I mean, who doesn't want to be part of the "orange army," right? No, this is definitely not why. Frankly, the "orange army" should be disassociated from MDLO's semi-guided and guided firearm hunts (1st Shotgun Season & 2nd Shotgun Season to many old-timers). When hunting with us during either of these two seasons, you will notice that you are hunting deer differently than the other guys at the hotel, the gas station, etc. You're hunting! You are not doing deer drives. We are trying to not put pressure on the deer. They are. Well, this has it's benefits, especially when we have bedding and food on the farms. Security. Security. Security. That is the name of the game. Well, why should you hunt with MDLO during either of these two seasons? Here is why.
Long-Term Low Pressure Farms - Our farms have had little pressure on them, not just this entire year, but all prior years (3-4 years and counting). That means there are 5,6,7 year old deer that have learned that our farms are safer to live on, bed on, feed on, travel on. As far as consistency goes, that is pretty consistent pressure/influence to rely on.
Short-Term Light Pressure Setups - Our gun setups are 75% blinds over food sources. This means we keep you back and off of the food sources, for good reason, so that we don't overpressure with human presence. This means easier, less-invasive entrance/exit routes, less chances of being winded, less chances of making a noise and bumping deer out, and over time, the deer feel much safer and will feed more frequently for longer stretches.
Great Food Sources w/ Little to No Competition - Our plots and cut crop fields act as a great food source in general. When you add in the fact that we strategically place certain plots in specific locations on our farms in purposeful neighborhoods, we have little to no food source competitions, and we have plenty of variety. For our gun hunts, we love brassicas, standing beans, standing corn, and cut corn. Occasionally, cut beans will be valuable if cut late, not tilled under, and showing without any snow cover. Snow makes the standing crops better. Brassicas sweeten after the first freeze, so by early December, they're plenty sweet and will only improve. In some spots, we can even have two food sources, maybe even three! That is dictated by the farm, the farmer, the crops, the weather, the deer, and the CRP contracts where applicable. If you want to kill a big deer post-rut, you need good food.
Cost-Effective Hunts - Get What You Paid For - Our gun hunts are not cheap, but that is for good reason. We want you to kill a big deer, and that costs money to attract, retain, and repeat. Food plots, leases, cameras and blinds are the major costs with these hunts, and just having one plot is not always enough. Shoot, even one farm is not always enough. The more gun hunters that we book and the more they spend on their hunts, the better we can offer and produce the hunts.
Easiest Non-Resident Buck Tags To Draw - Iowa's 1st Gun Season tags and 2nd Gun Season tags are remarkably easier to obtain than any other Iowa non-resident tags. Taking 0-1 point each, this is a breath of fresh air compared to that of the 2 points Late Muzzleloader tags are costing and 5-6 points that archery tags are costing. Hunt Southern Iowa more frequently. That is a huge benefit that is not exclusive to MDLO, but we can totally use it for reasoning to hunt in gun season!
2023 will be the first year in some odd years that we have actively offered such hunts to the public. We are extremely excited for such as it gives us another season (two actually) to chase these big deer in Southern Iowa. Furthermore, we are offering such in a Fully Guided setup as well starting in 2024, where all of our hunts will be offered in semi-guided and fully guided setups. We are anxious to get back after it, and we hope that you consider MDLO for your next Iowa gun hunt!