Does MDLO offer Fully Guided Hunts?
Not since 2017. Since then we went the semi-guided route due to the serious amount of time it took away from family. Starting in 2022, we went the DIY+Semi-Guided Hybrid route, which is really an awesome opportunity for hunters who want to have a bit more responsibility in their hunt that it doesn't feel like you're being guided by an outfitter but more so a buddy explaining a lease and sharing opinions (except MDLO reserves the right to make executive decisions on stand/blind sites, entrance/exit routes, etc.).
Does MDLO offer any accommodations such as lodging, meals, transportation to/from, field dressing, caping, processing, etc.?
Again, not since 2017. We use to offer lodging, meals, transportation, field care (dressing). Since, MDLO has and will always try to be present for all blood tracking, but otherwise the other needs fall on the responsibility of the hunter. MDLO is digitally present (phone calls, text messages, FaceTimes, etc.) to help the hunter with any guidance or assistance that they need. Sometimes, MDLO is physically present and willing to help when and where able.
Will MDLO ever offer Fully Guided Hunts & Accommodations again?
Hopefully. MDLO's wishes are to be able to offer such in the (near) future, but it would have to make sense for MDLO financially to take on the added manpower and corresponding responsibilities. First, MDLO would need to have enough hunters interested in such to be able to adequately afford the accommodations. Then, MDLO would likely need to hire someone to help "guide" or at a minimum, drive hunters to/from hunting areas on time while being able to represent MDLO in some hunting guidance. Both cost a considerable amount of money to offer to clients.
Lodging for a 7-day hunt means the night prior to a hunt starting, each night of 7 hunt days, so 8 days. Lodging can be $75-125/night in Southern Iowa depending on the entity and availability. On the high end, you're looking at $1,000.
The cost to pay someone to guide and transport would likely be close to the same for one week when gas is included. So, it would cost $2,000 to provide these things. This does not include any hunting at that point. Hunting, depending on the season, will cost $4,000 on average when you include leases, cameras, data plans, SD cards & batteries, extra antennas, stands and/or blinds w/ chairs, time scouting, equipment and vehicle usage/upkeep, and something for our time if anything is left.
The "fully guided" hunts for less than $4500 or $5000 are likely due to the land being owned and not leases (sometimes can be a gain or a loss), over-hunting or farm-cramming too many hunters put on the farm (hunter after hunter after hunter), or pure luck that an outfit doesn't know their own worth. Yet, if we offered these services, we would need a commitment from 25+ hunters each year because we will have much larger expenses by around $2,000 per hunter. We would like to offer private lodging at that, which could be long-term AirBNB type setups or we rent a space large enough to house everyone.
What does MDLO need from me if I am interested in Fully Guided Hunts but not the DIY+Semi-Guided Hunts currently offered?
MDLO would need your commitment and desired hunt schedule/year to be able to start planning for such. You would join our "Waiting List" for these hunts. What could even speed up the process if getting a group of hunters together. The easier and faster that MDLO can get 25+ hunters lined up for these hunts in one year, the faster the changes will be made. Reach out to us directly if you'd like to join that list.