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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 10-31-2005, 10:00 PM
  #1  
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Default Are we really better off as hunters today?

I'm a bit of an old dog but I was just thinking how complicated hunting seems to be now-adays. I remember when the only outdoor gear was army surplus and it was awfull. No one wore camo. No one had scents or electronic calls or trail cams. Coleman was about the only maker of sportsmans gear and it was and is still great.
Yet I also remember when every farmer welcomed us on his land and we showed our thanks by respecting his property. The thought of paying for the tresspass was unthinkable and the thought of buying a private hunting area was just not done. In fact in Alberta where I grew up, it was illegal. If posted "no hunting" you could not hunt it yourself. High fences and feeders hadn't been invented yet. It was well understood that wildlife belonged to everyone. Outfitters were ranchers trying to make a bit of cash in the fall. Most guys owned 1 rifle and a shotgun and a .22 for sure.Often this was to teach your children to shoot safely.
I read stories by Jack O'connor and his packtrips for sheep and elk. He loved the .270 and made a great case for it always. I lived from monthly "Outdoor Life" mag to Outdoor Life mag. Today there are chat rooms where rifle hunters are looked down on, Jack O'connor would not be welcome.
It seems like there is way too much money and hunting is now more of an industry than a sport. Hunting is only measured by the volume of game killed.
So are we really better off now, with our hi-teck everything and no place to hunt? For my two bits worth, I would gladly turn back the clock.
Happy Hunting
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Old 10-31-2005, 10:12 PM
  #2  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

tangozulu, I could not agree more with your post.
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Old 10-31-2005, 10:22 PM
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Hunting is a mutilbillion dollar industry. However, all this money doesn't just go to make fat cats rich. Alot of it is used to purchase habitat, fund wildlife research, waterfowl surveysetc, etc. So if you look at total number of animals, the amount of habitat that is protected from development in perpetuity,hunting opportunities,and wildlife management techniqueswe are much, much better off.
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Old 10-31-2005, 11:14 PM
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Hi BrutalAttack
thanks for the imput. I will suggest you may be a bit young and don't have the ability to compare today with yesterday.
You aggree then that a lot of money is involved in hunting today. I dont have anything against money but it tends to bring the worst out in us sometimes. By the way Ducks unlimited was around even when I was a young man.
I admit I have a hard time understanding how we have so many more hunting opportunities when everything seems to be on a draw basis, seasons are shorterand there is a need for primitive weapons seasons in order to take preasure off the game herds. Id alwaysheard that the numberof hunters in fact haddropped drastically in the last few decades. This certainly is the case here in Canada.



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Old 11-01-2005, 06:30 AM
  #5  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

tang,

how true it is. hunters today have lost the natural skills which include navagation, shooting, and endurance that made the old timers mountain men of their time.

now hunters rely on food plots and gadgets to kill their game. They rely on power vs. precision for their weapons. And the biggest heartbreaker of the time atv's vs their own two legs.

brutal said that organizations and funding help wildlife which they do. but there are organizations like the rocky mountain elk foundation that buy up huge plots of land that become nothing more than elite hunting grounds for the ones who can afford the tag. I was a committee member of their organization for four years until i got fed up with the b.s. What did it for me was when they had to have a new office building in the sum of 10 million and they hadn't even got the new worn off the old one that cost 2 million to build. Padded seats for the sake of habitat.

Animals will lose in the end to people encroachment. The area I live in Colorado has become the evil we have been trying avoid for the sake of habitat. They even created a zero elk tolerance in two new units on the valley floor. All because of potatoe farmers saying the elk will spread blight throughout their crops. Those elk were in that bottom before any potatoe was ever grown. Whats next on the hit list deer, antelope, fox, coyotes, rabbits, or any moving creature. Yeah were protecting habitat for the sake of filling our wallets.

Sure I take out clients and base some of my income off that. But it started out as a passion and will end as one. We personally don't hunt private land or bait in animals. We hunt out with the general public on national forest and get the job done and for that we take pride in our skills as woodsmen.

Most of todays hunters have lost what the word hunting meant in the first place. Food plots and gadgets don't make you a great hunter, being a great hunter is in the soul. If you have to kill just to prove to your buddy's you got one then you haven't reached the meaning of a true hunter yet.
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Old 11-01-2005, 07:01 AM
  #6  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

We always have a tendency to see the negative. As we get older, things change and we often donn't like that change. It's totally normal to yearn for the "good old days". There may be less hunters today but that's more of a societal problem than a problem with hunting itself.

My point was: We have much, much more habitat now that can never be developed than we did say 40 years ago. That alone makes us better off. If you look at the statistics, there isn't LESS public land now than there was yesteryear, but there is more people and more people wanting multiple use policies for that public land.
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Old 11-01-2005, 09:50 AM
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

Are we better off? Maybe in some respects. Most likely not in others. The real question should be: Are our children better or at least as well off as we. I don't know but I lean towards no. We can bash gadgets,High fences, feeders, food plots, USO, Trophy fees, et al. But, in the end it will do no good. Its not for me but to each their own.

There is too much emphasis on score these days. There is too much emphasis on the kill and too little on the experience. I ask you what feeds the high fence/feeder/food plot/gadget craze? The need to kill a bigger animal than the feller on the hunting show last weekend thats what.

