Prairie Dog Hunting
South Dakota prairie dog hunting is legendary. I have heard reports stating that South Dakota has more prairie dogs than the rest of the country combined. To the South Dakota prairie dog hunter, that means an awful lot of long range target shooting!
Prairie dogs offer sportsmen countless hours of entertainment. We can set up within 200 yards of prairie dog towns or set up out past 500 yards for a real long range challenge. I can produce nearly unlimited long range shooting opportunities for shooters. Shooting ranges vary depending on the day and depending on the prairie dogs. Either way, prairie dog shooting is an excellent way to sharpen all of your shooting skills that you will need when you go after that big buck this fall, settle in for that 400 yard shot on your elk across the canyon, or prepare yourself for that 100 yard shot on the great Alaskan Grizzly/Brown Bear. The best practice a person can do for your dream hunts is taking shots at game at varying distances.
Prairie dogs are small targets that will stand still, often times give you a few chances, and seem to replenish themselves as the day goes on. I keep the pickup close by with your gear and refreshments in the cooler. We don't drink alcohol while shooting but you are more than welcome when the day is done. I provide the benches and sand bags for bench rest shooting or you can bring your favorite one from home.
While there are many myths associated with the sport and you should come out with reasonable expectations, it is very possible to shoot 500 or more rounds per person per day. The average guy shoots 300-500 rounds per person per day. This is a long range sport. It is challenging. It is just about as much fun as you can have with a rifle.
We will stay in hotels in local towns on these hunts. I hunt on several ranches with towns ranging in size from hundreds to thousands. The advantage to this becomes evident when summer storms or other weather systems come through and force the prairie dogs to "hole-up" for the day. It makes your whole trip when we can pull up stakes and move 100 miles to shoot at dog towns that are not getting pounded with rain or experiencing very windy conditions. This move will often only take 1-2 hours and you will be right back to doing what you came here for...shooting South Dakota Prairie Dogs.
You can add predator hunting to the prairie dog package at no cost. We will typically go after the coyotes in the morning. The midday hours will be saved for prairie dog shooting.
Bring your buddies and plenty of shells. We have a lot of shooting to do!
Chuck Loebsack and Roger Gower (front)
Jamie Gower and Larry Gower (back)
Mike Fifer, CEO Ruger Firearms, took this rabbit at 687 yards while prairie dog hunting. He was shooting a Ruger 77 chambered in Ruger .204!
Unless other arrangements are made, I will be your guide. In a perfect world, an employee would care about the business as much as the owner. Unfortunately, we don't live in a perfect world. I do all of my own guiding unless other arrangements are made. It is comforting for you to know that the guy who is cashing your check (me) is the same guy who will accompany you in the field (me). I put my reputation on the line every time I cash a check. If you have ever paid a lot of money for a guided hunt only to be sent out with a sub-par(drunk/lazy/brother-in-law that just lost his job/etc) guide, you will know why this is so important. If you haven't ever experienced being assigned to a poor guide, you will probably take your chances until you do.....then you will insist on hunting with the owner.
When researching a hunt, you should ask to speak with ALL of the clients who hunted the same time you are considering hunting the previous year. It is foolish to consider booking a hunt with an outfitter before you speak with hunters who have hunted the same time and place during the previous season. It is important to know ahead of time what you are getting for your money. About 60% of my current business is repeat business and each year repeat business grows. This is because I show my clients a great time. I am proud of the attention I give each client before, during, and after the hunt. Most importantly, DON'T CONSIDER BOOKING A HUNT WITH ANYONE THAT IS NOT WILLING TO GIVE YOU PHONE NUMBERS AND/OR EMAIL ADDRESSES OF ALL OF THEIR CLIENTS FROM THE PREVIOUS YEAR.
A 50% non-refundable deposit will reserve your hunt.
Please call or e-mail me with any questions or to get a list of ALL my clients from last year.Jim River Guide Service
432 Railway Avenue
Mellette, SD 57461