My New Year's resolution is to do my part. I'm going to do my part to keep the tradition of hunting alive. For lack of a better phrase, I'll be spreadin' the word.
If I can help just one new hunter get in the woods this year, I'll feel like I've done my part. If I can help one hunter choose the best bow for his/her money, I'll have made an impact. The more hunters in the woods, the better off we all are in the end.
My first task, though, is to help a friend.
My buddy—we'll just call him John—sent me one of the most depressing e-mails to ever land in my inbox last week. It read:
I returned home from Christmas shopping around 830 last night. Went in through the garage, and hit the lock button on my truck. Went inside, and my girlfriend came over at 9:15. We watched MNF, and went to bed about 11pm. I woke up around 5:45 this morning. Went into my closet pulled out a shirt to where to work, and found a hole in it from the cleaners! Picked out another shirt, hole in that shirt as well! Got ready for work. Grabbed my laptop, and headed out the door. Hit the unlock on my truck, open the extended cab to put my laptop in the back, and then it hits me! Some things appear to be missing from the back seat! MY GUN IS GONE! and the bibs and back pack! I look up front! The Grinch got my binoculars too! So I reluctantly open the console hoping the he didn't find my rangefinder. Nope! The Nikon prostaff 400 is no more.
The first lesson to be learned here is to always lock up your belongings in a safe and secure place inside your house. Treat them as valuables, because, well….they are.
There's no doubt that John has been kicking himself ever since he realized some Christmas thief decided to ruin his holiday and, undoubtedly, his late-season hunting efforts. I would guess that we've all made or will make the mistake John did at some point in our lives. Luckily, it won't end in loss for most.
Nobody deserves to have their property—purchased with hard-earned dollars—snatched away by a cowardly thief. The worst part may be that John will lose at least a few days in the woods and a chance at the buck he's been chasing all year.
So, I'm going to do what I can to get John back in the woods again this season. I'll offer up my muzzleloader, rangefinder and whatever else he might need. I also hope that some of our friends in the hunting industry might read this and decide to help John replace what he has lost.
Step No. 1 for my New Year's resolution: Help a friend get back into the woods. Let's just hope we can all do the same for at least one hunter this year.