I’ve landed back at home after months of hunting that ranged from high-country elk/span> to corn-country whitetails. The hunts and strategies varied as much as the terrain, but one common denominator held through all my travel: hunting comradery.
What I’ve discovered over the years is that hunters hold a common core of values, interests and eagerness. When I land in hunting camp, I’m on track to renew old friendships, enjoy the atmosphere and make new acquaintances. Here are a few areas I see as hunting camp bonuses.
Hunting camp is an ideal locale to make friends. Why not? You’re hanging out with a bunch of guys or gals who share your core interest. They wouldn’t be there if they didn’t want to be, and these friendships could easily lead to years of future fun.
Some of my best friends were the results of hunts and hunting camp. I have a good friend who I met in elk camp years ago, and now we meet every season to hunt Kansas whitetails together. I met another buddy in turkey camp and we’ve shared deer camps and even a sheep hunt over the years. I could go on and on, but I think you know that most of your good friends were the result of great hunts.
Business and pleasure don’t mix … or do they? I’d have to argue otherwise. Sure you might not want to go into a million- dollar deal with your best friend, but you might meet new business opportunities while in hunting camp. You might discover that your business and those of others could mesh and lead to a new account or contract.
I’m always running into editors in hunting camp and we trade ideas on possible future articles. I’ve sold gear, bought gear, booked hunts and dozens of other business ventures that resulted from hunting camp comradery. Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.
Lastly, you’ll receive an education in hunting camp. I always learn something new from the other hunters. This year, I’m researching some long-distance optics for rifles after a buddy sold me on them. I also have some new respect for mineral supplements after seeing the effects of Bone-D-Monium on the bucks we hunted in Iowa.
And as always, I enjoy hunting with my good friend Doug Gardner at Gardner Ranch Outfitters. Not only do I learn new hunting strategies, but Doug always shows me something new in hunting country. This year he showed me some pioneer inscriptions that reveal the rugged history of Montana.
Sure, hunting is an engaging activity, but don’t overlook the aspects that make it more than just hunting.