Options and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service in collaboration with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is pleased to announce that applications for the 22th Annual Accessible Deer Hunt for people with disabilities to be held at Rydell National Wildlife Refuge are ready to be released. The dates of the hunt will be October 12th, 13th, and 14th. The MinDak Border Chapter of the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association underwrites the hunt. This year’s hunt will be open for buck or doe.
Rydell National Wildlife Refuge, located south of Mentor, Minnesota, offers hunters with disabilities a unique experience by providing the opportunity to hunt in one of the most accessible wildlife refuges in the Nation. Rydell has miles of paved trails in addition to hard-packed trails. It is large enough to accommodate up to 20 hunters, having enough land so that risks associated with deer hunting are minimized. The refuge has all-terrain vehicles with accessible trailers to transport hunters to and from stand locations as well as a limited number of accessible hunting platforms available.
Hunters are responsible for travel to and from the refuge, their sleeping accommodations while at the hunt, purchasing their license, and providing for their personal needs such as warm clothes, guns, ammo, attendants, etc. Hunt organizers will assist hunters with getting from the refuge headquarters to and from their hunting site, providing volunteers to assist with the handling of the animal after it is shot (if requested), and meals. Meals will consist of a noon meal prior to hunting and an evening meal once the hunter has come back from hunting
Anyone interested in applying for this year’s hunt may contact Options for a hunting application by calling (800) 726-3692. For those persons chosen, the Refuge will be open for scouting and choosing a blind location on Sept 30, 2017. Questions can be directed to Randy @ (800) 726-3692. If more hunt applications are received than spots available applicants will be selected based on severity of disability, ability to hunt in other locations other than the Rydell hunt, hunting experience as a person with a disability, and hunting experience at Rydell Refuge. If all is equal a random drawing will take place.