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Semi-Guided & FULLY Guided
WHITETAIL Deer HUNTS
IN ZONE 5 & ZONE 6
MDLO offers Hybrid DIY+Semi-Guided as well as Fully Guided whitetail deer hunts in Southern Iowa's Zone 5 and Zone 6 that are rather unique compared to other outfitters across the state and the Midwest. We take pride in our clients taking part in their hunt planning as much as they are qualified for, especially on the Semi-Guided side. We share the assigned farm(s) and their aerial maps in August, trail camera photos/video the entire stretch from June through the hunt, and we openly discuss how and why we have the farm setup the way we do. This allows our clients to understand just how we look at farms and hunting land as well as the deer. This is a team effort, and you should take part in it as much as possible. Doing so really improves your experience of hunting trophy whitetails here in Southern Iowa with MDL Outfitters.
MDLO operates on 100% exclusive private access where you can see a variety of quality habitat from bedding areas to travel corridors, food plots to cut crop fields, cedar thickets to hardwood ridges, and everything in between. Our farms range in size from 30 acres to 450 acres in size, and frankly, the size has nothing to do with it 95% of the time. The neighborhood is the key, and you'll come to appreciate the neighborhoods that our leases are in - lots of deer, not much hunting pressure, good age-structure, and of course, it's SOUTHERN IOWA! Anything is possible here! You just never know what could walk around the tree into view, or even better, in range.
Taking a very small amount of hunters every week ensures that our farms remain lightly pressured if at all pressured over the entire season. We will take up to 2 or 3 hunters per week per hunt type (semi-guided & guided) throughout the season, and it is our pleasure to spread it out based on what deer we have scouted and what farms produce better than others at different points in the deer hunting season. Some of our farms could go a month or more without anyone hunting on them.
Coming to MDLO, you should set your sights on a mature whitetail that should score north of 150" gross B&C. We have harvested a 200" deer, had a 200" deer or two to chase in 4 of the last 6 seasons, and we have had 25+ encounters with bucks in the "Booner" category over the last 6 years. In 2018, we had 100% kill rate, and every year since we have averaged 2x more daylight encounters under 100 yards than actual hunters booked, not bad when you consider 2018-2022 was strictly all semi-guided hunting. Now, being back into the fully guided hunts again, we know this will only improve as we continue to chase these corn-fed monsters in the great state of Iowa.
WHAT IS A HYBRID
DIY + SEMI-GUIDED HUNT?
A Hybrid DIY + Semi-Guided Hunt is one that does not carry any accommodations (food, travel, lodging, etc.) but has farms that are conservatively, often minimally, set-up to hunt as deemed proper by MDLO prior to the hunt starting while also giving you the ability to hang your own stand sets (lock-on or saddle) and set your own blind setup with prior approval by MDLO. This is a true effort of teamwork start to finish between hunter and outfitter. Of course, this added responsibility/ability onto the hunter requires deer hunting & bowhunting skill. This is not a hunt style for someone wanting or needing over-the-shoulder guidance or in-person attention. This is 100% real, authentic whitetail deer hunting for corn-fed monster whitetails in the greatest area of the country, Southern Iowa.
IOWA DEER HUNTING SEASONS & HUNTS
CLICK ON THE HUNT TYPE BELOW EACH PHOTO TO FIND OUT HUNT DETAILS
Hunt Dates & Rates
WHAT IS A FULLY GUIDED HUNT?
A Fully Guided Hunt is one that is all of the above defined in the DIY+Semi-Guided Hybrid hunts, but you have a guide guiding you on your hunt. The guide will drive you to and from the farm every day and remain nearby in the case you need him. Your guide will also be scouting that farm from the road and other farms/areas that are relevant to your hunt. Two meals, a sack lunch and a normal dinner meal in the evening, is provided daily by the guide during the course of the hunt. Alcoholic drinks are not covered due to liability reasons. Field Care, gutting and transportation to a local processor if desired, is also provided to you. This hunt carries much less responsibility and less freedom to roam as the guide and MDLO will dictate 100% which stand and/or blind you hunt. It is a controlled environment compared to the DIY+Semi-Guided Hybrid Hunt. Take the simpler approach and let MDLO take more of the responsibility with your hunt for you.
WHAT TYPE OF DEER DO WE PURSUE?
We are very specific about the type of deer that we allow our clients to hunt & harvest. We aim to only hunt & harvest deer that are 5-1/2 or older, regardless of rack score. Maturity is our target metric when judging quality deer in Southern Iowa, and we hope that all of our clients follow this same thought. Growing mature deer, regardless of score, requires they reach the age of 5-1/2. Our "shot opportunities" are founded based on maturity, not score. Our deer are 100% wild and 100% free-ranging, so they can come and go as they please. Fair-chase hunting for mature trophy whitetail deer that are either 5-1/2 and older or 160" gross B&C or larger is our goal at MDLO. From 170" 4-1/2 year olds to 150" 6-1/2 year olds, we have a healthy crop of local bucks that we pursue.
HERE IS WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO AT MDLO
SOME OF OUR FAVORITE RECOVERIES IN SOUTHERN IOWA DURING BOW SEASON
CHECK OUT OUR RECENT BLOG POSTS
FROM OPERATIONAL UPDATES TO FAQ'S & DEER STORIES TO TACTICS
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