Membership Application Process


How can I join SWMNV?

NOTE: Application does not guarantee acceptance.  

            Applications may only be submitted between February 1 and July 31.

Membership is by invitation of the Governing Committee, hereinafter referred to as the GovCom. Such factors as integrity, ethics, attitude, and quality of experience weigh heavily in the selection process. SWMNV maintains stringent qualification procedures, which are intended to select hunters who are safety conscious, proficient, ethical, discreet, and respectful of landowners and their property. This is very important as many adjoining property owners may object to hunting.

*NOTE: The GovCom may periodically freeze applications as conditions dictate (due to fluctuations in property/member numbers).

To be considered for membership, applicants must:

  • be at least 18 years old.
  • successfully pass a Criminal Background check.

Applicant must provide proof of at least one of the following:

Current Concealed Weapons Permit

Purchased a firearm from a licensed VA firearms dealer within the past twelve months

Currently hold an active Personnel Security Investigation Certificate

Active duty law enforcement officer or a retired officer drawing a pension

VA State Police Background Check

If you do not currently meet any of the above options you may apply for a criminal background check as follows:

VA State Police Background Check - Submit form SP-230 along with a $15.00 company check or money order to:

Department of State Police

P.O. Box 85076

Richmond, VA 23261-5076

Form can be found at the following address:

  • be willing to volunteer 6 hours of time to the organization not directly related to hunting.
  • have prior experience harvesting at least five big game animals within the last ten years with bow and arrow, including compound and crossbow.  You must be able to provide proof by either photos or game check cards.
  • complete a state sponsored hunter safety course and the International Bowhunter Education Program (IBEP).

All applicants must provide evidence of the successful completion of a state sponsored hunter safety course – being “grandfathered” does not satisfy this requirement.  Additionally, each applicant must successfully pass the International Bowhunter Education Program (IBEP) safety course.

If you already meet the above requirements, then proceed with the online application process.  If not, then wait to complete an application until such time as do meet all of the requirements.  Should you have questions, please contact the Membership Officer at

You must first complete the application on-line.

  • Your application should provide a hunting history supported by references.

Non-Refundable Application Fee.

  • Applicant is required to pay anon-refundable Application Fee of $60 via PayPal within seven (7) business days of the original online application. Upon submitting your application you will receive an email acknowledging our receipt of your application and a link to PayPal for payment of the application fee.   

Supporting Documentation.

  • All required supporting documents must be received by the Membership Officer within seven (7) business days of submitting the on-line application.  The applicant may forward these documents to the Membership Officer via email at, or via mail to the attention of the attention of the Membership Officer at the mailing address listed on the Contact Us page.
  • Required Supporting Documents
    • copy of state sponsored hunter education certificate or card;
    • copy of state sponsored I.B.E.P card front and back;
    • copy of driver’s license;
    • Criminal Background check documentation; and,
    • proof of 5 big game harvest by either photos or check cards

Selection Process

Applicants are selected for membership consideration using this process.

Pass a shooting proficiency test.

  • Upon the timely receipt of a complete application the Applicant will be contacted by the Membership Officer and provided with the information necessary to schedule the shooting test.  Applicant will have fourteen (14) business days to schedule the test with one of the qualification officers provided. 
  • The shooting proficiency test consists of, placing two-out-of-three broadheads, the broadheads that you hunt with and not practice broadheads, in a six inch circle at twenty yards and at thirty yards.  This test demonstrates shooting skills with actual hunting equipment. This test meets or exceeds the shooting proficiency tests required on area military bases such as Fort Belvoir Army Reservation and Quantico Marine Corp Base.  If applicant fails the range qualifications, it is the applicant's responsibility to schedule another test no less than one (1) week from original qualification date.

Complete an in person interview with members of the GovCom.

  • The GovCom shall examine all of the above information and as well as evaluating the additional information obtained during the in person interview when deciding whether to accept, decline or defer the applicant's request for membership.

What happens if I'm accepted for membership?

Successful applicants shall be required to:

  • Attend Orientation Meeting
    • When accepted for membership the applicant will be required to complete an orientation briefing to ensure all bylaws, rules and regulations, and policies and procedures of SWMNV are clear and understood.
  • sign a liability waiver agreement,               
  • complete a registration form,
  • receive website login and usage tutorial, and
  • pay Annual dues --  currently $60


Member activity reports are periodically solicited from cooperating landowners, game wardens, and biologists. SWMNV shall continually monitor members and take any disciplinary action necessary for reports of unsafe, unethical and/or improper activities, up to and including expulsion.

What are the benefits of membership?

You will receive periodic newsletters and flyers informing you of upcoming meetings, events, subjects of interest, etc.

Access to public and private property for regular in-season hunting.

You will have the opportunity to be placed on public and private property for out-of-season harvesting of deer.

Liability Insurance coverage.  (On SWMNV managed properties only)

An opportunity to improve the image of bowhunters with the general public.

An opportunity to participate in a sport you love while serving your local community.

How are bowhunters assigned to properties?

As members join, they are assigned properties, introduced to property owners, given reference materials (maps, aerial photos, etc.), and physically shown the boundaries of assigned properties. Most members prefer property locations close to home and/or work for ease of access. SWMNV accommodates such preferences whenever possible. However, due to management constraints, SWMNV makes no guarantees for such assignments. Client and property/member coordination needs, take precedence.

Rules may be customized to accommodate specific requirements on "special" properties.

County Coordinators, District Leaders, and Team Leaders provide local leadership for members.  Each member may be reassigned or rotated by the leaders to best achieve SWMNV management objectives.

Rules and Regulations

If you are still interested in becoming a member of SWMNV, please make sure you understand the application process above and continue to the Rules and Regulations.


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