As I stood silently behind that tree, preparing to make that fateful cast on that cold and crisp fall day in the Colorado mountains, I couldn’t help but realize that this is what life was all about.
All in all, understanding the experiences being offered on public lands; the motivations behind outdoor recreation and leisure tourism; and the desired benefits tourists' and recreationists' are seeking is vital for public land managers and tourism managers alike.
It meant getting back into the old pair of waders, cutting and replacing old decoy lines, checking the weights, conducting touch-up paint jobs on the seasoned decoys, purchasing duck stamps, reading recent migration reports, scouting new spots, taking out the old duck calls, taking the long road trip, and connecting with lifelong hunting buddies and dear family members.
The sudden silence was almost deafening. The adrenaline rush from knowing they were miles from civilization, miles from the concrete jungles of everyday life, miles from help if something went wrong - was a unique sensation worth every drop of sweat to get to where they were. Looking up, at the last moments of dusk, the pair sat in silence and took it all in. It was time call it a day.
Public access and use of natural resources for recreation is a hot topic - especially as the federal and state government continue to fight over control and use of America’s public lands and their precious resources. Furthermore, this topic is critically important for us - as public land owners, as our passions, livelihoods, and way-of-life are at stake.
Emphasis on fly fishing, hunting, backpacking, and camping.