Learning from our mistakes

The terms “expert” or “professional” can be thrown around quite a bit in the world of hunting.

The fact is, even the best hunters fail. Yes, soak that in, Michael Waddell has been unsuccessful at calling a turkey a time or two I’m sure.

At some point, all hunters fail. We miss shots. We jump deer. We flat out make mistakes in the woods.

It’s hard to think like a wild animal. How does a hunter determine which corn field is going to hold more pheasants? All one can do is prepare the best you can and then hope that your skills and equipment hold up to expectations.

That said, guns misfire, shells get jammed, hunters – dare I say – get a little excited at inopportune times. It happens!

Now, as we find ourselves in the midst of the two week rifle season, here’s my Top 5 personal quick list of why we fail.

No. 5 – Lack of preparation

Hunters who don’t prepare hinder their chances of success. When was the last time you shot that gun? A year? Two? Longer?

Oh my, you’re on a collision course for failure. Have an idea of what your equipment can do before you lug it into the woods.

No. 4 – Movement

Sounds simple, but the woods is not the time for any drastic movements. You’ve got an itch, scratch it, but don’t flail around like you’ve got a swarm of bees in your shorts. Slower is always better.

If a deer spots you before you spot him, your chances of success have already taken a hit.

No. 3 – Scent

What’s that smell? If your clothing still smells like last night’s poker game, there’s a problem. If you think deer won’t notice the stench of Marlboro or the t-shirt you’ve worn the last two days, you’ve got another thing coming.

No. 2 Internal battle

We’ve all heard the term of one being mentally tough. Hunting is the same battle. Hunters have to push through the inner battle of giving up or cutting a day short when things don’t work out. Trusting your gut is a battle all of us face at some point.

No. 1 Learn from mistakes

We all make mistakes afield. Some are minor, some major. The key is to not make the same mistake twice and adapt to errors. After a while, the mistakes list shortens and the success list grows.

Mike Kuhns with his archery buck Nov. 7, 2018



















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