2012 Trail Cam PicsCLICK HEREdon't miss the last page......
we have started running trail cams, but with the extreme heat please be patient. We just got most of our cameras out Last week. So most will be checked and posted by the First Week in August..... UPDATED September 20th....
Deposits and Payments to hold your hunt. If you drew a tag for this season, in order to hold your spot we must have atleast half of your hunt paid by August 1st, in order to assure your spot. Deposits not paid by September 1st will be listed as a discount hunt to those who wish to fill the spots and the Clients previous deposit will be lost....
2011-2012 Harvest Photos Click Here..
2011 Trail Cam Pics CLICK HERE
TROPHY FARMS for 2011. Ok you guys asked for it and here it is. We have designated 3 of our farms as Trophy Class Farms. We took the best three farms and with over 1000 acres have made these farms trophy class farms. These farms already have the genetics and now the deer will have the age. No more 120's and 130's will be taken off of them. The minimums and fines have been raised to let them grow. So those of you looking at the best chance to harvest a mature deer will want to hunt these farms . All clients need to keep in mind you will be given the option to hunt either a normal farm or a trophy farm. Since different clients have different goals this will be each clients decision. And no one will be charged extra to hunt a trophy farm. The minimums and penalties are just a little stiffer. We will also offer a few management hunts on our trophy farms to harvest deer in which we feel will not benefit the herd. We hope this will benefit all hunters in the near future.
2010 Antler Growth the best we've seen in years. The horns are good this year, growth is by far the best we have seen in years. And with an early harvest already starting you can bet the big boys with not be hiding in the corn this year. Check out our cam pics. CLICK HERE
Some things to think about when booking with an outfitter. Rules I go by when booking an out west hunt....
Rule #1, cheaper is not always better. Sure you may be saving $500, but if your sitting in over hunted stands, areas with no food left and hunting with an outfitter whom just doesn't care if you kill or not, you're not saving anything. With todays economy our hunt is still considered to be a great deal. Iowa is a tough draw, don't risk your hunt to just anyone.
Rule #2, can they provide references of clients in the past. The best person to tell you how the operation is run, is not the guide. It's the guy who before you. Find out through them first hand how they were treated, and what they thought of the operation. Be very wise of outfits that can't offer atleast a dozen references, and that only offer them upon request. Contact atleast 4 former clients.
Rule #3, the pictures can lie. Make sure the photos of kills are actual clients and not friends or relatives. Cross reference the kill shots with the references you are calling. This is the 2000's if the most recent Trail camera photos are of 2008 and the guy in the harvest photos is wearing Tree Bark camo chances are you are about to get scammed!!! Ask them " are you on the website and which deer did you kill?" Some outfitters will post pics of giant deer that were not even killed on any farms they hunt just to sucker you in. Make sure that what you see is what they get.....
Rule #4, Food Plots! Gun season is all about food plots and holding deer. I can't tell you how many clients we have had that have had nightmare experiences with other outfitters whom claimed to have food plots. Then when they show up to hunt, they are perched over a nice plot of grass! We spend all summer and fall putting in acres and acres of food plots. Our deer stay around and stay healthy well into the next year. Food is the #1 thing in the gun seasons.
Rule #5, Personal service. Yes sometimes it's the little things that make or break a hunt. You could hire the cheapest outfitter who has the biggest deer and if you have to sit in a homemade wooden stand that leans forward all day, you will never enjoy your hunt. We use only top quality blinds, stands and equipment during and all through the season.
Rule #6, We don't do Pre-Rut hunts. Let's face it, you got 5 days to make it happen. Do you want to put all your marbles into a week that could be highs in the 80's and mosquitos everywhere. Soaking with sweat walking to your stand? Also another downside to the pre rut discount is it just puts more people in stands prior to that golden month. Thunder Ridge starts hunting the first week of November every year. We don't try and squeeze in an extra group or two hunters at a cheaper rate that we know have very minimal chances to kill a trophy buck. The middle part of October just has too many variables...
Rule #7 We hunt the gun season with clients- you ask well what does that mean? Well that means we aren't hunting our own leases during gun seasons like other outfitters. We have a close competitor that does not book Gun 1 or Gun 2 so they can hunt their own 1700 Acre lease. They use their little outfitting
business to fund their trophy operation. You will NEVER EVER have to worry about a Thunder Ridge Employee, or TV personality hunting any of our leases, EVER! Our leased ground is strictly for clients only.
Rule #8 Success Rates- Let's Be Honest. If I told you we were 100% on Success rates would you seriously want to book a trip for the following year. I know I wouldn't. Our success rates year in and year out average approx 50-60%. Allot of our success is based soley on how the hunter performs when faced with the opportunity to harvest that buck of a lifetime. Will he get winded, flinch at the shot, or just plain miss. We take great pride in our trophy room photos, so browse around ant take a good look at the trophys we take year in and year out and compare those to the other outfitters. Ask them are they posting true Client Kill Photos?
