was to tip Cody what you thought the hunt was worth. he was a senior in high school at the time. My dad and I gave him 1000 dollars, he about passed out., grandma said it was to much, ended up sneaking it to Cody, in the presence of his grandpa. was a great place to hunt.If by chance you end up there, you will owe me 2 big bags of stamen wine sap apples, and 2 gallons of cidar for the referral.
 
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