Archery Talk Forum banner

1 - 20 of 76 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Still smarting from a very unfair experience with an outfitter that happened yesterday:
I drove 10 hrs. From NC to meet up Thursday night with my son in law Matt in Orlando Fl who had driven 5 hrs. We stayed the night in a hotel before driving 3 more hrs. Friday to our hotel for Friday night for a one day whitetail bow hunt out of Venus, Fl (near Lake Placid), which we had reserved for today through numerous phone calls and texts with Lee Lightsey of Outwest outfitters. He had assured he was bowhunter friendly, had great treestands and a lot of deer, and we would each have a stand for morning and evening sits. For complicated family and work reasons, we only had this one day we could do this, Dec. 16, so we previously agreed on the fees, extra fees for a trophy buck, etc. We are both experienced, committed bowhunters with strong hunting ethics. I have bowhunted with numerous outfitters in the Carolinas, Georgia, so. Texas, and Illinois, where I got my lifetime trophy, 150"which is on my wall. Matt has hunted extensively in BC where he took a trophy elk. We are not rookies and have invested much in our equipment and lots of practice all year long. I've never had a bad outfitter experience until this.
So yesterday evening, I called Lee Lightsey from our hotel to confirm start time, etc. He seemed very NOT thrilled that we were bowhunters despite this being clear from the start. He then said:
LL (outfitter): "I forgot to tell you, no one hunts my stands without one of my guys sitting with you."
me: Why? We really don't understand that? We'll follow any instructions you Give us."
LL: Its my rule because how do I know you won't shoot one of my expensive trophy bucks and then drag it away just for a picture and leave it. Bowhunters have to be told what they can and can't shoot"
me: "huh? who would do that" We are nothing like that. We each just want to sit in peace in the tree and hopefully get an opportunity."
LL: "I also only allow you have one arrow.That's my rule, obviously you don't like it, so I've decided I'm not going to take you anymore."
So I am in shock, try to calmly reason with him so we don't lose this chance to hunt together. I was cordial, but he became more and more irritated. I did then get angry and told him I would have to let fellow bowhunters know about this so they wouldn't get burned, too, he then hung up.
After two days of travel, two hotels, meals, and related expenses, no hunting trip from an Outfitter clearly hostile to bowhunters. That's Lee Lightsey, Outwest Out fitters, Venus, Fl.
AT friends, be advised.
How would you have handled this?
 

·
Shootingairborne
Joined
·
10,575 Posts
That's so sad. Sorry for your misfortune....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
782 Posts
Just as you did. I would have either not paid him, or asked for a full refund. I would also tell everyone I know.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,285 Posts
Are the "must be accompanied" and "one arrow" rules posted anywhere in advertisements, on websites, or in any paperwork sent to you or your son?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
No, nowhere. We had several communications leading up to the day we booked, was never a hint of this. Couldn't believe my ears.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
884 Posts
I'm not one for legal action as a solution to every little problem but that guy sounds like he deserves it.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,787 Posts
I agree with you and would be mad if this was popped on me after all that but I have one question and don’t take offense but why would you go to Florida for a hunt? Why not iowa, Illinois, Kansas? Was this a free range or pin hunt?
Only reason I ask is because everyone says that Deer in Florida are small compared to other places?
I would expect a full refund of any monies sent to book and or I would take to small claims court just to get some satisfaction!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Understand your point. This was to be part of a trip later ending with a holiday family gathering in the FL Keys. We just wanted to bowhunt together for a day, maybe get a doe for Christmas dinner. Wasn't looking for a trophy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,070 Posts
That sucks, and it sounds like the guy is shady all the way around. Being "accompanied" by a guide I can get if it was made clear that's the type of "hunt" it is, but the one arrow rule makes no sense, particularly if you are "accompanied" by a guide. Sounds like a high fence, pick_your_trophy_from_the_photos_and_we'll_run_him_out_to_the_feeder_20yards_from_your_stand type of deal to me, which has zero appeal to me, and doesn't sound like you were expecting either. If you have any type of documentation that he mis-represented the hunt, you should talk to a lawyer and see if you can help protect others from shady dude.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,672 Posts
Let's keep this one to the top! There is always to sides if the story, so maybe the outfitter can give his side. If that happen to me I would have flipped out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,491 Posts
Two sides to the story but doubtful this guy frequents AT or anything to do with archery.

