And you thought bowhunting was a challenge. How'd you like to test your mettle against a monster whitetail, elk, muley or any other big game animal with only a hand-thrown or otherwise propelled spear?
It seems that Montanans will soon join 12 other states in which a spear is a legal means of taking game.
The Senate Fish and Game Committee nearly voted to approve a bill legalizing the hunting method on Tuesday and are expected to finalize the process later this week.
From the Billings Gazette:
Sen. Greg Hinkle, R-Thompson Falls, said about 12 other states legalized the use of spears. The bill, SB 112, would also allow the use of an atlatl, a spear thrown with a separate device to increase power.
Spear hunters often await their game from up in trees or track the game with dogs.
The Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks is taking no position on the bill.
"We feel this is primarily a social issue," FWP Fish and Wildlife Administrator Dave Risley said at the hearing. "There is really no biology involved."
But he said FWP was concerned about sending any signal that wild boar — a popular spear target in other states — was an acceptable species to hunt in Montana.
Hinkle noted that Jared Allen, defensive end for the Minnesota Vikings, is an avid spear hunter and has taken bear and elk with the weapon. His exploits have been featured in American Hunter magazine and are viewable on YouTube.
The reference above is to my interview with Allen last year about his fascination with the thrill of this hunting style. It's good to know that by publicizing Allen's exploits, we were able to help in the defense of this practice as a legal way to harvest game.
Be sure to check out this roundup of the spear hunting's legal status in each state. What do you guys think of the legitimacy of spear hunting?