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  #1  
Old 08-17-2018, 7:27 AM
joeimp joeimp is offline
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Default Fort Hunter Liggett for 1%-ers only?

Just completed my registration for access to Fort Hunter Liggett. I'm current military so it was a breeze to complete the process. Well as far as the army goes anyways Until I got to the part where you purchase your permit.

$120 for the season, or $70 for a two-day pass?!?! And this is on top of your CA hunting license and whatever tags you need. My goodness.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:46 AM
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It’s a hassle, but like look at it this way; it lowers hunting pressure.

You’re current military. Look into Vandenberg AFB. Only mi, active and retired and DOD are allowed. Much less pressure.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:47 AM
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Good news is a tip will only be ~$12/$7 depending...unless you're ysr, then it's just some change from your car's ashtray.

Seriously, though...if you think that amount is 1%-er territory you should look up rates at Tejon Ranch. That may realign your perspective.

tejon.jpg
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:51 AM
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Yeah - Liggett is a rip-off. Don't go there.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:58 AM
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LOL thanks for the info. Will check out Vandenberg, but their webpage says hog is basically hunted out for now.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillyGoatCrawler View Post
Itís a hassle, but like look at it this way; it lowers hunting pressure.
If the OP thinks his fees are high, the cheapest guided hunt I've ever taken cost $1500 when there were four of us, not including the out-of-state license and tag fees.

By way of comparison, Texas charges around $350 for an out-of-state license that allows you to harvest a deer. 20 years ago I paid $325 for a caribou tag in Alaska and three years ago I paid $150 for a sitka blacktail deer tag plus the cost of a hunting license.
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Old 08-17-2018, 7:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbossman View Post
Yeah - Liggett is a rip-off. Don't go there.
Exactly! Don't waste your time.
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Old 08-17-2018, 8:10 AM
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I know, relatively speaking this is quite cheap. Here is my frame of reference: in HS I would pick a spot, pretty much anywhere. Farmers would let anyone hunt on their land. I'd hunt in the morning and leave my shotgun in the back window of my unlocked truck in the school parking lot, and dead birds in the back. Which I would then clean during ag class...

Good times! It ain't the 90's anymore!
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Old 08-17-2018, 10:35 AM
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It drives me crazy that I live near enough to hunt there but don’t have weekends off.

P.S that’s just a fraction of the cost I pay to hunt private property.
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Old 08-17-2018, 10:45 AM
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You're kidding right? $10/mo for access to 1000's of acres? Heck, costs me $60 in gas for a round trip.
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Old 08-17-2018, 10:55 AM
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I thought the 1% was referencing military!
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Old 08-17-2018, 11:09 AM
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I spent 6 months there in the mid 70's, had the run of the place. It sucked then and has for a long time. The proof is, I helped the supervisor of the FHL Outdoor Wildlife Center out of a stranded situation. He had killed a deer out in Cache Creek, he was at the North Fork but his ride was on Highway 16. Anyway he was hunting up there because it was too much pressure at FHL. His name was Steve, after he told me where he worked I recognized him, I have a DOD ID and pass on that place.

Last edited by tony270; 08-17-2018 at 11:11 AM..
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Old 08-18-2018, 1:26 PM
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Curious how OP came to the conclusion $10/month is expensive for hunting a 167,000 acre piece of property. Kind of hard to assess the value of the property, if you have never hunted it.

On average, about 30% of the base is open for hunting each weekend. Of course, military training can shut down the base entirely at times. However, in my opinion, it is the best public hunting in California.

Quail and rabbits are everywhere. If you work at it, you can get pigs and deer. I average 2-3 pigs a year, and a deer 3 out of 4 years. Once in a while, we get a good dove hunt too.
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Old 08-18-2018, 2:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishfisher View Post
Curious how OP came to the conclusion $10/month is expensive for hunting a 167,000 acre piece of property. Kind of hard to assess the value of the property, if you have never hunted it.
OK before everyone starts piling on: I have never hunted FHL and as I stated in a subsequent post my frame of reference is perhaps outdated. The 1%-er remark was a perhaps unfunny joke. If you're close enough to hunt all year, $10/mo is a great deal. For the rest of us that have obligations, $120 for one weekend is a bit steep. It's a 4-5 hour drive that I can make maybe 1-2 a year. Just saying.

