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Joined: 02/24/2012
Posts: 10
New to hunting

Hello everyone.  I am new to hunting and I am looking for some advise on how to start out and where to start out at.  I live in southern California in the big city.  I am interested in elk, antelope, bison and deer.  I am mostly looking to put meat in the freezer at this time.  I have been reading forums and other sites to learn, but nothing can take the place of experience. 

I went hunting several years ago in South Carolina for whitetail, but I sat in a tree stand for 3 days and didn't see anything.

Should I start off with a guided hunt? 

Thank you for your help in advance 

buckykm1's picture
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Location: Vicksburg, Mi
Joined: 11/24/2010
Posts: 336
Welcome

Welcome to the forum,

if you are new to hunting a guide wouldn't be a bad way to go, it would help you learn. or the best way would be to find a experenced hunting partner to teach you, maybe you could join a conservation, gun or archery club to meet some hunting friends.

Kevin

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Location: Colorado
Joined: 07/13/2011
Posts: 855
Welcome to the forum and

Welcome to the forum and hunting. I'm guessin by the name you took, that you're young? I would start out by hunting for deer. You need to find a mentor that will help you out. I lived and hunted in Big Bear. Lots of deer there, and a good spot for you to start out. Close to where you live. Hang around gun shops, and see if you can find an experienced hunter that's willing to take you hunting.

What gun do you own?

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Joined: 02/24/2012
Posts: 10
Thank you

Thank you for your replies.  The tips are helpful and appreciated.   I am actually in my mid 30's.  Getting old.  It's an old knick name because I have a baby face.

About the gun, I do not own a gun.  I am in the process of purchasing one.  I am researching it and going to gun stores and talking to people there. 

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Location: Colorado
Joined: 07/13/2011
Posts: 855
A 30-06 would be a good

A 30-06 would be a good around gun for the game you want to hunt. Just pick the grain weight bullet you want for the different game. Always easy to get ammo for it.

exbiologist's picture
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Moderator
Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/19/2008
Posts: 2399
get something standard or short action

Stay away from the magnums, lots of stuff will do the trick for you.  

You're probably gonna struggle a bit learning to hunt in California, but there's deer there.  Just go north to get into better deer densities.  Also learn about the drawing for X and some D zone deer hunts as well as the special hunts.  

On top of that, get ready to start hunting out of state to get a little taste of success, which is what most of the better deer hunters in California that I've known had to do to learn how to hunt at home.  Tis the season, application season, to start accruing preference points and start getting to know good places to go.

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: San Diego, CA
Joined: 07/27/2007
Posts: 5731
Welcome to the site, and

Welcome to the site, and welcome to hunting!  It's addictive, expensive, frustrating......but so worth it.... Wink

Are you in San Diego or L.A.?  I am in northern San Diego. 

arrowflipper's picture
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Joined: 01/03/2011
Posts: 579
welcome

Welcome to the site kid66.  You've come to the right place to learn about huning.  You'll find a wealth of information from the guys here.

You're looking for a rifle.... you can't go wrong with a 30-06.  It will do just about anything you want in North America, from little deer to Moose and buffalo.  And there is no shortage of ammo on the market.

How to start?  That could be a major problem unless you know someone or some place to hunt.  If money isn't the biggest concern, I'd suggest a guided hunt.  And if "meat in the freezer" is a goal, you might think about a buffalo hunt in Montana.  There are several places in Montana that provide either a meat hunt or trophy hunt.  You'll find meat hunts to actually be affordable.  For around a grand, you can go in and shoot a cow buffalo and put several hundred pounds of meat in the freezer.  I guess the operative word here would be "hunt".  You might be hard pressed to call it a "hunt" but it would be a great experience and provide lots of great eating meat.

If cost is the issue, you've been given some great advice about hanging out at sporting goods stores and/or shooting ranges and meeting people.  It's often who you know that puts you in the right spot.  

Good luck and welcome to a wonderful sport.

Retired2hunt's picture
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Grand Slam Challenge Winner!
Location: Colorado Springs, CO & Fort Myers, FL
Joined: 07/28/2011
Posts: 1595
  Welcome to BGH Kid66!  You

 

Welcome to BGH Kid66!  You have come to the right place for advice and direction.

My first rifle was a .30-06 and to this day it has done the job from mule and whitetails to elk.  So I am a little prejudice on the caliber.

As for finding a good hunting partner that could be challenging.  Just make certain you pick somebody that fits your focus.  There are plenty of good honest hunters that will want to take you under their wing - for no financial reimbursement.  Your state may have novice hunter seminars provided by the state's wildlife agency - try looking into those for a hunting partner.

I have yet to get an antelope (1st time hunt here in Colorado last year but a bust) but everyone tells me going to Wyoming is the way to go and it is not expensive for an out-of-state hunter and for a doe tag.  Camping in a state park also is cheap.  I will be doing that here in 2012.

Anyhow - keep at it, get your safe hunter certification, find a rifle you are comfortable with, practice shooting - practice shooting - and did I say - practice shooting.  Then get out there and enjoy yourself.  The harvest of a great animal is just a part of enjoying the sport of hunting.

We all look forward to your hunting stories and pictures of your adventures!

 

 

 

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Joined: 02/24/2012
Posts: 10
Thank you guys for the

Thank you guys for the comments and help.  I am definately looking at the 30 O6 to start.  I can't wait to get out and get some experience.  To start I am mostly looking to put meat in the freezer until I can gain the experience and knowledge to go after the "trophy" hunts. 

I am up in Orange County.  Not too far from North San Diego. 

Again thank you guys for the help.  The next question I have is how do you "earn" points? 

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Grand Slam Challenge Winner!Moderator
Location: San Diego, CA
Joined: 07/27/2007
Posts: 5731
Nope, not too far at all.  I

Nope, not too far at all.  I fish up there near Trabuco Creek, and I actually work in San Clemente.  Pretty familiar with Orange Cty..... Wink

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