Dumbing Down Your Hunting Style

huntingAs I recently mentioned, I am getting jaded with the high cost of hunting big game animals all over the United States. I live in Alaska and the cost of hunting up here is huge no matter which animal I want to pursue. I am getting to a point where I want to slow things down and simplify my hunting methods and style. Maybe I am just getting old, but hunting quieter and with less technology is really starting to appeal to me. Here are some methods that you can use to slow down and use centuries of proven hunting tools in a successful manner.

First off, get a canoe. I have a canoe. There are bodies of water to hunt from in almost every state. Canoeing is fun, slow, traditional and quiet. I can’t imagine how many animals were taken by canoe, but hunting close to water has never been considered a hindrance. We should all try this at times.

If you are a bowhunter, buy a recurve or a long bow and hunt traditional. Using a bow that does not require a bow press and several hundred dollars’ worth of accessories seems really appealing to me. Sure you lose speed, but those bows have killed plenty of big game for centuries. Today’s latest models of compound bows can set you back $1500.00 before you can even shoot them. That type of price is nearing ridiculous in my opinion.

Backpack hunting is also a good way to switch up a hunting style. I know several friends who will never hunt big game animals very far from their vehicles. That’s fine with me, but taking a hike into an area that cannot be reached by motor vehicle might be a good change of pace. I know hunters here in Alaska who hike 15 or more miles before they even start hunting.  That takes dedication, physical conditioning and plenty of boot leather. Sounds good to me.

If you like to call predators, leave behind the electronic caller and use only handmade calls. They are cheap and the variety is unlimited. During the winter, maybe a snowshoe trip with hand calls could be an amazing experience. 

Finally, make a personal pledge to utilize every scrap of your animal. If you deer hunt, learn how to tan the hide yourself and make something from it. You can tie flies with its hair or make knife handles out of its bones or antlers, as well as buttons or other carved goods that are artsy or handy.

I think hunting needs to be dumbed down once in a while and I bet there are plenty of lessons to be learned from simplifying both hunting and our lives, even if it is a temporary.