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Thread: Hunting hike

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    Default Hunting hike

    Does anyone go on a hike with the intention of hunting along the way? I always thought it would be fun to hike with a bow or shotgun and kill your food daily. Thoughts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pony View Post
    Does anyone go on a hike with the intention of hunting along the way? I always thought it would be fun to hike with a bow or shotgun and kill your food daily. Thoughts?
    Not a very practical idea. Even where it would be legal (no hunting on 600 miles of AT in national parks, state park lands may also have restrictions) if in season, what are you going to kill on a daily basis? I'm assuming that since you used the word "daily" you're thinking small game, not deer or bear? Squirrels, raccoons, birds? Most states small game seasons are late fall through winter. Sounds like a lot of hunting and not much hiking.

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    if in season, what are you going to kill on a daily basis?


    wouldn't it be easier to kill a deer in georgia (season looks to be open til january 12th---i just looked to make this post), then dress it and carry
    it for the rest of the hike?

    i would imagine one good sized deer could last a thruhike---maybe even with a hiker feed bbq style somewhere along the way...

    of course, that would mean lugging along a cooler to keep meat fresh......


    but seriously, and while ive never thru hiked-----as 4eyed stated-----there's a lot more hunting than hiking.....

    and in order to daily mileage----there wouldnt be much more time left in the day to go hunting......

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    The presumption the OP wants to hunt quadrupedal game may not be accurate given the more plentiful population of bipedal game.

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    I should probably clarify. I wasn't neccesarily talking about a thru hike or even on the AT. I know it would be next to impossible to thru hike this way. I was thinking more like a week out having squirrel or turkey for dinner. Something along those lines.

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    I've been known to kill over a pound of cheese and sausage on a big mile day. Does that count?
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoneStranger View Post
    I've been known to kill over a pound of cheese and sausage on a big mile day. Does that count?
    I'm sure anyone downwind would have an opinion on that!

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pony View Post
    I should probably clarify. I wasn't neccesarily talking about a thru hike or even on the AT. I know it would be next to impossible to thru hike this way. I was thinking more like a week out having squirrel or turkey for dinner. Something along those lines.
    If you will look on google for hunting adventures etc. I know there are places in Georgia and surely others that will host you on all kind of hunts where you camp out and then go hunt wild turkey,wild boar,etc.Check all the regs and have your permits and big game stamps etc.Most of the places that do that sort of thing likely use vehicles for transportation but you might find one geared more toward foot travel if you look.

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    I set a snare once on a canoe trip and caught a rabbit. Spit cooked with cayenne pepper was a big hit. This was late fall after a frost. I'd try just doing a day trip and shooting lunch. It takes a little practice to prepare something good in the field. A hike up a creek for native brookies is also an option (fishing). They are easy to prepare.

  11. #11

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    The first problem as I see it, is that you're not familiar with the terrain or the trail. Every time you spot some game, are you going to take the time to determine if the trail switches back, or is at a lower elevation behind that target? That there's no chance of missed shot hitting someone?

    I once strolled off the trail to poop when I saw a little rise that would give me some privacy, and take me far enough from the trail. As I crested that rise, I saw a woman was already squatting there, and I had to make an abrupt 180.

    Second. Yeah, it sounds kind of romantic and old fashioned to go on a hunting hike, and bring along an axe and chop pine boughs to make your bedding every night. But, there are far too many thousands of people using the AT each year for us to use the AT as a basic hunting trail. The Leave No Trace principle espoused by the ATC basically says don't mess with the plants or the animals in any way, on the AT. To share the trail with millions, we have to refrain from the "it won't hurt if I just take this pebble" mentality.

    You asked your question on an AT board, in a general AT forum, so, this is my suggestion. Don't skip the scouting the terrain part, and find some proper use public or private land for your expedition. They AT isn't the proper place for this.

    Edit: Removed an incomplete sentence fragment.
    Last edited by Puddlefish; 03-02-2020 at 12:07.

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    As a hunter and long distance trail hiker (Hiked AT in 2014) it is really not a good idea to hunt along the AT corridor. As a responsible hunter it is your responsibility to know exactly where you bullet or arrow is going and what is behind your target. Yes it is legal to hunt in the NF during hunting seasons. I ran into several spring turkey hunters in Virginia. As a hunter and gun owner we already have enough issues and bad choices to deal with, why add another.

