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AUSTIN ATKINSON PROFESSIONAL HUNT ADVISOR H appy New Year from all of us at Huntin’ Fool! It’s a new year with a fresh start for all of us. We are excited to provide you with the most comprehensive hunt research available these next 12 months. With this new year upon us, I encourage you to find the hidden successes in your own hunts and to do everything possible to make sure you have time in the field this season. In my opinion, we are the best hunters that have ever walked the face of the earth. We have traded many of our primal instincts for ballistic calculating rangefinders and Google Earth, resulting in animals, particularly trophy ones, having very little chance to get away. Our drive to compete against other hunters and to maximize our experience has created the demand for technical hunting gear that keeps us comfortable and allows us to be as successful as possible. Long- range rifles, high power binoculars, and everything else crammed in our backpacks ensure we can take the best animal available. Oftentimes, this has resulted in the top crop of trophy bucks or bulls being taken out of a unit. With that being said, it’s no coincidence that some of the biggest trophies of the year will come from units that border private land, reservations, rugged wilderness areas, or national parks. Trophy class animals are more difficult to find in areas where they cannot take refuge and get away from the ultra- equipped 21 st century hunters. Those who are looking to harvest a top tier, trophy animal this year must look beyond the herd numbers and face value of a unit. The most successful members we see know how to research and how to interpret maps and they rely on their Huntin’ Fool membership to guide them as they plan their hunt. Most importantly, though, successful trophy hunters repeatedly place themselves in the field where they can get lucky. Never trade an opportunity to spend real time in the field! The North American conservation model is still considered the best in the world and the most successful program we have ever had in the history of humanity. However, it requires sportsmen to speak up, listen, compromise when necessary, and do our part as stewards over wildlife. I encourage you to set a goal to spend as much time in the field as possible this year and to become the best Huntin’ Fool you can be! AUSTIN’S WIFE, CHELSIE, WITH HER 2017 UTAH GENERAL SEASON RIFLE DEER 6