Do you hunt? [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Do you hunt?

Dble Haul
06-10-2002, 01:42 PM
I know a number of sportsmen and women who believe that to truly experience the outdoors, one should fish AND hunt. They tell me that you really can't appreciate one without the other, and that they complement one another very well.

I have never been interested in hunting. My father hunts deer, and when I was younger I showed very little interest in the pursuit. He respected my position and decided to spend time with me fishing instead. I have respect for hunters.....they are a very good group to have as allies in protecting the environment, in managing wildlife, and in opposing animal rights extemists.

I choose to flyfish and tie flies. These two pastimes keep me very busy, and quite frankly I don't know if I'd have the time to hunt even if I were inclined to. Fishing has given me more than I could have ever expected it to, and there's still so much more that I want to learn and do.

So, do you hunt and fish, or just fish?

06-10-2002, 02:25 PM
I got to be honest and say flyfishing is what I do when I can't bird hunt. I miss lots of good fishing time to hunt, but often will do both in the same outing. I love working with dogs for upland and waterfowl hunting. From September to January I hunt, the rest of the time I'm fishing among other things. I like to stay busy and lots of my hobbies complement each other. Its not uncommon for me to go out in September grouse hunting and carry a rod to fish the high alpine tarns and streams I run into along the way. I just don't spend as much time on them as I would normally. In the early part of duck season we do float trips and hunt in the early morning and then fish the rest of the day.

I don't think it matters what your choice of outdoor activity is as long as you get outside!:) I just try and enjoy as many of the opportunities to be outside as I can.;)

06-10-2002, 03:56 PM
Used to, did white tails, ducks, geese,pheasants, squirrels, rabbits, bear.

Gave it up in 1971 due to business career, marriage (wife is an animal lover who would have made life misreable if I tried it), focused on other outdoor sports and activities: fly fishing, skiing, canoeing, tennis, golf, running, etc..

Now son's high school sports, fly fishing and golf are my main leisure activities. Not enough time to really fit in hunting since some of the best steelhead and salmon fishing in the great lakes is during the hunting season of September to December

06-10-2002, 05:29 PM
The fall time creates conflicts which I try to reconcile. My fall days usually look like one of the following;
(September) Do I go to the Cape & miss out on early uplands?
Do I head out for ducks & geese or try out for some of the best time on the Elk River?
Definitely stay here if I get a draw for Antelope!
(October) Do I go out for pheasants or hit the Bow River for giant Browns or get one last crack at big pike?
(November) Deer season is here and fishing is getting colder but there are still giant Rainbows to chase!

On occasion, weather permitting, I have been blessed with the following excursion.
4 AM, leave the house, head out to the farmland near a large pond, lay out the goose decoys and have a limit by 8:30 AM.
10 AM, hit the Bow for large Browns and giant Rainbows
1 PM take a snooze till 2 PM, 3 PM head out with the dog to get some pheasants and partridge. 4 PM set up near the pond and wait for ducks to come back for the night. 8 PM, back at home, ready for some sleep.
I enjoy being outdoors and the hunting part is another sport that allows me to be there. All fish are released and all game is eaten and the fur & feathers are used and/or donated for use.

06-10-2002, 08:48 PM
I do hunt. Mostly just to be out in the fall. It gets cold early up here and the fishing drops off just about the time partridge season starts. There's nothing like pushing a cover on a cool autumn day with my boy and the leaves are turning.

I also do a little deer hunting but again mostly just to be out of the house. It's nice to have some venison for fishing trips and for a treat during a Pats game. I don't put much effort into the deer hunting. Just a little time in my boys tree house/ tree stand. My folks placeis a hill top farm and it's a wonderful spot to watch the world wake up on a frosty fall morning. If I get one great if not, so what.

06-11-2002, 09:23 AM
Used to "hunt" pheasants and ducks back in the U.K. Great way to pass a couple of months during the fishing close seasons from November thru January. Sold my guns before relocating to the US - not been out since.

06-11-2002, 10:14 PM
I don't hunt. For whatever reason, I don't really have it in me. The thought alone of staring down the barrel of a gun to kill a deer, bear, etc...makes me feel uncomfortable, angry even.

That said, I'm often asked by friends and family how fishing is any different (i.e. isn't it just as cruel...kill or no kill?)

Subconsciously, I have no doubt rationalized the difference in umteen ways...barbless hooks, care in handling, catch and release only, nerveless lips, perhaps even that fish have smaller brains and are non-emotive????

Undoutbedly it also has something to do with conditioning/formative experience. That is, while I grew up around animals and was introduced to fishing at a young age, hunting was not part of my upbringing.

