We love to be in the great outdoors, which is why carelessness drives us nuts.
There are some things we can all do without in the wilderness. These annoyances dig at us outdoorsmen.
Most of these are experienced by hunters, fishermen, hikers and campers no matter where you go. Regardless of where you live, you seem to run into the same problems.
Here are the 10 annoyances that outdoorsmen and women share everywhere we go.
Litter and garbage
You might fly to the deepest part of Alaska and still find where someone left garbage. It's destructive to wildlife and just looks terrible. Pack out what you can on your trips to help combat this plague. This isn't only a pet peeve, but a danger to wildlife. Keep the wilderness beautiful and litter-free. Can I get an amen?
Last-minute hunters walking in late
An hour after sun up, good ol' Mr. Fudd shows up at the parking lot. He slams the truck door and comes crashing into the woods like a drunk bear. Coughing and cussing at briars he pushes right under your treestand and continues on (if you're lucky). He'll often plop down on a nearby log and light up a cigarette while clearing his throat. Now your morning hunt is shot for no good reason.
Have you ever hear the old adage "free after midnight?" Well, some rude fellows think this is the way to go. From treestands to even cabins, nothing is safe. If they can haul it out with an ATV or a truck, they actually think it's theirs. Anything else they don't want they'll often destroy by gunfire, ax blows or boot stomping. Always take precautions against such these types of characters and lock up your gear.
Other hunters using our treestands
Now this is just plain uncool. There might not be anything more frustrating than getting to your treestand and seeing a fresh gut pile under it. It's even worse when you know the hunter (or friend) who did this without asking permission. Talk about salt in the wound.
Rudeness on the trails
When walking a public trail, it's it is courteous to move over to let the other walker pass. A "good morning" or "hello" is typically in order. Well, some hikers act like everyone else is going to attack the at any moment. Some bicycle riders on a bike trail or regular path like to wait until directly behind you on fast approach to let you know they're passing you. Others will zip right past you nearly hitting you without a warning. Public trails can become quite annoying and possibly dangerous on a busy weekend. Animal-rights fanatics also fall into this category trying to ruin legal hunts and fishing trips. This ranks up there with mosquitoes and ticks in my book.
Stepping in dog (or even human) poo...
Many of us have experienced this to different degrees. Dogs can make a mess to step in. Decades ago, some human beings must've been quite ill and left a "present" for one of my boots. I sadly will never forget that day as the smell will stay with you for a long time. Toilet paper is better than someone's boot...
Bad stewards of the outdoors
Always leave the wilderness in better shape than you found it. Well, these guys and gals cut down trees and brush while also tearing up the place where they camp, hunt or fish. A four-wheel-drive ATV or truck can destroy a wetland area in no time. They leave a scar on the land that takes years to heal after one outing. Don't be that person, but rather the one who cleans up the mess.
Tree shooters and happy carvers
Nobody cares if you love your girlfriend and have to scar a tree to prove it. We don't want to see that out in the woods. Be sure to teach children respect for these towering living beings at an early age. Also, even more discerning is those shooters who feel trees make the best targets. It makes us a bit cautious when rifle bullet holes are whistling through trees at chest level. Vandalism of trees is a jerk move. Shoot into dirt backstops or hills and pack out your targets and empty shells too. Complainers just might talk to someone that has the power to post the whole area no trespassing. Once again, leave the woods better than you found it.
This also goes for loud pets. If you're in the woods hunting, keep quiet. If you're fishing, keep the chatter to your group. If you're hiking, don't scare all the wildlife away for the next hiker. Loud music is certainly a no-no. Hang up that cellphone and turn it off. Your voice carries farther than you think. Think of everyone else and, well, shut up.
Fishermen who fish way too close
Even if they have a wide-open river, they'll still fish right by you. Yes, tangled lines will be the next occurrence. The worst has to be when wading anglers walk right through the holes you're fishing. What's wrong with people?
Do you like articles about the outdoors? Click here to view more articles by Eric Nestor. You can follow him @ericthewoodsman on Twitter, The Classic Woodsman on Facebook, and @theclassicwoodsman on Instagram. You can view more Nestor Photography photos at Nestor Photography.