Now’s the time to start planning for a guided hunt. Here’s how to ensure a dream adventure—and avoid disappointment
#5 Have the right attitude
So you’ve finally selected an outfitter, laid out your hard-earned shekels and followed the recommended packing list, right down to the extra socks. What could go wrong? Well, there’s always the potential for travel problems, equipment failure and bad weather, but you really have no control over those things. What you do have, however, is absolute control over the attitude you take to camp. More than anything else, it will largely determine how you, and those you share camp with, will recall the hunt in years to come. Here are some cardinal rules to obey at all times:
Listen to the guides. They know the area and the local game better than you do—that’s why you’ve hired them. Guides want you to tag out as much as you do, so avoid trying to tell them how to do their job. Nobody likes a know-it-all, and in any case, it’s unproductive to not listen.
Be communicative. A good guide-client relationship is much like a marriage—it works best when both parties are open and honest.
Participate in the hunt. Whether it’s putting out decoys, spotting game, building blinds or hauling out downed animals (above), you’ll get much more out of the hunt—and endear yourself to your guide—if you’re willing to pitch in when the opportunity arises.
Stay friendly and positive at all times. Whether you’re dealing with the cook, the wrangler, other hunters in camp or the guide, remember you’re on vacation and it’s supposed to be fun. Things won’t always go as planned, and that’s when your attitude can make a huge difference. It’s not easy to explain why, but the hunter who stays positive from day one until the very last minute of the hunt generally enjoys more success—and makes lasting new friendships along the way.