What is a successful hunt?

mark knapp

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First of all, these are my thoughts, I am not imposing them or mandating them on any one. I am writing this in general and not aiming it at anyone in particular.

I'm writing them because this is a chat site and meant to share thoughts and ideas. If you are offended by what I say, I don't see why. You can certainly disagree but why be offended.

Because they are my thoughts, I think I am right and I'd like to talk about them with whoever wants to.

A successful hunt has nothing to do with the licenses or tags you have in your pocket. In my opinion, a hunt is a chance to get away from your regular life, a chance for experiences you don't get to have on a day to do basis and a chance to be in nature. It's also a chance to spend quality time with those you don't normally get a chance to do that with. If you do those things, you have had a successful hunt. If you guage a successful hunt by the meat or horns you brought home, or didn't, you have screwed yourself. It's so much more than that.

These are not the words of a vegetarian. I have been and am a consumptive user of Alaska's wildlife for 38 years both commercially and privately. I have four plugged in freezers right now and share a lot of what I catch and kill with other people. I seldom buy meat or fish at the grocery store and haven't for almost 40 years.

In my opinion, outings should be by the book. You are no kind of a man or hero if you break the laws to become what some people call successful. There are no negative connotations associated with anything I do when it's according to the law. If I want to kill ten wolves or anything else, and it's legal, there is nothing wrong with that. I don't need to boast about it but I don't need to talk like it was a dirty deed either.

I personally like to hunt silently on foot or a raft with binoculars rather than tear up the rivers or mountains with a jet boat or four wheeler. I would rather hear birds and other wildlife than roaring engines and people while I am out.

I personally don't think alcohol and guns should mix. If I wanted to drink I can do that in town. I have been Known to have a Peppermint Patty or a cold beer after dinner when all other activities are done with.

I waist nothing. All wanton waste laws are adhered to and more. I think as an outdoors-man I have the responsibility to use whatever I take. I respect animal life and kill nothing for no good reason.

I don't leave trash in the wild. I think it's ridiculous to bring trash out on outings and leave it in the woods. I like to leave things with no sign of my passing. I have picked up after others and think it's a huge lack of respect ( and honestly, a weakness) when others leave their trash in the woods or on the lakes. I think that people that leave trash in the woods are lazy, and no kind of sportsman. Please just stay home or take your trash with you.

I would not like to see your poop. When you poop in the woods, please cover it up. I will do the same for you. I burn the toilet paper too, when I can, but you will not see it. I have a cat that cleans up after itself, in my opinion a human should be able to do the same thing.

It's easy to go to the woods, it's only a little bit harder to be responsible in the woods.

I know I've said a lot. Nobody died and made me boss, this is the way I do things and I think the wild places would be better if people leaned in this direction.

All of this is open to comment. Agree, disagree?
 

mark knapp

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I can't believe you wrote all that and didn't tell us what rifle caliber/model to hunt with...your outdoor writer card is hereby revoked...😁
:D:LOL:

I mostly shoot a stainless, synthetic .300 Winchester Magnum classic for guiding and private use. When I hunt privately in brown bear country I carry a S/S .375 Magnum. And when I guide for brown bear I carry a .458.

All of my rifles are the same so my muscle memory only has to learn how to run one style of gun.

Better?
 

mark knapp

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I can't believe you wrote all that and didn't tell us what rifle caliber/model to hunt with...your outdoor writer card is hereby revoked...😁
I am curious why you used the words "tell us what....". You know I'm not telling you to do or not do anything. I'm only telling you what I do.

Actually, the only thing I said somewhat forcefully was about poop and trash.
 

4merguide

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Just like in life, being "successful" is going to be interpreted differently by many. I would think it has a lot to do with the type of lifestyle you actually live. Back in the day, and perhaps even now for those that live a subsistence lifestyle, having a successful hunt could literally mean weather or not you're going to eat today. View that in comparison with a person that has a full freezer at home, yet still goes out in hopes of a "successful" hunt.

