Public Land Useage Poll

Do you hunt and/or fish on public lands?

  • I used to but not now

    Votes: 10 8.4%
  • I currently do and plan to in the future

    Votes: 90 75.6%
  • I currently do but do not want to in the future

    Votes: 1 0.8%
  • I never have and never will

    Votes: 9 7.6%
  • I current don’t but want to in the future

    Votes: 9 7.6%

  • Total voters
    119

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
Just a simple poll so I get some numbers from the diverse group of us on this forum. I’ve got an email out to the wildlife commission license department but who knows if they can provide the information I asked for. At least this can give me an idea percentage wise.
 

ECU_Pirate

Eight Pointer
I haven't yet. Every year I tell myself I'm going squirrel hunting. Only problem is I don't want to do it during deer season and risk getting shot. And after deer season the hunting isn't nearly as good. One day I'll just go do it regardless.
 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
I think you may get a significant difference in your survey if you separated Hunting from Fishing on Public land/water.
I understand that but I included both together for a reason. For example, we’ve lost a lot of access to trout streams this past year here in NC, so even if one just fishes on public land what I’m attempting to create from scratch will benefit them. Just wanting rough numbers for now, when I get all my ducks in a row I’m going to post the information on here and want both good and bad feedback on it.
 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
Basically figure out how many users of public land we have in the State to see if a non-profit conservation group idea I worked out last night is even feasible. I emailed NCWRC asking if they had the numbers of game land permits bought/issued per year (not including lifetime license holders who do not have to buy one). Obviously not all issued will mean the person went onto public land as it’s cheaper to buy the Sportsman license that includes it than piece out everything else you might want, but at least I can work up an estimate on the number users here in the state. I also plan to contact SC DNR for the same info since then have a WMA permit. Let’s say between those two states alone there are 20,000 people utilizing public land. That’s a huge base that if resources were pooled together could add to land open to the public for hunting and fishing. I worked up a rough plan of action and by-laws last night. Plan to get the ball rolling on setting the organization up in the following weeks.
 

Eric Revo

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
Not really a close area for me to hunt and I'm too spoiled to leave this general area for other spots to hunt something that I may have a slim chance at close-by.
 

Homebrewale

Old Mossy Horns
I haven't yet. Every year I tell myself I'm going squirrel hunting. Only problem is I don't want to do it during deer season and risk getting shot. And after deer season the hunting isn't nearly as good. One day I'll just go do it regardless.
How many people were shot last year on public land? How does that compare to private land?
 

sky hawk

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
I think you may get a significant difference in your survey if you separated Hunting from Fishing on Public land/water.
That was my thought. I know a lot of guys who never step foot on public land for hunting, but fish in public reservoirs and at the coast frequently.
 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
No doubt fair amt western guys may be 100% public with so much available
Heck I’ve been 99-100% ever since I’ve started hunting and that includes when I lived in Raleigh and Charlotte. I literally want rough numbers on useage regardless of whether one hunts or just fishes on public land regardless of where they live. On a national level those guys in the Rocky Mountain West will blow away us guys east of them when it comes to hunter/fisherman days on public land, same as would be the case in our own state when it comes to mountains vs the rest. Hopefully I can get numbers from NCWRC but I still like seeing what is above so far, even if it’s just guys fishing. Shows it benefits us all to have these lands and waters at our disposal. Couple that with people saying lack of access close by to them is a major hurdle in the hunting game (I’d argue river and creek fishing game too) and I think my idea can grow legs and lead to good things.
 

red neck richie

Six Pointer
Just a question to make sure I answer properly. Unless you fish a lake or pond on private property, any other lake or reservoir is considered public land? If that's the case Most people fish public land or waters. Very few have access to a private lake or pond. Hunting is a different story.
 
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Soilman

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
I voted currently and in the future, but I do so judiciously. Mostly permit hunts or when deer season is out.
 

