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How important is hunter success to your enjoyment of the sport?

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  • How important is hunter success to your enjoyment of the sport?

    We know that it is vitally important to meat hunters with mouths to feed at home.
    But how about the sport hunters where the venison is a bonus?
    When I took up deer hunting, the success rate was one out of six, and taking a buck was cause for celebration.

  • #2
    I was told: Anything you do in life do it well. And Prep/Cost for Hunting for Meat or Sport, Your time is worth something, To come home with something besides stories or Join the BSA if you like walking in the woods.

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    • #3
      I only take what I am going to use. Hunting or fishing.

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      • #4
        Heh. I'll admit I get out a lot just to have the excuse to get out and for some quiet time.
        But success matters. One, it justifies and recoups cost, time, and gear (though the older I get the more rare a gear purchase is).
        Two, I relax more on my hunts when there's already some meat in the freezer.
        Three, I like squirrel hunting, alone or with the boy. But I have a real hard time making extra time for it when venison is scarce.

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        • #5
          I enjoy every hunting opportunity, even when I'm unsuccessful, but as the season draws to a close each year I'm pretty motivated to fill the freezer. I want some return on my investment. The memories and experiences are priceless, but the meat is yummy too.

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          • #6
            Well horns are bonus for me. Now success for me will be seeing deer. The grandson are going this year. It's about them now not me. And I couldn't be more excited.

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            • #7
              99, I think your question addresses two different issues, or situations. There are those who hunt for the definite reason to feed the family. When younger, I was in that boat, raising kids on a rather skimpy income, hunting was important and had dependency placed on it. But I now fall into a second situation where hunting is a sport without pressure to be successful and with much more enjoyment because of it. Hunting now is a time in the woods to enjoy watching the woods come alive in the mornings, watching all forms of nature, the smells, sounds and going home empty handed without being unhappy if that should happen, which it frequently does ! I enjoy my sport now, I just wish I did not have to become so old to realize and arrive at this point '

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              • #8
                It seems like I'm different every time I go. Some days, like dove this year, I was after my limit as fast as I could because it was run run run the last couple weeks. Some days I follow squirrels thru the scope and stay too entertained to shoot and then fall asleep against a tree. Some days it's all about being in the woods for the sunrise, other times, the sunset. I'm never sure of my hunters mindset till I get there. I do shoot some varmint species for sport and I make no apologies for when I do. As I've told everyone for years, including here, no one pulls the trigger for you and no else is looking back at you in the mirror each night and morning. Good hunting fellas.

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                • #9
                  Well looky looky 99Ex is 1,999,890 is about to enter the 2 million mark!
                  BRAVO..........

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                  • #10
                    I think the meat is more than just a bonus for most sport-hunters. Even if you don't identify as a meat-hunter, it's still very important. As for me, I don't care much whether I get something when I'm small-game hunting, and turkey-hunting has become much the same, so long as I have action of some kind (a few flushes, or seeing/hearing some turkeys) or see something interesting. Deer-hunting, I usually care more about seeing something I can shoot but still not all that much. I love having the venison, and being one of the guys on the hill who got one, but when it's done it's done and I don't fret about it.

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                    • #11
                      First, I'd say I am outdoorsman and just being out among nature's amazing world of plants, fish and animals is high entertainment for me. However, I realize that I am also a hunter, I really like to eat some game and I go after it to get some for my enjoyment. I also really like the excitement of the hunt... the anticipation of getting in position for a shot, the crow of a rooster and the whistle of goose wings as they pass close enough for a shot.

                      I must also say that I enjoy outsmarting prey and I seem to be drawn to the challenge of wits between me and the game I am hunting. If I need food, I am more intent on taking game. If I don't need the food, I often let game walk or allow someone else who is new to hunting take the shot. I normally release fish but will work for years to hook up with one that is hard to catch. I do feel that I have to either get in a situation where I take the prey or can choose the option to pass because I have succeeded in the challenge.

                      There is no doubt that although nature could not have been more spectacular, I was disappointed in my 10 day elk hunt where I never saw one bull. That of course told me that I have a lot to learn to match wits with that animal. Losing is never fun for me but it usually motivates me to get better at what I am doing. It would have been more disappointing to me to hire a guide to put me in front of an elk. In that situation, I would have been using the guide's wits to succeed and that doesn't give me any satisfaction whatsoever.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by DakotaMan View Post
                        First, I'd say I am outdoorsman and just being out among nature's amazing world of plants, fish and animals is high entertainment for me. However, I realize that I am also a hunter, I really like to eat some game and I go after it to get some for my enjoyment. I also really like the excitement of the hunt... the anticipation of getting in position for a shot, the crow of a rooster and the whistle of goose wings as they pass close enough for a shot.

                        I must also say that I enjoy outsmarting prey and I seem to be drawn to the challenge of wits between me and the game I am hunting. If I need food, I am more intent on taking game. If I don't need the food, I often let game walk or allow someone else who is new to hunting take the shot. I normally release fish but will work for years to hook up with one that is hard to catch. I do feel that I have to either get in a situation where I take the prey or can choose the option to pass because I have succeeded in the challenge.

                        There is no doubt that although nature could not have been more spectacular, I was disappointed in my 10 day elk hunt where I never saw one bull. That of course told me that I have a lot to learn to match wits with that animal. Losing is never fun for me but it usually motivates me to get better at what I am doing. It would have been more disappointing to me to hire a guide to put me in front of an elk. In that situation, I would have been using the guide's wits to succeed and that doesn't give me any satisfaction whatsoever.
                        I will agree with the contents of your last sentence Dakotaman. I have only hunted one time as a follower of a guide, that being on a bowhunt for moose in Newfoundland where a guide is required. All my elk hunts with a bow were unguided and there is no comparison to the self satisfaction obtained between the two !!

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                        • #13
                          Things have changed. When I was young I wanted to limit out on squirrels or ducks. The first bucks I saw when allowed to deer hunt, I wanted to succeed so badly that I shook with anticipation. Now, I am fine watching deer walk more often than not. Yes, I still eat venison but that is not my main purpose. Mostly, I am enjoying being in the natural setting and remembering all the times I have had in the woods and with the ones I loved who are gone now.

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                          • #14
                            Not very important. If I really needed to feed myself or family (which I no longer have), it would be a lot cheaper buying meat at a butcher shop ... even though my hunting grounds are only a half hour from home. If I don't shoot them, I don't have to clean them. For me it's all about being out in the field at the most beautiful time of the year and watching the dogs work.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by PigHunter
                              I enjoy the experience and challenge of hunting. For over 25 years I've hunted public land where the success rate is 1 deer per 11 hunter days. I've probably taken my share of large bucks but more often than not, I come home empty handed.

                              I give away most of the meat to three young families who struggle to make ends meet. So, that is an additional benefit of a successful hunt.

                              But I enjoy making the kill, no apologies. I'd just take a camera instead of a gun if all I wanted was to get into the woods to get close to deer. I'd just go to the grocery store if all I wanted was to get meat. And, I'd just go hiking if all I wanted was to get outside in the wild.
                              "One does not hunt in order to kill; on the contrary, one kills in order to have hunted...If one were to present the sportsman with the death of the animal as a gift he would refuse it. What he is after is having to win it, to conquer the surly brute through his own effort and skill..." - Ortega y Gasset - Meditations on Hunting.

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