I also believe that for some the thought of a successful hunt may change during their lives. When you're younger, it could be more like a rite of passage. To kill something could mean proof to yourself that you actually are not only a hunter, but a good hunter. Whereas with age and many kills under a hunter's belt, he already knows he's a hunter, and looks at a successful hunt as a matter of luck.

Age can, and often does, changes a person's thought patterns. This makes me think about myself as a young boy spending the day fishing. I could usually catch all the small fish I wanted, but success meant catching a big fish, and when I finally hooked a lunker and it got away I would actually get quite upset, I mean throw down the pole and kick the dirt mad! Contrast that to now, a couple years ago, when I lost one of the biggest sockeyes I've ever had. As it made that one final monstrous leap from the water and snapped my leader, I let out a waaawhoo in literal happiness for the great fish that just bested me. Believe it or not, it felt good to do that. Over the years I guess I finally learned it's not always about catching the fish.

Let's not kid ourselves. When we put a weapon in our hands and go out to kill something we are looking to do just that. We're not out there "just" for a stroll in the woods. We do in fact have successful intentions. But what is that? We only have so many hunts left in us. We've got to do it while we still can. So, for me now, I'd have to say that "successful" means that I have actually made the hunt happen. To be able to go out once again to take part in the hunter/prey ritual that's as old as time. To relax the mind of a thousand worldly thoughts and fill it with only one very ancient one. If I can ENJOY being out there to make that connection again, then I have been successful... successful in replenishing my spirit. If perhaps nature smiles upon me and gives me the gift of organic warm blood on my hands and animalistic beauty to my eyes, then that is an enormously appreciated bonus!
 

SmokeRoss

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My definition of a 'successful' hunt might vary depending on the hunt. If I am hunting moose for the freezer then success might mean actually putting one in the freezer. For some hunts it might be the memories that define success. Or teaching a youth the basics of hunting.
 

The German

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Ok, you asked,,,,, and leaving a little "Blood" on the Mountain, works for me...... what say you..... :ninja:
TG :cool:
 

mark knapp

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Ok, you asked,,,,, and leaving a little "Blood" on the Mountain, works for me...... what say you..... :ninja:
TG :cool:
I say, do what you want but why do you need to be so mysterious about it? You seem to carry it like a badge or something. I don't get it.
 

The German

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I'm Puckin with you Mark,,,,, and since you called me a "Troll", thought I'd do a little trolling..... and look in that tackle-box of yours, and see if you can find your sense of Humor...... :p
TG :cool:
 
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Patsfan54

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Sorry Mark, but this whole post is a fishing expedition.

In an honest post asking what a successful hunt is, I'd say that it would be a hunt that you got what you want out of it. In that respect, you got exactly what you wanted out of this post.
 

kwackkillncrew

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I have been lucky, fortunate or have done enough looking at maps to be doing pretty well with all of our big game hunts up here. If we chose a place and dont see anything sure we learned something dont hunt there, but we also failed. The object of hunting is to kill something to bring home. If that's not your goal bring a camera and take pictures.
 

mark knapp

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Sorry Mark, but this whole post is a fishing expedition.

In an honest post asking what a successful hunt is, I'd say that it would be a hunt that you got what you want out of it. In that respect, you got exactly what you wanted out of this post.
What am I fishing for for? Don't you think I had anything good to say? I think you are right about what a successful hunt is but I don't think you know what I wanted out of this post.
 