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    I've combined trout fishing and hiking many times, but I always have enough food to have an enjoyable hike. Foraging, fishing, and hunting make for some great additions to the menu, but can be unreliable and time-consuming. Of course that sometimes is exactly what I'm after!

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    Agree that there are way too many people to hunt on the AT. Also, you would need a non-resident license $$$.

    I have always wanted to try a backpack hunt, but never have. We have spring squirrel season in VA in June, so this might be the year.

    There is plenty of National Forest land in OH. You can probably find places to pack in, scout, and hunt. IMO best chance for success would be to set up a base camp and hunt from there.

    Remember that a whole turkey is a feast for several people. You would either have to eat it all or pack out extra weight. Also, shotgun shells and centerfire ammo are heavy. Mobility would be improved by hunting small game with a .22.

    Asolo's post reminds me of a canoe trip I once took with my late friend Paul. When we met to start the trip, his gear included a feed sack that was flopping around in the parking lot. Paul raised free range chickens, but could not sell the roosters, so that's what was in the sack. The rooster rode down the river on the bow of his canoe and then became our supper. Paul roasted it a dutch oven. We gave the guts to a fisherman camped nearby for use as bait.

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    What you would want to do is commonly called base came camping. You hike in to a area where you will be setting up camp for several days. When you arrive at your camping area and are set with the hike and camping, it's time to begin the hunting. You can scout the area, and learn where the trail is and goes and other signs of civilization that may be around, also scope out the potential areas to hunt and also to get a feel not to get lost.

    If you are thinking of hunting while hiking in other words taking targets of opportunity during the hike, that sounds reckless and irresponsible so please don't do that and know your area before the shooting part of hunt begins.

    LNT also applies to hunting (though guidelines for hunting differ), but the key is to know your area and respect it and others.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by reeseb View Post
    ...Asolo's post reminds me of a canoe trip I once took with my late friend Paul. When we met to start the trip, his gear included a feed sack that was flopping around in the parking lot. Paul raised free range chickens, but could not sell the roosters, so that's what was in the sack. The rooster rode down the river on the bow of his canoe and then became our supper. Paul roasted it a dutch oven. We gave the guts to a fisherman camped nearby for use as bait.
    Sorry you lost your friend. It sounds like a trip and meal you won't forget!

  17. #17

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    As a hunter/hiker myself I would think this idea to be quite impracticable. Maybe if your hunting gear was a slingshot or a throwing stick and you simply went for targets of opportunity you could supplement your diet but to rely on hunting would be next to impossible.
    I briefly entertained the idea of bringing an Atl Atl and learning it as I walked along but after about 10 minutes discarded it as being more trouble than it was worth.
    The hassle of keeping up with the appropriate hunting license is a whole new conversation in itself.
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    I am a hunter myself and have hiked the AT. It would really be impracticable to hike and hunt at same time. While many miles of the AT are in areas open to hunting (I ran into Spring Turkey hunters in Virginia) it just would not be good hunter/gun safety. I could not imagine myself hunting anywhere near the path of the AT. You don't know who is around the corner, over the hill, or just out of sight all of which violate the rules of hunter and firearm safety. I hiked 2200 miles of the AT while I did see Big Game animals such as Deer, Bear, Moose, and turkeys there were many days even weeks without seeing any game. So my advice would be either hike the AT or hike into a more safe area and hunt.

  19. #19

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    After seeing thousands of backpackers in the TN and NC mountains in the last 40 years---I've only seen two backpacking hunters in all that time. Just last October I saw these guys out for three days with squirrel guns. Locals boys from Robbinsville NC.



    Since I don't eat meat it's a non-issue for me---but I do forage roots and greens on a regular basis. And the great Himalayan yogi Milarepa lived on nettles for most of his life.

    In the Southeast mountains there's plenty of bear and pig hunters---and plenty of regular backpackers---but no backpacking hunters.

  20. #20

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    I think that living off the land is a great goal to set for yourself.........................
    have done several trips that way......but it was fishing and bird trapping, never for longer then a week BUT IT IS DOABLE
    Do some short hikes going in with just what you need to capture and cook your meals....
    Good Luck

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