The Colorado chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers recently appointed Eric Jones to serve as a Habitat Watch Volunteer (HWV) for the Arapaho National Forest.
Eric was born and raised in a small town outside of Jacksonville, Florida. He started hunting (and angling) around the age of three, walking in the woods with his dad training hunting dogs. “From there I hunted mainly small game in Florida as well as white-tailed deer,” he said. “I shore-fished on the Atlantic Ocean and its tributary rivers and creeks … I hunted with my father and uncle for the majority of my childhood. While my father took me fishing some, a friend later in life taught me almost everything I know about angling.”
Eric is an experienced hunter and angler, but is looking forward to learning how to fly fish. He hunts with a rifle, shotgun and compound bow, but plans to add a muzzleloader to the mix. Eric lives in Aurora and works for the Department of Labor, Mine Safety and Health Administration. He also worked as a Park Ranger for the state of Florida (2015-2018) and served in the Florida Army National Guard (2004-2010), including completing a 16-month tour in Afghanistan (2005-2006).
“I am a disabled veteran who loves volunteering at various veteran outreach programs,” Eric added. “Now I have fulfilled my dream of moving out west and being able to annually hunt all of the western big game animals available to me as well as small game and birds.” Eric originally heard about BHA through podcasts and decided to join. “I am so proud to be getting more involved with this excellent organization,” he said.
“The kind of grit and determination that veterans like Eric infuse into their daily lives is representative of the drive that motivates BHA members across the nation and continent,” Colorado BHA co-chair David Lien (a former Air Force officer) said. “Their devotion and dedication to protecting our wildlands and wildlife is unequaled. We need many more like Eric and the growing army of BHA members across the country and continent.”
Colorado BHA has over 40 Habitat Watch Volunteers serving as our “eyes and ears” in all eleven Colorado national forests. Contact HWV Program Coordinator Don Holmstrom ([email protected]) for additional information. Also see: Colorado BHA Habitat Watch Volunteer (HWV) program information.
Additional BHA Information:
- Colorado BHA Corporate Partners.
- Hunting For Sustainability (H4S).
- BHA’s Public Waters Access campaign.
- BHA’s Collegiate Program. Collegiate Quarterly: (December 2020); (October 2020).
- Backcountry Journal (Winter 2021); (Fall 2020); (Summer 2020); (Spring 2020).
- Backcountry Beat (January 2021); (November 2020); (October 2020).
- BHA’s Armed Forces Initiative. “Armed Forces Initiative-Get Involved.”
- “Where Hope Lives: A Brief BHA History.” Backcountry Hunters & Anglers: 11/30/20.
- “Empowering Leaders: It’s In BHA’s DNA.” Backcountry Hunters & Anglers: 1/7/21.
- David “Elkheart” Petersen (founder of the first BHA state chapter, here in Colorado, and a former U.S. Marine Corps helicopter pilot) books: www.davidpetersenbooks.com
Founded by Mike Beagle, a former U.S. Army field artillery officer, and formed around an Oregon campfire, in 2004, Backcountry Hunters & Anglers is the voice for our nation’s wild public lands, waters and wildlife. With over 40,000 members spread out across all 50 states and 13 Canadian provinces and territories—including chapters in 48 states, two Canadian provinces and one territory, and Washington, D.C.—BHA brings an authentic, informed, boots-on-the-ground voice to the conservation of public lands. Since the Colorado BHA chapter was founded by David Petersen (a former U.S. Marine Corps helicopter pilot) in 2005 (the first official BHA chapter), they’ve grown their boots-on-the-ground presence to some 2,500 dedicated hunters and anglers.