How much is too much?

lukew

Member
Jul 1, 2019
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67
What do you budget yourself to each year for hunting trips? I think it is an interesting topic I always find myself talking with my buddies about.
 

JimP

Veteran member
Mar 28, 2016
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Gypsum, Co
If I want to go and know that I can afford it I just go and I don't worry about the budget.

Now after saying that I choked real hard on a $13,000 grizzly hunt, but didn't blink a eye on my African trip which was quite cheap. The hunt itself was only $7,000 for 8 animal, but in the end after everything was paid for it was right near $22,000. That was taxidermy and everything
 
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go_deep

Veteran member
Nov 30, 2014
2,250
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Wyoming
It's all relative to where you are in life.
I'm at the point that I don't even look at the price tag or think about it, but only buy what I truly need.
 

mallardsx2

Veteran member
Jul 8, 2015
2,406
920
IMHO Anything more than $2000/person/hunt is too much.

That includes gas and food and tags.

By the time the wife and I pay for the deer lease and gas driving back and forth and seed and feed and preference points and tags across the country I spend between 5K-10K/year on hunting.

Having said that, I realize that I could probably go to Saskatchewan twice and have some guide drop me off in a box blind and put a 180" buck on the wall. But thats just not my style. Always was hard headed and wanted to go my own way. lol
 
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LCH

Very Active Member
Jun 28, 2015
699
156
Southern Indiana
For me, it's definitely fluid. For the most part, I throw out applications then make it work with money/vacation time. If I draw some high $$ tags or hunts with higher travel costs, I'll cut back somewhere else to make it happen.

I'd say I spend an average of $3-4 k per year to do 3-4 week(ish) long trips. Some trips cost $3k, some cost $300.

This of course does not include preference points, equipment, etc.
 
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RICMIC

Veteran member
Feb 21, 2012
1,326
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Two Harbors, Minnesota
The amount that I am willing to spend has changed through the years. I don't really need any more gear, though I wish that I had bought the high end optics years ago. I quibble on it now mainly because I'm not sure how much longer I will be able to use them. Heck, the guided elk hunt that I went on last year cost me what a full set of Swarovoski optics would cost. I am beginning to realize that if I don't start spending some of my money then my kids will do it after I'm gone. The DIY mule deer hunt this year will go about $2K once you add it all up, and that's hardly any concern. I almost moved on a cancellation dall sheep hunt this year for $16.5K, but when all was done that would run over $25K. I just wouldn't let myself do it, but still have some regrets. I wouldn't spend $5K on a Quebec caribou hunt years ago, and now it isn't available at any cost.
 

ScottR

Eastmans' Staff / Moderator
Staff member
Feb 3, 2014
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For me it really comes down to a simple formula, how much enjoyment am I going to get vs. how much time away from my wife and kids. It's less about the money for me at this point as saving for our goals is a lifestyle, and more about not missing the most important things with my kids. For instance my son just started crawling last week.
 
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mosquito

Member
Nov 1, 2012
137
155
NE ohio
For are first trip this year were trying to do it as cheap as possible. Not because we don't have it , we want to come as often as possible . Im sure an antelope hunt is nothing compared to some of you guys but the real cost is the travel that i see. I do agree its where you are in life. I have 5 years till the mortgage is paid off after that hopefully im trying to help with college for my kids. After that ... i really don't think ill care very much how much i spend it probably won't matter.
 
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LCH

Very Active Member
Jun 28, 2015
699
156
Southern Indiana
For are first trip this year were trying to do it as cheap as possible. Not because we don't have it , we want to come as often as possible . Im sure an antelope hunt is nothing compared to some of you guys but the real cost is the travel that i see. I do agree its where you are in life. I have 5 years till the mortgage is paid off after that hopefully im trying to help with college for my kids. After that ... i really don't think ill care very much how much i spend it probably won't matter.
That's what I do.. Sleep in the car or camp, bring food from home, etc. I'd rather do a bunch of cheap trips than one expensive hunt every few years.
 

Buckbob

Member
Jan 22, 2018
51
64
Michigan
For me I put in for tags and ill figure it out after I see what I'm drawn for. Some years I figure ill spend a decent amount of money and others ill spend very little so it evens out. I have a lot of the gear already so thats not much of a factor anymore. I have no issue spending money doing something I love, I could find a lot worse things to waste money on thats forsure.
 

dan maule

Very Active Member
Jan 3, 2015
541
317
Upper Michigan
For are first trip this year were trying to do it as cheap as possible. Not because we don't have it , we want to come as often as possible . Im sure an antelope hunt is nothing compared to some of you guys but the real cost is the travel that i see. I do agree its where you are in life. I have 5 years till the mortgage is paid off after that hopefully im trying to help with college for my kids. After that ... i really don't think ill care very much how much i spend it probably won't matter.
I have two kids in college and I told them I would give them help using a formula that basically the better grades they get the more I will help. They have been doing very well in school which is great but it is cutting into my available cash for hunting. Just the stage of life I am in right now. When they graduate I am hoping to be able to do some more of the hunting trips I used to. Hopefully they will be able to come with and pay their own way at that point LOL.
 

Ikeepitcold

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 22, 2011
9,204
307
Reno Nv
I’ve done a few guided hunts and have guided for a few years for clients. Now with the perspective of both I prefer to go DIY.
I would still hire a outfitter if I was going outta state on a unit I’ve spent many years drawing to get a big animal or if I had to like a wilderness hunt in Wyoming.
 

cking13

Member
May 20, 2017
129
17
VA
Its only money. You'll make more tomorrow. For me it just depends on what I feel is a fair price for a tag. Ill pay for a special deer tag in Wyoming but I wouldnt even think about applying for a special elk permit. Once the tag is paid for, for me its just gas and food. I sleep in the truck most nights while there except for a couple, so that saves money. I have a separate bank account for my hunting trips and after the tag is paid for Ill try to have about $1200 in there for the trip.
 

taskswap

Active Member
Jul 9, 2018
371
217
Colorado
I usually budget $300-400.

I usually spend $3000 or more.

It's all toys and stuff I don't need. But I enjoy it.
 

Colorado Cowboy

Veteran member
Jun 8, 2011
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Dolores, Colorado
Depends on a lot of things. Last year I spent a month in Alaska with my wife fishing and just seeing the country. Went to Wyoming with a couple of hunting buddies for antelope and deer. All were affordable.
I'll be 79 later this year and know I don't have all that many years left to hunt. This year it's Wyoming deer hunting .

I have enough points to draw a good Colorado deer and elk hunt in 2021 and plan on going back to Alaska again for as fishing trip with my wife. We are also looking at a trip to Belize to fish and do some diving. Have to spread it around. Probably spend 1500 to 2000 this year and next year probably 10k to 15 k for what we have planned. Would have spent that much this year except for the virus crappola. At my age I don't really look at cost all that much, but I do have limits, especially since I have been retired 20 years and have travel quite a bit and hunted a lot too.