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I believe hunting means different things to different people. To some itís a way to relax, a way to enjoy the outdoors. Itís the challenge, sport, and the camaraderie between friends. It can even be a break from work.
My grandpa had over 200 head of walker dogs when I was a kid. He never took a stand; he always drove the dogs and as a young child I remember riding in the front seat shooting deer with my POP gun. You rememberÖÖ..the little plastic rifle with the orange cap on the end. When I was old enough to hunt with a real gun my grandma took me in the woods and taught me how to hunt. Thatís right my grandma! She has killed more bucks than most men I know and I have the pictures to prove it. My favorite part wasnít the hunt, it was the hanging out at the camp, playing with friends, making forts, and getting into trouble! I even have a picture of my mom 7 months pregnant with me holding an 8 point she had just killed. I think itís safe to say hunting is in my blood
As I have gotten older, the way I hunt has changed. I havenít hunted with dogs in years. I mainly bow hunt now. I learn new things about wildlife and the outdoors every year. There are new guns, bows, camo, and thousands of new hunting products every year. It seems like everything is always changing. The one thing that hasnít changed is the fact that I still enjoy hanging out with friends and family around the campfire more than actually killing something. Donít get me wrong, I LOVE to hunt but it canít compare to fellowshipping with your buddies. We tell the same stories every year and hardly ever are they about something we killed. Itís about Mr. Pat busting his butt while trying to cook egg omelets and the omelet fling up as he is going down. Itís about bringing your son to the woods for the first time watching him shoot 1000 BBís at every grasshopper, horsefly, and every other bug he can find. I care more about that and enjoying the woods than I do killing something. When I do kill something itís a bonus.
Some people just donít get it. They are more worried about killing something than enjoying everything else that goes along with hunting. I have a buddy that comes hunting with us sometimes and soon as the hunt is over he goes home. In three years I can count on one hand the amount of times he has stayed and hung out after the hunt. Me and Live Bait are heading to Missouri next week to do a little hunting at his aunts. This is a place that nobody but us hunts. We have some trail cam pics of small bucks. So we decided to start a management program. Our buddy I mentioned above was going with us but when he found out he could not shoot a small bucks or yearlings; he decided not to join us. This is the same guy that has a 145 inch deer on his wall. That shows the heart of a personÖ..more worried about killing baby deer than hanging out with FRIENDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So again I askÖwhat does hunting mean to you?
Good post
Thats a great post man. You hit the nail on the head. I unfortunately didn't get to hunt as much as I wanted when I was a child. But now that I'm older I hunt as much as I can. I hunt just to get away from everything. To watch the sun rise over the bayou, for the smell of the marsh mud, the sound of nothing but nature. I could go on forever because theres so much I love about the outdoors. I can't wait till my son is old enough to come and enjoy it with me. Hopefully I can have a camp by then and he will be able to make the kind of memories you spoke of.
You are so right fellowship and commoradre are what it is all about when it comes to hunting for me! Nothing like sitting around the campfire telling those same old stories over and over again. I have been dragging my son along for 3years now hunting with his daisy in hand he loves it! It crushes him when I go to the camp without him (during School) but he gets over, I take him as often as I can. we are going to the camp for a week during the christmas holidays he is so excited and can't wait. I can't wait to see the look on his face when he sees his rifle under the tree! To see, shoot, or kill doesn't matter it's just a bonus. I am trying to lead my 6yr old the same way. I don't know about anyone else but when it comes to going to our camp the (bloody bucket), you don't have to kill because you will not go hungry! Best post/story I have seen in a while thanks for sharing!
