A E T N Logo
Support The Programs You Love DONATE NOW

Hunting in Arkansas

Posted on 25 Jan 2011

Profile photo of Bryan Fields

As the white tail season is rapidly approaching its conclusion, this rookie hunter has come to a conscience understanding that hunting is far more than the trophies we mount on our walls, the meat we store in the freezer, and the stories we embellish around the campfire—it’s an all out addiction! I confess I am actively seeking a Deer Hunter’s Anonymous group to join.

My family recently relocated to Arkansas; my wife Theresa is a true-blooded Arkansan, but this man was born to cotton farmers in West Texas; please, don’t hold that against me, I got here as fast as I could!  For two decades now we have been visiting family, and the scenery in Arkansas never fails to drop my jaw, bring a tear to my eye, and somehow draw me closer to an overall understanding:  It’s as if God paused a moment because his canvas needed more color; he was not content with just the normal colors of nature.  He created enough beauty here to last a life time.

The decision to become a hunter was filled with multiple trials, several failures, and lots of antics—my Arkansan brethren were more than willing to point this out:

My first deer was shot on opening weekend from a climbing tree stand.  All my kinfolk warned me how dangerous these stands can be (I chuckled under my breath). The shot was a good 170 yards, and it required a far lean around the backside of the tree with only one arm on the rifle, and the other on the tree.  I soon discovered when a man is under the poisonous effects of Buck-Fever, you just don’t make good decisions.  The shot was fired, the deer was hit, and I proceeded to fall thirty feet.  Have you ever played with a Slinky on the staircase, you get the picture.  I quickly pounced to my feet, started hooting and hollering (that dang gum Buck-Fever again) and quickly looked for the blood trail.  Then to my dismay, I realized I was dripping blood as well….Lesson number one: never let a rookie play in a tree stand—especially if he’s from Texas.

I would love to say the story ended there, but a Texan is always worth a second laugh.  I figured I needed to recover; you know, look tough since I had a dripping cut on my head.  I tried for several minutes to hoist the deer on my back.  I figured no one would hassle at a man carrying a deer on his back.  I am sure God is still laughing at the sight, and no, I did not manage to accomplish this task.  After dragging the deer for about 500 yards, my bother-in-law called and told me to come get the four-wheeler to carry the deer back.  I marked the deer location with my GPS—please don’t laugh—and I returned to camp.  After several minutes (seemed like hours) of laughter over my cut, my brother decided to assist me with the retrieval.  When we arrived at the general location, I turned to my GPS to locate the deer.  My brother kept telling me to turn the machine off, and finally I yelled at him to let me find my deer.  Naturally, he was standing right in front of the deer.  Lesson number two: if you need a GPS, don’t let others see it.

All humor aside: Deer hunters are passionate about the sport, and this man now understands the passion.  My brother keeps about two hundred acres dedicated to his deer.  This land is left unscathed by man’s hand in order to provide these majestic creatures necessary statuary.  Sure, he could clear this land and have more space for his cattle, but in the end he understands the need to preserve nature.  His part might be just a small part, but together with other fellow hunters, nature is in safe hands. 

This was my first “real” year to hunt this elusive and mysterious creature, and in the end I have more respect and admiration for the white tail than any other animal I have encountered.

AETN ENGAGE BLOG

“Agri Arkansas” - June 2016
This month, join us to take a look at the Natural State’s global reach. What are the products that Arkansas farmers sell around the world, and how are we expected to fare in a declining export market? We’ll also have an update on a farm-to-fuel initiative in DeWitt and make a visit to the Olde Crow General Store at the junction of Highways 9 and 5 in the latest “Agri Arkansas” on Sunday, June 26, at 1 p.m.

CONTINUE READING

“A Deeper Look: The Poverty Divide in Arkansas” airs June 27
Arkansas is currently ranked fourth in the nation with most people in poverty: one of every five people lives below the poverty line. How does this affect our state and what resources are available to help anyone who is struggling? Find out as we further the conversation about poverty and opportunity in “A Deeper Look: The Poverty Divide in Arkansas” Monday, June 27, at 9 p.m.

CONTINUE READING

Turn Up the Heat With Sunday Night Drama
The weather isn’t the only thing heating up this summer! From “Vicious” and “Endeavour” to “Dancing on the Edge” and “The Tunnel,” get ready for new seasons, new series, a special series finale and more! Masterpiece PBS is ready for summer — with plenty of romance, mystery and even murder — and June is just the beginning.

CONTINUE READING

Win an “I Can Readathon!” Event Kit - Facebook Contest
Travel to new places, different times and even new worlds this summer by reading together! You can help the kids in your life fight the summer slump and win a Harper Collins “I Can Read” event kit by entering our I Can Readathon! Facebook Contest June 13-30. Learn how you can enter and host a summer reading party for 20!

CONTINUE READING

PBS KIDS ScratchJr Pine Bluff - Coding for Tomorrow
Through a grant from PBS and the Verizon Foundation, AETN Early Childhood Education has been proud to partner with Pine Bluff School District elementary schools to hold the PBS KIDS ScratchJr Camp. This camp, which directly addresses the Arkansas Department of Education’s goals to integrate computing concepts into the classroom, is revolutionary because it supports critical thought processing with computational thinking and problem solving. Learn five ways that Pine Bluff is laying the groundwork for students to achieve basic computer coding after the jump!

CONTINUE READING
MORE POSTS ]