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May 2019
Author: Garth Jenson

I remember back when I started applying out of state and before I started working at Huntin’ Fool, I would read the Huntin’ Fool magazine religiously cover to cover to inform myself of the different opportunities that were in front of me. Back then, Huntin’ Fool really only covered the top end hunts and very seldom gave much information on hunts that wouldn’t produce anything other than trophies. Fast forward 15-20 years and those hunts now take that many years’ worth of applying to get drawn. Those hunts aren’t nearly as appealing to new western hunters with little to no points or long-time western hunters who have burned their points and have started over. Huntin’ Fool slowly started to dabble into areas and units in the West that could be hunted on a more regular basis, but it seemed like it was a halfhearted attempt at best as the Huntin’ Fool team at that time seemed to be hung up on competing for the top spot on the mantle and were less interested in exploring unfamiliar units, running the risk of failure.

I am so proud of the track Huntin’ Fool is on with the team of Hunt Advisors and contributors we now have on staff who put the wants and needs of its members above their own egos and accomplishments. The amount of research that goes into providing hunters with the information needed to make a sound decision on which general or 1-2 point hunt to go on can be quite overwhelming, but today’s market warrants it. All of us here apply for multiple states every year, but like most of you, we end up going on over-the-counter or easy-to-draw hunts. This is our forte, but we can’t be everywhere at once, and above all else, we strive to get our information as accurately as possible. This is why we often lean on fellow hunters, outfitters, biologists, and residents of the state or unit we are researching for our information.

The fact is that if we limited ourselves to only using the experiences and knowledge within the walls of Huntin’ Fool, we could not provide enough accurate information to fulfill our obligation to our members to look out for their best interests. Instead, we have doubled down on finding more opportunities for our members to get out and enjoy the hunt by utilizing the people who know those states, units, and species the best. The end result is more hunters finding out that there really are opportunities to devise an application strategy to hunt the West as much as their schedule will allow. With all of these added hunts and not enough room in the pages to go into great detail on them, you can always call us and ask about certain units that piqued your interest or listen to the Built to Hunt podcast where we discuss a lot of the information that is within the pages of the magazine as well as information that is not.

Also, check out our new video series “The Advisors” on our YouTube channel. It will give you some insight on the hunts we’ve been on, including Jerrod Lile’s Idaho mule deer hunt seen in the photo below. Watch him harvest this buck and keep an eye out for the other great upcoming videos in this series.

I wish you all good luck with the last few applications. I hope to see you in the field or on the trail this year!