Game & Season
Castle Mountains have abundant big game, including elk,
mule and white-tailed deer, moose (migratory), black
bear, mountain lion, prairie dog (gopher version), badgers,
and antelope. As anywhere, game patterns can vary with
pressure, weather, forage and water availability, and
other factors. Ultimately, hunting success depends on a combination of these factors, hunter skill, and luck.
Hunting area includes 3600 acres of private land and
privately-accessible state land, plus thousands of acres
of adjoining National Forest. The ranch has four miles
of boundary with the National Forest.
Public access to this area is minimal in archery season
and limited during gun season. The normally abundant numbers
of elk, deer, and antelope on the ranch combine with the
low-impact nature of archery hunting to make the ranch
an outstanding bowhunting venue. While game behavior is,
of course, more unpredictable during gun season, the combination
of animal numbers, hunting space and limited public pressure
generally produces excellent gun hunting opportunities.
All hunting will be unguided. We’ll provide you
with a plasticized topographical map, annotated with property
boundaries and local place names, upon your arrival. We
will meet you when you arrive and check you out on the
cabin, the map, and the territory. If you want to purchase
your own map in advance, the appropriate maps are USGS
/ USDA FS, 7.5 Minute Series, “Castle Town” Quadrangle
(Township 8N 8E, Sections (various portions of) 26, 27,
34, 35, & 36) and “Hamen” Quadrangle (Township
7N 8E, Sections 15 & 16. After booking and lease signing,
we’ll be happy to email you a scanned version of
our annotated map.
|" Mike, I just wanted to say we had an excellent time at the Ranch. We went out expecting a bed to sleep in and hoping for a chance to see an elk. The results were beyond expectation. The cabin was nothing but the best and there was more land for us to chase deer and elk on than our bodies could handle. We saw lots of game and had a great hunt. We even still-hunted up to the lake and caught fish for dinner one night. We were already talking about coming back before the hunt was over. " -- Wisconsin Rifle Hunter
terrain includes heavy timber, open parks, aspen groves,
creeks, springs (favorite spots for elk wallows), and
alfalfa fields. Average
altitude is approximately 6200 feet, and much of the terrain is steep
and rugged. Fall weather is unpredictable and can change both drastically
and suddenly. We recommend hunters be in top physical condition and
always travel in pairs. In addition to extra clothing, hunters should
pack, at least, a map, compass or GPS, whistle, water, food, matches
and paper, and a first aid kit.
"Mike, I just wanted to drop you a quick note to say "Thanks" for providing us with such an awesome hunting experience. We all had a great time on the Rhynard ranch. I can honestly say that from a hunting perspective, I have never stayed in a more comfortable and inviting place. You run a first class operation with great accommodations and excellent hunting habitat. I hope to return next year." -- Minnesota Rifle Hunter
bow-hunting trip to the Rhynard Ranch was a great
experience. We stayed in an excellent hunting
cabin and enjoyed the fellowship only found at
hunting camp. But beyond all those moments in
camp was the absolute adrenalin pumping excitement
of being in the middle of an elk herd stalking
a 6 x 6 bull. Although others got their elk,
I didn’t harvest that big bull but what
I did drag out with me was one of the best hunting
experiences of my life. Thanks Mike.” -- Montana
Licensing & Regs
hunters must have an appropriate hunting license. Since
we operate as a "drop camp", each hunter
must obtain his or her own hunting license from the
of Montana. The Montana
Fish, Wildlife, and Parks web site provides detailed
information on seasons, licensing, bonus points, and special permits,
by district. The ranch is in elk and deer districts 452 and 580,
and the adjoining National Forest is all in district 452. Both the
ranch and adjoining National Forest are in antelope district 491.
Normally, districts 452 and 580 have one week of either-sex elk gun
hunting, while deer and elk archery hunting are always either-sex.
ranch is eligible for up to 15 non-resident Landowner
Sponsorship Deer Combination licenses. These licenses
are allocated in a special drawing. The ranch can expect
to receive 6-9 of these "guaranteed" licenses.
Hunters or parties, who wish to apply for a Landowner
Sponsorship Deer Combination License,
must first book a hunt at the Rhynard Ranch. We’ll
then mail you a certificate, which must accompany your
license application to Montana Fish, Wildlife, & Parks.
