“ There are some who can live without wild things and some who cannot.“ – Aldo Leopoldo
As hunting seasons begin to open up around the country it’s only a matter of a few weeks until the highlight of the sport opens. This of course is deer season. I thought while checking off the last days from the calendar and putting the final touches on my setup that starting a series of articles to share my insights would be fitting. During this series we will touch on everything from tradition to tactics with a mindful twist.
I look at our sport in two different categories. The first is what I call active. This is the time spent in a field seeking out the prey. The second I call the passive season. While the active season of course holds the reward and deep rooted traditions, the passive season is where the work is done that leads to that reward. You see you can’t have one without the other in my eyes.
This isn’t to say the passive season does not hold adventure. This is the time where you get to geek out. This is where you put in the time scouting and learning. Yes there is always something new to be learned either through an article you read or just by walking through the woods. By taking the time to learn there is one thing you will find that happens, you will build an understanding and connection with not only the animal you’re planning on hunting but also with outdoors. This has changed my thinking towards hunting over the years. Originally I was going out as a way to pay homage and remember my own traditions. As well as for the thrill of the chase. Now those things are still important to me. However through knowledge and time, I’ve built this deep connection and reasoning for what I do. I’ve found this space inside of me where being immersed in my active hunt is now just as much about hunting the connection as it is about hunting the prey.
This sort of understanding isn’t out of reach for anyone. It just takes time and effort. I know a lot of us put in the time scouting in order to decide where to hang that tree stand or where to spend a morning sitting. However have you ever taken the time to ask yourself why am I picking this tree? Sure maybe it’s just that lucky spot or it just feels and looks good. I want to ask you this though, after you’ve stared at your scouting app of choice have you ever taken a few extra minutes to look up a study or an article about deer behavior? Have you ever ventured out beyond the spots you know just to pick up a pair of binoculars and take a deep look around with a clear mind? I’m offering the idea that these things could not only lead to the success you’re seeking but also a whole new chapter of adventure to add to the story you’ll have to share while you’re gathered around the fire of your deer camp that you could have missed out on.
After all, dear reader that is what this sport is about when you look beyond what is going into our freezers. Hunting is about the adventure and thrill that is around the hill or group of trees. It’s never too late to try on a new lens to see your adventure through or add some new insight to your tool box. At the very least you’re going to find something new through your adventure and that’s where traditions and memories start.