Mid-America Hunting Association has been providing do it yourself hunts since 1965.
The way it works is the Association acquires the lands. The lands are mapped. The hunter has access to the maps and reserves the leases he wants to hunt. Then he hunts as a do it yourself hunter.
Our Iowa private lease land is located in turkey zone 4 and deer zones 4 and 5. All of which are in south central Iowa. Nearby towns are Bedford and Corydon.
This entire region is the upper fringe of the Grand Giver Watershed. This makes for many brushed in and wooded drainage's cutting through Iowa’s farm fields. That combination makes excellent cover and food. What we offer in this region are season long access at no hassle for those seeking self guided hunts.
Do It Yourself Hunters
Hey John and Jon,
I wanted to tell you about our hunt that we just got back from. Hopefully it will start out a new era of pheasant hunting for me.
We started out on Saturday getting several. The day was pretty cold with the wind probably over 15 mph most of the day. The dog worked pretty well even with the windy conditions. On Sunday it cooled off even more but the wind settled down for the mornings hunt. We had several points and had a blast watching the dog. The wind picked up a little after that we still got several good points after that. The pheasant population seemed to be pretty good this year with some of the fields holding pretty good numbers.
As you can see I was able to get my girlfriend out. I am not exactly sure, but she may have shot all of the birds in the picture. Seeing that I am more of a deer hunter those moving targets seem to elude me more than not. It was still a great hunt where I was able spend time with people I care about.
Anyway, I wanted to thank you for a great association to hunt in. Even if I want to branch out into some hunting I don't normally do, the opportunity is there.
Our approach is simple.
We lease land. We make that land available for self guided hunts.
The do it yourself Iowa hunter simply hunts on his own with his own equipment and skill.
There is more to what we offer the do it yourself hunter. That effort is to ensure he will want to hunt through us again that season and for years to come. We recommend to the first year Association hunters where to hunt. That will be based on his hunting discipline and habitat of choice. We will not let anyone flounder.
Our system for the do it yourself hunter saves money and time.
Regardless how it is cut all hunters spend money and time to hunt. Gaining the best return value for that cost is the distinction between a successful and an average season. For those with the wherewithal to make their hunts MAHA gives opportunity. That opportunity defined:
All hunters want to hunt on their own. At their own pace. Using their own equipment and importantly doing so on their schedule free of competition from others. Not a simple task to achieve. To gain this satisfaction hunters will spend many hours knocking on doors seeking free access. Or, giving gifts. They try to beat others to public land. Or, pay a hunting service. Our system simplifies this entire process.
Take one comparison model using cost of travel and time plus gifts for landowners or simply the cost of hunting public land. What is all that worth per acre for the average hunter?
Let us say just $2.00 per acre. Then take the number of acres required to have a good single day’s hunt and call that 400 acres. That is now a cost of $800 for one day’s hunt. A high sum. A $250/day guided bird or a $3,500 for a 5 day deer hunt is looking better. That is for those that want just one short hunt a season and are willing to take the chance on pen raised birds or a guide having better hunting skills than the hunter. This just is not for the do it yourself hunter even one that has just one vacation week a year to hunt.
For that do it yourself hunter with one vacation week that amounts to 9 clear days counting both weekends at the beginning and end of the work week that amounts to two travel days and 7 hunting days. Using the comparison model of $2/acre and 400 acres/day for that 7 hunting days the cost is now $5,600. A very large sum.
A trick with math - maybe so. However, use whatever model you would like to compare. The amount of acreage the Association provides. The cost of the annual membership dues. The number of hunting days available. Most do it yourself hunters will agree for the effort of writing a check to have year round access to scout and hunt on a self guided basis with MAHA is a very good value.
That ease of hunting land access we provide is the first step to the true benefit that do it yourself hunters really want. That is the tranquility achieved through spending the day in the field away from all others and enjoying one’s participation with nature. Within our system, the hunter is spending his time hunting rather than hunting for a place to hunt. And, do so the entire season on his schedule.
The choice is simple. All may continue to achieve the hunt quality they currently have or take the risk for the potential of achieving even greater results. The very minimal return will be the adventure of seeing new ground. The very most that can be expected are memories for a lifetime that may exceed any previous hunting experience.
The real potential lies with more deer, turkey upland and waterfowl hunting than anyone can hunt even if hunting every day of the season. The payback begins immediate on map issue that starts the planning process. After that it is all about hunting.
Deer Hunter Feedback
A successful deer hunt from a dedicated group that travels over 1,100 miles one way to deer hunt each year on Association land.
