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Why Quit?

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Why Quit?

Postby Swede » 10 11, 2018 •  [Post 1]

Why did the people you know quit hunting or quit hunting a species or using a weapon such as a bow?
I have known of many, mostly men, that have quit hunting over the years. Generally it could be said they were discouraged by what they were experiencing. Usually that main things they disliked was not getting game, or over crowding.
I have witnessed the over crowding first hand, but the game commission says we have fewer hunters now than in the past. I suppose they are referring to the recent past, and not my childhood past. That may be true, but is not true for otc bow hunt areas. We are experiencing over crowding in some areas, and the big game numbers are holding up because the critters find refuge on large ranches.
Another factor was their inability to convert from gun hunting to bow hunting. Using the tactics of a gun hunter for deer or elk is not likely to work. Also you need to be able to tune your equipment so it shoots where you aim.
What have you seen and heard?
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Magic » 10 11, 2018 •  [Post 2]

Ain't quittin' although I stated last year that it would be my last Elk hunt. 75 year old legs won't jump as high as they once did, but at least I'm still jumping. I have been riding the bicycle 12 miles 3-4 days each week which has certainly helped. The only other hunting that I do is Whitetails. I am choosy and will only take an old buck so I do a lot of watching and enjoying.
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Jhg » 10 11, 2018 •  [Post 3]

I was a very serious whitetail hunter back East. Very. I knew I was when I was sitting in a big bucks day bed, in the pouring rain, at 4 AM, waiting for him to return after a night of chasing does. Now, finding a bucks day bed is no easy task, but sitting in it? In the rain? In November? This is to illustrate how much I loved to hunt. Anyway, I moved to Colorado and 1st year guided rifle elk for an outfitter out of Steamboat. I got all my hunters broadsides on bulls under 125 yds. They blew off legs, gut shots, high torso hits under the spine but way back. Just aweful, irresponsible shooting. They enjoyed it. Said it was exciting, the long blood trails. I never saw such disrespect for a game animal as those wealthy "hunters" demonstrated. I quit hunting for 20 years that experience grossed me out so much. Now I am back, but I quit for a long time.
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Fridaythe13th » 10 12, 2018 •  [Post 4]

Simple life changes, family, kids, money and time are just a few.
One of my best friends he owns 1/3 of the base camp: tent, trailer, mess tent, all of it. He told me last day of the hunt this year it was going to be his last year. he poored out a bunch excuses, but what I think, he is 46 years old and just had his 1st kid and was home sick. I understand, most of us had gone through that. I have a feeling when time to buy his license the check book well come out. Hope so but it's up to him. I dont beg people to hunt elk. it's one of my rules.
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby saddlesore » 10 12, 2018 •  [Post 5]

My oldest hunting buddy had to quit because his hip replacement didn't come out well and he can't ride anymore. The his wife has dementia and he can't leave her alone very long. Another just quit . H e said he didn't want to shoot an elk,but I think it was too much work for him.
Another fellow in his 40's that I started him elk hunting killed one bull, went two more times and said it was too much work. That very same thing happened several more times to people started elk hunting.

Myself, I sway back and forth.Where I muzzle load hunt it has become over run with bow hunters. It isn't real bad ,but every year ,I find more and more hostility from bow hunters complaining about me muzzle loader hunting during "THEIR" bow season.Never mind that you have very Tom,Dick, and Harry tooting on every elk call they can buy every 5 minutes.

In Colorado every OTC elk area is a sea of orange any more. The hunters have no problem setting up camp ten feet from your camp, running generators all night, play loud music, drink until midnight, hollering and acting out. Or they setup their camp in prime elk habitat and the elk that are usually there have since moved to the next county. Courtesy among hunters is a thing of the past

Physical limitations keep me from spot and stalk and now my hunting is mostly confined to sitting. My success rate used to be100%, now I haven't killed an elk in two years. I had to cancel a whitetail ML hunt this weekend because of mud.Going alone, I couldn't get my diesel unstuck if I buried it the mud.

