Ask yourself.. Deep down inside.. What makes you feel the best??
What makes you feel content, happy, fulfilled??
So… I’ve played this game before with people and it always results in the same realisation.
Here are some of the common answers I get
- My family
- My car
- My house
- My health
- My career
Now… Think of your answer..
Hold onto that answer in your mind and contemplate this..
I’m 100% willing to bet that whatever your answer is… what ever makes you the happiest you’ve ever been has been EARNED… NOT GIVEN.
Let that settle for a second…
True purpose and happiness is earned NOT given.
Wether its your relationship, car, health, career or your kids, these things have all come from sacrifice, hard work and effort.
These things cost time, money and require heaps and heaps of continued learning and adaptation.
Hunting is the same…
Hunting can’t be bought… It can’t be given.. It’s gotta be earned.
Mindset towards Hunting
Hunting for me started as a passion. I wanted to get to know where my meat was coming from and I wanted to get out of the city and reconnect with nature.
However… what I didn’t know at the start was how much I needed to give to really earn the reward of my effort.
These days we can buy anything… Have whatever we want and have it NOW!
But what we fail to remember is that a skill or a discipline (which hunting truly is) MUST be learned and earned.
This is why we started The Alpha Human… to help people understand what hunting truly is and to understand the responsibility of earning your experience and skills the ethical way.
After helping guys get into hunting for 3 years now through our hunters education programs starting with the Bowhunting for Beginners Retreat we often hear the same questions, misconceptions and reservations about hunting.
One of the biggest things we teach our guys is to be patient in the process, pay your dues in your discipline and then when you’re in the field, trust in your preparation.
This all takes time and consistency!
So with that all said..
Here are the top 5 questions we get from our Bowhunting for Beginners course participants!
Q1 - How Long Will It Take Me To Make A Kill?
Let me start with an old quote my old rowing coach used to tell us…
“Consistent crews create their own luck”
I think that says it all…
There is no time frame you can put on hunting or making your first kill. In essence it comes down to 3 things…
1- How much you practice marksmanship/shooting your weapon
2- How much time you spend in the field
3- How you learn from your mistakes
The first two are pretty self explanatory however the third point is essential and a bit of a grey area…
Ensuring you don’t make the same mistakes is key to hunting. From playing the wind to stalk execution, all the mistakes you make are key times to learn and refine.
When I first started hunting I used a journal to write down each hunt I made. Journal everything… every little detail and read it back!
Once you start journaling you will soon see how much can be learned and how much better you're understanding of hunting will get as you can reflect on the successes and failures on your in field actions.
Q2 - What Bow Should I Buy?
This question is a cracking one…
If you are really interested in getting technical I suggest for you to read my Article 3 CRUCIAL TIPS FOR CHOOSING YOUR FIRST BOW
But in a nutshell.. The one that fits you best!
For me that bow is a Prime. I believe these bows are the best on the market and they fit me really well. In the past I’ve shot and owned a few other bows made by reputable manufacturers but I keep coming back to Prime Bows.
My Prime Logic is an incredible bow to shoot and makes me really consistent on the shot… But thats not to say the bow that fits you will be a Prime.
A big thing to remember when buying and shooting a bow is…
Consistency = Confidence
Over time the most consistent bow is the one you’ll be most confident in, which in turn results in consistent and ethical results in the field.
Q3 - How Often Should I Shoot My Bow?
Short answer…. Every Day!!
Yep thats right… every day
The main reason is you need to make this a subconscious skill and if you’re taking up bowhunting as an adult you’ve got to make up for a lot of lost time!!
I shoot 50-100 arrows minimum per day at varying distances.
Most of the time its not aiming at the target that I’m trying to achieve, its more my stance, grip, position, shot execution and follow through I’m trying to keep consistent
4-5 yards and a good block target is all you need, HOWEVER... I will say you most certainly need to shoot at the range out to and beyond your hunting distances at least 1-2 times per week.
This will make you confident in your aiming and shot repeatability.
Q4 - How Do I Get Access To Private Property?
This is a hard one…
Usually it takes a long time in asking many property owners or knowing personally someone that owns a piece of huntable land..
The reality you need to consider is that most of the time you’re asking a complete stranger with a vested interest in the land to run around their property with weapons.
Think about that for a second…
Would you be inclined to trust a complete stranger to run around your backyard with weapons?
That said here are a 2 key tips to get the process started.
1 - When approaching a property owner wear respectable clothing.
No camouflage… no sneakers or training/casual attire. Wear a nice collard shirt, nice dress pants or jeans, leather boots/shoes and have your hair done nice or if needed a black or plain coloured cap.
2- Take a genuine interest in what they use their land for.
Ask what they farm on their property.
Learn how much livestock they have or what is in their fields.
Find out how this year has been so far.
Ask how long they’ve owned the property.
All these things you need to remember and be able to converse with them… You’ll learn more about the property, lay of the land and hunting from the farmers than any other person.
Q5 - When Will I Be Ready For A Multi Day, High Mountain Hunt?
My answer… "When you come to the realisation that there is an extreamly high chance you will die on the mountain."
This one is a really “in your face” answer.
The reality is that even some of the most experienced hunters die in the mountains.
They Freeze to death. They Fall to their Deaths.
This is the reality of Alpine Hunting..
In our Retreats and Education Courses we teach..
First, become a Marksman… Second, become a Hunter… Thirdly, become a Mountaineer… Then you’re ready.
Know where you’re at… Don’t lie to yourself…
Because at the end of the day the people you love are more important than hanging off a cliff without being ready for it.
So there you have it... the top 5 questions we often get from our beginners…
Some of the answers aren’t pretty but they’re the truth!
The word that comes up the most in these conversations is Consistency… In reality consistency and discipline are the attributes that make a great hunter. A hunter that gets back to his family and a hunter that has EARNED his right to be on the mountains!
And like we have already estabilshed.. Anything worth doing is Earned!!
Written By: Luke Bara - Director - TheAlphaHuman.net
Photo: Eamon Waddington