Undertaker is refering to me in his post. Everyone has their own ways that they hunt. You have yours and I have mine. I guess since I have moved away and started a new family my life and way of hunting has changed. Its not about me anymore its about my family, especially that beautifull little girl that I get to hold, hug, and kiss every day and night!! That's my life now and hopefully she will always wanna be daddys little girl. I love hunting with yall, and the hanging out. There is very few memories that I don't have in the last several years of hunting that don't have yall in them. So here it is, why spend the night away from my family when I only live 35 minutes from where I'm hunting at? Nothing against yall but mamas a lot warmer and better looking than a tent. Sometimes in life you don't need to make excuses to what decions that you make in life or what choices that you do decide to do. As far as missouri goes I had all intentions of going but then "management" on a 100 acres that I'm only hunting once a year sucks. I hunt 6000 acres now and can't kill anything. I beginning to think that I'm "a bird watcher" cuz I can't shoot anywheres that I go. Don't get me wrong I enjoy hanging out but we can do that here and save A LOT of money and still have nothing but does killed. If you think I'm wrong that's your decision and if I think I'm right that's my decision. I wish you and livebait the best of luck in missouri, I hope yall each kill a wallhanger! Sorry that I won't be there to congradulate you.. Good luck boys its gunna be cold on the body and hot on the rut!!
I agree with you that family is always first thats why I will only hunt a grand total of 16 days this year. Its not that you dont camp with us its that every time you hunt with us if we dont walk out of the woods with you we dont see you and have to talk about the hunt over the phone. Hanging out for a coulpe of hours on a sat after the morning hunt shouldnt be that big of a deal. You are one of the lucky ones that gets to ho home every night to see your family so surely you have a couple of hours on a sat to just hang out and not be in such a rush. The only reason that we are we even bring it up is because we like you and like hanging out with you and especially since you moved 2 and 1/2 hours away we dont get the chance very often. So mabe you like to hunt and run but I wish you would just slow down and enjoy the friendship we have developed over the years. We sure going to miss you on the deer farm in Missouri.
hunting and spending time with friends and family
great post

I was just talking to a friend about the difference of hunting and spending time with friends and family at the camp.

About 3 years ago I moved to Brazil for work and personal reasons. I still visit Louisiana 3 to 4 times a year and at least once during hunting season. Last week I had the luck to take a small spike hunting with my dad on our family property, and the last two years I also was lucky enough to take other deer, ducks and squirrels during my short visits home. And just about every one of these hunts I got to spend time with my dad.
But, I am really missing the time I spent at the camp with friends, the trips to Tensas deer hunting, turkey trips to Three Rivers and Tensas. Before I moved to Brazil I had an offshore schedule and I would sometimes spend a month straight at the camp with friends, cooking supper, playing cards, drinking, etc. I really miss that and next year I will make it a point to spend more time at home during hunting season so I can spend time with my real family and my hunting family who really have no idea why I would leave good ole Louisiana.
I will give you this! Most of you know my deal what has happened, well hanging out at the camp is a great part of the hunting world and is the best part to get great hunting stories, that I miss it very much because I got the best drama stories a farther could ask for!!! and you get to enjoy the family at the same time. Family is first, you raise them to love the outdoors as you do ,and then you get the best of both worlds, family at the camp fire. Now my story; befor March 19,2007 I was a HUNTING FOOL everyday in the marsh, winn parish forrest, and Kansas where we both shot 2 12pts out of the same stand 2 differant mornings and anywhere we could get in a tree legaly and hunt we where there, me and my hunting partner, we took trip after trip after trip, and I can tell you I miss those stories and trips you never know what you really have till its gone, now as I sit here thinking and missing 2 years of a camp fire stories as on March 19, 2007 My hunting and fishing partner was killed, yes my 20yr.YEAR OLD SON, an accident that should not have happened and we are still fighting the nightmares of this, and my Hunting sail is deflated, where I would jump out of the bed to get in that stand to where, now if I go hunting good, if I don't oh well. I am blessed that I get my chances to go hunt some awsome places as I did last week as I got to hunt with 12yr vetran and former Clevland Indian David Dulluchii's Place and I also have the marsh that I was raised hunting in. I have not went out there in 2 weeks where I was out there everyday 2 years ago, so with that being said, spend as much Time with your kids at home in the outdoors as possiable and also your friends because you dont know when the GOOD LORD is going to call you, your daughter, son, mother are Farther to anwser to him at the pearly gates of Heaven....So I now have to really push myself to go hunting. Fishing is a differant story, because that was my sons dream to become a guide and I just done it for him as he is on that boat every morning it leaves the dock with me,,,,,,So enjoy your family time and fellowshiping with friends because NOBODY is promised tomorrow.

