My neighbor’s daughter has been expressing interest in taking up duck hunting, and asked for some suggestions on how to approach the sport. I’m not sure of the exact reasoning behind the request, but I’m always pleased to have more young people involved, so I was happy to pass on some tips.
Of course, my first step was to refer Kristin to the experts at Minturn Anglers in Denver. Whether you’re looking to brush up on your skills or an absolute beginner, they are the authority on hunting information and lessons. So if you’re also looking to get started and go out on your first time duck hunting experience, make sure you’re paying attention.
From September to the end of February, Minturn Anglers offer a waterfowl instructional session that starts with an evening class to cover the basics and waterfowl hunting as a whole.
The classroom instruction covers everything, including:
- Waterfowl habitat and biology
- How to setup decoys
- Using blinds and other concealment
- Duck calling
- Duck hunting dogs
- Guns and ammunition
- Choosing hunting locations
- Choosing the right gear
- Etiquette and safety
The next morning is devoted to practicing what was discussed in the classroom session during a half day hunt. Class sizes are limited to 8, so every student is assured practical, individual and thorough mentoring from an expert duck hunting guide. This is your chance to use the knowledge gained in the classroom and practice it in the field – i.e. hands-on learning with the chance to ask questions and boost your comfort level.
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. If you’re a total beginner who is just starting out, you’ll need to first stock up on necessary gear. This can include:
- a firearm
- warm, waterproof clothing
- duck calls
If you aren’t sure what brands you like or just aren’t quite ready to commit to a purchase, check out the available rental programs for outerwear and gear.
So what’s the take away from all of this information? Hunter education is important in keeping you and your fellow hunters safe from preventable accidents and ensures maintained sustainability for the years to come. In addition, the proper gear will help you to enjoy the sport by giving you the confidence and comfort your desire. As a beginner, both are necessary to get you started on your duck hunting journey.
I’m pleased to report that young Kristin has taken my advice and signed up for a course. I’m convinced that she will appreciate the sport as a whole and continue hunting with skill and self-reliance for many years to come.
Armed with the proper education and gear, duck hunting can be an enjoyable way to get back to the basics and get away from the stressors of everyday life. Don’t let another duck season slip away because you don’t feel confident about your hunting skills. Let Minturn Anglers be your guide on the way to hunting expertise.