As a kid, I quenched my interest in the skill by target shooting and by shooting trap...oh...and by fishing my brains out, go figure.

These days I'm pretty much focused on "shooting" at moving targets with a casting claves and along the flats of Cape Cod. Keeps me busy anyway. I'm finding hitting this bullseye to be a little more difficult :confused:, which explains my participation in this Forum and reliance on others more experienced for clues in solving the puzzle.

06-12-2002, 10:37 AM
While my first outdoor experience was fishing from a 16' amesbury dory for flounder & cod, my real passion is for duck hunting - I've gone for walks hoping to get a shot at a pheasant or rabbit and found trhem very relaxing (accept for the jokers wound tighter than their wirehared birddogs that get mad when the pull up next to you and cry because you are in THEIR field...on public land - off soapbox, sorry).

I eat what I shoot and try to use as much of the bird as possible - feathers for flies, pillows or govt research programs.

I enjoy the marsh on a January morning, wind 25 knts, temp 2degrees F. and snotty. - Anybody else ever been there? Ever sit in the "tall" grass and see the sun come up over PI on a clear skies day? You are missing something if you haven't.

I can't explain it all here so I won't try but know that passion in you or not - guys that say "I used to but..." don't have it in them. I hope to hunt as long as I am physically able, on the same land, with my son the way Dad has done for me.

JB hit a point: I always feel a sense of loss and regret for the taking of life when I shoot a bird (among the joy and a hundred other feelings that flood you in that moment you see the bird fall). I didn't feel anything once, I almost gave it up. To feel absolutely nothing after taking a life is disturbing to me.

Hunting is killing - harvest, take, blahblahblah are all just words for killing. It isn't the most fun part of it all but a neccessary one. I don't get used to killing, just try to cope with it and do my best to bring respect to the birds I am lucky enough to shoot.

Hunting takes me through a whole year of one place - for me it's the estuaries of the Merrimack & PI - I guess thats why I drive at least an hour to fish there. I've seen the place in all kinds of weather and times of the year. It's part of my life not just a place. Hell, I'm not a resident but it's like home to me, I feel better there than most anywhere.

What else do I get from it? How does it connect to fishing, besides the location?
I shot a pheasant once (in particular), I didn't tie flies at the time so I gave the skin to a friend - he gave me, my buddy and a couple others flies from that bird - those flys gave me the best season I've had trout fishing. He made some great stuff from that bird and we all benefited - but if I didn't hunt I would not have gotten that bird...think about it.

I get back ten fold what put into it - just like fishing. I'm intimately connected to a place and all that live there. Suprisingly, fishing has added to my hunting in ways I did not expect. I used to fish for something to do until ducks. Now it's all connected together, no waiting just preparing for the next trip out there.

bottom line: hunting isn't for everyone but it is for me.

thanks for opening the poll & discussion and to those who took the time to read my ramblings.

06-12-2002, 11:10 PM
I haven't hunted in awhile. I love to hunt, but came to a point with me that too many morons can get a hunting license, buy a gun, and shoot away. I'm a very methodical hunter/fishermen. I do things a certain way, mostly the way I was raised. But when I started hunting, it was a way to fill the freezer. We were borderline poor growing up, so did alot of our hunting/fishing for food, not fun. As I got older, and money came into family, we changed to more of a fun sport, not a need sport.

But, I mostly fish now. I've had the bug really bad to hunt again. I've done alot of tracking, not actually hunting. Was shot at by accident (luckily the moron didn't site in his scope) and haven't hunted since. But, once it's in the blood, you can't get rid of it. So, I'm probably going to get the rifle down, site her in, and head out next year or two.

06-12-2002, 11:33 PM
Always had a minor urge to take up pheasent hunting...have watched it a number of times and it looks like an absolute blast!!!

Would not mind giving deer hunting a try but have always thought it would be difficult for me to take a large fuzzy cute animal out (dont even mention dressing them)...Hell, I have a hard enough time bonking a hatchery steelie...just love the buggers too much.

06-13-2002, 07:35 AM
Haven't hunted in a long time, even while maintaining memberships in sportsmen's organizations, e.g., Ducks Unlimited. Don't even own a long gun anymore. Regardless, lure of hunting doesn't go very far away.

06-13-2002, 11:18 AM
Yes I hunt for new striper spots. Used to hunt birds with my Dad when I was a young teenager. What I'd give for one more walk with him through the Apple Orchards in October. Be sure to crack open the shotgun when you cross the stonewalls. We'd always find one last apple high on a tree too.