Hunter-Trapper Education

As part of our committment to the preservation of the tradition of hunting, and the ongoing participation and development of youth in this sport, Cocalico Sportsmen conducts Hunter-Trapper Education courses each year. These are part of the schedule of nearly twenty classes that are conducted in Northern Lancaster County under the direction of the PA Game Commission (PGC). We provide the use of facilities, free lunch and refreshments to all students participating, while the course and reference materials are provided free to the students from the PGC.

The current course is (6) hours of an instructor lead class combined with self study at home by the students. The course is comprised of basic instruction designed to start the students on the road to becoming safe, ethical, knowledgeable, involved, and responsible hunters. It includes an introduction to firearms and their safe handling, archery, trapping, and black powder muzzleloaders, as well as outdoor safety and wildlife conservation and management. Lectures and demonstrations are intermixed with several videos designed to provoke thought and discussion on the various topics. Also included is a review of the PA Hunting and Trapping Laws by a PGC Game Warden.

The course concludes with a test that the students must pass in order to receive their Training Certificate, which is necessary for them to purchase their first PA hunting license. You must be at least 11 years old to participate. Adults may also take the course to obtain their Certificate as these are more often now required for non-resident hunters to obtain a license in many of the western states.

From 1959 when formalized hunting safety training was adopted in Pennsylvania through today over 2 million students have been certified, with a resulting 80% decline in hunting related shooting incidents.

The 2019 classes conducted at Cocalico Sportsmen are scheduled for June 29th and August 10th. You may obtain additional information about these and other classes held in Lancaster County and across the state, as well as register online at You may also contact Matt Aungst at 717-484-0727 or Sign up early as the classes fill quickly and there is a space limitation.

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