Just be glad you don't have to try to get a refund from this asshat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,070 Posts
Upon further review, I think it's fairly easy to deduce what type of "hunt" this is based on the description on the website (ie penned deer and feeders) so I kinda get why he doesn't want hunters he doesn't know out there alone with a full quiver.
http://www.floridahuntingoutfitter.com/


Prices

Whitetail Deer Buck Hunting
$2,500 (all bucks up to 120")
$3,000 (all bucks up too 130")
$5,000 (all bucks 130" to 160")
$7,500 (all bucks 160" to 190")
$12,000 (all bucks 190" to 230")

Whitetail hunts are fully catered from time you arrive at our camp till you leave
IMO, "fully catered" means you're under constant supervision.

Still sucks for the OP... I wish these type of operations weren't even allowed to exist.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
I made it clear we weren't looking for one of his trophy bucks. I had no idea what "catered" meant. I had never bowhunted anywhere where you were "accompanied" or supervised if you were hunting from a treestand. You can bet I'll ask about that from now on.
I want to add that I am no fan at all of hunting high fence, genetically mutated monsters. Not interested in that. Again, just wanted to spend time with a bow and my wonderful son in law and maybe get some venison for Christmas. I stated that clearly to the outfitter. Archery is a shared passion for Matt and me, and again, I was shocked when the outfitter got mad and said the hunt was cancelled. Really a disappointment.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,067 Posts
That family is a major land owner in Fla. They dont need the money. Waste of time and that sucks man. Bunch of BS.

Try Okeechobee Outfitters next time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,070 Posts
I made it clear we weren't looking for one of his trophy bucks. I had no idea what "catered" meant. I had never bowhunted anywhere where you were "accompanied" or supervised if you were hunting from a treestand. You can bet I'll ask about that from now on.
I want to add that I am no fan at all of hunting high fence, genetically mutated monsters. Not interested in that. Again, just wanted to spend time with a bow and my wonderful son in law and maybe get some venison for Christmas. I stated that clearly to the outfitter. Archery is a shared passion for Matt and me, and again, I was shocked when the outfitter got mad and said the hunt was cancelled. Really a disappointment.
Yeah, not blaming you. I got my eyes opened about the different definitions of "hunting" that exists some years ago. I went on a lot of hunting trips in the 90's that were semi-guide, or un-guided bow hunts, which basically meant the outfitter would provide food and lodging, and land to hunt. Some had stands, I could use but I was not told which I could hunt, or when, but mostly I took my own stands and hung them where I wanted. No guarantees, no expectations... basically the same as hunting public land at home, just more potential for larger deer. I took a long break from hunting and hunting trips for many years until a friend convinced me to go on a guided hunt in Wyoming with him. Not until then did I realize what "guided" meant, and now I know why my friends game room is so awsome (although I'm wholly unimpressed by it now). After I figured out what type of "hunt" it was, I requested to just be dropped along the road at dawn and be picked up at the same spot at dark, but the options were basically to be driven around in the guides truck until we came across something to shoot, or sit in a fully enclosed heated stand with sliding windows. I basically just watched deer (and some elk) from a little house at the edge of a field for 3 days and never even thought about shooting any of them even though some were bigger than anything I've killed. I'll never go on a "guided" hunt again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,454 Posts
I agree with you and would be mad if this was popped on me after all that but I have one question and don’t take offense but why would you go to Florida for a hunt? Why not iowa, Illinois, Kansas? Was this a free range or pin hunt?
Only reason I ask is because everyone says that Deer in Florida are small compared to other places?
It’s high fence


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
1 - 20 of 76 Posts
Top