2010 Harvest Photos
For the Hunter who has everything, next time when buying him a gift consider either a Thunder Ridge Gift certificate, or a hand made custom Trappers Cabin. With over 40 painstaking hours put into each custom hand made cabin. The no two alike cabins are a symbol of the outdoorsman in your life. Each cabin can be made to your likeing or you can simply order an already in stock one. Great for birthdays, retirement gifts, or other special occasions. Click on the cabin to see an example.
Late Muzzleloader season sees record snow fall and well below average temps. What can we say, with snow falls totalling in the 30-40 inch category along with gail force winds blowing drifts as much as 5 feet high, late muzzleloader season was a difficult hunt. Not only was getting anywhere difficult but walking was a complete different story. But we trekked on and even with a tore up transmission, and a few other stuck vehicles, we still had a very successfull ending to the year. Of the nine hunters in LM season5 harvested good bucks, two missed, and 2 went without. Two that went without were looking for bucks over the 170 category and passed several mid 150"s deer. We would like to congratulate all of ourlate muzzleloader guys for braving the snow and temps at times well below zero.
2008 Was Riddled With Misses, Wounds, And Woes!!!!! If I had a deposit sent for every call that asked what was your percentage rate last year and I could give an explanation for all
the things I saw that went wrong and happend, I'd still be on the beaches of Playa Del Carmen, and probably have the swine flu by now. This year the Deer were lucky enough to be spared by branches,
misfires, bad shots, and just plane no shots. We had more bad luck running through the timber than we dare speak about. Many giants were spared and we are very eagerly awaiting the camera season.
Luckily with 7 bucks wounded only 2 were found dead. We scoured for the others during shed season and did not find them, so we are very confident they made it. But yes if we could post the pics of all
the guys with there hands up and there smiles turned upside down, there would be many new pics for 09.
New Minimum Installation for 2007!!! Yes it's time and it only benefits everyone. This year we are going to place a min. inch on all kills both gun and bow. In an effort to keep 2 and 3 year olds from getting taken too early. We've talked to several clients and this will be a very effective way to make clients take the time to think before they shoot and be sure this is the deer they wish to go home with. All of the penalty proceeds will go towards stand upgrades and more food plots for the following year......
Country Singer Craig Morgan Scores on a great Buck! We were fortunate enough to have another Celebrity hunt with us this year. Country music recording artist Craig Morgan hunted with us during the month of November. He shot a great buck with his bow. He was hunting for the Hunter Specialties PrimeTime Bucks 12 video which will be released next year. The hunt was Filmed by Wade so that added some more excitement to the hunt.....PHOTOS.
214" Pig goes down!!!! Hillary Bates of Minn. shot a 26 point nontypical buck in November, Sitting through wind gusts of over 40 mph this wise old hog came sneaking right under his stand and met his maker. Congrats to Hillary!!!! See Photos...
Michael Waddell stops in at Thunder Ridge
Thunder Ridge had the pleasure of entertaining Realtree Roadtrips Michael Waddell a few months back, although he can hunt and play guitar, his texas hold em needs some work. Photos
Score on 4 bucks that gross over 170"
the impressive photos on the site of both archery and gun 1 of these
taken at Thunder Ridge.
Ridge Clients go 100% in 2004 and set an
all-time inches of rack record.
2004 we had a total of 13 clients
with a total of 13 kills. The total inch count
of these kills came
up to a whopping 2,036 inches of antlers. And the good news for our 2005 clients is there were plenty left and passed
Ridge to be seen on the Outdoor Channel.
past fall we were privilaged to have several TV host join us on hunts. In November Matt Morrett from Hunter
Specialties killed a 147",10 point on
one of our best farms, where he saw plenty of other bucks
which just wouldn't come close enough to close the deal on. In December North
America Whitetail's Pat Reeve
joined us for a Gun Season 1 hunt. Pat had a Monster 160+
10 point narrowly escape his muzzleloader bullet by a mear half inch. Then
the second day of Late Muzzleloader season
Rick White filled his tag in which
was a very warm week for our late season on a beautiful 8
finished up the season with H.S. Phillip Vanderpool taking a nice
management buck. After having so many monster bucks come in
with nothing but bad
luck Phillip helped out our
deer herd a little. So keep an eye out for us this Summer
on The Outdoor Channel
and on H.S. Primetime Bucks 9.
Shed Hunt Shows Sign of Things Yet to Come.
of March 5th Pat Reeve from Driven 24/7 came back to join Wade and Tony at the Iowa Deer Classic.
While back for this, We spent the whole weekend scouring through our
leased woods for shed antlers. Pat really gave Wade and I several
tips on where to look, and how to look for sheds. As you
can see in the Photographs, with Pat finding
most of the sheds, he really knows his shed hunting.