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Luck is when Equipment and Skill meet Opportunity.

For many years I thought luck was the only thing that you couldn't count on when hunting, but a skilled hunter said that wasn't true at all. He said you are in control of your equipment. You can hunt with the right tools or the wrong tools, tools being all your hunting gear, not just the rifle, and you need good tools to do good work. Skill is up to you also. Learn how to shoot well and hunt well or don't bother to learn - your choice. Opportunity will always present itself. If you take the time to find where the game is and then hunt it successfully, opportunity will arise. When these three things happen at once you just got lucky. I always thought this to be the most accurate assessment of hunting I ever heard, and always thought it to be the most inspirational as well.
 

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Yep, all of the "unlucky" hunters I ever shared a camp with were simply not prepared to take advantage when the Opportunity presented itself. If you hunt long enough, even poor tactics will eventually result in a chance to take a shot, but if you don't know your gun, or how to shoot it well, you might as well have stayed home and watched football.

Growing up, my grandpa and my great uncles would grab their 30/30 or .410 shotgun, which they sighted in...15 years ago, and they would head out to hunt deer. They'd be in their work clothes, with an extra jacket on top, lighting up a cigarette as they walked out of camp around 9:30ish. Having done no scouting whatsoever, they would wander around until they found a likely-looking stump, and there they would sit, until they got cold. They'd usually be back in camp by 11:00, complaining about how bad the hunting was and what terrible "luck" they were having. This is not meant to disparage my ancestry, but it is the gospel truth and, God rest their souls, they didn't harvest but 2 or 3 deer in Lord knows how many seasons of hunting.

My dad started out much the same way, but as time went on, he got to know a gentleman everyone in the local area respected, because he got a deer every season...frequently a big one. The details are not necessary, but suffice to say dad learned a bit about scouting, dressing warm, watching the wind, and shooting your gun enough to actually be effective with it. I was fortunate that a lot of this information was passed down to me, but I will never forget those 2 or 3 years, hunting with my elders, seeing all the different ways to guarantee bad luck, when hunting. :)
 

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There's one piece of land my party hunts (about 800 acres) that doesn't have a single road on it, and with the exception of the owners very small yard, is completely virgin land (mostly treed). Every year the (35 yeard old) son of the fellow who owns the place goes out for a walk around the outside edge of the property, and promptly returns to inform us that there is not a single deer on the property. The 10 or 12 times he HAS seen a deer on the property, often resulted in his shooting over their back.

He did get truly lucky one time though, when he shot over a monster non-typical whitetail's back at about 80 yards. The buck was interested in a doe, and didn't even notice! He shot again, in front of the deer. A third shot went under the deer, and he only plugged it finally on his fourth shot. That buck literally had about 11 1/2" bases on it, and he didn't even mount it!

Anyway, about a 10 minute walk onto the property often has us seeing about a half a dozen does, and usually at least one or two bucks of some size. In fact, somebody usually manages to pull at least a mid 140's class buck off of there every year.
 

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Well Said

Some people say "I'd rather be lucky than good". However, I still believe if one is skillful and well prepared, you can make a great deal your luck.
 

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Or, if you want to put it another way, the more prepared and skillful you are, the less "luck" you actually need. :)
 

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Lots more "prepared" men are relaxing in a recliner! I believe in luck, but more often than not, you make what luck you have, be it good or bad.
 

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In the words of Grandpa Al-fonts Sodi. "Give a man a little bit of luck and anything will do for brains." Escanaba in the Moonlight.
 
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