The big species get the spot light but you don't have to look very far to see the problem if you look. Take small game for example. I remember when every body either owned or had access to a fine quail dog. Nowadays, there aren't enough quail to keep one dog per county in shape. Rabbit hunting was an every weekend pastime in my youth. Now a rabbit would have to pack his lunch to survive in my state. Sure there is a lot of deer and turkey but no more quail or rabbits. Why? because deer and turkey bring in the $.

Deer camp use to be a social gathering in the woods. You packed in to live in nature if only for a brief time. Nowroughing it isusing the"gameboy" instead of thePlaystation 2. Its definately diferent, whether its better or worse is not for me to decide. My personal opinion is that it isn't as much fun.

Your right! you use to be able to drive up to a farmers house and get permission to hunt. Not now. But you can't blame the farmer in today's sue everybody mentality. Besides I don't want others hunting my farm, where would I hunt? I don't know how there can be less hunters when it sure seems like there is more pressure. I guess the reason is that we used to have a lot of folks that would go for the pheasant opener instead of deer hunting. Now that it really isn't an option we are all in the deer woods. etc.
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Old 11-01-2005, 10:01 AM
  #8  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

ORIGINAL: tangozulu

I'm a bit of an old dog but I was just thinking how complicated hunting seems to be now-adays. I remember when the only outdoor gear was army surplus and it was awfull. No one wore camo. No one had scents or electronic calls or trail cams. Coleman was about the only maker of sportsmans gear and it was and is still great.
Yet I also remember when every farmer welcomed us on his land and we showed our thanks by respecting his property. The thought of paying for the tresspass was unthinkable and the thought of buying a private hunting area was just not done. In fact in Alberta where I grew up, it was illegal. If posted "no hunting" you could not hunt it yourself. High fences and feeders hadn't been invented yet. It was well understood that wildlife belonged to everyone. Outfitters were ranchers trying to make a bit of cash in the fall. Most guys owned 1 rifle and a shotgun and a .22 for sure.Often this was to teach your children to shoot safely.
I read stories by Jack O'connor and his packtrips for sheep and elk. He loved the .270 and made a great case for it always. I lived from monthly "Outdoor Life" mag to Outdoor Life mag. Today there are chat rooms where rifle hunters are looked down on, Jack O'connor would not be welcome.
It seems like there is way too much money and hunting is now more of an industry than a sport. Hunting is only measured by the volume of game killed.
So are we really better off now, with our hi-teck everything and no place to hunt? For my two bits worth, I would gladly turn back the clock.
Happy Hunting
AMEN Brother! Things were so different back in the 50's,60's and 70's. It was a different hunting world!
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Old 11-01-2005, 10:39 AM
  #9  
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

thanks for everyones comment;
A few more of my own'
-wolf killer- I have read some of your posts in your own forum and i do hope I am not heading down the road of hanging up my guns. In fact this year was a wash out for me (no time)and I really do need to get out hunting asap next year. It will be the campfire, clear water and camping with my family, not a kill, that will fill the void. Hopefully the trip will produce its usualy half dozen close calls and big ones that get away. The stuff of campfire tales.
-cherokee- thanks for the insite reguard the elk foundation. I guess this is simply empire building that seems to be a natural progression of any beaurocracy. I think this is an example of just too much money. Pretty soon you get a bit bigger so need to hire more staff which means you need to raise more money and to build a bigger office.............After a while everyone forgot why the Assoc was formed in the first place and half the staff wouldn't know an elk from a full curl moose. Please hang onto the passion, I have seen too many young outfitters here in bc payin a million bucks for a concession and in the end their bankers put so much preasure on them they kill way too much game to make ends meet. In the end they have to sell out and the next guy has a 1.2 million loan over his head.
-Brutal Attack- I do try to not focus on the negetive. All change is not bad. For instance this forum, agreat place for all of us to talk about our favorite passtime. Unfortunately this has taken the place of the campfire at the trail head where horses were once packed and others set up their camp. Once the chores got done everyone got together to meet new friend and enjoy the company of like minded people. Today we would all look at each other as the competion. Outfitters are advertising "You wont see any resident hunters." Whats up with that. Guided hunters are residents too when they are at home.
-ShatoDavis-I think you nailed it with the comment of just not being as much fun. So maybe this is the key to gettin back in time. I know that my new daughter (8 weeks)will get an outdoor education from her old Dad. Whether or not she becomes a hunter is up to her, but I know she will learn to love the mtns from mom and dad. I remember when there was a lot more wonder in the world and I hope my daughter can show me how to see it again.
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Old 11-04-2005, 08:33 AM
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Default RE: Are we really better off as hunters today?

I just got back from deer camp. I understand what everybody means by having to get permission and not just getting to go out and hunt. I stay with my buddy his grandfather and uncles. They all hunt the old fashion way. We do however have to go get permission from land owners. We live 2 1/2 hours away so we go up the day before opening day and ask all day. That night we go back to camp break into the captian morgans and play cards untill around midnight. Wake up the next morning and go tracking deer. We track all day then we pick a spot in the feild and sit through the evning. No treestands, feeders, or foodplots. Just the occiosinal corn feild and apple tree we find.

All I'm saying is that everyone may not be as frendily as they used to be but you can still enjoy your hunt and put meat in your freezer and the ocasional trophy on the wall if you really want to.
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