Hunters holding one of these licenses may not hold other
licenses, and all hunting must occur on ranch property.
District regulations, quotas, etc., change from year to year and are published on the MT Fish, Wildlife, & Parks website. You can also phone (1-406-444-2950) or write MT Fish, Wildlife, & Parks website. Their address is PO Box 200701, Helena, MT 59620-0701.
|"We saw a
herd bull every day. The cabin is perfect. I can't
say enough about our week, except that it was a
totally enjoyable experience." -- PA Bowhunter
Mountain Lion Hunts
The ranch has a prospering lion population; and we, therefore, lease the ranch and National Forest access to a mountain lion outfitter. If interested in a lion hunt, we'll connect you with our outfitter to discuss his offering, dates, rates, and other items.
"Mr. Rhynard, First of all I want to thank you for a great hunt. We had a great time and saw and got into elk every day. The accommodations were perfect. It was above all expectations... It was the most enjoyable hunt I have ever been on. The other 4 guys agree!" -- Wisconsin Bowhunter
you’re tired of freezing your tail off in a tent,
love the warm ambiance of a hot soak in the tub, electric heat, a woodburning
stove, and a comfortable bed after the day’s hunt. Our luxury
cabin has all the modern amenities needed to make
your stay the most comfortable of your hunting career. While guests provide
their own personal and hunting gear, transportation, and food; everything
else is provided, including cookware, a game cart, a game pole, and both cooking and eating utensils.
areas are fairly close to established ranch or Forest
Service roads/trails, facilitating game retrieval. Retrieval
services may be purchased, for a fee, from nearby residents.
The cabin yard has a large, elevated game pole. Game
butchering and packing services are available in White
Sulphur Springs, Clyde Park, and Livingston. ATV’s
and horses are not permitted, with the exception of ATV’s
used for game retrieval on established trails only.
closest commercial airports are in Helena, Bozeman, Great
Falls, and Billings. Various Airlines service these cities
(see below), each of which has rental car facilities.
Four-wheel-drive vehicles are most adaptable to Montana’s
rapidly changeable weather conditions, and we recommend
their use. Tire chains are a good idea during gun season.
Bozeman – 1.5
hours – Delta, United, Northwest, Horizon
Helena – 1.5
hours – Delta, Northwest, Horizon, Big Sky
Falls – 2.5 hours – Delta, Northwest, Horizon,
Billings – 2.5-3
hours – Delta, United, Northwest, Horizon, Big
Delta | United | Northwest | Big
Sky | Horizon
Mike, I just wanted to drop you a quick note to say "Thanks" for providing us with such an awesome hunting experience. We all had a great time on the Rhynard ranch. I can honestly say that from a hunting perspective, I have never stayed in a more comfortable and inviting place. You run a first class operation with great accommodations and excellent hunting habitat. I hope to return next year.
-- Minnesota Hunter
Rates & Schedule
of the lease fee is due within 10 days of initial booking. After receiving your down payment, we will email you the lease agreement, which is due back to us, signed, within 10 days. If either of the 10-day periods is exceeded, the booking will be considered void, and the week will be placed back on the open market. After lease receipt, there are no refunds. However,
persons who fail to draw a tag may receive a refund before
30 April of the current year; or, credit their down payment
to the following year. Prices may vary from year to year.
The remaining half of the fee, along with a refundable
$500 security deposit, is due 30 days before arrival.
Payment must be by personal check or bank check.
With the exception of the first and last weeks of both
archery and gun season, check-in
is any time on Sunday and checkout is before 10 AM the
following Saturday. Check-in and checkout times may vary
slightly due to scheduling constraints, but will always
be specified and accepted by guests before arrival. Rates
and hunting schedules are shown immediately below.
Groups of 2-3: $1,700
per person per week
Groups of 4 or more: $1,500 per
person per week (must have at least 4 hunters)
accompany at least two paying hunters pay a reduced rate
A single hunter may be
accompanied by a non-hunter (total of two persons), but
must pay the "hunter" rate.
We lease to only one group per week. Minimum group size
is two hunters. Published rates at time of down
payment apply Rates subject to change without notice.
Prairie Dog Rates
$150 per person per day. "Summer Recreation" cabin pricing
applies for lodging fee.
