TO THE NEW HUNTERS OUT THERE…

Hey there, New Hunter

Welcome to the greatest sport on Earth…hunting. It’s unlike anything else and it’s why so many of us are absolutely consumed by anything and everything hunting. But, I know what it’s like being a new hunter. It can be overwhelming and intimidating with the endless resources and opinions of hunters. Asking someone “What’s the best way to hunt a deer?” is about as straight-forward as asking “What’s the best food for dinner?” The answers are endless. But don’t worry, preparing for your first hunt doesn’t have to be overly complicated.

A .22 and a few friends makes for a great time small game hunting.
A .22 and a few friends makes for a great time small game hunting.
You Don’t HAVE To Spend A Lot Of Money

Contrary to commercials, ads and social media, you don’t NEED to spend a ton of money to start hunting. You certainly can, but you don’t have to.  Need a gun or bow? Check out used equipment (you can find some great deals on used guns and bows). Need some camo? Buy a long sleeve shirt and pants that are a size too big and layer up as needed. Need property? Find some public land in your area or knock on a few doors to see if you can gain access. Start basic and upgrade as you discover what you like and don’t like.

Adam found success during his first coyote hunt.
Adam found success during his first coyote hunt.
You Don’t HAVE To Start With Deer

I absolutely love deer hunting. It’s my obsession. But, it’s not where I started. My first hunt was a turkey hunt, followed by several squirrel hunts before I hit the woods for deer. Deer hunting is the most popular, it’s what you see and read about all the time. But, you don’t have to start there. You can hunt squirrels, rabbits, upland birds, waterfowl, predators and varmints. These game animals may not be the most “popular” animals to hunt, but they can be just as fun. And, equipment is often cheaper, land is often easier to access and competition from other hunters is significantly reduced. It’s okay to start “small” and work your way up to the world of deer hunting. Most deer hunters did the same thing.

20 years later, I still enjoy squirrel hunting!
20 years later, I still enjoy squirrel hunting!
Don’t Listen To All The “Experts”

The hardest part about getting started in hunting is filtering all the “experts.” Your friends, family, people on social media ALL have different tips, tactics and opinions. Some will help, some won’t. Filter those opinions to what YOU want to try or what YOU think is cool. If you want to try a crossbow, DO IT and don’t listen to all those who bash crossbows. You want to hunt over bait, DO IT (assuming it’s legal in your state) and forget about all those who are against it. If the only gun you have is grandpa’s old single shot, use it. Use the equipment you have, try what sounds fun to you and develop your own opinions.

Your first deer is always a trophy.
Your first deer is always a trophy.
The Most Important Thing Of All…HAVE FUN.

Hunting is freakin’ fun. If you’re not having fun, then something isn’t right. Get out there, try some stuff. Make mistakes and learn from them. Don’t set unachievable expectations or hold yourself to the standards of experienced hunters. Just have fun in the woods, whatever you hunt and however you do it…HAVE FUN.

As hunting seasons across the country approach, stay tuned to Draggin’ Deer Outdoors for suggestions and recommendations on inexpensive gear, shopping locations and tips for new hunters. And…to all you new hunters out there…HAVE SOME FUN IN THE WOODS THIS YEAR!

-Matt

 

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