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On average, about 30% of the base is open for hunting each weekend. Of course, military training can shut down the base entirely at times. However, in my opinion, it is the best public hunting in California.
OK. Other people here are saying it's a complete ripoff and the hunting is terrible. I'll just have to check it out myself.

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Originally Posted by Irishfisher View Post
Quail and rabbits are everywhere. If you work at it, you can get pigs and deer. I average 2-3 pigs a year, and a deer 3 out of 4 years. Once in a while, we get a good dove hunt too.
Good.
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Old 08-18-2018, 2:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joeimp View Post
OK before everyone starts piling on: I have never hunted FHL and as I stated in a subsequent post my frame of reference is perhaps outdated. The 1%-er remark was a perhaps unfunny joke. If you're close enough to hunt all year, $10/mo is a great deal. For the rest of us that have obligations, $120 for one weekend is a bit steep. It's a 4-5 hour drive that I can make maybe 1-2 a year. Just saying.



OK. Other people here are saying it's a complete ripoff and the hunting is terrible. I'll just have to check it out myself.


Good.
If you can't amortize over multiple hunts, it's probably not a good solution for you. There are quail and bunnies much closer to Amador than FHL. Your gas money, which costs more than the access, will go a lot further.

Some have luck on pigs there, but you need to know what you're doing. Pigs don't just hang out on pressured property. Much more nomadic than deer. They'll move through. You need to learn when, where, why they move.
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Old 08-18-2018, 2:43 PM
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How about coyotes? It's all I hunt anymore and have been wanting to try that place out.
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  #17  
Old 08-18-2018, 9:14 PM
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They were thick because we were not allowed to hunt coyotes., that was until about 10 years or so ago when a new Commander allowed them to be added to the list. I don't know about now, but I know every inch of that place.

The best thing to do is to research the areas that border the west side of the Fort. It is the Los Padres National Forest, last I saw the NFS restricted shooting in a lot of that area. Start by searching access roads off of Nacimiento Fergusson Road (No Fort access, then try Highway 1 near Big Sur). We use to drive out of the back gate (there was no gate) down to a water fall they called the Hippy Hole.

We knew many of the hogs to be on the east side of the Fort, along Jolon Road, from 101, to past the Adobe Ruins. They bed up on the Fort and feed in the barley fields on the east side of Jolon Road.

And they are south of the San Antonio River, near the front gate, they feed on the acorns that drop from the oaks that border the river, turkeys are in the last 2 areas that I mentioned. The north side is good to, there's game hunting ranchs all along that side, the east sides of the Fort too. But to much training makes it diffcult.

I mention in another thread about the soldier that shot a doe with an M16, while on guard duty at the ammunition storage dump southeast of the front gate, he claimed to have hit it with a Jeep.

Last edited by tony270; 08-21-2018 at 5:32 AM.. Reason: Correct directions...
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Old 08-19-2018, 6:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbossman View Post
Yeah - Liggett is a rip-off. Don't go there.
Iím signing up. Seriously.
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Old 08-19-2018, 7:39 AM
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Originally Posted by bigbossman View Post
Yeah - Liggett is a rip-off. Don't go there.
Uh huh, there’s a clue.

Last edited by FatCity67; 08-19-2018 at 7:40 AM.. Reason: Opps Taper beat me to it.
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Old 08-19-2018, 2:40 PM
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Originally Posted by joeimp View Post
LOL thanks for the info. Will check out Vandenberg, but their webpage says hog is basically hunted out for now.
I believe that it is around $70 per year to hunt Vandenberg.

