Outfitter review on Beams On The Prairie
HuntTheNorth.com Outfitter Review On
Beams On The Prairie
For the month of May, 2004, we will be examining the outfitter Dave Beam of Beams On The Prairie. Dave is based out of Fargo, North Dakota. We have had a chance to speak with Dave Beam for many hours on end and actually meet Dave in person several times. We were also able to participate on two of his exceptional Spring Snow Goose Hunts. Our first adventure with Beams On The Prairie took place in February of 2004 in Fairbury Nebraska for a 3 day hunt. Our second hunt took place in April of 2004 in Northcentral North Dakota for another 3 day snow goose hunt. During the second venture we were able to bring our HuntTheNorth.com writer Mike Moen along to give him an opportunity to participate in the hunt and then summarize the experience in his own words.
A Spring Fling With Beams On the Prairie
By Mike Moen
A cold North Dakota wind accompanied by fluffy snowflakes greeted us as we stepped out of the truck. As I walked across the field towards the massive spread of decoys, I could feel the excitement building inside of me. Dave Beam from Beams on the Prairie had invited HuntTheNorth’s Dan Wennerlind and Dustin Butler up for a shot at the tail end of the spring snow goose migration in north central North Dakota. When Dan called to ask if I’d like to tag along for the two day hunt, I jumped at the chance. After helping to put together Hunt the North’s weekly spring snow goose reports, and hearing about all the great shooting the hunters were having with our outfitters, I couldn’t wait for a chance to down a few birds myself……
About The Outfitter
Dave Beam founded Beams On The Prairie in 1992. Prior to being one of the premier outfitters in the Midwest, Dave Beam was an operator’s manager for the company Granger, out of Fargo, ND. When asked why he decided to go into the outfitting business Dave replied, “His whole life, all he wanted to do was hunt”! I think that pretty much sums it up. He also stated that during the amazing 200+ days he spent in the field last year alone, he really enjoys the freedom and flexibility of his job, and just being outdoors is satisfying for him. Dave currently employs approximately 5 additional guides throughout the year but you can be assured that he will be present as one of 3 guides providing you with your hunt. He is very conscious of his clients needs and the reason he has been so successful throughout the last 12 years is his repeat clientele. Dave specializes in a variety of hunts, in several states. All of his hunting opportunities are listed in detail at the bottom of this page.
Dave bases his hunting success on his mobility. While he is in the process of building a beautiful lodge in Langdon ND, he hunts so many areas across North Dakota as well as the upper Midwest that he needs to have several base camps to provide for all of his hunts. Through the last 14 years Dave has personally researched all of the possibilities for lodging in each area and he has a good handle on the local motels in each area that service the hunter’s needs.
Though you will be staying in a motel while participating on your hunt, be assured that all of your needs will be met and you will be in very close proximity to the game you are hunting. Your reservations will be made in advance for you and if you have any additional needs be sure to let Dave know what they are and he will accommodate them as best he can. Accommodation rates are not included in your daily hunting rates.
Custom Hunts Available
North Dakota Waterfowl Hunts
Early Canada Goose Season
Dave starts out down in South eastern North Dakota and stations himself in the town of Milner. This season starts on September 1 and runs through the 15th. The limit is 5 birds a day and the worst day in the early season last year left one young man one bird shy of his possession limit, not too shabby. Dave had access to numerous cut grain fields that the local geese are using.
He has also tied up the waterholes that the roost on to assure that they will not be disturbed before the hunt. He is very thorough. Dave hunts over large spreads of full body canada goose decoys and uses Final approach ground blinds to maintain his mobility throughout the season. As Dave says ”These local birds smarten up quick and you have to stay one step ahead of them”.
Sandhill Crane Hunts
The Sandhill Crane season starts in mid September and this is one of Dave’s favorite hunts. He says that these massive birds are like B57’s coming into your decoys. That’s right Dave actually decoys Sandhill Cranes on this hunt. Prior to the regular Waterfowl opener, Dave is stationed in the 3 bird per day zone just west of highway 281. He hunts out of the town of Rugby. Believe me that this is an exceptional hunt for the waterfowler who wants to try something new. Dave describes the hunt as more like big game hunting than waterfowl hunting.
Fall Waterfowl Hunting
During the regular waterfowl hunting season Dave is stationed out of the town of Langdon. He has access to tens of thousands of exclusively leased fields to hunt. Dave has been hunting this area for many years and he will customize any hunt you desire. If you would like to field hunt Snow Geese in the morning and Canadas in the afternoon… no problem. Dave has more decoys than any person I have ever met. How about an afternoon field mallard shoot? Dave has over 250 field mallard decoys to give you a once in a lifetime mallard hunt. Another exceptional waterfowl hunt is Dave’s custom Swan hunts. If you are interested in bringing down a huge Tundra Swan be sure to apply by July for your swan tag and Dave will take you on a guided decoy swan hunt. If you think you’ve seen everything you need to watch as a 20+ lb Swan comes sailing into your decoys… Wow! Bottom line Dave Beam has made a lifestyle of customizing any type of waterfowl hunt for any size group of hunters. This is Dave’s bread and butter and with the way the regulations are today it is well worth the extra money to have Beams On The Prairie set up the your custom hunt for next fall.
