Rebel Ridge Outfitters
                                                         Southwest Kansas Prairie Dog & Bison Hunts
Modus Operandi

Mode of Operation:
We are well-suited for accomplished marksmen who are serious about their sport and able to make shots beyond 300 yards.  Although you will have closer shots, at this range and beyond targets are essentially unlimited and you will have a much easier time staying busy if you can shoot that far. We have many high vantage points to set up shooting tables, offering excellent fields of fire over large areas at distances from 100 to 2,000 yards.  If you can’t or won't shoot beyond 300 yards this is not the place for you.  If this is your first time shooting at these distances you will be surprised how easy it is to get the hang of it with a little practice.  

For insurance purposes we do not allow clients to drive around and shoot from their vehicle.  Plan to shoot from a bench rest with several moves throughout the day as needed. 

The consumption of alcohol and drugs is strictly prohibited while in the field. 

Keep in mind that this is hunting, which means that results will be mixed depending on the day.  On average you can expect to shoot around 200 rounds per day with a bolt gun.  However, if it is overcast or especially hot, there will be fewer prairie dogs out.  One day may yield 60 shots and the next could yield 400.  Oftentimes a bit of patience is required between shots, especially when you first arrive in an area.  Initially the dogs will scatter when you show up but after a short time, usually about as long as it takes us to get set up, the dogs will gradually re-emerge into the open.

Plan to shoot with wind.  Wind is a fact of life and a daily occurrence on the Great Plains.  If you waited for the wind to stop before hunting you would never get a shot off.  We cannot take credit or blame for the weather.  Plan to hunt rain or shine or wind.  There are some things you can do to mitigate the effects of a crosswind, such as setting up to shoot with the wind at your back or directly into it.  The wind is the game.  Without it everyone would be a good shot.  Learn to compensate for it.
 

Firearms:
If you’re new to the sport, I highly recommend a scoped rifle with bipod, sandbags or both.  You will initially get shots within 100 yards but this soon dwindles and you are shooting 300+ yards after that.  At 300 yards and beyond the prairie dogs either can’t see you or are not concerned and will stay out until you connect or get really close.  Because of the ranges involved you need a steady platform (hence the bipod/sandbags), a scope with good magnification (16X-24X is recommended) and a fast, center fire varmint cartridge such as .223, .22-250, .204 Ruger, .17Rem, etc.  Larger, heavier calibers such as .308 Win are needed for ranges beyond 600 yards.  Rimfire rifles are fun to shoot but have limited range and you soon run out of targets that are within your reach. 

A scope with bullet drop compensation and windage adjustment is essential.  Scopes with target knobs that can be reset to zero are very effective and convenient.  A few of my favorites are the Burris Fullfield E1 4.5-14X42 and the 6.5-20X50.  This scope has a fantastic bullet drop compensation reticle with added hold points for windage, making shot adjustment quick and precise.  Another fine scope is the Leupold with the varmint reticle.  

An even more precise method is to purchase a set of custom ballistic turrets for your existing scope from Kenton Industries.  With your load data (bullet weight, velocity and environmental parameters) they will custom build you a set of turrets with yardage markings laser etched onto them rather than the factory MOA markings.  With this setup all you need to do is range the shot, dial your turret to the correct distance and shoot. 
 
 

Ammo Restrictions:
No tracers, armor piercing or API.  Soft point or ballistic tip are recommended and mitigate ricochets.

AR-15 Rifles:
We no longer allow AR-15 type rifles.  One AR-15 chews through 10X more dogs than a guy with a bolt gun.  We can't acquire enough dog towns to keep up with AR-15s and this is not a cost-effective way to utilize our leases.    
 

   

 



Gear:
We provide up to eight shooting benches and chairs.  Availability is on first come first serve basis.  We highly recommend that each shooter have his/her own pair of binoculars. 
Ammo is available in limited type and quantity within 30 miles of Las Animas
, so bring as much as you think you will need plus a little more.  Over the past several years people have typically averaged around 200 rounds per day.  If you want to bring more ammo than is allowed on a plane (11 lbs.) you can ship it to Matt Gould, 602 E. Avenue C, Syracuse, KS. 67878 and it will be waiting for you when you arrive. 