God Bless everyone on here and have a safe and happy hunt this weekend, and Take your kid with you because you never know, I had talk to my son at 9:31pm March 18th and got a phone call at 8:30am less than 12 hours......
I moved to New Orleans East in 1967 when I was 10 , I don't even rememeber thinking about hunting before that , my Dad started me off with a benjamin pump then got me a single shot Savage .410 and took me rabbit hunting with the guys and hanging out with the older guys made me feel bigger than I was , it made me grow up and become responceable and I relize now that being in the woods and on the water back then kept me off the streets and out of trouble , back then rabbits in the East where unbeleivablly thick as well as ducks , deer , hogs , crawfish and fish ,it was a great place to grow up , it was easy to get hooked as you never went without getting a bag full of something , by 12 he trusted me enough and would give me 5 shells at a time and let me go by myself as a block walk and I was in the woods , with only 5 shots at a time I made every shot count and learned to not take a shot unless my chances were good to not bust them up , I moved to ducks and deer and started traveling when I got a license to drive ,I lived and breathed hunting and fishing , not to ring my own bell but I have killed more animals than the law allows with out concience , till one day in Demopolis , Alabama on a frozen day when I dropped the biggest buck I had ever shot on a bad shot which broke his back , he was trying to run off on the front two legs and I should have just finished him off with my hand gun but thinking I was going to mess him up I slit his throat with a knife , which I had done many times before but this time he looked me in the eye and died slowly , dude it hit me bad , I realized at that time I lost the purpose of why I was there , I gave up hunting and stuck to fishing , till just recently I moved out of New Orleans into woods where a bunch of my old buddies had moved years ago , not even knowing this when I got the house is the fact that I am right in the middle of some really good deer turf and I started to see deer and hogs while riding my 4 wheeler around the house as I there are hundreds of thousands of acres right out my back door , I started feeding the deer and then my buddies got involved and we started trail cam'in the spots and was shocked that there are so many back there and some quality bucks , I had sold off all my guns except that .410 my Dad bought me , stands and hunting equipment years ago and swore that I would never hunt again , as hunting had become a quest of horns and numbers , I just got the fever again and went and bought a bottom of the line Mosberg pump and a license , and been spending a lot of time in the woods and on the back porch with friends talking about it , and maybe this time I finally realize that hunting ain't got to be about pulling the trigger and scoring the shot , it is rewarding to do the scouting and prep involved in hunting , it feels good to watch the does and little bucks walk off knowing if I wanted to drop them I could and wait for the trophy to show up , and with trail cams that were not around back then I know the trophy is there , and what is so wierd to me is right now is I feel that I don't have to be the one that makes the kill , as we been doing the prep work as a team and if anyone of us get him I feel good to know that I helped to set it up
True So True
Undertaker you have hit the nail on the head, what a great post. I still vividly remember my first days of hunting with my step dad out in the Basin. I would go out with them every weekend to build the houseboat and once it was finished we moved it from the landing to an area near Crew Boat Chute and the many weekends duck hunting,the cooking, listening to the older guys talk,drink, cuss,.... LOL man there is nothing that compares. I remember thinking I was a all grown up, cause I had my own bunk on the houseboat... LOL. As I got older my parrin starting taking me out to the marsh and he and I hunted and fished just about every weekend, until 4 years ago when CANCER took him from the family, man I really miss him. I enjoyed listening to his stories about how they used to do it back when he was growing up and I have told some of these stories to my sons and they still ask me to re-tell them often. I have tried to pass on this to my two sons, the hanging out, the fires, the cooking, the story telling and just the friendships. We just haven't met up with the right folks yet who enjoy those things as much as we do but that will come. Don't get me wrong we have friends who like to come, but don't really like to stay very long, you know they show up the night before, sleep, getup hunt, and then back home. It seems everybody is in such a d**n hurry today to go absoulutely no where. I just wish folks today would slow down and enjoy everything the outdoors has to offer, it's not about killing a limit or a B/C deer on every outing it's about just being there......