Newsome Road

Ten Pointer
I do not, because the only fishing I do is in my pond, and I'm fortunate enough to access to plenty of hunting land. That being said, I support having public lands and waters, and do not oppose a portion of my tax money being spent on them. I would probably even give money directly to support them, if I believed they were being managed properly.
 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
Just a question to make sure I answer properly. Unless you fish a lake or pond on private property, any other lake or reservoir is considered public land? If that's the case Most people fish public land or waters. Very few have access to a private lake or pond. Hunting is a different story.
Speaking about most impoundments and river access, they are public in a sense based on licensing agreements. Without those, ones whom did not have access to private launches would be out of luck. The only true public owned inland large bodies of waters in this state I would think are those that are Corps of Engineer dammed or on federal or state lands.
 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
Wish there was some close by
That’s what I’m hoping to address. They aren’t making more land but we can damn sure take matters into our own hands on “saving” and opening up as much as possible without waiting on governments to do it for us or being beholden to large land owners like Weyhauser being kind enough to lease it out. Solves access issues people constantly point too as well as spreads out hunters if it was even just something like 1,000 acres in each county of this state.
 

para4514

Six Pointer
That’s what I’m hoping to address. They aren’t making more land but we can damn sure take matters into our own hands on “saving” and opening up as much as possible without waiting on governments to do it for us or being beholden to large land owners like Weyhauser being kind enough to lease it out. Solves access issues people constantly point too as well as spreads out hunters if it was even just something like 1,000 acres in each county of this state.
Isn't this already being addressed by existing non-profits? Two recently mentioned on this forum is the NC Habitat Foundation and the land trust working to get the Alcoa property. It seems that the mechanism is already in place it is a matter of prioritization and sportsman involvement.
 

woodmoose

Administrator
Staff member
Contributor
so you're wanting to give the Backcountry Hunting & Fishing Assn a run for the non-profit money? or just stay focused locally/in this state?
 

wcjones

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
I use a ton of public land. I just discovered how low pressured some areas are that take a lot of hiking to get to....:)
 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
I think focusing at a state, possibly regional level is the best bet but growing to a national audience would not be out of the question as something like a 10-plus year goal. Sure we have the Land Trust working to save a portion of Alcoa, that’s great. But I have issues with how most land trusts are currently run when it comes their property holdings. Admittedly I need to do my research on NC Habitat, if they already do what I want to then it’s better served to join them than “compete” against them when it comes to that. To lay it all out, you’d have a non-profit that let’s say membership was $100 a year, the sole purpose of which is to put all monies collected towards land purchase and management of said land. This could be small tracts to make for better access to existing public lands or hopefully bigger tracts on their own. The goal at least for this state would be to have every land for public hunting and fishing in every county. I would say you put all land held into conservation easements, the group would maintain ownership. Personally, my thoughts are the group maintains ownership and does not enroll it into the state gameland program (but make it open to the public) until the Sunday Hunting on gamelands issued is solved in order for there to be public property outside of the military bases that’s is open for hunting 7 days a week. Maybe once that is addressed you enroll it into the gameland program officially. Make it so there is as little administrative costs as possible, basically want as close to 100% of money going towards the land purchase goal as possible. There’s more to it but that’s the basic idea. Maybe it’s terrible, maybe it’s not. If anyone wants to see what I have as a “plan of action” so far, PM me and I’ll send it over to you. Critique it because I’ve never done anything like this before and am basically flying by the seat of my pants right now.
 

para4514

Six Pointer
So members would pay $100 per year but the public would have access to the land? I am interested to see more about your proposal.
 

alt1001

Old Mossy Horns
So members would pay $100 per year but the public would have access to the land? I am interested to see more about your proposal.
There is an organization in Hendersonville like this, they used to be called Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy (CMLC you'll often hear them referred to). They're called Conserving Carolina now. Members pay an annual fee, I think it starts at $35 and is tiered up from there.

They have been on a tear purchasing land recently and was instrumental in getting parcels of land surrounding existing national forests and state forests. They have other large parcels strictly used for hiking for their members but all in all they have been VERY successful in conserving land. I believe they had a big hand establishing the Headwaters State Forest last year. Here is a little of what they do and how it works:

 

ncstatehunter

Twelve Pointer
There is an organization in Hendersonville like this, they used to be called Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy (CMLC you'll often hear them referred to). They're called Conserving Carolina now. Members pay an annual fee, I think it starts at $35 and is tiered up from there.

They have been on a tear purchasing land recently and was instrumental in getting parcels of land surrounding existing national forests and state forests. They have other large parcels strictly used for hiking for their members but all in all they have been VERY successful in conserving land. I believe they had a big hand establishing the Headwaters State Forest last year. Here is a little of what they do and how it works:

Thanks! I heard about that acquisition. This is what I would like to do but with a focus on having the land be open for hunting. Pinnacle Park over by my new house is a huge chunk that connects two pieces of Nannathla, but since it got transferred to Jackson County (I think) I’m not sure you can use it to access those two pieces with a weapon. I need to make some calls because it’s the only way to access the one piece unless you come in off the parkway.
 
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