Iowa deer hunting has become possibly the greatest deer hunting in the world. Along with the rise of Iowa deer hunting has brought about many different Iowa outfitters. It seems as if every country boy in Iowa is running Iowa deer hunts on the family farm and some cheap leases in order to become involved in the hunt industry. Few Iowa outfitters offer quality deer hunts in Iowa as this location is newly discovered territory for the whitetail enthusiast. Thus the craft of being an Iowa outfitter is one that is in its infancy. Iowa may be the best place in the United States to book a bad hunt, due to the lack of evolution of newly founded Iowa outfitting services. Its true.
We began running Iowa deer hunts over 6 years ago. My first experience was with a man who leased me several thousand acres of ground in Iowa. This man built a lodge and I agreed to contract all my Iowa deer leases through him and place all my Iowa deer hunters in his lodge. The first couple years this man was simply glad to be aboard with us here at IMB Outfitters. Little did I know he had other plans. He kept listings of my clients and began to plan behind my back to build his own Iowa outfitter business. This man was 60 years old and had never deer hunted a day in his life. He knew nothing about patterning big whitetail bucks. The third year I was with him I began to catch him calling my clients behind my back in an attempt to steal my business clients. Of course his plea to them was that it was his ground we were hunting and that he could do just a good a job as IMB Outfitters had. Once I found out he was plotting to become an Iowa outfitter independent of my company I dropped him like a hot potato. This man went to all the trade shows, and called everyone that he could, to book Iowa deer hunts but failed miserably as an Iowa outfitter. Not long after he left us as our primary Iowa landowner and lodge location he called begging to come back. Why? There is much more to being an Iowa outfitter than just having ground and a place for hunters to lay their heads at the end of the day.
Especially in the State of Iowa, the majority of Iowa outfitters fall into this category. While some of them have the best intentions in the World they simply do not possess the abilities to outfit whitetail hunts. Outfitting is an art and takes a lot of experience, organization, money, whitetail knowledge, problem solving, honesty, and many many other traits to insure a whitetail hunter is successful. You just donít go out and lease ground, find a lodge or old farm house and fix it up, and become a great Iowa outfitter. In fact it is my personal opinion after 13 years as a whitetail outfitter that Iowa may be the best place to get taken advantage of. Itís not enough to book a hunt with a Iowa outfitter. You need to be with a credible Iowa outfitter. The temptation to book with this type of outfitter is that they will be up to $500 cheaper, however if you pick the wrong Iowa outfitter you will not save money, you will lose all your money because you wonít be on huge Iowa deer.
Some of these Iowa outfitters are a little more educated than the aforementioned scenario. Just days ago I had a hunter phone me to book an Iowa deer hunt. He indicated he had his choice narrowed down between two Iowa outfitters. I ask him who the other outfitter was. He told me. When we arrived at the website the homepage was wonderfully marketed. It even had a huge hunt celebrity endorsement on the homepage. This was an Iowa outfitter that had learned how to fool you on his website, but was easy to spot as a poor choice. I told the hunter on the phone to go to his photo gallery. Meanwhile I was on my computer and went to the website as well of the opposing Iowa outfitter. I told him to go to the photo gallery as this particular outfit was claiming they had been in business for 8 years. Personally I had never heard of them before. Upon our arrival into the trophy gallery we found only 26 trophy buck photos. Further only 12 different deer wherein the 26 photos. This Iowa outfitter had simply took photos of many different men with the same buck so he could get as many hero photos in his gallery as possible. A big deceptive I thought. Then we were down to 12 legit bucks in the gallery. Further I told the hunter to count how many of the 12 legit photos were of the Iowa outfitters wife, himself, or daughter. Now only 6 of the 26 photos were legit. Imagine after 8 years of claimed business this Iowa outfitter had only 6 legit photos in his trophy gallery. I told the hunter that this outfitter was guilty of one of two things. #1. This particular Iowa outfitter was too lazy to load trophy photos in his gallery, which is a direct implication that his hunt would be one of a lazy nature. OR #2. This particular Iowa outfitter hadnít been in business for 8 years and was so hard up for hero photographs that he was using his family photo album and the same bucks over and over with different hunters behind the animal to increase his image as a businessman.