Man reading all these posts really got me thinking about my childhood, growing up in the outdoors. I just started hunting in about the last four or five years but I have been fishing all my life. I'm 34 now and I've had the pleasure of having loved ones having fishing camps at some great places, like toledo bend, anacoco lake, and hurricane lake in mississippi. Man I wouldnt trade those days for nothing. I think the camp sitting around camp fires, sitting in the woods or a boat is really where a boy becomes a man. I started hunting a few years back and just enjoy the heck out of it. I am very fortunate to have great friends like F_F_T Warren that I am able to go hunting with. He took me to his place around clinton, where I killed my first deer ever a doe with him sitting in the same stand with me, now about a month later I told him you know I have never killed a buck before...Well we were hunting that same stand together again and I shot a nice 8 point off of it, now you tell me how many "friends" would let that walk so you could get it. That's what the outdoors has meant to me hunting and fishing with friends, and family and yes you are right it is not always about what you kill but that quality time that is spent in the woods together...And I believe if there was more of this going on with the young ones todaay they wouldnt be looking for the wrong kind of trouble to get into. To echo Capt. Eric..Everyone be safe and happy hunting and good luck fishing!!!!
Why I Hunt.
I was sitting in a Box Blind on the big highline on my 60 acres in Hosston, LA. About 10 miles from Texas and Arkansas corners in NW part of state. It was cold, with about a 8mph North wind. As I adjusted myself in blind I noticed a small doe hop out into the food plot of mixed greens about 150 yds away. She would eat a bite of greens, nervously look over her shoulder and take another step out of the Pine thicket into the food plot. Her actions indicated that something was following her. I figured maybe a shooter buck would appear. I glassed the edge of the thicket and the shadows were moving. The shadows rolled out of the thicket and spead like a fan across the edge of the green field. This was the first time that I had spotted a flock of turkeys on this property. I have lived here for 18 years and this was a new development. There were a dozen large birds moving like a conga line across the field. The hens were quietly eating greens but there were a few Gobblers mixed in the flock. They would flop their wings and then thrust their necks as high as they could reach flashing their bright blue and red heads. The doe was gone but for about twenty minutes the turkeys put on their show. I didn't get a deer that afternoon but as I rode back to the barn the sky was bright red with a sunset that promised a beautiful tomorrow. My score was zero deer, but another great memory to file away for years to come. That is why I hunt.
A quote from the legend
"A hunt based only on trophies taken falls short of what the ultimate goal should be...time to commune with your inner soul as you share the outdoors with the birds, animals, and fish that live there."

Fred Bear
A good slogan
I like Bill Jordan's slogan for Realtree: "Family, Friends, and the Outdoors"
Good Stuff
I just had to say some more. I grew up in the '70s and '80s and we spent alot of time at our old camp. I think we built it in '78. Had lots of good times there. Dad's old hunting buddies had sons about my age, so I always had friends as well as cousins around my age to hang out with after the hunt. We'd ride the 3 wheelers (remember those?) in the woods near the camp and just have a good old time. We hunted a little ways down the road, so it didn't matter. At night it was gumbo, some good rice and gravy (squirrels, deer roast, pork chops, etc.) barbecue, or a short trip into town for a box of fried chicken. After that, sitting around the fire, Hank Jr., George Strait, Alabama, Waylon and Willie (going back quite a few years), Merle Haggard, Charlie Daniels, some "chank a chank" Cajun music or LSU football on the radio, hoot owls hootin' and squawkin' somewhere back in the woods, coyotes yapping and howling in the distance sometimes. The men would have a few cold ones, or sip a little Old Charter and Coke, in moderation of course, while the BS flowed. Good BS, often flowing hip-deep! Sometimes we'd carry on like that until late, after adding a few logs to the fire as it got chilly out there. These days I don't have a camp of my own but on evenings when I'm not bowhunting, and it's good and chilly outside I like to build a fire in my patio fire pit, turn on some music and just relax by the fire. It reminds me of the old days at the camp. Those were good times indeed.
StoriesÖ Thatís what itís about. Iíve enjoyed reading them but there not just stories; they are snapshots of our lives. The good times weíve had, the bad. The heartache of losing loved ones. Learning how to continue living life without them. Teaching a new generation about the outdoors. Making new friendships that last a lifetime. YesÖ Thatís what itís about.