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Are we really better off as hunters today?

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Are we really better off as hunters today?

Old 11-04-2005, 08:51 AM
  #11  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

tangozulu:

There are a lot of things to consider in your question. One thing that is different and is "worse" than formerly is how many more people there are today than formerly. I was born in 1956. I don't know what the population of the US was at that time, but maybe 1/2 what it is today? This greater number of people puts greater pressure on natural resources.

On the other hand, back about the time I was born Illinois, my home state, did not have a deer hunting season because there weren't enough deer. I wager there weren't nearly as many pronghorn antelope back then as there are now. So it is with other species, though I can't recite the specific statistics on these other species.

I think some things have improved and other things have worsened. Of course, the answer about all the products that you deem unnecessary is to not buy them. Do you really need anything other than a .30-06 to hunt big game if you leave the Grizzly and Brown Bears out of the game bag? Do you need camo to hunt? Etc., etc.

I too lament that hunting has become commercialized. I particularly lament that hunting has become, in many circumstances, a competition of horn/antler size. This seems to me silly and a diversion from the pure essence of hunting. But it is not for me to tell others how to hunt. I see a logical link, however, between the commercialization of hunting and the emphasis on horn/antler size. In competition you do not neglect anything that can give you an edge -- including the commercial products. This leads to paying guides to take you to the most productive ground -- expensive, commercialized -- and to buying as much gadgetry as possible. If you are hunting cow elk do you need all that frou-frou?
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Old 11-04-2005, 09:36 AM
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Hell yeah were better off! I would much rather sleep in a wall dry wall tent with a woodstove or an RV that has running water than curl up in a leaking pop tent in a rain storm. And I dig my camo clothes!
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Old 11-04-2005, 10:35 AM
  #13  
 
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Are we better off?? Yes and no-[/align][/align]When I first started hunting I had a hand-me-down 30-30 and an old compound bow. Hunting for us was about getting meat. We didn't have a lot material wise, and every animal we got went to feed the family. It was always "neat" when one of the family members bagged a nice mature buck or big ol' six point bull, but we were just as happy with atwo pointand a spike or cow. Generally we prefered them spikes and cows cuz they were always better eating than some nasy old rutted out bull elk. Hunting season was also a time for family. It was a time for father to pass on knowledge to his sons. It was a time we all enjoyed with family hunting camps and road trips. Every aspect was family oriented, even the meat cutting time when uncles and aunts would show up to help carve and package the meat.[/align][/align]Today hunting for me has remained the way it was. I only have one rifle, a 30-06, onecompound bow, and a traditional Hawkin muzzleloader that is in my hunting arsenal. It is still a time for family and commodery. The only difference is it is no longer a neccesity. For me, hunting is a way to escape the concrete and asphalt jungle and return to the woods. It has become more of the experiance of the hunt, not something I need to do to provide for the family.[/align][/align]Tecnology has allowed me to get the gear to make the experience a bit more enjoyable (gortex),or give me an edge(scent-loc), but itstill the thrill of huntingfree-range, no-fence game animals that keeps me coming back for more.[/align][/align]I have to confess, I have been bitten by the trophy bug a time or two. Opting to pass on that spike elk 20 yards broadside because the big 6-point herd bull is almost in range. But, I am more excited for the guy who shoots a small fork-in-horn buck on public land over some guy who just shot a monster mulie on some high fence hunting ranch. The guy that got the small free rangebuck, to me, is ten time the hunter than Mr. Richy Rich on his hunting show who sets his coffee down in his blind to take aim at that big ranch buck.[/align][/align]So, has the face of hunting changed from the "good ol' days"? Yes, and probably for the worse. But it is how you approach it as an individual that makes the biggest difference.[/align]
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Old 11-05-2005, 10:45 AM
  #14  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Thanks for the insites. It seems most of you are focused on the positive and this has to be a good thing.
andy o - it seems that maine has maybe been a bit sheltered from all the trends inn hunting pertaining to commercialization. It is great to know a good old fashion hunt, something from the 50's or 60's,can still be managed in some states. Don't get me wronge though, we too asked for permision back in the 60's, it was just more likely to be granted. The ranches of my youth have all been rented by Outfitters and I am no longer welcome.
Alsatian- I agree there are far more people today and that should be part of the problem. I have heard that hunter numbers are far less than they once were. Perhaps this just depends where you live. I do think perhaps there are less public areas to hunt. I include once open ranches now under contract to commercial interests. No doubt hunters are more mobile, so far more non resident hunters aresay hunting out west. I too have an old 06 which is my only biggame rifle. (which is fine for grizzly)
I have no camo, scents, atv's or rv, so I have reframed from buying everything. Out west the most important gear is boots and binos. Good observation connecting horn size and commerilization, I think there is a lot of truth there. On the other hand I am a bit of a trophy hunter, but this is a competion with only myself, and tends to extend the hunt. More hunting is always better than less.
gandilamont-wall tents have been around for-ever
trouthunter-I too agree high fence hunts are really not hunts at all, but your comment that our approach as individuals makes all the difference, is a good one.
In general I have a confesion to make. Though the areas I hunted as a young man in Alberta are now off limits to me, unless I cut a cheque to an outfitter, hunting today here in British Columbia has never been better.
Almost all of BC is public land, generally public land is as good as private.
There are relativaly few hunters, mostly non-draw tags,mostly long rifle hunting seasons, and 15 species of big game to hunt. I have taken several 6 point bulls on public land recently. I know I am fortunate.
Never the less I do miss the hunting fields of my youth, that I knew so well.
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Old 11-05-2005, 06:50 PM
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Tango,

