In the midst of our usual summer heat and humidity, the Southeast chapter has had a busy few months enjoying our public lands and waters.
We followed up our successful Gobblers and Garbage initiative by issuing a chapter-wide challenge during Hike to Hunt to collect trash while folks were out trekking the trails. Members responded to this by gathering over 300 lbs. of trash during their travels.
In July chapter leaders in Mississippi organized the Pearl River event to educate the public about two main issues impacting the Pearl River near Jackson, MS. Despite the best laid plans, however, the issues of unmitigated sewage runoff and lack of public access conspired to keep the teams off the river. In true backcountry spirit, they responded by dealing with what Mother Nature gave them and organizing a trail clean-up and a wild-game meal to feed the attendees. To read more about the Pearl River, read Josh Watts’ blog post here.
R3 initiatives are taking off across the Southeast. In August, Florida members held an event at the Easton Archery Center in Newberry, which introduced youth to archery. In September, Arkansas members helped kick off the state’s “Eat Natural” program at the World Championship Squirrel Cook Off in Bentonville. Also, in September, dove season kicked off across the Southeast and there were various public-land dove hunts designed to introduce people to this fun and accessible way to get into hunting.
Finally, as we head into the Fall, we have many of our Southeast members headed west for various hunts. Once again, we have been hosting a series of Facebook live events to highlight the various aspects of preparation for the trip. Southeastern hunters typically know a lot about whitetail deer hunting but may not know where to start when it comes to western big game. Sharing knowledge from a common starting point helps reduce the barriers, and it also lets people know that “dream hunts” are as much about how you define the dream as they are about coming up with a lot of money. Our Western Hunt series is available on our chapter Facebook page or YouTube Channel.