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Old 08-19-2018, 2:48 PM
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Also at Vberg southern area shut down for launches all the time. Sudden ranch has lots of animals but never available.
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Old 08-19-2018, 3:11 PM
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I have not hunted there for 30 years. used to be great quail hunting.
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Old 08-19-2018, 3:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by .22guy View Post
How about coyotes? It's all I hunt anymore and have been wanting to try that place out.
Yes. You can hunt coyotes. They are plentiful. I rarely get in a hunt without seeing a least one. In fact, I was surprised one morning to realize how many were in the area. I was quail hunting in an area near the main garrison portion of the base when their morning reveille recording sounded off. The valley below me came alive with coyotes sounding off in response. Kind like when a siren sets off all the dogs in a city neighborhood. Must have been at least two dozen howling within earshot.
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Old 08-19-2018, 6:38 PM
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I wanted to share a couple of photos to illustrate the change at FHL.

The first photo is just south of the front gate, it where our base camp was, just a couple hundred yards away from the guard shack, there were no gates in 1975.


The second photo is at the border where Nacimiento Fergusson Road goes into the Los Parades National Forest. I have gobs of photos in places that you need to be in the Infantry to explore, even back then. We even fished many of the reservoirs that were off limit to others.




Last edited by tony270; 08-22-2018 at 7:59 AM..
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Old 08-20-2018, 6:54 AM
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Tony, the fishing is still outstanding at a few of the reservoirs. Unfortunately, most of them only open up a few times a year due to the military training schedule. The bass pictured by my ID is an average bass from the best pond on the base.
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Old 08-20-2018, 7:49 AM
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That's a nice bass, there was an Upper and Lower Stoney, last I looked they let Upper Stoney dry up.

The middle photo is of Upper Stoney, where Sgt. Dristal from Texas though us to fish a Texas Rig plastic worm, he nailed the heck out of them. It was diffcult to catch on, when to set the hook, and fishing the worm slow stopping and going. I was use to using top water lures and plugs, but cut bait and minnows were our go to baits. The top left photo shows a game trail going through the WW11 barracks at Camp Roberts, look close down the trail and you can see a deer standing there.

The photo in the middle of the second image is of a rock outcropping, there are dozens of bowl shaped holes where acorns were ground. This west of the rear gate off of Nacenento Ferguson. Road.

This should show why the game is so hard to come by. Heck, we had a hog in a pin behind our mess-hall, fed it leftover slop. We even had out own enlisted club, with wine and beer, and biweekly strippers, our company paid for them as a moral boster.





I never mentioned the Palisades, who knows where that area is at on FHL? How about Hell's 1/2 Acre? Both are one of the better areas for deer and hogs.

We would also walk the river bed from Jolon to past the gravel pit, fishing the pools that held what we called squawfish. I don't think they were through, we would catch using minnows, then release. We hunted ground squirrels around our base camp too. There's an abundance of them along the main drag, and to the north and west along Jolon Road.

Last edited by tony270; 09-24-2018 at 3:32 PM..
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  #27  
Old 08-20-2018, 4:04 PM
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Upper Stony has been closed for quite a few years. That area is now an impact area. Lower Stony is still there, but rarely open to fishing. I am familiar with the Palisades. It is still a good area, but has several mountain lions living there. They like to bed down in the trees along the river during the heat of the day.
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Old 08-20-2018, 7:13 PM
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Quote:
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Exactly! Don't waste your time.
Not only it is extremely expensive, the only pigs you will find are in the local bar.
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Old 08-20-2018, 7:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyCat View Post
Not only it is extremely expensive, the only pigs you will find are in the local bar.
Only hogginí I ever did at Hunter Liggett was at a bar while we were stuck there waiting for a new swashplate for our -53.
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Old 09-09-2018, 9:28 AM
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Duck hunted there once in the late 90's. The duck hunting was just ok. There were a lot of quail in town.

I think back then you could hunt a weekend for $25 and buy your permit when you got there. I think it was closed for a while after 9/11 and they changed the application process, making it a little harder.

Never went back.
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