Spot Burning Ethics
Spot burning is a touchy subject for many public land hunters. There is a fine line between inviting friends along for a great hunt and blowing up a spot you’ve worked hard to find. Here are a few suggestions from FarWide to minimize the chance of your favorite public land spot becoming overcrowded.
Choose your Hunting Partners Carefully
When you choose to bring a partner to a great new public land spot think about who you are bringing. Make sure it is a person you can trust and preferably one that has brought you to one of their spots. There is a mutual respect needed to ensure that these great locations don’t get burned out. Along with this respect make sure that your partner understands this is an area you would like to keep on the down low. New hunters might not be as keen on these ethics, so make sure you mention it.
Find New Spots
The hunter or angler that hits the same spots every year will experience an inevitable decline in success. Even if you are the only person that has ever been there, there is always a better spot somewhere else. Let this motivate you to keep finding new spots to treasure. Think about what makes your first spot so great then put in the effort to find the next one.
Hold a Few For Yourself
Hunting and Fishing are great with friends but sometimes there are areas too small for more than one person to experience success. When this happens there is a judgment call to be made. Often it is best to keep these locations hidden to avoid spot burning. Talk about these spots in a general sense but hold off on the picture sharing and pin dropping. Social media can also inflate the mystique of a spot and is a sure-fire way to increase competition. When you hit a spot that is resource limited, bring a partner that only wants to get outside, or maybe just the dog. These partners won’t have any temptation to spot burn your public land jewel.
The Right Spot Burning Mindset
Management guidelines for public lands normally have a few words about managing for different stakeholders. This means that hunters and fisherman are likely to encounter other recreational users. There is also no piece of public land reserved in perpetuity for an individual hunter or fisherman. Eventually, you will see another person in “your spot”. Public interest in an area is going to ebb and flow, seeing some competition out there doesn’t mean you’re ruined. Have confidence that your experience in the area will ensure continued success.