Many of our resident deer hunter/members are astonished at the success of some of our non resident deer hunters. They come from whitetail deer states that don't have the quality of deer that the central Mid-West has to offer and take full advantage of every day from sunrise to sunset.
Occasionally, non-resident deer hunters stumble into a great hunt or two the first time out, but typically, it takes a year or two to become familiar with the maps, terrain and weather to put things together.
Once the puzzle is put together it appears all they need is quality Iowa deer land and we have a lot of it.
This Association does provide a lot of good to the hunter. It however is not perfect.
These are some of the things that a few hunters have identified as wrong. With each of these short discussions is the understanding that 99% of the folks in the Association are good folks. There always has and will be that 1% that think they are special.
Cannot Lock Up A Spot
Duck and deer hunters bring this point up. There does exist an occasional attitude that any one hunter should be able to secure for only his use a particular blind, wetlands or deer lease. It often goes like this:
A hunter will call in and ask what it would take to keep one spot to himself for the season. Or, a variant is along the lines a hunter will offer some level of cash for some type of special treatment.
The answer in all cases is to insure the one making the offering to understand he was dumb for having done so. It is an insult for anyone to think the Association partners can be bought. It is the entire Association body of all hunters that own the Association. No one hunter can.
Land Is Lost
The Association guarantees that eventually all land will be lost. When land is lost i t is due to cause outside of the Association's ability to influence. Examples are: Landowners die. Corporations are sold or go bankrupt. Bulldozer land improvement degrades cover quality. We will be out bid for lease renewal. CRP comes and goes.
There are some that take any land lost, especially of a favored spot, as the Association is in decline. What is not part of this evaluation is that land that was lost was not always part of the Association. It did come to the Association through the efforts of the partners. That same effort is repeated every year. It is the case that land is lost and land is added each year. While it may not be a large amount of acreage any one year. It will eventually come to pass that change will get to a piece that is particularly favored by a hunter that will interpret it as a problem. That is all part of the drudgery of running a hunting lease. The constant search for better land.
Frequently a more objective analysis in this case is a different situation. That is the hunter that finds the lost of any one lease disturbing is commonly the hunter that has not developed more than one spot to hunt. Or, one that did not take advantage of a great strength of the Association. That is to cover ground to find what is wanted.
Those that leave the Association and seek to return do so at full cost. No discounts for joining more than once.
This is sometimes interpreted as unfair. The hunter wanting to rejoin will offer reasons that show him in good light and the Association the bad guy for some perceived injustice that caused his departure. Yet, he wants to return.
What is more common is the Association at any given time has more than 20 hunters who have joined more than once. The reasons for breaks in membership are varied. All that do rejoin do so at full price.
With this understanding: That all pay the same price. For the same service. No one is given special treatment. Keeps all things fair. A simplicity approach all too rare to find in the world.
No groomed food plots to attract and concentrate deer. This is often a question from the big woods state hunter where available winter-over food is limited to dry browse.
In the case of grain farming within limited ground accumulation snowfall regions there is too much food. When whitetails have a selection of several 25 to 200 acre corn and soybean fields of waste grain to choose from a one acre food plot is of little value. Regardless of what may be planted in that food plot.
What is more descriptive of this topic is the risk assumed by Mid-America Hunting Association when it does allocate a membership.That risk is taking on a hunter that may not have the ability to be self guided. Especially so on new terrain.
It is that when a hunter that travels in from another locality of different terrain he must adapt to the terrain where he is now hunting. Any hunter that is coming out to hunt Iowa and believes in the corn belt a food plot has value, that hunter is not adapting to changing conditions. He is less likely to find a satisfying experience. The Association then has made the mistake of allocating a membership to the wrong hunter.
This does fall into the category there are such things as dumb questions.
All hunters want un-pressured land. Most are willing to pay for that. Then the failing occurs.
That same hunter wanting un-pressured land and pays for it then wants to bring his friends. Or, add pressure. That is bring his friend that have not contributed to buying the access to that land. If that hunter wants to hunt with others at no cost then that is what public land is for.
Having To Make Reservations
This goes to the wanting un-pressured hunting topic.
The purpose of making reservations is the prevention of stacking hunters up on the same hunting lease.
If a hunter finds it just too difficult to make a telephone call anytime within the 40 hours each week we provide a live person to talk to for immediate confirmation of that reservation then we choose not to do business with that hunter. Inability to conduct such basic planning inclusive of a telephone call indicates further a hunter that may not be successful as a self guided hunter.
Persons inquiring of the Association have stated they would join if it were not for having to make reservations. When asking that person for an alternative to insure hunter separation none are offered.
Have a read of some more details and always feel free to call any day or evening. Our number and email link is at the bottom of every page.