Elk Hunting Ethics Displayed by Youth Hunter

Have you had those moments? The ones where you come to battle with your conscience? You have to decide in the seconds what to do. You have to know right from wrong and deal with the results of your decision. My daughter, aka, LG, has been through hunter safety, shooting safety and has been a member of the NRA YHEC program for a number of years. She’s learned more than how to be safe and how to shoot. This week LG shares her experience, how she came up empty-handed and how she’s satisfied with her decision.

Tales from LG
Tales from LG

No matter how old or how young a hunter is they will always experience one major situation. A heart-pounding event of shoot or don’t shoot. Many times an animal may present it’s self in a situation where you may have to hesitate.

This year on one of my elk hunting adventures I had this shocking moment. As my friend and I were headed home, near the end of the first day of season, it was just getting late. It was very dramatic as the sunset and the dust flew behind us down the dirt road. The sunset began to fade away and it was almost the end of shooting light. I was half asleep in the passenger seat and happened to crack an eye open when there were four big bodies in the road.

The brakes screeched us to a halt and my friend, and adult who should be a mentor, yelled “Look at that bull!” A very respectable 6×6 stepped out and began crossing the road. I watched in awe while my friend was telling me to get out and shoot him.


I didn’t shoot. I couldn’t shoot. Why I didn’t shoot, 1 – not legal in road. 2 – not legal within 50yds of road. 3 – private property on the other side of the fence.

No words were coming out of my mouth. I was shocked that I was seeing this dream bull of mine. It was right there in front of me, broadside. There was a rush of the situation. I did get out. I stood a looked at the big 6×6 bull, in awe.

The majestic bull made it to the other side of the road. I was still in shock that this was happening to me. There seemed to be a little voice in the back of my head telling me to shoot it. It was really my friend behind me. My gun never made it to my shoulder before the bull disappeared into the trees.

We both hopped back in the truck and my mind started to race, thinking of all the outcomes that could’ve happened. I could’ve had my tag filled. I could be done with the hunt. We could be doing the hard work of field dressing a big bull elk. The worst part of the situation was the friend nagging me and saying how I did wrong.

When we finally got home the bull was still in my mind. I couldn’t seem to stop thinking about those minutes that seemed like hours.

Finally, I lay down for bed. I thought one last time about what had happened. I told myself I had made not only the right decision but also the best decision. I went to bed and woke up the next morning pleased with what I had, or rather had not, done and hunted on the next four days.

Lea-calling-elk-hunting-coloradoI never did fill my tag, but I got to hunt with another friend, a better mentor. Together we called several elk within yards of us. Some were just spikes. Some wouldn’t give me a clear shot. Still others were lazy in their beds and wouldn’t come out to play. Overall it was an amazing experience to be that close to so many big animals. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

There are many influences in hunting, whether it’s yourself or one of your friends or family. A big key to remember all through your hunting career is to never underestimate yourself. Take control of the situation, you are the only one who can decide the big fate of shoot or don’t shoot. Also remember to take your time and consider the conclusion of the event. If the animal walks away from your shot then it wasn’t meant to be. Always be your own hunter don’t weaken your ethics for someone else, even if they are older than you.


Follow Mia’s posts at Beretta USA Blog
Read the Adventures of Mia and the Little Gal at the Women’s Outdoor News, Sponsored by Girls with Guns clothing
Follow Mia’s shooting safety tips at North American Hunting.
Mia shares tips, gear and stories for women who love the hunt, or want to, at Western Whitetail Magazine.

Hunting Ethics at the Shooting Channel

One of the most important things taught during hunter education classes – Hunting Ethics. Read my post at The Shooting Channel

Always be sure to say
Always be sure to say “Thank you.” to a landowner when they let you hunt.


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Excellent show: Skull Bound TV

My weekdays are primarily shared between the Little Gal and work so on the weekend I do my best to get outdoors. I don’t watch TV often, but last winter I did get to catch an episode of a friend/fellow Prois Staffer’s show on the Sportsman’s Channel which I really enjoyed.


I first met Jana Waller in 2011 at the annual SHOT Show in Las Vegas. As we introduced ourselves at the Prois booth my first impression was that she was kind hearted and genuinely down to earth. She and her camera man, Jim Kinsey, chatted with Hank and I and told us of their mission to create a show incorporating hunting, conservation and Jana’s famous skulls. We both thought the idea was great and couldn’t wait to see the huntress on the flat screen.Prois Staff Mia Anstine and Jana Waller

I caught the first episode last winter and truly enjoyed it. As I said, I am not around often so I felt it was unfortunate that I didn’t get to see more of Jana’s shows. When I saw the season 1 dvd set come available, I purchased it right away along with a Skull Bound T-shirt for my Little Gal. The Little Gal just loves the shirt and is currently watching Jana’s shows. Me? I watched nearly four hours of content right away and enjoyed every minute of it. The cinematography was outstanding, and I have been told season two will be even better. I’m going to have to get that one too.

I highly recommend the show to hunters and non-hunters alike. It is great to “travel the world with” Jana Waller as your host. She share’s the highs as well as the lows of her hunts (which I find impressive because not every show ends with a harvest). She and Jim have included a “Conservation Minute” in each episode to help educate the viewer on hunting, conservation and how we can all make a difference. They share the cultures of the people in the areas they spend time in with you the viewer, and you feel the friendship that is created along their journeys. You of course will also see unique and amazing skulls, both raw as well as embellished with Jana’s one of a kind beading and painting.

I am excited for my Little Gal to watch the excellent hunting and conservation ethics portrayed in the episodes and think you should take a moment to enjoy them as well.The Little Gal with her Skull Bound TV season 1 & T-shirt

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