MISSOULA, Mont.- -An upcoming auction offers bidders- whether they''re on the phone, online or attending the sale in person- a chance to buy their dream hunt while supporting the work of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.
Dozens of hunts will be auctioned as part of RMEF's annual convention, called Elk Camp, in Las Vegas, Feb. 28-March 3.
Also up for bid: a log cabin, New Holland tractor, art, firearms, trips and many other items.
See Donor Profile booklet linked below for descriptions and photos of many auction items:
"The hunt auctions are always a highlight of Elk Camp," said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. "From elk in Montana, to plains game in Africa, to tahr in New Zealand, buying a hunt at an RMEF auction is a great way to support conservation because these hunts were donated to our organization by devoted outfitters."
RMEF also will auction special hunting permits on behalf of state agencies and tribes, with the vast majority of proceeds returning to those agencies to fund conservation programs.
Ten things to consider when buying a hunt at an RMEF auction:
1. If the sale price is greater than retail value, the difference may be tax deductible as a charitable donation to RMEF.
2. RMEF only sells hunts from outfitters in good standing with RMEF.
3. Research auction items in advance. Contact the donating outfitter and ask all the same questions you'd ask if you were buying the hunt directly from him. Check references.
4. Read the donation description closely. Note what is and is not included, such as trophy fees, gratuities, gun import fees, licenses and permits, lodging and meals before or after the hunt, transportation from the airport to the hunt area, etc. If something isn't clear, ask.
5. Many outfitters who donate hunts to RMEF auctions also are exhibitors at Elk Camp. Attending the event gives you a chance to meet and visit with them personally.
6. Once the auction gavel comes down and you've purchased a hunt, book it as soon as possible. Most hunts have expiration dates. The faster you book your trip, the better chance you'll get your preferred dates.
7. Most outfitters are happy to upgrade hunts purchased at an RMEF auction. You may be able to add hunters (or non-hunters), days, species and other services.
8. Don't rely on verbal agreements. Make sure all the particulars of your hunt, including any added services and associated fees, are part of your contract with the outfitter.
9. All auction times, buyer's premiums and absentee bidding information are included in the Donor Profile booklet linked above, posted on the RMEF website and available at the auctions. Be sure to review the detailed auction info and terms of sale.
10. Remember why you're participating in the auction in the first place-to support the RMEF mission to ensure the future of elk, other wildlife, their habitat and our hunting heritage.
To arrange for live bidding via telephone (deadline Feb. 15) or Internet, contact Kristy Bosworth, RMEF donations manager, at 406-523-0242 or firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
RMEF is leading a conservation initiative that protected or enhanced habitat on more than 6.2 million acres-an area larger than Yellowstone, Great Smoky Mountains, Grand Canyon, Glacier, Yosemite and Rocky Mountain national parks combined. RMEF also is a strong voice for hunters in access, wildlife management and conservation policy issues. RMEF members, partners and volunteers, working together as Team Elk, are making a difference all across elk country. Join us at www.rmef.org
or 800-CALL ELK.