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Thread: Morale is down, what do you do?

  1. #1
    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Default Morale is down, what do you do?

    Please share a story of what you did to boost moral on a tough hunt.

    What can you do to increase moral in camp?

    I think being on a tough hunt is alot like a cycling team. Watching the current tour really reminds me of how were all in things together on a hunt. One moment someones pulling and the others are resting and your rotating together towards a common goal.

    I come up with silly little diddys (songs) to lighten rough patches.

  2. #2
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    What do you mean by a tough hunt?

    I don't set expectations other than see new country and have my Blackberry not work.

    I'm pretty happy at that point.

  3. #3
    Member LungShot's Avatar
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    Default I know all about that

    I have faced this many times. I do most of the planning for my hunts and the people I might bring kind of expect that I know what Im doing. I feel a ton of pressure early on if were not seeing what we expected. I guess I could do a better job setting the proper expectations though. Good food, and plenty of food is one way to help moral. A big campfire and a full belly every night helps. Dont forget phrases like "thats why its called hunting and not harvesting". I always bring a fishing pole and a BB gun because there is almost always some spruce hen/ptarmigan and some good fishing to be had. I have not had many hunts where we didn't get our animal but it has happened and I cant help but feel like I let the others down. I always recap the hunt when it's over and focus on the positives though like the country we saw, the fact we didn't have to deal with any people for a week, any fish we caught/ any animals we did see or harvest ect.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Well I have some folks I fish with that we take a apple for bait. We cut the apple in half and bait up and put the hooks in the water. Eight hours later we reel in the line take off the apple and call it a great trip. I will say we have never took apples for bullets but always enjoy ourselfs.

  5. #5
    Member AlaskaTrueAdventure's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Feed em well...

    When a guided hunt is not progressing according to my projected script, I feed 'em well and glass more, even earlier and later.
    Everybody likes big thick steaks (if we have any left), or chili beans and cheese with onions over rice!
    Really, really.

    Dennis

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    Default look around

    Look around you and point out what you see. Every time I go out in Alaska to hunt, no matter what the landscape, there is beauty abound. The countryside, the other critters... there's always lots to appreciate.

    It also helps if your out with someone you've spent a lot time with in the woods. There's always plenty of stories to tell of other trips you've been on.
    Everything that lives and moves will be food for you.
    Genesis 9:3

  7. #7
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    Tough hunt??

    Maby take a break, smoke it if ya got it,build a fire, have a cup of coffee, remember worse times and laugh at it, and if the kids are there, give them candy.

    Sometimes it pays to set up camp and rest. Getting busy to get rested is a nice way to warm up.

    When Im "Stuck" at any time of year, wind, fog, snow, I pull out a book, my multi purpose survival tool. Read it , wipe with it, burn it, what ever is nessary.....A good read will pass time under a rain fly by the boat, waiting for the wind and ocean to calm, or a blizzard to blow out in a snug snowbank, with out going crazy and doing something stupid.

    Were usually cheerfull enough and when were pisssed, we try to say nothing, untill theres something to laugh at.
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

    "Dam it all", The Beaver told me.....

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    Amigo Will. You have to expand on the apples. I am completly confused. Do they just not like to fish? Help me out

  9. #9
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    Oh and for moral. If it's a tough place my mind just goes to survival and a safe place. If it's game then hey, anyday in the woods trumps anything and how many times does quick minutes turn into a harvest. I'm just keep looking for those minutes

  10. #10
    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Haven't ever had a tough hunt that I needed to raise anyone's spirits on. Even when we didn't get our game we still had a great time enjoying the outdoors and the beauty of Alaska. I agree I try to bring a 22 and fishing supplies along on most trips and substitute hunting big game with those items.

  11. #11
    Member Phil's Avatar
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    Default Fire & Memory

    It's tough to be cheery when its rained all day, every day for the first 6 days of a 7 day hunt & everything you own (including your sleeping bag) is wet.

    That's why there are 4 things that I find invaluable - a BIG campfire, great companions, good food, & a long memory.

