Milk River Outfitters – Hinsdale, MT
Eric Albus – Outfitter/Guide
“I’ve been Outfitting and Guiding since 1989 and I’m a 4th generation rancher/farmer. My love for the land, livestock and wildlife are an integral part of the outfitting business. Thanks to early outdoor shows like Realtree Monster Bucks and channels like TNN and ESPN Milk River Outfitters quickly became a household name. The roster of successful hunters and outdoor industry personalities who have hunted with us here is certainly too numerous to list; however, it’s safe to say that anyone who is seeking high numbers of trophy big game animals has spent time with us here at Milk River Outfitters. I never thought that muddy river I swam in as a kid would give back as much as it has.
As integral as the river systems that we are blessed with have been in consistently growing big, mature animals, I eventually realized that there was more potential to be tapped. We wanted to push the envelope and produce more trophy class animals. The answer was to push the limits on the forage quality we offered to complement the fertile river bottoms.
Like most ranchers and outfitters I planted some of the same crops we used for our cattle. That’s when Jason Snavely with Drop-Tine Wildlife Consulting came to film a national TV show with us. It didn’t take me long to realize that Jason was a food plot freak. When he asks what’s planted in a particular field he doesn’t want to just hear “alfalfa”…he wants to know the variety, grower and explanation on why it’s better than other options. He will then recall specific trials from states across the nation that dealt with the performance of that variety. It cracks me up! Jason filmed a great hunt with us and I began picking his brain about the nutritional needs of whitetails specifically. I began planting some of the products that Jason had tested over the years for his clients and I quickly realized he was on to something. He then sought region-specific varieties that would outperform unimproved varieties I was already using. I immediately noticed more winter hardy, persistent, high-yielding results from these improved varieties. As a result, when Jason called to tell me he finally decided to develop his own product line I was excited. Jason’s ability to remove any price point building and provide ONLY the most suited forage products available caught my attention.
Drop-Tine Seeds don’t just attract deer for our clients; they also hold them on our ranches until they reach maturity. I’m looking forward to trying new products from Drop-Tine as I know Jason is never satisfied with anything and he’s always motivated to seek a better option. Although I don’t do as many TV hunts as I once did, we are currently managing more ranches than we ever have. We’ve killed some of our biggest bucks in recent years and it’s a result of our food plot programs. With numerous intensively managed ranches along the Milk, Missouri, Yellowstone and Powder Rivers I can’t imagine a bigger customer of the Drop-Tine Seed Co. than myself!
Over the last few years I’ve had the pleasure of spending time with many of Jason’s clients who have also hunted with us. I’ve sat back at camp and listened to how satisfied these guys are with Jason’s consulting services as well as his dedication to big game nutritional programs. Jason has a unique blend of knowledge for the science behind what works and the ability to share that knowledge with food plotters like me. I’ve seen that look in his eyes when he knows there are better products out there and I’m confident that his passion for constantly sourcing great products from around the globe will drive the Drop-Tine Seed Co. to great success.