Not sure if Im old enough (32)to really have a valid opinion on the good ole days vs present times but I am going to throw in my 2cents. I grew up and still live in ranch country in the Southern Interior of BC. My dad as well as my uncles all hunted as far back as I can remember. Mostly for the sole purpose of filling the freezer with wild game. I remember tagging along as a young 'un and watched more young bucks vs old bucks shot. I recall asking why not shoot the bigger buck? I was more often than not told the younger bucks taste better and the horns make piss poor soup! They were not trophy hunters although there is some very large species hanging on their walls. I recall hunting all through the valley on private land as well as crown, ranchers were happy enough to let you take an animal on their property...just close the gates behind you and dont shoot my cows was the normal response. Another thing I noticed was the whole social aspect of getting together with all my uncles and family friends at hunting camp. Other hunters from nearby camps stopped in to shoot the bull and swap tales. It was for sure a different time and Im only going back 20-25 years.

times have changed drastically....the world over. Never mind just hunting and out methods etc... Permission on private land is sacred these days. Too many bad apples ruined it in this area over the years. You dont dare stop in someone elses camp because you are perceived as a threat or scoping out their camp on what you can steal while their out the next day....and to be honest its happened to us and its hard to let your gaurd down to perfect strangers out there and Im a peoples person. As for the commercial end of it, its hard to not have all the latest and greatest tech that can bring you home at the end of the day to your family...ie the GPS. radios, cell phones etc... My self like most...i have all the above. I know my way around the mountains pretty well but I admit the new stuff sure is nice when you need it most. As for the trophy hunting end of it...I got sucked into that whole racket this year hunting sheep for my very first time. I put alot of pressure on myself to pull out that monster ram thats supposed to be there....and for what? I was lucky enough to shoot a respectable California Bighorn...not massiveon the tape but I have to admit its BY FAR the most memorable hunting experience of my life!! Therefore to me, thats the biggest trophy of my life to date. Im not sure if it was alot better 30-40-50- years ago or not but I know this is what we have to work at right now....and hopefully enough voices and opinions can shape the future to come. All I know is Im thankfull everyday that I live the life I live, where I live, and try to pass on as much positive information and education to my 2 little kids in hopes the caring and respect I have foreverthing around me is passed on through them. This is only my 2cents on my limited outlook on the subject!

Have a safe season!


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Old 11-06-2005, 01:12 PM
  #16  
 
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

I am 17 years old and I belive in using no more then my rifle, pair of cheap binocs, and my legs to hunt. Just feels better to not bring to much technology into the woods. Maybe its just cause im poor. hah.
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Old 11-06-2005, 01:51 PM
  #17  
Typical Buck
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Great on keepin it to the basics sffguitar. Being poor is neither a crime nor anything to be assamed of. Where our value is really measured is in our hunting ethics. Yours seem just fine
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Old 11-07-2005, 04:34 PM
  #18  
 
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

thank ya sir
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Old 11-07-2005, 04:46 PM
  #19  
 
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Are we better off, sure we are. Conservation and education are a priority now. Wildlife has benefited, the lands we hunt are in better shape than they were decades ago.

Are we better off, no we're not. Like some have mentioned simplier times meant you had to be a woodsman and dedicated to be sucessful. All that has fallen by the wayside with technology. How many of us could handle being a trapper/hunter in the Rocky montains 150 years ago. Doubt many of us could handle it, living of the land and our skill like that.

Guess it all depends on which side of the coin we are on.


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Old 11-08-2005, 08:23 AM
  #20  
 
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

A little off the subject but along the same lines: How many of us who have complained on here about the "good ole days", wolves, hunting rights, etc are members of hunting/gun organizations such as SCI, NRA, Rocky Mountain Elk, etc. These groups are the only defense and voice we have. They fight to keep are rights to guns and hunting rights etc. We need to support organizations that promote our hunting heritage. We all need to do a better job of educating our youth so that they too can enjoy our sport. I myself am a member of the SCI and NRA. I don't agree completely with everything that they do but they are the two most powerful organizations that we hunters have fighting for us.
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