    If all else fails, I just remember my first big game hunt outside of NY whitetails. It was in Idaho for bull elk & DIY like most of my hunts. We depended on my nephew and his piece of junk pickup (notice I didn't refer to its make). If we drove the pickup, we released the brake bands about every 10 miles (literally). The Idaho F & G did a "controlled burn" that drove us out of the hunting area and none of the 3 of us ever pulled a trigger. Still I think of that hunt fondly (and, yes, I will be hunting with my nephew in August of this year in Alaska).

    I've been exceptionally lucky to have GREAT hunting companions and a combination of the 4 mentioned conditions keeps me coming back for more.

  12. #12
    Member AKFishOn's Avatar
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    A fast break candy bar is what has sometimes worked. I have been surprised by how someone can have a different attitude with a piece of candy, young or old. For me I just think well I could be in some stuffy meeting at work, then there is an instant smile. If it is raining I think well at least it is not 20 below, and if it is 20 below I think well at least it is not raining.

    Think positive, your attitude and that of others will spread throughout the group.

  13. #13
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    (Amigo Will. You have to expand on the apples. I am completly confused. Do they just not like to fish? Help me out )

    We talk and watch the world go by.

  14. #14
    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Default Long memory

    I've told the story of my first deer dozens of times. Just to pass time and remember how quick things can change.

    I'll save the long drawn out animated version for in person, on-the-mountain, times.

    It boils down to this. My uncle and I set up decoys in a mule deer area with some small potholes. The seasons overlaped and a buck had been pushed by some adjoining hunters and crawled into the lake and swam right through our decoys. He hunkered down in the cattails directly across from the spread. I waded slowly arcross the puddle and whacked him nearly point blank with a shot gun in the neck.

    I love telling that story. I get my arms and facial expressions all into it and I think about family and friends. I'm also reminded about how unpredicatable being a hunter is.

    I can't remember jokes well but I sure love having a jokester in camp too.

  15. #15
    Member L. G.'s Avatar
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    Default

    Pretty tuff to change people's morals by the time they're reached hunting age . . .

    Humor and optimism are about the only things that can save morale . . .

  16. #16
    Member Erik in AK's Avatar
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    With a good partner there is almost no limit to the misery I can endure. Being stuck in the hinterlands with someone who's selfish, whiney or irresponsible makes me want to quit right there, right then (since killing them isn't an option)

  17. #17
    Member Marc Taylor's Avatar
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    Wink

    Can't hunt with a man who can't spell...

    M O R A L E

    The Company's morale was high because we just "smoked" a bunch of Taliban.

    Now, the MORAL of the story is; never leave yourself open for Taylor to pick on!


    Bighorse,
    Just causing trouble 'cause your goat hunt is too hard for me this year!

    Taylor

    I'll say it for you. "What a JERK!"

  18. #18
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default Good partner

    If you have that, then generally you won't have a problem. Good company can always keep the spirits up. You can generally always remember a worse time so PMA can be maintained. It helps to have had plenty of unsuccessful hunts, that way when you have another you are use to it. I was
    successful at the 23:59th hour of my last hunt literally. That will last me the rest of my life to remind me that anything can happen at any time

  19. #19
    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    We were sheep hunting in the Brooks Range in 2007 and a dense fog moved in. I was pissed. You couldn't see hardly any distance at all, maybe 300 yards if you were above, but it limited to about 150 yards. My dad had taken a nice ram and we're sitting in camp cooking dinner and I'm irritated because we can't do much until the fog moves out. Well no sooner than I look over and theres a sillouette of a ram's head against this fog bank on the edge of this hill. I grab my .30-06 and just start running for the ridge line. The ram had ran along the hill and there was another one with him. I get to the ridge line and there's two rams about 75 yards away. I'm trying as hard as I can to make a legal ram out of either of them, but they just weren't QUITE legal. I've seen rams to this day that we're smaller but considered legal. So I sat there and watched these rams walk out of sight. That made me feel alot better.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

  20. #20
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    Default morale...

    As 90% of my hunts (wife calls most of them extended nature hikes ) are solo... I have to rely on the "other" voices in my head! If that doesn't work, I sit for a while and enjoy being who I am and where I'm at while listening to the positive voices in my head. If that don't work, I pitch camp and go to sleep.

    It's amazing what a good long sleep will do for changing my outlook on things. And it makes the other voices less critical too.

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