It’s the ultimate type of adventure. A new company, Helibacon, specializes in taking customers on shooting excursions. The best part? They’re shooting out of a helicopter.
Helibacon was started by Chris Britt, John Dumont, and Chase Roberts, three friends who saw an opportunity after the Texas legislature made it legal for helicopter companies to sell the gunner’s seat during a flight. “We love firearms, hunting and helicopters, and this was too good of an opportunity to pass up,” Britt told Opportunity Lives.
“Now we deliver full auto machine gun helicopter hog hunting experiences to a worldwide audience,” said Britt. The service has become incredibly popular, with friends taking trips for fun or companies using it to treat clients.
Customers go through a comprehensive safety course the night before the hunt. Then, the morning of, each customer is provided with a fully outfitted AR-15 as the helicopter goes searching for hogs. The goal is to shoot as many as possible.
The fundamental idea behind Helibacon is that the shooters taking trips are providing a service to local farmers, whose crops are terrorized every year by feral hogs. “People don’t understand what kind of damage pigs can do,” said Scott Savage, a rice farmer, in a recent video released by Helibacon. “They eat and breed, that’s it. They destroy everything.”
“The farmers love it,” said Britt in the video. “If they had their way, we’d be flying every single day.” Farmers have always been able to hire helicopter companies for eradicating the hogs themselves, but it was very expensive, said Britt.
This new opportunity allows everybody to win – customers get a hunting experience and farmers get their land protected. “The farmers give us access to the land in exchange for us bringing paying clients to cover the cost of the activity,” said Britt.
Britt said about six to ten thousand hogs are killed per year on Helibacon trips, making a sizable impact for the farmers. The biggest challenge is weather, though Helibacon does operate year-round.
Helibacon also offers “ultimate shooting experiences” that allow customers to shoot at exploding targets with a variety of historical and modern machine guns.
In the future, Britt said the company would love to go even bigger. He would love to have Huey’s with pintle mounted machine guns. “Want to use a minigun to cut a junked car in half from the helicopter? That’s us,” said Britt. Undoubtedly, as word continues to spread, Helibacon will become more popular with people looking for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.