It’s hard to put the past 2012 duck season into words, but WOW might scratch the surface! Each year at this time, we find ourselves in a familiar but fortunate position…how did we beat our previous season again?! From the big, beautiful bunches of greenheads to happy clients in the Lodge at night, we can say with certainty that each year keeps getting better. The off-season preparations are continuing to intensify and expand, and the fall pay-off with unprecedented numbers of greentops is the ultimate reward.
A lot of people ask what a “Day in the Life” is like for me, and I will be the first to admit that I’ve worked my whole life to build a career around hunting. But with this lifestyle comes a GREAT deal of work! As a co-owner and fulltime guide at Habitat Flats, mornings start early with AM client groups, and afternoons are often spent rotating different PM client groups. Scouting fills our freetime, and occasionally we get to “buddy hunt” with each other among the guides. There are many aspects to this operation… hosting writers and TV crews, daily direction of clients around our blinds, making nightly game plans for the following day, managing our own film crew for future DVDs, and most importantly, ensuring that each client receives the first class experience that we hold standard. There isn’t “free time” or a day off during season, but for that we are fortunate! I do what I love, day in and day out, 12 months a year…it’s a great deal of back-breaking work, but it’s the only lifestyle I know! To succeed in this business, sweat equity needs to be your best friend, and there’s absoultely no substitute for it.
As Habitat Flats continues to grow and expand, I want to personally thank everyone who adds to my own memories each year. Our clients, guides and staff all contribute to the ultimate duck season, and it’s my goal to make memories for them. But the road goes both ways, and I can’t be more thankful for people who hunt with me from around the world each fall. I want to thank our fans for your appreciation of conservation and our waterfowling heritage. Our industry is a unique one, and I truly consider it a community where we all work together to maintain the values of this great sport. As 2013 begins, I hope to continue to see a growth in youth and women hunting – we can only grow stronger in numbers! Please remember to set the example in the field and uphold our role as conservationists!
Canada Geese and, of course, Snow Geese are next on the schedule for me…and as always, I look forward to providing you all with images from the field each day. We will continue our video series as we enter Snow Goose season, so get down and ready as the TORNADOES APPROACH!!! If you haven’t seen our Duck 2012 Video Series yet, we have compiled 3 excellent short videos from the field this season, free to the public. Click here to visit our Habitat Flats Channel: www.youtube.com/user/habitatflats. In addition to the video series, we also compiled this 5-minute montage representing 60 days of ducks!
Happiest of New Years to all of you, and best of luck in the field!!