Need all the help I can get

Thread starter #1
Hello all. I am am not only new to GON, but also a new hunter. I grew up in southeast Colorado and have always liked to fish. I have recently tried teaching myself to fly fish. That has not gone so well so far, but I am enjoying getting out and getting a line wet.

I have in this past year decided to try my hand at hunting. I am almost 41 yrs old and completely new. I tried deer hunting this past season with no luck. I went to a hunt and learn put on by the state at the beginning of the season and learned a lot, but clearly not enough. I have no venison in the freezer. I have decided to try rabbit hunting, and so far, no luck with that either. All those rabbits I seen while out looking for deer seem to be gone. I plan on trying turkey hunting when that rolls around, but I am told that will be more frustrating. People have told me not to get discouraged, but it is happening. It's just me hunting. There is not a group i go with, and no dogs. I live in Fulton County, but have been traveling to several WMA's around the state. I do not have any access to private land. Any advice from those more seasoned than I? Where to go? What to do to improve my chances of success at a species? etc, etc. If nothing else, I love getting out and getting back in the trees, but it would be nice to bring something back on one of these trips. Thanks GON community.


🥃 Cap`n Jack 🥃
Welcome to the Campfire! You found the right place with a lot of good folks. Just hang in the hunting threads and ask your questions, you'll get plenty of good info here, and make some friends along the way.
Let's start with fly fishing first. I started young, down south on bass and bluegill and I'm self taught, consequently, the last word someone would use to describe my casting ability is "grace." I compensate with my ability to read water. Get yourself some good books and google YouTube.

If you want to go the self taught route I would advise pan fish and bass first, both on the bank and small boat or canoe on small bodies of water. A fly fishing school would be better. They have some good ones in the Atlanta area. You'll be way ahead of the game if you go to one of these schools, especially if you're interested in trout fishing.

As for deer hunting, you can't be discouraged with one season. It's very tough for a newbie without access to private lands. You can tough it out on WMAs and wait, maybe years, before you get one, or you can pay for a private hunt or join a club. (Either way you'll be spending money, but you ain't going to learn much on a private hunt).

If I were you, I would use this forum's "Clubs" section and find a good club to join. A club will have many experienced members who've been killing deer for decades. I'm sure some of those guys will be more than happy to share some of their knowledge. You'll learn how to field dress and butcher one, even if you're just a spectator. You'll learn how, where, and why to set up a stand, wind watching, calling, scent cover, etc. etc..

As for turkey hunting, I think you're going to find that harder than deer hunting. You didn't mention what you used for deer hunting. I'm assuming a rifle. You can hunt deer without being camouflaged, but not so with turkey. You will have to have a good camo outfit, top to bottom, and a shotgun (preferably a 12 ga. with something like #4 shot) and unlike deer hunting, when you can sit, play the wind, and do nothing, you've got to get good at turkey calling. Watch YouTube videos on the subject. Forget the mouthpiece . Get yourself a good box call and practice. You need to scout before the season starts for a place to set up the ambush. General rule is, you can call a tom up a hill but it is very hard to call one down a hill. Again, if you join a club, someone will probably be turkey hunting on it and maybe you can learn from that someone.
Good Luck to you.


GON Political Forum Scientific Studies Poster
Welcome. Ask lots of questions. Many on here willing to impart years of knowledge.
Start squirrel hunting, it will be a great learning experience that will translate to other species.
Agreed, they are the most plentiful game species and one of the best tasting.


Senior Member
Welcome! It’s tough starting a new hobby when there are as many layers and moving parts as there are in hunting. The right location, gear, timing, knowledge of game, and let’s face it -luck-, need to be synchronizing.

I grew up fishing and hunting and feel like I’m on autopilot with that. I started seriously coyote and predator trapping about a year ago, and man...I was lost. I’ve found that GON forum, YouTube, and trial and error are the quickest ways to mastering or at least finding first successes in outdoor crafts. Glad to have you here.