There is lots of private land in Kansas enrolled in the WIHA ( Walk in Hunter Access) the Kansas Division of Wildlife and Parks prints an atlas every year of enrolled lands. Thousands of acres. Information and the atlas is avaliable on their website. A good portion of Western Kansas has large populations of prairie dogs.
It ain't bent, Ned
In the past I've done quite a bit of pasture poodle shooting in Kansas. Most of it on Treg Hatchers place near Syrucruse. (Hatcher Cattle ) It was free when I hunted there but I hear he's charging now. Him and his wife were very pleasant people to deal with.
Kansas requires a license that you have to buy the whole year whereas Colorado will sell you a day license much cheaper. Most Kansas dog towns are near the line. Not much farther to drive.
The towns I've shot in near Springfield Co. are not as big as some in Ks. But there's still a lot of dogs and the people are very friendly.
Some people live and learn but I mostly just live
Take several rifles for each shooter to allow for barrels to cool and cleaning. Saves barrel life. A couple good days gunning on a prarrie dog town with just a 22-250 or swift will smoke the barrel. A 22 rimfire is a lot of fun on them along with a hornet, 222 or 223 maybe a 6mm of some sort and a 22-250 or 220 swift. STart out with the close ones with the rimfires and increase guns as the range increases.
Most prairie dog towns have cattle in or around them. Bullet selection is an issue to most land owners. Nothing wears out a welcome faster than the land owner hearing bullet ricochets. The more explosive bullet you select the better. The 17 Cal. rimfires with the 17 grain ballistic tips are almost impossible to get to ricochet. The 40 grain to 55 grain 22 Cal. V-Max or Ballistic Tips are very explosive also.
Hutchinson has a town 'in-town' next to the WM.
Casper has a ton of private land around it.
make sure you have a map of what is what.
it's all an educated guess,,,, till the trigger is pulled.
this opinion brought to you by mister low-tech solution..
Thanks again for the info and advice. I know WY is father than Kansas but I'm hearing good things about the dog towns there. It's going to be a long drive no matter what. A few more hours won't be a big deal and ice been to Wyoming before. It's very pretty
Petroid, you got me curious and interested on this type of "new" adventure, so watching closely. What do you intend to shoot, cartridge and ammunition? Will you be casting for this trip, if so which projectile? Good luck, sounds like a lot of fun.
Fist timers tend to shot way too far. Pick a % of kills you want to make and when your are dropping below that % figure out how to improve it or stop shooting at the distance.
Normally it will be "breezy" so the HMR will max out at about 100 to 125 yards. On quiet days you can stretch that a far amount.
For the 223 on prairie dogs % tend to go down fast much beyond 300 yards.
I called a couple places in Kansas and after talking to several people finally got a rancher. He said the only dogs left in Kansas are either not huntable or leased. Still checking on other places
I shot 223 almost exclusively on all my trips. When you are shooting 1-2k handloads per trip, cost and availability of components becomes a serious factor. I usually shot a bolt gun (cz527) but brought a heavy barreled ar for a backup. I like the boltgun much better on all accounts as the only benefit to a semi is rate of fire, and I already found it difficult to keep the barrel cool on the bolt gun. I did smoke a barrel once in Sheridan WY, I got into a draw where all the shots were inside 100, and they were very tame and plentiful, and well it was a sort of fox in the hen house scenario.
Which brings me to another thought, bring a good copper solvent. I always used Sweets, but whatever works for you. At the end of the day (usually 1-200 rounds) you will need to give the bore a good stripping. Just my .02, ymmv.
Everything depends upon the dog town and how hard they have been shot at. There will always be wind and in some terrain the wind will be blowing in 3 different directions in different locations between you and your prairie dog.
300 yard shots with a 223 are not easy - you'll need good glass and probably a couple "sighters" to connect. In my limited experience 223 with 52 to 55 grain bullets are best within 150 yards. We use "wildcat" 22 centerfire and a 22 BRL with 53 grain burgers are very consistent out to 350 yards and with a sighter or two dogs are in peril out to 450/550 yards but most of them don't seem too concerned about it. You'll need elevation in order to see and shoot at dogs much past 250 yards. Walking around the dog town with a 22lr is good exercise but not much shooting unless the town has a few pups.
1st time out, I'd recommend bringing along a 243, as most towns today don't give many 50 to 125 yard shooting, so unless you want to just sit on them and get a shot every 20 to 30 minutes I'd bring what can reach out to 250 to 400 yards - at least you'll get shooting, maybe not many hits but shooting instead of glassing is the fun part.
I haven't been out the past 2 years to my ole reliable locations in SW North Dakota, as some type of disease knocked hell out of every town - I heard prairie dog populations went way down in surrounding States as well, so maybe check with the local Game Wardens in the areas you intend to shoot.
As for glass, 36X is usually to much as mirage will get ya - I use a "custom" 18X40X40 viable with benchrest crosshairs, others in our party use Leupold 24X boosted to 30 or 32 power with benchrest crosshairs. One uses the straight 24X but to me, it's on the "weak" side. A good table rest with bags are nice and binoculars or a small spotting scope.
Here's our set up, as we reload on site as it can be 75*F in the morning and 98*+F in the afternoon.
Do not fear the Enemy, for your Enemy can only take your Life. It is far better to keep the Media at bay, for they will Steal Your Honor.
That looks like a well practiced setup there ol 5 hole. I know our equipment isn't up to serious varminter standards, but I don't think the kids will mind, me included. I fully predict there will be a lot more shooting than killing. If they stay still long enough for us to walk the shots in, we might have a chance.
Grasslands outside of Casper WY was always good for days of shooting
Your going is an excuse to get a 204 Ruger. Thats my favorite now and I have a friend out in SD that has a PD town on the ranch, well he has a SAKO in 204 now too. He was impressed the way it shot flat and rips into them.
Ole 5 Hole Group
Nice mud flaps. Look like snowmobile track?
|BP||Bronze Point||IMR||Improved Military Rifle||PTD||Pointed|
|BR||Bench Rest||M||Magnum||RN||Round Nose|
|BT||Boat Tail||PL||Power-Lokt||SP||Soft Point|
|C||Compressed Charge||PR||Primer||SPCL||Soft Point "Core-Lokt"|
|HP||Hollow Point||PSPCL||Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt"||C.O.L.||Cartridge Overall Length|
|PSP||Pointed Soft Point||Spz||Spitzer Point||SBT||Spitzer Boat Tail|
|LRN||Lead Round Nose||LWC||Lead Wad Cutter||LSWC||Lead Semi Wad Cutter|