I can’t be alone with this feeling, but if there’s one thing I could change about most types of hunting I would change the time in the morning I have to get out of bed in order to participate in the sport. It seems the older I get the more difficult the mental challenge is to arise and get the body moving from its resting state. It’s certainly not that I enjoy hunting any less than I ever have…but perhaps I enjoy a good night’s sleep that much more than I used to.
I had to laugh about a month ago. My wife and her sister were putting on a big garage sale that they were excited about and had planned for quite some time. They ran the garage sale on Friday and had an awesome turnout…but Saturday arrived and was much less promising. It was cold, windy and rainy…certainly not the kind of weather you’d expect most garage sale folks to be enthused to be out and about in. With that same thinking in mind, it was really difficult for the two ladies putting on the garage sale to rise early and to get things ready for what seemed to be a down-right rotten day to hold such an event.
As I laid in bed early that morning my wife got up grumbling about having to get up to such terrible conditions so early in the morning. It suddenly struck me that the shoe was now on the proverbial other foot for a change. Typically it is her that continues to lay in bed long after I get up to go hunting…but not on this particular morning. Nope, I simply told her to have fun and be safe—the same words she usually has for me—and then I rolled over with a slight snicker on my face and went back to sleep.
Oh, how many times I have sat out in a deer stand and seen no action only to regret getting out of bed so early. Of course, we don’t have the luxury of doing it all over again by hitting some rewind button. It’s part of the price we pay for being a sportsman. In most instances the prime time for hunting is occurring about the time the coffee is starting to brew urging most non-hunters to get out of bed on the weekends.
What compounds matters for me is I have always been a late night person rather than an early riser. Maybe I missed my calling and should have been a coon hunter. Problem is I love turkey hunting the most but this requires you to be out in the woods earlier than any other type of hunting I know, particularly if you strive to sneek closer to some roosted birds.
Duck hunting can be a little more forgiving if you arrive somewhat late…except if where you hunt is highly competitive. In those cases a hunter sometimes needs to get to the lake quite early if for no other reason than to secure a preferred public blind site before some other hunter stakes their claim on the spot before you.
Of course, if a sportsman wants to sleep in just a bit there is always upland bird hunting. While the season for these birds typically opens rather early each day…it can be a bit more forgiving if you don’t hit the field until later in the morning.
Truth is if you want to be a successful sportsman…no matter what species you might chase…there’s just no option for rolling over to hit the snooze button. Yes, it can be tough to climb out of a warm, comfortable bed only to dress to go out into a cold, dark outdoors world. Yes, it can be challenging to settle into a cold blind when everything is frozen cold and otherwise un-inviting. But what keeps us all motivated to repeat this silly behavior is the dream and hope that someday—hopefully soon—it will all pay off handsomely making the effort seem very worthwhile.
© 2006 Jim Braaten. All Rights Reserved. No Reproduction Without Prior Permission.