The posts suggest I'm in the minority here, but the poll says otherwise. We're an increasingly small percentage of the population, and America is becoming increasingly urban. Take a drive through the Midwest and see what's happening to Small Town America. Our way of life is slipping further and further away from the mainstream. If we refuse to compromise and accept terminology that the mainstream understands, we're doomed.
Although the term isn't all encompassing, I'd allow that it does, in some respects, describe what we do. And frankly, I think sitting around a campfire telling stories of hunts in the past is pretty darned entertaining.
At first I was going to say "No, it is not a sport." Then I started thinking. I have been losing weight and training since June for a hunt/scouting trip in October. I run three times a week and work with weights five times a week . . . to prepare for a high mountain backpacking/scouting trip. I am in better shape for this trip than 15 years ago when I played tennis pretty often.
The sport makes physical demands on the hunter -- at least some manifestations of the sport. Road hunting for deer in Wisconsin, maybe not; hunting for Elk in a wilderness area at 11,000', definitely. The sport has rules or codes of behavior, it is stylized (I say this because I think this is true of most sports -- I can't climb on my teammates back and stuff the basketball into the hoop).
We all spend our time at the range, making sure our rifle is shooting just right. We get it dialed in, and then we head to the woods, ready to shoot our animal. Well, what happens if the animal comes out where you do not expect it? Will you be able to make the shot?
This scenario has happened to me. My first deer I ever shot, I had to shoot left handed. I had never practiced that way, and paid for it by having my nose broken with the scope. If I had just...