As hunters, we spend a lot of time talking about the benefits of wild game and the millions of dollars that hunting & fishing provide for conservation every year.
And rightfully so. These are not empty headlines or talking points—the closer you look, the more truth you will find to both arguments.
Wild game actually is an unmatched source of lean, nutrient-dense protein, and hunters are unique in their propensity to share and give away their bounty.
And due to self-imposed taxes on hunting & fishing equipment, license fees, and millions of dollars in private donations, hunters and fishermen are responsible for far greater conservation victories than the general public will ever know. (If you don't believe me, do a deep-dive into some of the conservation work that is being done by groups like RMEF, Ducks Unlimited, Pheasants Forever, Wild Sheep Foundation, or a dozen other groups like them.)
But aside from our usual talking points directed at helping the uninitiated understand, there's a BIG reason to go hunting this year—and it has absolutely nothing to do with either meat or conservation (although we'll always root for you to get the meat.)
Days spent afield (or on the water) tend you stick in your brain in a unique way. Days spent hunting or fishing are cemented in your memory in a way that few other days in life are. I can basically give you a day-by-day breakdown of how my last several hunting seasons went.
I don't think it's a coincidence that we have such vivid memories of days spent in pursuit of a quarry, on the side of a mountain or the edge of a creek. The reason those days stick so vividly in the mind is because hunting is a rare activity when you're forced to be fully present in the moment—all 5 senses firing.
And as we look back on our lives, what are we but an accumulation of memories we've created and people we've impacted?
As you look ahead to the Fall hunting season, cherish those days. Remember them. And make memories that will stay with you for many, many years to come.