Finally, a good hunting showAfter watching a dozen different hunting shows on a couple sportsmen’s channels, I quickly tired of the fourth-grade-level dialogue (“awesome!” “cool!”), the southern accents, the English grammar equivalent to sixth-grade dropouts, and the preponderance of shooting from blinds.
By: Bernie Kuntz, The Jamestown Sun
After watching a dozen different hunting shows on a couple sportsmen’s channels, I quickly tired of the fourth-grade-level dialogue (“awesome!” “cool!”), the southern accents, the English grammar equivalent to sixth-grade dropouts, and the preponderance of shooting from blinds. Most of these shows do nothing to enhance the image of hunting or hunters.
So it was refreshing when I learned about the program, “On Your Own Adventures” on the Outdoor Channel, which is being produced by Randy Newberg. Randy, a Big Falls, Minn., native, has been a friend of mine for a dozen years, he is my accountant, and I have hunted with him for Montana whitetails during the past two seasons. I first met Randy almost 20 years ago at public meetings hosted by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Randy was always the guy who stood up and presented an articulate voice for wildlife and the average hunter.
Knowing Randy, it did not surprise me that I enjoyed his hunting programs — pronghorns in New Mexico and Colorado, elk in Montana and Wyoming, whitetails in Montana, mule deer in Colorado. As Randy says, “On this program there are no trespass fees, no high fences, no guides or outfitters.”
The program is truly “on your own,” and very tastefully done. I cannot overemphasize the latter.
“On Your Own Adventures” depicts REAL hunting — not shooting animals from a blind — and it comes with all the frustrations and challenges inherent to hunting, with bungled stalks, misses, ruined opportunities due to other hunters or posted land. Add to that snow, mud, rain, wind and bad luck, and you have hunting that the average guy experiences. And always, running like a thread through the program, are fair chase, ethics, and following the law. There is no hooliganism to be found on “On Your Own Adventures.”
Randy and his two-man film crew strive to “catch it live and in the moments,” and if you watch a segment, I’m sure you will agree that he accomplishes that. “My goal is always to have a good time,” Randy says, “Spend time with friends, and do it on my own … it’s a way of life.” Indeed it is.
The narrator at the beginning and end of the program is Marc Pierce, of Manhattan, Mont., and formerly an officer with Ducks Unlimited. Pierce delivers an articulate introduction and conclusion to each segment. As a former information officer myself, I am impressed with Pierce’s demeanor. By the way, the Outdoor Channel is available on all satellite providers and all cable services. Air times are listed on Randy’s home page at www.onyourownadventures.com. All times listed are Eastern times.
A couple months ago I had an evening phone call from Randy Newberg in which he told me of his bad luck this year with drawing out-of-state big game tags. He had been checking draw results on various states’ websites. “But I have good news for you,” he added. “You drew a Nevada elk tag in the northeastern part of the state.” I couldn’t believe it! Ten years ago Randy told me I was foolish for just applying for sheep permits in Nevada because I was spending the $143.00 on a general license anyway. So I started adding elk to my application. So for 10 years I applied for an elk permit, but even with bonus points, there were hundreds of hunters ahead of me, and my odds of drawing were only about three percent. Still, I was lucky enough to draw!
“I’d like to bring along my film crew and use the hunt on ‘On Your Own Adventures,’” Randy said. “You’d have to abide by a few rules — no profanity on camera, no running shots, and we’d have to get to within 200 yards of the elk so my film crew can do its job.”
Naturally, I agreed to that.
“Now, you aren’t going to miss, are you Bernie?”
“I’m not going to miss. You saw me fire four shots and hit each shot … I’m not going to miss.”
“Good, because there is a year’s wages riding on your shot. That’s what I’m paying my film crew and editors for this hunt.”
Talk about pressure! I’ll let you know how it turns out.