By Montana Grant

Posted: December 1, 2019

Too much success too fast leaves little excitement for the future. Setting kids, rookies, or guide clients up for success can be detrimental to their future fishing and hunting.

Learning does not happen from success; it happens from mistakes. A Big Fat Mistake will teach you a lesson every time. If someone else does the scouting, casting, baiting, sighting, and set up for you, what did you learn?

Years ago, a friend of mine took a kid deer hunting. His trail camera was showing a great buck coming to his feeder at 5:00p, like clockwork. The rifle was sighted in, all the gear was supplied, everything was set. All the kid had to do was pull the trigger. Sure enough, at 5 o’clock, the Big Buck walked up to the feed pile and started to feed. The kid aimed and pulled the trigger. The shot was poor but enough to leave a good blood trail. They followed the trail and found the buck the next day. It was a massive 5×5 whitetail.

This buck of a lifetime was impressive. He had it mounted and displayed for all to see what a Great Hunter he had become. The next year the boy came back to fill his tag again. This time, he was on his own. After a few hours of hunting, he quit. “This is too much work!” The Rookie never hunted again!

It’s easy to shoot or catch something. It’s way tougher to really hunt it. That’s why it is called “hunting” or “fishing”. When conditions, weather, and luck align, you can get a great opportunity. Without these, you have a nice trip outdoors.

When the great buck, BIG fish, or flocks of birds are perfect, it seems easy. These moments become the standard. Starting with a once in a lifetime critter, fish, or experience sets the stage. If the quest does not meet these expectations, few sportsmen will continue to pursue the sport.

Special hunts, stocked fishing derby’s, and canned adventures will not encourage appreciation for the sport. There is plenty of other great things that will make the day fun and memorable. Setting a bar too high, that is artificial and unearned, wastes a lifetime of potential fun. Let the kids get skunked a few times. Allow them to earn and appreciate the experience. Start slow and enable them to discover the thrills on their own.

Give the Rookies a chance to learn how to become a real Sportsman!

Montana Grant

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