Answers From the Field – April
When hunting or fishing, do you prefer to take day trips or to camp overnight?
Jerry E. from Redding, CA
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Multiple day/week/month trips are the way to go. The longer you spend out there, the more in tune to the particular surroundings and the environment you become, thus generally experience higher success rates. Complex logistics, more gear (weight to haul), increased physical and mental demands, being uncomfortable, etc. can make extended trips troublesome to say the least. However, who wouldn’t want to spend more time in the back country chasing fish and game?!?
I am blessed that most of my hunting and fishing grounds in North Carolina are close by and pretty accessible. Whether it is public or private land, I usually don’t have to go more than an hour or two away. So, my excursions are usually day trips. Even still, I pack as much as I can into my outings. I plan and prep before the trip, and then go early and stay late. Whether its a day trip or not, that’s the only way to handle it.
When hunting I prefer to camp and the reason being is I want to be out in the blind well before the sun comes up and for me it is impossible to make that happen unless I am in location, plus it adds to the hunting experience. When I go fishing day trips are the best! there is nothing like loading up a boat full of friends, heading out into the Gulf Of Mexico for a few hours to catch some offshore game and head back early enough to fire up the grill to eat the most fresh fish you have ever had! While both traditions are very different they have one thing in common, it all about being in the wild.
In Sweden you don’t hunt like you do in the US. Here, we very often have day trips, or a overnight sleeping in a cabin/house. I have never tried camping with a tent in the wilderness but maybe I will try!
That is a tough one!! In an ideal world I would prefer to always camp overnight because camping is one of my favorite activities and it really puts you in the right spirit for harvesting nature. In practice fishing is usually a day trip activity while hunting ends up being overnight more often.
Always like to stay overnight when I can, really doesn’t take much more preparation and can pay off when you get that first light buck or early morning hatch. it really gives you an edge in the field, especially on “educated” animals or in high-pressure areas. Some of my best memories are from nights spent around the campfire. You really can’t beat time spent outdoors with good friends, so any excuse to spend more time outside is a good one.
For me, hunting is about being in nature and developing a relationship with yourself, your surroundings, and your hunting buddies. For that reason, I prefer to camp overnight when I hunt. It allows me to pick up on a lot more, learn a lot more, test myself, and have a break from the everyday hustle and bustle of city life. There is something quite serene and tranquil about being in camp, sleeping under the stars on a cot without a tent, getting up in the dark, smelling the damp earth as I get mentally prepared for the hunt and day ahead. Waking up at home and going out to hunt just isn’t the same to me. Although, I do both, I definitely prefer to camp. As for fishing, I would say I prefer to take day trips because as an ocean angler, the salt water sure feels amazing to wash off in a hot shower after a long day on a boat in the sun.
I always prefer to camp for long periods of time. I grew up camping and love every minute I can spend out in the wilderness. It not only allows me to be close to the fish and game, but it give me a chance to recharge my batteries. Many of the locations I hunt and fish receive a lot of pressure from other hunters and anglers so backpacking further away from trail heads allows me to get closer to the more abundant fish and game.
I would love the convenience of setting up camp near a place I plan to hunt the following morning although I never have.. It would definitely make things easier when heading out as I normally have an hour drive to location. I also think it would definitely create a stronger connection with the hunt as well as the harvest.
Anytime I can, I prefer to camp. If I’m out in nature anyhow, I like to get the most out of it. Nothing beats sleeping under the stars, anyhow.