Written By Bill Howard

Do you know what time it is? No, not where the hands on the clock are located that indicates the daily travels of the sun overhead. I am referring to what time of year it is.

Yes, it is hot and feels like the Earth has bounced in its orbit towards the nuclear powered celestial orb that emits heat that is nearly unbearable. But in just a few weeks, we have a whole new season. Again, I am not necessarily referring to something based on the Earth’s position along its orbital path either.

I am referring to hunting season!

Are you ready? I am getting there. I actually am getting a late start to getting ready, but I am trying to catch up quickly.

First comes dove season. The annual celebration that is all but a national holiday. In fact, a national holiday is positioned perfectly beside opening day of dove season. Birds, birds and more birds. That is what we want to see.

It will be hot. After all, the other season is still going on, summer that is. There will be bugs. Gnats will stick to our arms, necks, legs and faces due to the amount of sweat we will be pouring as we suffer through the plague of worrisome and aggravating miniature pests and heat. Mosquitos will threaten us with Zika or some other potential disease in which we will likely just receive an itching and maybe swollen bite mark along with a quick slap of either our hand or someone else’s hand nearby.

But it will be worth it. We get to hunt. We get to shoot. We get to have our annual duty of cleaning a little over a dozen birds each in order to wrap some bacon around the breasts of something that nature provided to us for a food source that happens to be downright tasty.

If we are lucky, we get to approach it as a marriage; you know, something old, something new. Maybe we get to hunt with someone new, or with a new shotgun we have been anxious to test. Maybe we get to teach and mentor a new hunter and show them not only the techniques to hunt in a safe manner, but also the techniques to make quick and ethical shots and an enjoyment and skill that will last a lifetime.

Maybe we will get to embrace the old part as well. Taking a parent, uncle or aunt, or even a grandparent for a hunt that will always be remembered with fondness. Maybe we will bring out that old 16 gauge that hasn’t seen a hunting day for decades, or the old side-by-side 20 gauge that has been handed down in the family generation to generation.

Maybe we get to carry an old companion that may be on his or her last hunt. You know, the one that sleeps at the foot of your bed, lays with you in the recliner, and begs for you table scraps during dinner because you sneak some down in one hand when your wife turns her attention elsewhere. The one who has been faithful and loving more than any human could be. The mutt, the registered purebred, or the immaculate bloodline of field trial champions, whether they behave perfectly in the field or not, your dog will likely be even more excited than you for that one more hunt.

Yes, it is that time of year. The time of year that leads into the rest of hunting season. Deer, bear, goose, and duck all become fair game one after the other as the days march by.

It is that time of year. I am ready. Are you?

 

Bill Howard is a lifelong North Carolina resident and hunter. He is a lifetime member of the North Carolina Bowhunters Association, an associate member of Pope and Young, and an official measurer of both. He is a certified hunter education (IHEA) instructor and bowhunter education (IBEP) instructor. Please share your stories with Bill at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 Editor’s Note: “Bill Howard Outdoors” is a new weekly series that will be published every Saturday in the new Outdoor Living feature section but is being published on Sunday this week.

 

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Local News

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    FLOOD WATCH IN EFFECT FROM MIDNIGHT EDT TONIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY MORNING Read More
  • Moore County Sheriff’s Deputy Lieutenant Donny Shingleton Presented The Boys And Girls Club Hero Award For 2017 +

    Deon Allbrooks, Club Director of the Southern Pines Boys and Girls Club, presented Moore County Sheriff’s Office Deputy, Lieutenant Donny Read More
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Crime Reports

  • Sheriff Neil Godfrey Announced The Arrest Of Aberdeen Woman For Providing Contraband To A Moore County Inmate +

    Sheriff Neil Godfrey announced the arrest of Faith Mather for providing contraband to a Moore County inmate. Read More
  • Sheriff Godfrey Announces The Arrest Of Jesse Nelson And Patricia Corbin For The Physical Abuse Of Corbin’s Child +

    Sheriff Neil Godfrey announced the arrest of Jesse Nelson and Patricia Corbin for the physical abuse of Corbin’s child. Read More
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Obituaries

  • Virginia Dowd Of Carthage Obituary +

    Virginia Dowd, age 90 of Carthage died Thursday (April 20, 2017) at FirstHealth Hospice House in Pinehurst. Read More
  • Mrs. Bernice Williams Ross Of Southern Pines Obituary +

    Mrs. Bernice Williams Ross, 92, of Southern Pines, NC, died Wednesday, April 19, 2017, at the First Health Hospice House Read More
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Accident & Fire

  • Three Injured In Single Vehicle Accident Outside Of Carthage Saturday Night +

    Three people were injured with one of the passengers trapped in the SUV after a single vehicle accident outside of Read More
  • One Lane Of 24/27 Blocked By Two Vehicle Accident Outside Carthage Friday Afternoon +

    A two vehicle accident temporarily trapped the driver of a passenger car and blocked one lane of traffic west of Read More
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