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How old do I have to be in order to hunt unaccompanied?
General hunting seasons have no requirement for hunters of a certain age to be accompanied while legally hunting. If you were born after January 1, 1972, you must have either successfully passed a hunter education course or obtained a one-year, once-in-a-lifetime hunter-education deferral in order to legally hunt in Washington. While hunting, you must possess a valid hunting license and tag(s), be hunting in an open season with legal equipment in an open area, and not be trespassing. There currently is no age limit for attending a hunter-education course in Washington.
If you are hunting under a hunter-education deferral, you must be accompanied by the designated accompanying mentor who has been certified to meet necessary requirements. You must be at least 10 years old to apply for a hunter-education deferral, and the accompanying mentor must be at least 18 years of age.
Youth waterfowl and upland bird seasons and moose and bighorn sheep permit seasons require youth hunters to be accompanied by an adult at least 18 years of age who is not hunting.
The Department recommends youth hunters be accompanied by older, more experienced hunters.