I'm leaving next Wednesday for a OTC bull elk hunt . I have enough light weight gear now to pack into a wilderness area, but but don't know if I have it in me to get that all done or stay at the trail head and ride in every day. Filling my freezer with 1/2 a beef instead of going out and torturing myself to kill and elk is looking better and better. It's hell getting old !!!. :x
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Swede » 10 12, 2018 •  [Post 6]

I really understand what you guys are saying and experiencing. It looks like there are a lot of reasons and more than just physical limitations and loss of fun. Like Friday, I don't beg people to continue. If hey can't go or don't want to, it is not for me to interfere. I wish old farts like Saddlesore that has hunted for years and enjoys it, could go on forever. I wish that hunting could return to the way it was when we were young. Probably one of the reasons I have soured on calling is due to what Saddlesore describes. It is goofy to hear so much calling. The last couple of years it has subsided some for me, but not enough.
Calling is a good tool, but in the hands of people that just bought one from Walmart, and read the instructions on the packaging, it is just a nuisance.
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Jhg » 10 12, 2018 •  [Post 7]

saddlesore wrote:...Or they setup their camp in prime elk habitat and the elk that are usually there have since moved to the next county....
I see this a lot too. Or they will drive their quads across 2 miles of prime in the dark, park at the trailhead to the wilderness area (no quads allowed) Its like a parking lot. Meanwhile, they just pushed any elk that frequent their access quad trail out and they did it in the dark. Real smart. I often wonder how many elk they would have encountered if they chose to walk that 2 miles in the dawn light. Good elk hunting does not necessarily start on the edge of an invisable boundry line. Just sayin. So I hunt 4th rifle. Fewer idiots, fewer examples of what saddlesore describes. Cold and snow has a way of keeping them at home.
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Lefty » 10 16, 2018 •  [Post 8]

saddlesore wrote:My oldest hunting buddy had to quit because his hip replacement didn't come out well and he can't ride anymore. The his wife has dementia and he can't leave her alone very long.
Another fellow ,,,,,,said it was too much work. That very same thing happened several more times to people started elk hunting.


My mother-in laws health is holding my 89 year old father in law from hunting.
A good friend had a stroke,.. turned his mind into a 10 year old with a foul moth, family sold all the guns.
Years back I always visited with an old timer on opening day of waterfowl. I think he was in his 90's, I was the only person to interrupt his very last hunt. the farmer loaned him an ATV to drive down. He set out a handfull of decoys and sat under his tree all day,.. never fired a shot.
I actually went to check on him,.. geese had landed where he should have bean ( and was) he was satisfied just being there
I think for too many the excitement and satisfaction wanes and the hunt isnt worth the effort.
We purchased a fellows decoy spread,.. his dog died
I bought another fellows gear,.. he just couldnt physically do it anymore
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Jhg » 10 17, 2018 •  [Post 9]

It is hard to keep going, aging AND staying in good physical condition is very difficult with some of the challenges thrown at you from life as the above posts illustrate. If you start early enough though, (40's) with keeping fit, eating healthier and simply refusing to let the work it takes keeping in shape hold you back it can be done.
I see, sometimes, guys in their 70's and 80's still out there but not many. I am 59 and its been a revelation how hard it is compared to younger years keeping in mountain hunting shape. I think Paul can chime in on that one. We spoke a few years ago about aging and training for mountain hunts and his take was about the same as mine- it takes work and dedication to keep it going as the years add up.
Keeping the weight off is huge, and keeping your cardio above average, and leg strength are 3 things an older hunter can aim for. Makes a big diff and maybe you are not the stud you once were scaling mountains in a leap and a bound, but you can still be out there enjoying what you love.
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Re: Why Quit?

Postby Swede » 10 17, 2018 •  [Post 10]

Last July it was 80 some degrees and a 2 1/2 gps mile hike into and area where I went to scout. It was all uphill on the way in. I had to take four breaks on route, but I made it. I was tired, but was able to hike out just fine. Part can be attitude, part is conditioning and part health. I do what we can and the Lord takes care of the rest. He knows I am having a harder time doing the long hikes, so He has shown me some closer in places. I am hoping to hunt until I am 80, then to stick around to blat about the good old days for a few more years. My Lord has not indicated what His plan is, but I know it will be the best. :D
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