Deer Hunting Part 3 – Solitude & Thrill

“Solitude is fine but you need someone to tell that Solitude is fine” – Balzac

Is it the wildlife that truly draws us ?

Here is a question I often find myself asking myself a lot in this current stage of life. “ Is hunting my identity?” As I walk thru this journey I’ve been thrown into this year I have had to question every aspect of myself including my relationship with hunting.

At this stage of life, I often ask myself, “is hunting my identity?” As I walk through the journey, I have been thrown into this year I have had to question every aspect of myself including my relationship with hunting.

For the bulk of my hunting career there has been two key words that have influenced my hunting “thrill” and “solitude”.  The time on the water or in the woods has always been about the escape which fed the solitude.  In many ways even as a husband and father the time spent in the field was a metaphor for how I felt.  Now in this current state of my life it has become the safest place for me to be alone.  Even as the depression and anxiety of the drastic changes that were thrown on me have pushed me into a space of self-imposed solitude, I still find no greater sense of inner peace then the time I spend out in a field. There has been one aspect that has changed though with this aloneness, and that is the people I used to enjoy sharing the story of each adventure with are no longer there. As much as the solitude has always been such a huge part so was the sharing of the story and that will be my biggest miss of this season.

The other word I used to describe my hunting career was thrill. This is the feeling that as hunters we all pursue. If you have never experienced the rush of adrenaline that comes with locking on to your quarry, then let me assure you there is nothing quite it. When you feel your pulse begin to quicken and your nerves are starting to stand on edge as you ready yourself to squeeze that trigger or loose that bolt. For myself, this physical reaction is often coupled with a rush of split-second thoughts and emotions. It is at that very moment I rely on all the hours of practice with my bow and all the experience I have under my belt as I bring the story of that animal and myself together. I am now penning these words in a way to say hunting is not for everyone. If you are indeed a non-hunter reading this, I am offering a little bit of depth into why we do what we do, and as a narrative of just how to myself hunting is much more than just putting a piece of meat on the table.

Yes this a Sanctuary

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