Over the weekend we met up with our friend Casey to go over a few last minute things for our trip to Canada. A couple days after we leave, Casey himself will be headed out to Alaska to go caribou and moose hunting. To say I'm a wee bit jealous is an understatement. Caribou is on my dream bucket list for hunting. Casey was going to bring his rifle to shoot and I had plans to shoot my bow with my broad heads on. Casey had his three kids with and also brought his pellet gun with for the kids to shoot. Now you might be thinking kids and guns, that doesn't sound like a good combination. Gun safety is everything a hunter has to go through and learn, but I think its even more important to teach your kids at a young age the importance of gun safety, even before they are old enough to take the course. Children are never to young to learn something that can teach them responsibility and life skills. I watched as Casey helped each child shoot the pellet gun and when they hit the target the excitement on their faces was so awesome. You can tell instantly how proud they are of themselves. When they missed the target, Casey advised them on what they needed to work on, for instance not taking their time and being more patient. But the kids also knew you don't take the safety off until they are ready to shoot, you keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire.
If Ryan and I are ever blessed with children we fully plan to teach them about hunting. We plan to take them out with us, so they can experience hunting at a young age. We think its important to teach them about nature and the animals, to teach them patience and responsibility. Hunting gets a bad rap from people who just don't understand it. Some think its cruel or that we hunt for the kill of the animal. This is not true at all. Yes hunting is exhilarating and when that animal walks into your sight it gets your heart pumping, but hunting is also for filling our freezer, and for controlling the population of certain animals.
I was able to shoot Casey's 300 short mag rifle. My first time shooting a rifle and I have to say I was instantly hooked. You can see the video of me shooting his rifle on our Instagram page. When my father taught me how to shoot my shot gun, of course I had fears and nerves, I had never shot a gun before. As I laid out on the ground to shoot Casey's rifle the only thing I was nervous about was not screwing up. Once I got positioned correctly, pulling that trigger back was easy, no fear. Shooting guns has definitely built my confidence. Even in a years span I can already tell a difference in how I approach holding and using guns. Hunting, and shooting bows and guns has also strengthened my relationship with Ryan. We have a common passion and it allows us to spend time together and also be active together.
So I encourage you if you hunt and have children, get them involved. Even if you have a house full of girls, get them involved and start helping build their confidence at a young age. If you have a spouse that enjoys hunting maybe try joining them out on a hunt one day, you never know what you might learn about your significant other and just the quality time together in the outdoors is worth it. Ryan purchased my first 20 gage shot gun and of course we had to go with the pink camo pattern to fit my style, a true man is willing to shoot his wife's pink gun! Happy shooting folks!