There is something special about introducing a youngster to hunting. Getting kids fired up about hunting begins the moment you start talking about it. Ask many leading questions, such as “What do you think it will be like when a turkey walks in?” or “How much do you think you can move before a deer sees you”? Another fun way to get kids excited about hunting is to tell them fun stores of past hunts, or have other kids share their adventures with them.
The night before a hunt is a good time to go over the hunting details. It will help your youngster to feel more prepared and a part of the hunt. Let the new hunter know where you are going to go in the morning and why. Explain the strategies of playing the wind for deer or playing the set up for turkeys. Help the new hunter get their hunting clothes spread out the night before. That will be one less thing to worry about during the next morning’s excitement.
When it’s time to head out, try to remain calm and positive and reinforce the excitement with the new hunter. If you’re anything like me, a few mishaps will happen and taking them in stride, with a positive attitude, will go a long way. Kids pick up on your anxiety and that can discourage them. If a hat gets left behind, don’t make a big deal about it. Simply make the best of the situation and remind yourself, and the young hunter, that going back once or twice to get something is not a big deal. Remember that it’s hunting and is supposed to be fun.
When you are in the field with the new hunter you have to play on the child's patience. If you’re not seeing deer and your new hunter is bored in an hour, maybe it’s time to call it a day and not push it. Even though you might know just a little more time could be all you need. Don’t worry, and remember it’s supposed to be fun for the new hunter. There will be other days.
The main thing to keep reminding yourself is that the adventure is for the new hunter. Even though you want it to be great, the big moment might not happen until you and your hunter have gone out a few times. Easing kids into the outdoors is okay and with some luck they will eventually have that awesome hunt you’re hoping for.
Lucky Luke’s Hunting Adventures
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