I just received several hunting magazines in the mail this last week. All of them had features talking about the upcoming hunting seasons. They specifically were focused on the hopefully-to-be-amazing 2014 deer season.
I casually flipped through them. The more I read ,the more I became depressed. These articles seemed to be written for the hunter that has nothing else to do but hunt. Apparently the guys who wrote these articles assume that none of us have jobs, must not have any family obligations, and have unlimited funds. Yeah, whatever.
I don’t know about you, but I have a job, have loads of family obligations, which by the way I am happy to meet, and very limited financial resources. I think most of us fall into this category.
These articles were talking about how we should have our scouting done weeks ago, our stand repairs and checks should have been finished by now, and of course our food plots are all in pristine shape so we can leave the woods completely alone for sixty days before opening morning. Oh, and we should also have all of our gear ready, located and in top condition.
Are you kidding me? First of all, it is difficult to find time to go scouting. Thank goodness for trail cameras. The days of sitting idly in the cab of a pickup truck with a spotting scope jabbering to your hunting buddy are long gone for me. All of those evenings were before kids. Maybe someday I will have that time again, but not now. I have to rely on hunting areas that I’ve had success in from seasons past. That might sum up my scouting for this year.
I will be lucky to check my stands a month before the season, let alone sixty days. Besides, what if some squirrel eats through my ratchet straps between July 31 and the first day of October? I am a big fan of checking those stands as close to opening day as you can, within reason of course.
The food plot I normally use has all gone to weeds because I didn’t have any time to take care of it this summer. I know, I should have made the time for it, but sometimes something has got to give. Next year, I hope to have it back in shape again. Unfortunately, this summer gotten by me too quickly.
This last one makes me laugh. I am supposed to have all of my gear in order by now. Hah! If I’m lucky enough to go sit on a stand opening morning, I will be still looking for my stuff five minutes before I walk out the door. If you are anything like me, you have accumulated so much stuff over the years you don’t know what you have and where it is. The end result is I usually go out and buy the same thing over again. That way, next season I can own six of the same item that I still won’t find when I need it.
I know. I should be better than this. But, life just gets in the way. Or does it? All of the things that have slipped by me this summer were for good reasons. First, I try to never miss anything that my kids are in. I’m proud to say, that I have seen or been in attendance at just about everything they have done since they started getting real active in school. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.
Someday all too soon I will have time back on my side. My oldest is already talking about college and it freaks me out. How did he grow up so quickly? The youngest won’t be that far behind him. Instead of sitting at school events, I guess I’ll be logging many more hours back in the tree stand. Many more than I am getting to do now. I used to be the person that these articles talk about.
Until then, I will cherish the time I do get outdoors. And if I have to go hunting with mismatched gloves, a half-dead flashlight, in a stand full of raccoon poop over a weedy food plot, that is exactly what I will do.