There’s just something about spending an afternoon perched in a tree stand that’s impossible to describe.
It could be the solitude. Or, it could be the camaraderie — after all, how often do you have the chance to spend even a few hours of uninterrupted time with friends and family?
While it’s impossible to say why any one person enjoys hunting (other than the person themselves), here are a few ideas of why it’s only becoming more popular.
1. There’s always the next “big one”
If you ask a surfer why they surf, it’s chasing the next big wave. It’s no different with hunters.
The moment you shoot your first buck, whether it’s with a firearm or a high-powered air rifle, is one you’ll never forget. You may have been waiting all afternoon with little to show for it. Then, suddenly, you see your chance and take it. After an experience like that, you’ll always be looking for the next “big one,” no matter how many years you spend hunting.
It’s that chase that keeps hunters in the wild, even in the dead of winter and in the baking heat of summer.
2. There’s always room for improvement
This may sound like a stretch, but hunting and golf are also similar in at least one regard: you can never master either sport.
You can always improve the accuracy of your shot. There’s always a new gun or bow to master. If you’re an expert at hunting in the forest, there’s always the desert or plains to tackle. Similarly with golf, you can spend hours practicing your chip shot using a chip shot net and never perfect it.
For those of us who are motivated by growth opportunities, hunting is the perfect outdoor activity. It gives us the chance to look deep inside ourselves, figure out where we can improve and then work to do it.
3. It’s the perfect way to decompress
Screens are inescapable these days. If we aren’t looking at a laptop screen, we’re opening a new browser window on our phones. This constant stream of information can wear on you.
Hunting offers us the chance to turn off all of our devices and become one with nature. For only a few hours, we get the chance to refocus and remove ourselves from the world.
If you ever feel as though you’ve lost the ability to be alone with your thoughts, hunting is the perfect way to rediscover it. Spend just a few hours in the woods and you’ll return to your senses in no time.
4. It helps us return to our roots
For many families in North America, hunting is a family tradition passed down through the generations. For most of us, hunting is a hobby. But for our ancestors, hunting meant survival.
Families who settled in the Canadian and US backcountry in the 18th and 19th century hunted not only for meat, but for fur, as well. While we can’t fully recapture what life was like back then, hunting does give us something of a glimpse into it. When we hunt, we get the chance to contemplate what life would have been like without a grocery store at the end of the block.
That said, if you do have to visit the grocery store, follow a few of these tips to go under budget!
5. Hunting provides healthy, affordable meat
Spend a few minutes looking at a news site these days and you’ll surely read an article about the rising cost of meat. Luckily, with hunting, the costs are manageable once you have your equipment.
However, hunting has many upfront costs, even if you aren’t using firearms. If you use an air rifle, for instance, you need to first buy airgun equipment. Or, if you’re an experienced crossbow hunter that only wants the best of the best, you might want to try a high-tech crossbow that’s designed to bring down large game. But once you have everything you need and have read up on how to grill game meat, it’s an affordable and sustainable way of getting your next meal on the table.
Give it a try
It’s never too late to give hunting a try. Look into your local laws for hunting and find the time to get the training you need. From there on out, it will just be you, your hunting weapon, and the great outdoors.