When were your kids old enough to backpack hunt?

Discussion in 'Backpack Hunting' started by rtabor, Mar 22, 2012.

  1. rtabor

    rtabor Well-Known Member

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    My oldest boy, Joshua, is seven years old. We've camped together multiple times and he likes it. He also loves shooting. We're still working on developing a love for the hunting part. I often look forward to the days when we get to go together on some good back-country hunts. He isn't yet interested in something quite so adventurous, but I think he's close.

    So my question is: in your experience, what was the age when your kids began to really enjoy the back-country hunts, even with all the work that is involved with those trips?

    Or maybe you can tell me your own experience growing up.
     
  2. sp6x6

    sp6x6 Well-Known Member

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    I started my boy early. This is him at 13. This was a hard core 3 hr. in dark in, then we pulled about 2000 verticle. I shot a nice buck,was going to let him take it but it had trash. The pack out did him in, 1/4 and strap. I had rest, and his gun, out in the dark. He is seventeen now and when I last saw him this year with elk 1/4 he was trotting out:D He dusted me
     

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  3. kcebcj

    kcebcj Well-Known Member

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    I had my son tag along when he was little and wanted to when I could. I started hunting with him as soon as he was able to license up. The day hunts 6-8 hour hikes type thing. I did not take him on 2-3 day back pack hunts until he was 16 and quite skilled and able to take care of himself in the high country and bad weather.

    What I noticed about me back then especially at the start was my worry about him especially when the weather would turn bad and I would lose track of him across the canyon or where ever his line was for a few hours. It ruined my hunting for a couple years. Every minute spent was worth it though and has paid off as now he is much more capable then I in the high country and great to hunt with.

    When he was like 18 I think when he approached me one day during the summer and laid out how he wanted to work a particular canyon where he had seen a really good buck the previous season. I just smiled and thought to myself he's really hooked now. Mentally hunting deer in July.
     
  4. HARPERC

    HARPERC Well-Known Member

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    At 7 we took my partners boy on summer rock shoots. Youth model Marlin 22, water and lunch. It seemed to be a good start, days are long, weather usually good. A day trip will answer some of your questions, without undue stress on anyone. My daughters daypack for school made me cringe putting it in the truck more than once LOL.
     
  5. MuleHunter

    MuleHunter Well-Known Member

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    High country hunting mule deer is my passion. I didn't get started until i was 18. I thought with my son i would get him started early. This isn't a picture of high country hunting but it is cross country in Montana. We put in a little over 4 miles that day. He is 3 years old.

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  6. C.O. Shooter

    C.O. Shooter Well-Known Member

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    Cool pictures! I look forward to that! Side note, what kind of pack is that? Make and model?
     
  7. tt35

    tt35 Well-Known Member

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    Fun pictures, Mulehunter!
     
  8. MuleHunter

    MuleHunter Well-Known Member

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    Its the Eberlestock j107 Dragonfly pack. He had a blast
     
  9. hammertyme

    hammertyme Well-Known Member

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    All my kids start competing at the local gun club at 6 years old with 22 rimfires.

    My oldest son shot his first buck on a back pack hunt at 8 years old. We were 4 miles in from the truck. At 10 he wanted to quit shooting the smaller bucks and shoot one's " like you shoot dad".

    The youngest would not have been mature enough until 12 or 13 for anything but a day hunt here in Alaska. Fighting the brush for an hour or two before breaking out in the alpine is actually hard work.

    Neal
     
  10. rtabor

    rtabor Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the good responses. I am impressed. I can't think of many things better than sharing the wilderness with your kids. It makes me want to be the best I can so I can pass on as much as possible.