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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How many of you have had difficulties finding land available for training or setting up Field Trials or Hunt Tests? Has it been your experience that there is less private land available or government/conservation land?

I often hear that this is a large concern for trialers and other competitors but I recently read a 2008 report and it talked about hunters (not field trialers) trying to access private land. Some 60% of the hunters that complained of land availability were trying to access private land. This led to a "perceived" notion that less land was available when it cetain areas this was not the case.

Also a large amount of private land owners that previously made their land available removed hunter access due to "poor attitudes". I am sure this doesn't pertain to any of you but what are your thoughts and experiences about it?
 

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the ultimate demise of the dog games will be the disappearance of both training grounds and/or trialing grounds...or the scenario will be that the training grounds will also be the test/trial site and those will be owned by private individuals

Since so many public areas are multi purpose use facilities, it is difficult if not impossible to get them used for specific dog use only, lands such as wildlife refuges and military bases that were once accessed by dog clubs are no longer available

You need not look any further than the last National Am or the upcoming National Open, if it had not been for the generousity of private individuals with very good grounds the clubs would have been hard pressed to come up with suitable venues
 

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What I have noticed in our area is that the land owners are getting tired of not getting the respect for their land that they deserve. We are a rural area and people dont respect the land owner enough to take care of the property when they are on it. Most of these situations have turned into the land owners not allowing anyone on, whether hunting, fishing, trialing or training. We have to remember to take care of the land and leave it better than when we got there and I think over time you might get some of the trust back? Just my opinion .
 

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the ultimate demise of the dog games will be the disappearance of both training grounds and/or trialing grounds...or the scenario will be that the training grounds will also be the test/trial site and those will be owned by private individuals
The game is and will be impacted by the lost of grounds. In the future there will be more and more trials held on lands only pros and their clients have access to for training. That will be a major factor driving the amateur trainer out of the game. With fewer amateur trainers you will see increasingly more professionals on the boards of the remaining clubs in order to have trials to run- fewer clubs, fewer trials, fewer entries. There will be areas less impacted by those events, areas where clubs have ownership of lands. There are properties like Lee Kay, Cooper Black, and CRTA. But far too few. But in most areas, Colorado for example, in 10 years time I expect the number of clubs and trials to be greatly reduced from what we enjoy today.
 

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I am surprised that more communities don't recognize the economic development aspects of properties like Cooper Black. The folks in Cheraw certainly do and are very thankful for it. They may not know what the heck goes on at CB, but they do recognize the dog trucks and are always coming up to talk at the gas stations, the Huddle House or Fatz to thank you for coming to town and spending some money. I can think of a number of places with not much good going on economically that are surrounded by state land that could relatively inexpensively develop something like these properties.
 

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I am surprised that more communities don't recognize the economic development aspects of properties like Cooper Black. The folks in Cheraw certainly do and are very thankful for it. They may not know what the heck goes on at CB, but they do recognize the dog trucks and are always coming up to talk at the gas stations, the Huddle House or Fatz to thank you for coming to town and spending some money. I can think of a number of places with not much good going on economically that are surrounded by state land that could relatively inexpensively develop something like these properties.
It takes someone (or several someone's) in those local area's who recognize the value of such a property and have the pull with the local officials and/or the population to get it going. I don't know the history of CB, but I would be willing to bet it was a long time in the making.

I agree though, that it is one awesome resource. I wish other states would follow S.C.'s example and help out the sportsmen and women (and their dogs).
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
the ultimate demise of the dog games will be the disappearance of both training grounds and/or trialing grounds...or the scenario will be that the training grounds will also be the test/trial site and those will be owned by private individuals

Since so many public areas are multi purpose use facilities, it is difficult if not impossible to get them used for specific dog use only, lands such as wildlife refuges and military bases that were once accessed by dog clubs are no longer available

You need not look any further than the last National Am or the upcoming National Open, if it had not been for the generousity of private individuals with very good grounds the clubs would have been hard pressed to come up with suitable venues
Regarding the National AM, I am not aware of the circumstances. Was it due to private owners not allowing access to land that they did previously or that those previous grounds were not acceptable for other reasons? Encroaching urban development?

Many of the reasons I have seen, including below, have been regarding private land owners which I must say kind of surprised me a bit.
 

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Regarding hunting, the biggest reason for loss of good private hunting grounds here is the change in farming methods. 40+ years ago, in our pheasant "haydays", most farmers would welcome you with open arms just for knocking on the door. Even despite their occasional bad experience with some jerks who called themselves hunters, generally you could find plenty of good places to hunt.

Today, with the herbicides used, the ditches all sprayed, the waterways all tiled and dry, harvesters that leave nary a kernel of corn in the field, there is very little farm ground left that will hold pheasants. So over time, hunters began flocking to the doors of the relatively rare "hot spots", the farmers wised up, and now most of that is leased, often to some wealthy bankers or stockbrokers from Chicago who pay big bucks to bring clients in. The rest of us, unless we have a connection, crowd into public lands or resort to game farms and make the annual $2000 trip to South Dakota.

As far as training ground, FT grounds are harder to find, partly for the same reasons and also that larger areas are required for that training. For HT training or starting young dogs, there are plenty of spots within my city limits owned by developers that are ideal (except for flyer day) and they usually don't care.

Holding actual trials is a different story. You need a lot of things along with good terrain and water, like traffic access, etc., that make it very hard to find.

JS
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Regarding hunting, the biggest reason for loss of good private hunting grounds here is the change in farming methods. 40+ years ago, in our pheasant "haydays", most farmers would welcome you with open arms just for knocking on the door. Even despite their occasional bad experience with some jerks who called themselves hunters, generally you could find plenty of good places to hunt.

Today, with the herbicides used, the ditches all sprayed, the waterways all tiled and dry, harvesters that leave nary a kernel of corn in the field, there is very little farm ground left that will hold pheasants. So over time, hunters began flocking to the doors of the relatively rare "hot spots", the farmers wised up, and now most of that is leased, often to some wealthy bankers or stockbrokers from Chicago who pay big bucks to bring clients in. The rest of us, unless we have a connection, crowd into public lands or resort to game farms and make the annual $2000 trip to South Dakota.

As far as training ground, FT grounds are harder to find, partly for the same reasons and also that larger areas are required for that training. For HT training or starting young dogs, there are plenty of spots within my city limits owned by developers that are ideal (except for flyer day) and they usually don't care.

Holding actual trials is a different story. You need a lot of things along with good terrain and water, like traffic access, etc., that make it very hard to find.

JS
That explains a lot, thanks JS
 

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In the area that I live housing development has taken a lot of areas that were used for hunting & dog training, on the remaining land suitable for these purposes the landowners are beseiged with requests to use the property. I know of one landowner that had over 125 people ask to hunt his property. The state (OH) has disallowed the use of much of the public hunting areas for trial use due to Pittman-Robertson funds being involved. I can well remember the time when I could hunt most any property just for the asking, this is simply not true anymore.
 

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well i can say this as a land owner, not a lot of land, but enough to hunt and fish on. Anyways when people hunt or fish our property they leave a mess, or don't follow the rules that we have set in place for harvesting game or fish. Also when you raise cattle or have horses or farm your land and you find gates left open that were previously closed, or closed that are supposed to be open it can really make you not want to let anyone on your land. Not everyone is like this, but enough were that way we had to make it so that if anyone wants to go on the property that they must have a family member with them in order to go. People just are not as respectful with property as they used to be. It is sad.
 
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