North Dakota Whitetail Deer Hunts
Beams On The Prairie also offers a limited number of bow and rifle whitetail deer hunts out of Fargo. He has over 10,000 acres of prime agricultural land that are all exclusive for Beams On The Prairie available with 20 permanent stands already set up. He only takes 2-4 hunters at one time to assure you the quality of the animals are there year after year. The bow hunting tags are available over the counter and the rifle tags are a lottery drawing in June.
Spring Snow Goose Hunts
Starting in mid February Dave hits the prairies of southeast Nebraska near the town of Fairbury, to get set up for the Spring Snow Goose Season. Dave has been guiding for spring snows since the first day that the season opened some 8 years ago in the same area of Nebraska. Through the extensive research of his spring hunting Dave has taken an alternative approach on his spring snow goose hunts. They are all done over water, out of permanent blinds. Don’t worry about being up at the crack of dawn down here…
You still need to let the birds get up and move off the water. Then Dave’s custom 250-300 floater decoy spread really piles up the birds all afternoon. After the birds move through Nebraska Dave leapfrogs up into North central North Dakota where he uses a mix of floaters and full bodies on field sheet water to make short work of the late juveniles that filter through all spring long.
Spring Turkey Hunts
I don’t know how he finds the time, but Dave also guides for Spring Turkeys along the South Dakota/Nebraska border out of the town of Valentine. Dave likes this area since he has access to a lot of private property in both Nebraska and South Dakota. These states are also very inviting since multiple tags are available over the counter in each state.
Dan Wennerlind, Dresser, WI
2004 Spring Snow Goose Hunt
Special Canada Season: Sept. 1-28
Youth duck/goose: Sept. 22& 23 (no guides fees charged)
Sandhill Crane: Sept. 14 – Sept. 27
Afternoon dove hunts: Sept. only. Minimum 2 people
Ducks: Sept. 28- mid December
Geese: Sept. 28- mid December
Tundra Swan: Sept., 28-mid November
All Waterfowl Hunts Are: $200.00 per person/per day
Spring Turkey: April 13- May 19
3 day hunts- 1 bird, $500.00. 2nd bird additional $250.00
4 day hunts- $1000.00 sunrise to sunset, plus $250 for buck (rifle) tag.
Includes breakfast rolls and field lunch.
Cost of buck tag due upon booking, nonrefundable unless we can rebook the hunt. 50% deposit due within 30 days. Final balance due upon arrival.
Nebraska and North Dakota Spring Snow Goose Hunts
Nebraska: February 10- March 10
North Dakota: March 10 – April 31
Hours: Sunrise to 3 p.m. or limits reached
Price: $200.00 per person, per day
All Waterfowl hunts are a 2 day minimum. When possible, parties of 1-3 will be grouped with other hunters. Mixed parties will have no more then 5 hunters per field. Dogs are allowed only in parties of 4 or more.
Deposits: A 50% deposit is required upon booking. If your deposit is not received within 10 Days, your hunt is subject to re-booking to the next available party. Deposits are refundable for cancellations received within 45 days of season opener.
Final Balances: Due upon arrival
Beams On The Prairie Spring Snow Goose Hunt Rating
|Catagories||Comments||Ranking 1-5 best|
|Outfitter Knowledge/Personality||Dave & his crew are experts at what they do and were very entertaining throughout the hunt, to say the least!||5|
|Quality Of Equipment & Decoy Spread||All of the equipment used was in excellent cond. & the decoy spread consisted of over 400 full body decoys & 200 floaters.||5|
|Opportunity To Take Game||We saw many geese everyday, we had numerous flocks work the spread & we did not see another hunter the whole trip.||5|
|Ability To Tailor Hunt To Customer’s Needs||We never had more than 5 hunters in the field, each hunter’s needs were met & multiple types of blinds were anvailable for individual needs.||4|
|Quality Of Lodging & Meals||The motel was within 10 min. of the field, it was relatively cheap. There were several restaraunts avail. in town for meals.||3|
|Pricing Of Hunt & Additional Costs Of Trip||At $200.00 per day/per gun, Beams is right in the ballpark with the quality outfitters in the business. There were no hidden charges & overall it was a reasonably priced trip.||4|
|Overall Quality Of Hunt||The overall hunt was exceptional! We were not competing for the birds we saw. We had ample opportunity to shoot birds. The guides were experts & made the hunt very enjoyable!||5|
|Overall Beams On The Prairie Scored 31 Out Of 35 Giving Them An “A” Rating. We Would Not Hesitate To Refer Dave Beam For Any Of The Hunts That He Offers!||31/35|
For More Information
Please contact Beams On The Prairie:
Dave and Annette Beam
P.O. Box 903
West Fargo, ND 58078