I always tell hunters that are looking to book a Iowa deer hunt to call me if they are considering a different Iowa outfitter besides IMB Outfitters. I tell them I will examine the opposing outfitters website for them and if I find any ďred flagsĒ I will tell them what to look for. The truth is because of our experience in whitetail deer outfitting, IMB Outfitters is unmatched as a Iowa outfitter.
IMB Outfitters is located in Zone 5 of Iowa. It is bar none the BEST zone in the State of Iowa. It is the location the Boone and Crockett Record Books are being rewritten from. I wouldnít even book a hunt with a Iowa outfitter unless they were located in Zone 5. Trust me the differences in zones are night and day.
There are many red flags to look for so you donít book with the wrong Iowa outfitter which include poor lodges, do it yourself hunts, acreage amounts, brochure quality, website quality, how many references they provide, and much much more.
While I would sleep in my truck to kill a big Iowa whitetail deer the lodge can be a dead giveaway often times. Just the other day while cruising the internet I viewed a website of a Iowa outfitter that had a dilapidated small farm house with a bar b que grill out front with some lawn chairs. I swear it would have been good enough for me to hunt out of, however poor lodges can be a dead giveaway to a bad choice of Iowa outfitters. Think of this. If the Iowa outfitter canít afford a decent lodge then rest assured he canít afford to lease you the best Iowa hunt leases, buy the best tree stands, hire the best guides in the country, feed you quality food, etc, etc. See a poor lodge and most often times you can count on experiencing a very poor Iowa deer hunt. There are exceptions however. I have seen a couple Iowa outfitters who have wonderful lodges but terrible hunt ground. Normally these are the Iowa outfitters who can market well but donít perform successfully. So how do you tell who to book and Iowa deer hunt with?
Do it yourself Iowa deer hunts are a definite ďNO NOĒ. Think about this for a minute. On a do it yourself hunt most outfitter will lie and tell you that you will have all the leases to yourself but once you arrive you wonít. Even if you do you can count on the fact that prior to your arrival several do it yourself hunts have occurred on the ground by other hunt groups. This spooks deer so badly for a bunch of different groups to be walking out the very farm your going to hunt youíll be lucky to see even does and small bucks. A credible Iowa outfitter doesnít offer ďdo it yourself hunts.Ē They manage their hunt camps and hunters. Itís the only way to control the herd and correctly implement Quality Deer Management Programs. Donít book a hunt with Iowa outfitters who offer do it yourself hunts.
The quality of the brochure you receive from Iowa outfitters is vital. Get a poor brochure and most often times you can count on a poor Iowa deer hunt. The brochure is a direct reflection of their business.
The quality of the website you view of Iowa outfitters is also vital. Normally a poor website containing little content is a red flag. Few photos in the gallery indicated unsuccessful whitetail harvests. Credible Iowa outfitters will present a great website with tons of information.
Iowa outfitters should return phone calls and emails almost immediately. Anything less is unacceptable. Your Iowa outfitter should have a down to earth quality conversation with you, without leaving you with the feeling heís in a hurry to get off the phone, or is simply trying to close the sale or get your money quick. You should come away from the conversation with an Iowa outfitter as if you have been served. Although I am on 28 pro staffs in the hunt industry, have been published in many magazines, have killed 15 Pope and Young Bucks, possess more content on my website than any other outfitter in the World, won more outdoor industry awards than any other Iowa outfitter, I know I AM A MERE SERVANT. I AM HERE TO SERVE MY IOWA WHITETAIL HUNTERS. Iím not some frickin celebrity. Iím a merchant presenting a quality service for whitetail enthusiastís. A servant and nothing more.
In fact although Iíve been to college and have multiple degrees the fact is I am not good at too many things other than patterning huge whitetail deer, and knowing how to present a great hunt to whitetail hunters on a regular basis. It took 13 long years to learn this.
Iowa whitetail hunting is precious and shouldnít be based upon some guess. Here at IMB Outfitters we work as a team together to make sure our hunters are successful. Not to be arrogant but I would go as far saying we here at IMB Outfitters located at www.imbmonsterbucks.com are the best Iowa outfitter and second to none. Give us a call night or day toll free at 866-855-7063. Now you have the bare boned facts about Iowa outfitters.