Layout hunts

Another of our specialties! We are the only guide service in the area to offer layout hunting for waterfowl. If you’re a duck hunter and have never had the pleasure of layout hunting, you owe it yourself to give it a try. This is a very unique and exciting way to hunt ducks that many will never experience.

If you’re unfamiliar with what layout hunting is, here’s a quick primer: Layout hunting involves the use of both a layout boat and a tender boat. The layout boat is carried into position by the tender. The layout is then unloaded and anchored in its hunting position, usually very far from shore in the open water. We then deploy decoys around the layout boat, both to draw in passing birds, and to conceal the layout boat. We normally use approximately twelve dozen decoys, and add more if necessary. Once the decoys are in place, a hunter is transferred to the layout boat with a supply of ammunition and a two-way radio. The tender boat then motors away several hundred yards away and anchors. The hunter in the layout boat lays down in the boat (hence the name) and awaits the birds. Members of the hunting party take turns in the layout boat until the trip is over.

When the birds decoy, they normally come in very low to the water, and very fast. This affords the hunter some of the most exciting shooting available. Many of the species that are harvested while layout hunting rarely come near shore on the Great Lakes, and are never seen on a typical duck hunt. These include: Scoters (Black, Surf, and Whitewing), Bluebills, Canvasbacks, Redheads, Old Squaws (also known as Longtail Ducks), Bufflehead, and Goldeneyes.

We exclusively use Layout Addictions layout boats to target diving and sea ducks on the waters of the Bays de Noc, Green Bay, and Lake Michigan. Arrangements can also be made for multi-day trips in other areas such as Saginaw Bay in the Lower Peninsula and other select ports in the Upper Peninsula.

Open Water Boat Blind

When hunters prefer or weather doesn’t permit use of the layout boats, we also offer open water hunts from a boat blind. These hunts use the same decoy set up as the layout hunts and target the same species, but involve hunting as a party from a larger boat. This is the ideal hunt for parties that include younger hunters who still need a bit of supervision or hunters who may have trouble transferring from the tender boat to the layout.