Temperatures can fluctuate greatly from morning to afternoon, so bring adequate layers of clothing.  Sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat are also good items.  Many people scorch themselves on the first day.  Don't be that guy. 

Be aware that rattlesnakes are present in prairie dog towns requiring you to be aware of your surroundings all the time, especially when walking.  Leather boots and long pants provide a greater degree of protection than other footwear and should be worn in the field.  Pants will also protect your legs from biting flies if they are present.

 
 


Logistics:
Prairie dog hunts are based out of Las Animas, Colorado.  This is where you will be staying during the hunt.

Rebel Ridge Outfitters is based out of Syracuse, KS, about 80 miles from Las Animas.  This is where our range and lodging facilities are located. 

If you are coming from the east you will pass through Syracuse on your way to Las Animas on Hwy 50.  You can pick up your shooting benches at that time.  If you are flying into Denver or coming from west of Las Animas I will bring the benches with me when we meet for the initial orientation.

Season dates:
Officially our dog hunts run May 1 - October 31 and that is when most people book.  However prairie dogs can be hunted any time of year as long as it is sunny.  I have had some fantastic shoots in December. 

The weather in May/June and Sept/October is optimal.  July and August will be hotter so the best way to hunt during those months is to go out for the first 4-5 hours in the morning, knock off during the heat of the day (from 12:00 - 4:00) and resume hunting for the last several hours in the day.  Most prairie dogs will go below ground during the hottest part of the day during the summer and you will notice a dramatic increase in activity early and late in the day. 

  

Common Questions:

  Would my group be combined with other hunters?
    - No.  You will only hunt with the people in your group.  We never combine people of different groups.  You will have exclusive access to several large properties for your hunt.  In the past we have had single hunters ask us to put them with an existing group.  We will not do this so please don't ask. 

Would we have to share accomodations with other hunters?
    - No.  Your group will have one of our two lodging facilities all to yourselves if you are staying in Syracuse, KS.

Is there a seperate guide fee?  
    Our prairie dog hunts are self-guided.

Can we shoot the hawks?
    - No.  First of all, that is a federal crime.  Secondly, you have paid for a prairie dog hunt.  That means all hawks, burrowing owls, coyotes, rabbits, turtles, lizards, meadow larks, antelope,  and all other wildlife are off limits.    

Is a guide necessary?
    - No.  We will provide you with an initial orientation and detailed maps to get you to and from your hunting properties.  We will also have a guide "on call" at all times should you become lost or need assistance of any kind.  
    
 We have a few simple rules.  (1)  We do not allow hunting to take place from a vehicle.  All shooting must
be done from a bench or on foot.  (2)  Safe hunting practices must be maintained at all times.  Some properties will have livestock present.  This requires extra caution and constant awareness.  Some properties are bordered on at least one side by a road or have dwellings nearby.  These properties require extra planning so as not to end up shooting at the roadway.  (3) Always know what is beyond your target before you take the shot.  If any unsafe act is observed or if blatant disregard for our simple requests is apparent, your group will be required to leave immediately.  If you do anything illegal and the authorities show up, you're on your own. 

Have these towns been shot?
    -  Unless you are the first group of the season, yes, of course.  We are in the business of hunting, therefore we hunt our properties.  We spend roughly $30,000 each season on lease fees and subsequently cannot afford to hold properties in reserve until you get here. 

With that being said, we currently have 25,000 acres under lease with good populations on them and we are always actively seeking more.  We schedule our properties on a rotational system, allowing them down time throughout the season and we do not overbook.  If there happens to be a scarce turnout of dogs on a particular day it will be due to environmental factors such as heat, rain, overcast, etc.        
Just let us know what your experience level is and what you are looking for in a hunt.  We will accomodate you any way we can.

 

 

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