Hunting is hard. Flat out. It takes patience, courage, and grit. More often than not you are left with an unfilled tag in your pocket and a long walk back to the truck. So why do it? Why put in so much time, money and effort if percentages do not go in your favor? I know why I do it. I do it because the effort it takes to successfully harvest an animal is unlike any other feeling in life. Because with no risk there can be no reward. It is what makes hunting and harvesting your own meat so special.
Being new to hunting, I constantly second guess myself and have doubt about if I am doing the right thing, especially since I never had a mentor to bounce questions off of. It is my weakness. It is the internal battle that I struggle with when hunting. Have you ever had questions about what others would do in certain situations? Maybe you catch yourself not staying in the game mentally. I know I often do. I find myself double guessing a move or a plan of attack when I hunt. Being new to hunting can be frustrating and defeating, so much that it is hard to stay motivated.
This blog series is meant to be a way to inspire and motivate you and others when it comes to hunting your dreams, and at the same time making a difference in recruiting new members and building community in the hunting world. Hopefully the advice and insight shared by our guests can help you feel like you are not alone in your struggle against the wild, as well as build confidence in your chase.
WBC: What is your name?
Tony: Tony Wintrip
WBC: Where are you from and where do you currently live?
Tony: I currently live in Menlo Washington.
WBC: What is your day job?
Tony: I am a road maintenance technician for Lewis County public works.
WBC: Do you have any family or pets?
Tony: I have a wife, two kids and one stepson. And one bad ass dog named Brooklyn.
WBC: How and why did you get started into hunting?
Tony: I learned how to hunt through the guidance of my grandfather and father. Both were very successful in the outdoors and knew how to provide resources for their families. The idea of being able to provide for my family became intriguing, and drove my desire to be like them and my love for the outdoors. The camping trips I was apart of every fall were a huge reason why hunting became embedded in me.
WBC: Did you have a hunting mentor? What did you learn from them and or what did you want or wished to learn from them?
Tony: My hunting mentor was definitely my dad. He took me hunting for: grouse, duck, deer, elk, mushrooms, and we even berry picked together. I learned patience from him and why animals are seen in certain places and not others. He explained to me how to determine animal locations based off of food and shelter. Something I am very thankful for.
WBC: What has been your favorite hunt? Why?
Tony: My favorite hunt that I have been on was an elk hunt in the wilderness of Washington state. I hunted with my brother for 9 straight days in steep and big country, while my father and great buddy Mick, scouted and cooked for us in the most legit elk camp ever. The hunt was relentless, and the obstacles were extreme, but the passion for camaraderie and fun never left our minds. We ended up harvesting a 350″ bull with a bow at 8 yards.
WBC: What has been your biggest struggle when it comes to hunting?
Tony: My biggest struggle when it comes to hunting is second guessing my options. Rule number one when hunting elk is, never leave elk to find elk. I often find myself not following that rule and regret ending up on a wild goose chase.
WBC: Our strengths can also be our weaknesses. What are your weaknesses that can inhibit you on your hunts?
Tony: My weakness is my favorite thing about my hunting mentality. It is my desire to hunt with my closest buddies every year that can’t get far from the road because of their body condition and age. My dad and my second dad Mick, still love to camp and build camaraderie every year, and it often keeps me from getting further into God’s country where I truly feel I need to be. But there is no way I would give them up for my own desires. I’ll take the camaraderie with them over a hunt by myself any day. That is my weakness and also faithfully my strength.
WBC: What piece of gear can you not hunt without?
Tony: I definitely can’t hunt without my license and tag (LOL). When I was young and left my license somewhere or lost it, my dad would say, “Well it looks like we’re going home!!” So after many years of doing this, I realized how important it was to have what you need at all times…my license.
WBC: What is your favorite place to hunt and or species (i.e. terrain, location, topography, region, state)?
Tony: My favorite state to hunt is Washington. Nothing beats hunting Roosevelt elk. Thick and brushy but green and lushy…the spirit of a bull elk lives in me.
WBC: What is one piece of advice you would have liked to have or know when you first started hunting?
Tony: One piece of advice I wish I knew, would have been to save more money when I could for out of state hunts. Things have really changed since I first started hunting.
WBC: What is your social media account handles or website?
Tony: You can find me on Facebook under TonyWintripMusic. On Instagram under the handle @elk_singer. Or you can find me at tonywintrip.com or www.bulldownproductions.com. My music is also on iTunes under Tony Wintrip.
We want to thank Tony for allowing us to interview him and for sharing his insight and thoughts. If you want to know more about Tony aka the Elk Singer and his music, be sure to follow along on his journey by checking out his social media accounts and website. Don’t forget to check out his music on iTunes.
If you enjoyed reading the blog or can think of anyone that could benefit from the insight given, please share it with others. It is “OUR” job to continue the growth of the hunting and outdoor community. Be sure to invite someone to start hunting with you. You never know what type of impact it may have for them and their life.
If you would like to be featured in the blog series or know someone who should be, let us know by emailing us or direct message on Instagram.
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