It’s Autumn and Upland hunting season is in full swing in most states across the U.S. That got me thinking. Have you gone out this year? Have you taken someone new? Think of a family member or a friend who has expressed an interested in hunting but has yet to go afield. Well, hunting upland game birds is great place for a newcomer to get started and right now is the perfect time to introduce them.
There are a few things to consider when bringing out someone new, such as ensuring they understand safety procedures, that they are outfitted with the proper gear and helping them turn their potential harvest into a mindful and memorable meal.
While going afield may be an exciting endeavor for an experienced hunter, it can be easy to forget what it felt like before your first hunt, such as the nerves, the excitement and the questions. It’s important to cover the basics. Here’s a good place to start, what is Upland hunting?
The Basics: What is Upland Hunting
The term Upland isn’t as easily understood as say waterfowl hunting or deer hunting. Upland refers to non-water fowl game birds such as Doves, pheasant, grouse, quail and others. Upland hunting can be done in a variety of locations but is most often depicted and done in open fields. This environment provides thick ground cover for the birds which is why many upland hunters bring along trained bird dogs. Hunting dogs help flush the game out of the brush and into the air, many dogs will also retrieve the downed birds.
Safety First when Upland Hunting
Before you can take your friend or family member out into the field it’s important they understand safe and lawful hunting procedures. They will need to take a hunter’s education course where they will learn all about firearm safety, hunting fundamentals, conservation, as well as hunting laws and regulations. Start an online hunter safety education course for your state at Hunter-ed.com. This course will teach them all they need to know, but it’s always good to go over safe firearms handling and hunting procedures with your buddy before and while afield.
In this video, NSSF offers a few upland hunting safety reminders that will help ensure your next day in the field is a safe and enjoyable experience. The video offers experienced hunters a quick review and is the perfect tool for introducing newcomers to the rules of the field.
Upland Hunting Gear
Along with safe firearm and hunting practices, the proper gear is also important to ensure a safe hunt. If this is your friend or family member’s first-time upland hunting they will likely need to borrow some gear or at least need some direction on what to buy before going out. While upland field clothes aren’t essential, brush pants, quality outerwear and a good vest can go a long way. Clothing that is essential however is items that are Blaze Orange, whether that’s a hat, vest, jacket or all three blaze orange plays a large role in each hunters’ safety. Blaze orange allows hunters to see one another and safely be afield. Read more about the gear that will help make your upland hunt more successful. Also, check out some of the latest women’s upland apparel that is practical and stylish.
Upland Game Recipes
If you decide to take someone hunting it’s also nice to help them see their game from field to table. Hunting provides an ethical source of local and natural meat. Try out some of our favorite upland game recipes like grilled Dove poppers, quail and wild rice casserole and wild goose and pineapple stir fry.
Ask your friends and family members to come afield with you and share all the joys that hunting has brought you. Make sure they are prepared for a safe and ethical hunt with the proper hunters’ education, licenses and gear. If just one in three hunters adds one new person to our sport, we’ll secure a strong future for generations to come. So be the one. Ignite the passion that can change the course of someone’s life forever.