Youth Hunters, How are they learning? Today.

Bowhunting, publisher, Craig Steele recently spoke about #bowhunting pronghorn at the Arizona Antelope Foundations annual hunter’s clinic. For more on Craig’s thoughts on bowhunting pronghorn antelope click the “Learn More” button.

Posted by on Sunday, June 14, 2015

When I was younger I was inspired by Gordon Eastman’s films, so I started filming and dreaming of making my life/career in the industry.  I bought his VHS tapes, which was the only way I was able to consume his content.  Some were also privileged to see him speak at outdoor filming events, but I lived several states away.  In the 1990’s those where the only mediums or channels you could possibly view his content, so that is how every hunter learned or watched Mr. Eastman’s Films. 

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to speak at the annual Arizona Antelope Foundation hunters’ clinic and I was instantly disappointed by the demographics, not because of who was there, but because of who wasn’t there.

We often get caught up in, “How things use to be…”  or “How you want them to be…”, but really, the world is always changing and you must either adapt or die (like it or not).

I think many organizations and businesses in the hunting industry are really missing out on what youth we do have in the hunting industry &/or growing the youth sector, because we are often marketing to the older demographics.  This 45+ demographic is a HUGE portion of the hunting industry, but that is not where the actual growth is, if we are talking about growing hunting or the hunting market.

Today, we can communicate to the youth via other channels, which are typically self promotion distribution channels.  It can be frustrating for a low budget company, non-profit or agency to spend money and time in these ventures, but in my opinion, you don’t have a choice.


Where are you publishing and marketing today?

[caption id="attachment_5011" align="aligncenter" width="300"]A recent comment from our Youtube Channel.  A recent comment from our Youtube Channel.[/caption]


3 thoughts on “Youth Hunters, How are they learning? Today.

  1. John

    I can answer your question with a simple single question to you- how much do guides charge for hunts? It’s become a rich old persons hobby. The rest of us will continue to learn on our own. Same way you did. ie… My son drew Nov. rifle bull elk and the best I get get from a guide was $5500! FOR A YOUTH HUNT! enough said. We’ll figure it out.

    • Craig SteeleCraig Steele Post author

      First, congrats on your son’s tag! That should be a fun and memorable time.

      Why does the price of a guided hunt have anything to do with how kids learn?

      The guided hunts today are often driven for the desire of trophy animals and generally speaking the market is driven by higher income earning folks. To say what a guide should charge for a hunt should be driven by the market, not by ones’ perception. Also, I know there are many guides who do late elk hunts for a lot cheaper.

      The reality is you don’t have to take your son on a guided hunt, in fact you can take him out on your own and try to enjoy the hunt as much as possible. If the biggest goal of the hunt is to kill an elk or a trophy elk, than you either need to dedicate the time to scout the unit or hire a guide.

      I am just being blunt, because I don’t like people just ASSUMING they have to hire a guide, that’s a bunch of BS and I am a guide. You can do it on your own, but again, that is one’s choice.

      Craig Steele

  2. John

    I guess that’s a good point. If the market demands $5500 for a hunt then that would be a fair price but if you are wondering why youth don’t reach out to guides who are giving a workshop on antelope it’s my opinion that the perception is it’s out of reach for most in both time and price. I’ll probably be 50 before I get that tag too. Appreciate your honesty though and the advice you share. I’m a reader.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *