So sometime in the next 5-10 years I could potentially have the opportunity to make a big decision. Buy a warm season only retirement residence in Northern MN with good nearby public access for fishing & Ruffed Grouse hunting opportunities. Or take a more expensive (but maybe more rewarding) road and look at a 1/4 section of property in a pheasant/upland bird state.

Assuming I have the financial flexibility to purchase a decent chunk of marginal agricultural land for recreational purposes what locale has the best options. I would consider pheasant "production" a primary purpose but an area where pheasants & bobwhite quail could coexist would be really appealing too.

The general area would have to have low (relatively speaking anyway) land prices

The general area would need to have at least decent existing upland bird populations with some insulation from the whims of national farm policy

The area would need to have good potential to enroll land in revenue producing conservation programs or have cash rent crop options that compliment/enhances the upland habitat

Other good public upland hunting opportunities within a short drive would be important

The upland habitat type would be such that I could generally handle the maintenance by myself with a small compliment of equipment

I'm guessing the short list will include some combination of South Dakota near the MO river, southwest/south central Nebraska or north central Kansas but curious what other will say. Thank for any feedback.