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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

December 2002 BGH Poll:
Bagging A Trophy....

It is safe to say that many of us have heard about an inexperienced hunter getting a lucky strike on their first outing. There are also many hunting experts that lecture on the belief that the only route to trophy bliss is through exceptional skill.

In practice is bagging a trophy just luck, superior skill, or both?

expatriate's picture
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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

There's an old saying: the harder I work, the luckier I get. I think work has more to do with it than either luck or skill, because the main difference is how much time you spend in an area figuring out who the king buck/bull is and where he hangs out.

Work can create luck, and you can be a walking encyclopedia of knowledge and still get skunked if you don't get out there and apply it. I'd wager that a significant majority of guys in the record books invested an awful lot of hours chasing the big one.

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2002-12-04 20:36 ]

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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

Ex is right but I think if I was given the choice I'd take luck over skill. Luck, like skill, puts you at the right place at the right time. I think skill wins in the pride department but luck still always plays an important part. Skill can get you on the biggest and baddest buck but bad luck makes that buck walk through your area at midnight.

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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

Luck....Skill. Ever know a braggert? Care to be around them? With trophy hunting, any number of factors can come in to play. There are certain areas of Northern Arizona that I've been told hold more world class bull elk per square mile than anywhere in the world. The ticket to get in $$$. Same is true for Whitetails or any animal for that matter. Habitat is key to antler development, private or restricted access public when managed properly is a time proven formula for antler development. So maybe the correct answer lies not in hunting for the animal but rather hunting for the right to access to the animal. By the way anyone willing to grant me access to a Kansas Whitetail, please let me know. I'll gladly try my luck at bagging him.

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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

Baggin a trophy..... requires a big bag!

HA HA....HA Ha....ha ......ha... huh....

ok so that was lame.

bitmasher's picture
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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

I think it is completely possible for a ninny to wander around, stumble upon a big buck, remember which side of the gun goes forward and make a good shot for the first time in their life. That being said, I don't think it happens very often.

Patience and covering ground actually is skill in hunting. To prove my point, spend a half day hunting with a newbie. They'll probably want to hike in a ways, hang out in a draw for 20 minutes then say something ingenious like "Where are the big ones!?!".

Luck is a big factor though, while I have never tagged anything that would grace B&C or P&Y, I have spent many hunts where I stalk one area or plan to drive one draw only to have an unknown bunch of elk pop over a ridge from out of nowhere. Or get in range on a buck, then have a bigger one pop out of brush within range, that I had previously missed.

Hunting is a game of chance, skill is just knowing how to increase your odds.

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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

I'll agree with that, Bit. Luck's never been my strong suit. I was carrying a muzzleloader when the biggest buck I've ever seen in front of my sights came right toward me about 25 yards away. I pulled the trigger and -- click. He promptly changed course and ran up the ridge and into another hunter who didn't have the problem. As he gutted my deer, the other guy thanked me for yelling "Buck" and letting him know the deer was coming his way.

I was climbing a ridge in Idaho once (doing the ninny routine) and paying too much attention to tracks. I heard something above me and looked up to see a nice 4X4 bull elk standing broadside munching on a bush 40 yards away, paying no attention to me whatsoever. I had all the time in the world to shoot, and sat there with the crosshairs on him cursing my luck because I was hunting deer, and elk season didn't open until the following week. I never did get my bull -- all I ever saw during the season was cows.

So in retrospect, I have to agree that luck plays a bigger role than skill in whether or not you fill your tag.

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2002-12-06 01:28 ]

cob
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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

My dad always said "If it wasn't for bad luck i wouldn't have any luck at all"

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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

Expatriate,
Is the hunter sure you said "Buck" or did it just should very similar to the word "Buck"? :smile:

[ This Message was edited by: ChesterGolf on 2002-12-06 13:34 ]

[ This Message was edited by: ChesterGolf on 2002-12-06 13:35 ]

expatriate's picture
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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

At the time, I wasn't in the mood to correct him. I figured it was better to be thought generous than unfortunate.

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Bagging A Trophy; Luck, Skill, or Both?

There must be some luck to it since you can use everything you know and stay out all day and bag a trophy buck on your walk back to the truck.

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