Hunting Land in Virginia -Public Land Or Private?

For some people, hunting is a way to put food on the table. For most, it is a sport that allows them to get outdoors and be in nature. And for some people, hunting is a way of life and is something that allows them to spend quality time by themselves or with friends and family members. Finding quality Virginia hunting land can come at a premium.

One of the biggest problems that hunters have is finding a good place to hunt. If you’re looking for hunting land in Virginia, you have a few options.

  • You can buy some land… become the Landowner, then you can hunt on your own land.
  • You can join a hunt club and pay the annual dues, put in your required weekends working and hunt with the other club members.
  • Or take your chances and hunt on public land for a low fee.
  • If you’re lucky you will have a rich relative who owns a farm or find someone that allows hunting on their private land.
  • If you have the budget you can visit an Outfitter that will provide luxury accommodations, guides and home cooked meals.
On this page, we will look at the pros and cons of Private and Public Virginia Hunting Land.

Public Hunting Land in Virginia

If you do not own your own land and you do not have rich relatives who own a farm or you don’t have an extra six figures lying around to purchase a piece of hunting land, hunting on public land is an option. The main benefit of hunting on public land in Virginia is that it is inexpensive and according to the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, there are over 200,000 acres across 39 different managed areas for people to pursue a variety of wildlife related outdoor activities.

Although there is a lot of public land available for hunting in Virginia, there are a number of drawbacks to hunting on public land. One drawback is that there are an incredible number of rules and regulations that you will need to become familiar with to make sure that you are not violating any laws. Rules for hunting and trapping on public land can be found on the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries website at and the regulations are also available in PDF form as a 72 page ebook. That’s right, 72 pages that are mostly rules and regulations.

Another drawback to hunting on public land in Virginia is that although there is over 200,000 acres of land that people are allowed to hunt on, you are not guaranteed to be able to hunt on that land. Some places require hunters to make reservations well in advance and other places even have a lottery system where the privilege of being able to hunt on public land is left to chance. If you don’t win the lottery or you can’t get a reservation, you are not able to hunt.

One of the biggest drawbacks to hunting on public land in Virginia is that it can be much more challenging, frustrating, and even dangerous. When you are hunting on public land you will have other hunters in your area and you may also have to deal with hikers, backpackers, horseback riders and other visitors to these public places. It’s not easy to hunt when you have a lot of other visitors scaring away the animals. To avoid crowds, a lot of hunters confine themselves to hunting only in the off peak time of the day between 8:30 AM and 2:30 PM.

Hunting Private Land in Virginia

Hunting private land in Virginia has a number of benefits over hunting on public land in Virginia, but it does have its drawbacks as well. One big benefit to hunting private land in Virginia is besides the landowners rules there are far fewer rules and regulations. All of the rules for hunting on private property fit on one page and can be seen on this page of the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries website

One of the major benefits to hunting on private land is there are no commitments. You don’t have to do any work, maintenance or time consuming tasks typically associated with property ownership or being a member of a hunt club. Just show up and focus your time on hunting.

One of the major drawbacks to hunting on private property is the cost. Ownership of land is costly. You have the purchase price of the land initially, then general maintenance, and the cost of equipment to put in your food plots and the cost of seed and fertilizer. It is easy for these costs to run in the six figures.

Because of the liability and the high costs of land it’s not easy to find private landowners that will let you hunt on their property. If they do open their property up to hunting the local hunt clubs drive the prices up so high that an individual can’t afford the rental.

For a luxury all frills included hunt there are several outfitters in Virginia that can accommodate you. For this luxury they charge large sums of money for hunting  privileges. If you search online for places where you can hunt on private land in Virginia you will find some places don’t even list prices on their websites. Usually this is a sign that the cost is very expensive.

Remember these outfitters are professionals and require people to call in to inquire about prices so they can have their professionally trained staff close the deal. Some outfitters don’t have prices listed but do advertise specials where you can get $900 off the regular price. Common sense tells you if the place can offer a $900 discount, they must be charging quite a bit of money. Even the outfitters that do post prices online will usually charge in excess of $1000 per person for anyone that will be hunting. Luxury costs money.

If you’re looking for hunting land in Virginia  to hunt on and want

  • Comfort,
  • Prefer a guided hunt
  • These price points are within your budget
Then hiring an outfitter would be your best option.

Family Friendly Hunts In Virginia

A drawback of going with some of the outfitters or private land owners that allow hunting on private property is that there are restrictions in place that will not allow children or non hunters to be part of the group. If you wanted to take your son or daughter hunting with you, or your spouse and children wanted to go along but not hunt, you will not only have to find an outfitter that you can afford, you will also have to find one that will permit your young children to hunt with you and a facility for visitors.

Your Best Bet for Finding Hunting Land in Virginia

While this may seem like a tall order it’s not impossible to find a place that will allow hunting on private land in Virginia without the high costs. There are some that are not only incredibly affordable, but also much more accommodating.

If you would like to find out where you can find private hunting land in Virginia for a fraction of the price other places charge, and a place that encourages you to bring children, a spouse, or anyone else, even if they are not hunting, begin your search at:

Let this be the benchmark of what to expect when looking for Private Hunting Land in Virginia.


Leave A Reply (7 comments so far)

  1. thom tran
    3 months ago

    So there is a difference! I used to hunt public land only and I don’t think I even saw a dear for many seasons in a row. I’m not sure if the public land was over-hunted or just not good for deer hunting at all .

  2. efpierce
    3 months ago

    What do you recommend for your area? I know in some areas, public land can actually be better, but I try to stick with private land as long as I know the area well and have visited the land that I am going to hunt.

    • admin
      3 months ago

      My opinion is a bit biased since our farm is my play ground. IF you like rules and regulations then public land is cool.
      If you want to put up your tree stand or ground blind and leave it up for the entire time you plan on hunting without worrying about it being stolen or getting a ticket because the rules say you have to take it down then hunt on private land. A lot of public land won’t let you have an open fire or a generator. Roughing it for a week in the cold is for the animals.

  3. Ali Khan
    4 months ago

    Where is virgina your frams are? Can you give me address? I want check the area for place to stay etc?

  4. Eleanore
    2 years ago

    Sweet blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo News. Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News? I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Cheers.

  5. Grace
    2 years ago

    Excellent read, I just passed this onto a friend who was doing some research on that. And he just bought me lunch as I found it for him smile Thus let me rephrase that: Thanks for lunch! “Any man would be forsworn to gain a kingdom.”