The Solo Hunter And You

It’s time to start organizing your gear again. You slowly go over everything and make sure it’s all in order. You take a good look at your rifle. You disassemble it, clean it, and put it back together in record time. You’ve been doing this for a long time as both a solo hunter and a group hunter. It’s time to decide what type of hunt you’re embracing today.

Solo Hunter

Hunting might be second nature to you but it didn’t start out that way. Memories of childhood trips with your father still pop up every now and then when you’re in the wild. 

The thing you hold so dear now, hunting, actually started out as a group activity.

Is it still that way now?

Just like someone who is trying to move from one home to another, ancient hunters discovered that there is strength in numbers.

Imagine you were living in a small, mountain village and a bear has been seen roaming closer and closer. Your weapons aren’t the best, and the bear is big and hungry.

Would you rather take it on yourself, or get more people from the village to help?

The answer is obvious.

Hunting started out a long time ago, with very clearly defined purposes: to harvest useful animal products (meat and fur), and for protection (removing dangerous animals).

Now that we know why ancient hunters grouped up, what about today’s hunters?

First of all, how else could you possibly learn? A lot of people think hunting is just picking up a rifle and heading for the woods. They couldn’t possibly be more surprised, could they?

Most of us grew up on this tradition; this way of life.

We went on many a hunt before our father or grandfather finally put a rifle in our hands. 

Do you remember which rifle that was? How heavy it was? How it felt to finally feel its weight in your hands?

We trekked and stood through the heat, the rain, and the cold. We earned that coveted moment of finally getting to hold a rifle.

And with that moment came a great deal of responsibility.

From the first time you went out on a hunt with your family as a child until the moment you found yourself in your father’s shoes teaching your own youngling, you learned everything with and through the group you were in.

Just like it’s in our nature to hunt, it’s in our nature to enjoy things more if there are other people there. Hunting is no exception.

Do you remember that special moment when you first started hunting? The moment when you were deemed worthy enough of the huge responsibility of carrying a rifle? It’s a life-changing experience and it doesn’t take a lot (at least not for me) to be brought back to that moment as I start organizing and packing my things for a hunt.

Why is it better to hunt with your friends?

Let’s say you are willing to part with every memory of you hunting together with your family and friends. Depending on the game you’re chasing, you might still need a friend or two.

Bagging an elk? Good luck trying to do it all yourself. Animals are heavy. Dead animals? Even more so.

There are countless reasons for why you might enjoy hunting with others. Let’s go through a few of them:

  • You’ll feel safer.
  • You’ll be surrounded by the people you care about.
  • You’ll learn more from others.
  • You’ll make friends for life.

Even if you’re hunting with new people, chances are, you’ll end up making new friends. Friendship goes a long way, especially when we’re talking about hunting!

Many people tend to forget that doing things with your friends or family is something truly special. Add hunting to that, and you’ve got something most people will not easily forget.

Everyone forgets things from time to time. Even if you’ve got a checklist, even if you’re extra careful when packing. Every once in a while, you’ll forget something. But it won’t be as big of a problem if you’re not alone, will it?

Let’s say it’s been a long day and you’re tired. The group you’re with is there for you. A short refreshing break, a change of pace, or even just good conversation will help you keep going; it’s hard to find downsides to hunting in a group. 

Hunting in a group is about more than the hunt itself. It’s about connecting with your friends in the same way people have been connecting for longer than ever. It’s about experiencing something as a group that is impossible to experience in a different scenario.

But what about solo hunting?

There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that hunting alone is something that everyone should experience at least once. 

 

It’s an easy way to experience nature and the thrill of a hunt as closely as possible. You’re alone. It’s just you, your rifle, and your supplies against nature.

You think a lot more as you weigh the pros and cons of each move. From simple things like “Can I carry that all by myself?” to the more complicated such as “What if I sprain my ankle trying to jump over that ditch?” There’s no one way of going about it. Each decision can change the outcome of the hunt and every moment has the potential of being a threat to your safety.

On the other hand, you’ve also got more control over everything. You can more easily choose the route you’re going to take. You’re the only one responsible for noise or smell. It might be easier to keep an even head and it might be easier to make decisions.

It could be hard to juggle everything when you’re alone. It could even be dangerous.

However, it’s also oftentimes very rewarding. That doesn’t mean that it’s for everyone, though.

Our life experiences shape us, shape our mind, our whole being. Hunting is no different.

You might go out into the wilderness one day, alone with your rifle and supplies, and discover something new about yourself. How ‘bout we put that in simpler terms? Don’t knock it till you try it.

Final Thoughts

What’s it to you? How much thought have you given as to why you prefer a hunting group versus going alone? Was there ever a pivotal moment when you realized that you wanted to start exploring things on your own? Or maybe you’ve always been a group hunter?

A lot of things can be summed up easily. It’s also human nature to complicate the same said things without even knowing it. Hunting is, was, and always will be both a group and solo activity. It’s up to the hunter to decide what he’s looking for in a hunt. To decide what it is that gives him the strength to wake up early, prepare everything, and head out into the wild. It’s up to each and every hunter to try and understand what hunting means to him.

We are taught to hold our breath before pulling the trigger. We’re taught to always take the cleanest shot. We’re taught to minimize unnecessary damage.

We’re never taught how to experience hunting.

That’s on us to learn.

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