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Public Land Hunts #7585626 08/21/19 05:30 PM
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DpdAlan Offline OP
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We have a small group and are considering the public land hunting for the opening of dove season. Interested in hearing pros and cons? I was going to go scout a few. Do you have to have the permit to just go around and look right now before season? Is it ok to go look around before season?

Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7585632 08/21/19 05:38 PM
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A permit depends on where you are hunting. If you are hunting a WMA or a federal property managed by the TPWD, you need an annual hunting permit ($48). Some Corps properties don't need permits and some do. Look in the sticky on this forum for links. If you hunt a WMA, look at the specific property guidelines. Some of them are for specific days and some for the first split. Others are both seasons.

I've had good luck hunting public land. Water in the evening and property close to grain or sunflowers in the morning. On mornings your are usually hunting traffic so you either have to draw them to you or find the pattern. On evenings the action doesn't usually start until about an hour before dark (at least that is my experience).

Good Luck and welcome to the forum.


No matter how high a duck flies a hammer still breaks a window.
Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7585635 08/21/19 05:40 PM
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I just re-read your post. You have to either have an AHP or annual use permit to be on most of the properties, I believe, unless no permit is required for that property. Some properties you cannot enter until September 1st.

Last edited by jnd59; 08/21/19 05:40 PM.

No matter how high a duck flies a hammer still breaks a window.
Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7585655 08/21/19 06:03 PM
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DpdAlan Offline OP
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Thanks for the info. None of the sites we were looking at are on WMA's or Corp land. I just wanted go look around before spending the $48. I know they would be crowded first of September but we are old retired guys who will also go during less crowded days.

Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7585680 08/21/19 06:40 PM
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If they are managed by the TPWD then they require a permit and many of them are not open before the 1st. Some are if they had seasons that did not close last year. Most of the dove places are closed until Sept 1.


No matter how high a duck flies a hammer still breaks a window.
Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7585840 08/21/19 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted by DpdAlan
Thanks for the info. None of the sites we were looking at are on WMA's or Corp land. I just wanted go look around before spending the $48. I know they would be crowded first of September but we are old retired guys who will also go during less crowded days.


You can drive down the road and scout most of them.

I'm guessing you're looking East/NE of Dallas. They're stupid crowded the first week or two of the season.

10-15 years ago there were several places that would have pretty good hunting on a consistent basis throughout the season and year after year - all of the "good" places are no longer in the program save maybe one place and it's gotten so crowded it's not worth it until late Sept or October.

There are lots of reasonably priced season leases still around though.

Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7586682 08/22/19 07:36 PM
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DpdAlan Offline OP
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I scouted a few. All locked and just drove around edges in truck. Once these open do you have to park in the area marked as parking on the map? If you use the e-check-in can you park on the outside and walk in. Several of these only have one designated parking area and it would take a long time to park and walk. I'm talking parking on the edge of county road and climbing over the fence. Good news is all boundaries I saw were very clearly marked.

Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7586693 08/22/19 07:52 PM
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If you are hunting USFS properties (the one northwest of DFW comes to mind) then you can cross the fence. As far as TPWD properties, I think you have to enter at the required spot. Some properties specifically state you must enter and exit from the designated road (some don't allow you to enter from the water source for instance and these are specifically OSR). I would read the APH booklet (online at TPWD public hunting). If you check in and check out on the ap, I'm not sure how that affects the entrance and exit. That's a question I will need to ask the state.


No matter how high a duck flies a hammer still breaks a window.
Re: Public Land Hunts [Re: DpdAlan] #7586751 08/22/19 08:54 PM
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I hunted public land near Dilley and there wasn't any designated parking areas, so you were able to drive on the property and park where you wanted to. The ones northwest of Houston have deisignated parking areas. So you will need to look in the APH at the specific property to see if it has any designated parking.

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