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mark knapp

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I'm Puckin with you Mark,,,,, and since you called me a "Troll", thought I'd do a little trolling..... and look in that tackle-box of yours, and see if you can find your sense of Humor...... :p
TG :cool:
I understand you now, you like to post things for the shock effect. That's OK. with me.
 

mark knapp

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I have been lucky, fortunate or have done enough looking at maps to be doing pretty well with all of our big game hunts up here. If we chose a place and dont see anything sure we learned something dont hunt there, but we also failed. The object of hunting is to kill something to bring home. If that's not your goal bring a camera and take pictures.
That may be true with you, but I actually enjoy a boat trip with a gun over a meat gathering expedition. I have a lot more fun when I don't HAVE to kill something. No pressure, no tension. And, more times than not, I get something. I don't think I NEED to get something every time. I think luck has very little to do with it. I think preparation and effort have more to do with filling a tag than luck.
 

mark knapp

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Just like in life, being "successful" is going to be interpreted differently by many. I would think it has a lot to do with the type of lifestyle you actually live. Back in the day, and perhaps even now for those that live a subsistence lifestyle, having a successful hunt could literally mean weather or not you're going to eat today. View that in comparison with a person that has a full freezer at home, yet still goes out in hopes of a "successful" hunt.

I also believe that for some the thought of a successful hunt may change during their lives. When you're younger, it could be more like a rite of passage. To kill something could mean proof to yourself that you actually are not only a hunter, but a good hunter. Whereas with age and many kills under a hunter's belt, he already knows he's a hunter, and looks at a successful hunt as a matter of luck.

Age can, and often does, changes a person's thought patterns. This makes me think about myself as a young boy spending the day fishing. I could usually catch all the small fish I wanted, but success meant catching a big fish, and when I finally hooked a lunker and it got away I would actually get quite upset, I mean throw down the pole and kick the dirt mad! Contrast that to now, a couple years ago, when I lost one of the biggest sockeyes I've ever had. As it made that one final monstrous leap from the water and snapped my leader, I let out a waaawhoo in literal happiness for the great fish that just bested me. Believe it or not, it felt good to do that. Over the years I guess I finally learned it's not always about catching the fish.

Let's not kid ourselves. When we put a weapon in our hands and go out to kill something we are looking to do just that. We're not out there "just" for a stroll in the woods. We do in fact have successful intentions. But what is that? We only have so many hunts left in us. We've got to do it while we still can. So, for me now, I'd have to say that "successful" means that I have actually made the hunt happen. To be able to go out once again to take part in the hunter/prey ritual that's as old as time. To relax the mind of a thousand worldly thoughts and fill it with only one very ancient one. If I can ENJOY being out there to make that connection again, then I have been successful... successful in replenishing my spirit. If perhaps nature smiles upon me and gives me the gift of organic warm blood on my hands and animalistic beauty to my eyes, then that is an enormously appreciated bonus!
Thanks for your insights.

I like what you say and would like to say just a couple of thing about it.

It's true that many of us use what we hunt as a major part of our diets but very few of us will go hungry if we don't get what we are hunting for. The cost of many hunts makes it not cost effective to hunt for ones food. Certainly there are exceptions. Many moose hunts from home and many fishing trips can be cost effective. Many hunts are not when you include all of the expenses.

I think that luck has very little to do with filling a tag. In my opinion it has a lot more to do with preparations and effort than luck does.

I don't really intend to kill something whenever I put a weapon in my hands. The best way to ruin a perfectly good float trip is to kill a moose during it. However, I still kill a moose if a good opportunity presents itself. I can fill a tag when I really want to or think I need to. Certainly it's a different story when I'm guiding. The kill is everything when I'm guiding, and to me, it's why I'd rather not guide.
 

kwackkillncrew

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That may be true with you, but I actually enjoy a boat trip with a gun over a meat gathering expedition. I have a lot more fun when I don't HAVE to kill something. No pressure, no tension. And, more times than not, I get something. I don't think I NEED to get something every time. I think luck has very little to do with it. I think preparation and effort have more to do with filling a tag than luck.
So keep it no pressure no tension so that way if you dont get anything your not disappointed in your efforts? Just curious do you feel the same about fishing. Go boating with a rod if you get fish its a bonus?

"The best way to ruin a perfectly good float trip is to kill a moose during it."
you lost me at this...
 

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