Young guns can register this month for a chance at a black-tailed deer hunt of a lifetime at the C2 Cattle Company ranch off Highway 140 during the Christmas holidays.
Sixteen hunters younger than 18 will be chosen in a drawing for these hunts, which have been offered since 2006 at the 9,500-acre ranch as part of the state Access and Habitat Program.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will take applications for the hunts through Nov. 30, and the winners will be drawn the following day.
Winners will get a guided day on the ranch during the 630T Rogue Unit Youth Deer Hunt, which runs Dec. 15 through Jan. 5. Hunters need to have drawn and purchased their tag by the Dec. 14 deadline.
The youth hunts will be one-day affairs for either a buck or doe, and the ranch will provide a guide. A parent or other family member can attend.
Under the program, the ranch receives habitat work such as herbicide application and brush-clearing programs paid for by the state's Access and Habitat Program, which is funded through surcharges on license sales. In turn, the ranch hosts the annual youth deer hunt, a youth turkey hunt in the spring and an adult archery hunt in the fall.
Last year, eight of the 16 youth hunters bagged a buck during their guided day, says Vince Oredson, the ODFW habitat biologist who oversees the program here. Of those, six were bucks and two were does, Oredson says.
Young hunters who put in the C2 hunt application have two ways to qualify to take part in the hunt should their name be drawn.
Those who already have drawn a 630T tag can apply, Oredson says. Those who applied for a 600-series tag last spring and didn't get it can apply and receive one of those tags if they have not used their first-time deer tag draw for youth hunts, Oredson says.
Young hunters who draw the C2 pass Dec. 1 can then apply for their first-time deer tag and get that 630T tag if they had previously not used that exception. If that's the case, they must do so by the Dec. 14 tag-purchase deadline.
All that's needed to apply is a name and a telephone number. Do so by calling Oredson at 541-826-8774, ext. 232, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.