The state of Montana charges a daily $5.60
tax for this property lease. These taxes will be
withheld from the security deposit refund, unless paid
I can't comment enough on the excellent accommodations you’ve built. We really enjoyed the hunt…I saw at least four whitetails that would make the Pope and Young record books – missed one of them.” -- Wisconsin Bowhunter
Big Game Hunt Dates
Opening day – Sept 7, 2013;
Closing day -- Oct 20, 2013
Note 1: NET = not earlier than, NLT = not later than
* = extra day in this week
# = this week discounted to $1000 per person per week.
*#Sept 6, NET 9 AM
Sep 13, NLT 2 PM
Sept 15, NET 8 AM
Sep 21, NLT 10 AM
Sept 22, NET 8 AM
Sept 28, NLT 10 AM
Sept 29, NET 8 AM
Oct 5, NLT 10 AM
#Oct 6, NET 8 AM
Oct 13, NLT 10 AM
Opening day Oct 26, 2013;
Closing day Dec 1, 2013
Note 1: NET = not earlier than, NLT = not later than
* = extra day in this week
*Oct 25, NET 8 AM
Nov 1 , NLT 2 PM
Nov 3, NET 8 AM
Nov 9, NLT 10 AM
Nov 10, NET 8 AM
Nov 16, NLT 10 AM
Nov 17, NET 8 AM
Nov 23, NLT 10 AM
*Nov 24, NET 8 AM
Dec 1, NLT 2 PM
Hunt dates may change, if MT Fish, Wildlife, & Parks implements changes to the big game season. MT Fish, Wildlife, & Parks can decide to make such changes at any time before the season begins.
Bookings are on a first
come, first served basis. However, since some parties are
unsuccessful in the draw, vacancies
generally develop after the draw date (April 15). Therefore,
in cases where a party’s preferred week
has already been booked, we allow the party to book a different week
(so they’re guaranteed a booking if they draw),
AND also book the second or third position, if available, for the week
they originally wanted. Or, if there are no first positions
available, a party may book the second or third position
for two separate weeks. Thus, if a party
wants the first week of bow season, but another party
is already penciled
in for that week, they can book the first position for
some other week and ALSO book the second position for
the first week. Then, if the party that holds the first
position for the first week fails to draw, but the second
party does draw, the second party can take the first
vacate the week they held first position in, leaving
it for any party in line behind them for that week.
We provide references, upon request. However, to avoid over-burdening our references, we ask that you not request their contact information until you are in the advanced stages of your hunt selection process. We and our references greatly appreciate your cooperation.
I forwarded the photo of the nice 6x5. He was the last in a line of 6 elk I bumped into on a heavy timbered, steep slope... A single shot from 150-175 yards dropped him where he stood. With or without the elk, I wanted to make sure I emailed to thank you for providing such a wonderful place to stay, hike and hunt. I'm spoiled on elk hunting for life! I hope that I'll get a chance to return to Rhynard Ranch for elk hunting again someday. I'll never forget the hunt.
-- Minnesota Rifle Hunter
Click below for a hunt video from Rhynard Ranch!
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Broadband -- high speed
Windows Media Player
-- Broadband -- medium speed
Windows Media Player--
had an awesome time hunting at the Rhynard Ranch. The
accommodations were great and the elk were outstanding! We
can't wait to make a return trip!"
-- Minnesota Bowhunter
"Mike, we would like to thank you very much for giving us the opportunity to hunt your family ranch! We had a blast! Your ranch and the area around it was game rich! The views were breathtaking and your attention to detail was awesome. I can't say enough about the accommodations, they far exceeded our exceptions. You can bet, that will be back." -- Florida Bowhunter
for the opportunity to hunt on such a fine
ranch. The elk herd population is more than
sufficient and with a little patience and determination
any hunter can be successful. We found out
first hand on the second day of our hunt ---
I harvested my bull around 7:45 AM and Ricky
harvested his bull later that day around 6
PM. As for the accommodations, they are just
like being at home with the exception of our
families not being there! In the future I plan
to bring my family so they can experience the
same things that Ricky and I have been fortunate
enough to experience. Can't wait 'til the next
Texas gun hunter
Just wanted to say thanks for the great hospitality we all had a fantastic time! I'm very impressed with your operation and can't wait to come back in 2014. Also just wondering if you have clients for the last week of season this year?" -- SD Bowhunter