Getting Ready for Hunting Season: A 2019 Guide
As the Fall weather approaches, many Americans look forward to the beginning of hunting season. It’s an activity that can truly provide a challenge—a trek through nature, a test of skill against a known objective, and the prize of providing sustenance for you and your family.
The Internet is full of excellent hunting resources and stories, so we’ve compiled a few of our favorites to help get you excited and prepared.
State-by-State Hunting Seasons
Not all game is created equal, and neither are their legal hunting seasons. Luckily, Hunting Season HQ has a handy interactive map of America. Click your state to see the most relevant hunting dates, organized by game. All 50 states are included. By exploring the site, we learned that there’s avid hunting opportunity in Hawaii (feral pigs, goats, and sheep mostly)!
The site also has suggestions for the latest and greatest hunting gadgets and gear.
Game Bucket List
Outdoor Life created an informative article detailing its top ten game animals that every North American hunter should harvest. It’s long and filled with tons of high quality photos, so if you have the time, definitely check it out. It is very detailed in terms of legal requirements, tips, and firearm recommendations.
In summary, and in no particular order, these were the picks:
Mountain Goat: Confined to western states or Canada, they present a big hiking challenge and often require a knowledgeable guide. The area will be remote, the undertaking intense.
Elk: Since elk are so big, many hunters prefer to take a horse team into the wilderness to assist with range and carrying capacity.
Plains Pronghorn: These guys are some of the fastest animals alive.
Quail: The article challenges the hunter to score the “quail trifecta”— harvesting three types of quail (Scaled, Harlequin, Montezuma).
Late Season Pheasant: Tricky targets and chilly winter conditions are the hallmark of this hunt. A challenge indeed!
Mountain Moose: You’ll have to trek to Alaska and absolutely hire a guide, but the moose meat is well worth it.
Dall Sheep: Another Alaskan adventure. More hiking and ranged hunting than the moose. Still thrilling and highly recommended.
Musk Ox: This one ranges outside of America, to the tundras of Northern Canada. Less about the hunting challenge, and more about the incredible wilderness vistas.
Bird Challenge: In a specific area in Idaho, stars (or birds) align to make it possible to nab up to six species in one trip (partridge, quail, grouse).
Osceola Turkey: a rare, subtropical hunt in Florida against some pretty tricky birds.
Finding the Best Hunting Towns
According to RealTree.com, prime hunting towns have a few advantages. Number one (obviously) is a wide variety of game. Two: Accessible public hunting land, preferably within an hour’s drive. Three: relevant accommodations and facilities, such as a meat processor and affordable hotels. Finally: tourist appeal. If you’re going to make the trip out, some sights to see for downtime is a big bonus.
Here are five towns that scored high on this list of criteria. Have a look at the full article
to learn more about the game, surrounding area, and recreation opportunities in each.
- Albuquerque, New Mexico (map)
- Crosset, Arkansas (map)
- Baker City, Oregon (map)
- St. Joseph, Missouri (map)
- Pittsfield, Illinois (map)
Peace of Mind On and Off the Trails
Hunting safely and securely are the most important aspects of all, and many resources and topics can be found at The International Hunter Education Association (IHEA) - USA. Jeff Cooper, modern firearms training expert, established the Four Rules for Firearms Safety more than fifty years ago:
All guns are always loaded.
Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
Identify your target, and what is behind it.
Protecting yourself and others on the trail is paramount, but your gear and firearms also need protection year-round.
Homeowners insurance often does not cover items like guns or knives, so be sure to research and understand what options are out there for insuring your items. Contact Collectibles Insurance Services for a free quote.
Happy (and safe) hunting!