Today, I am not going to talk fishing or about how great Canada is. I’d like to, but recently I experienced a recharging of my batteries, a renewal of my energy. And I am completely amped to share my experience with the rest of the world.
At a Christian Sportsman’s Dinner this month, I got to rub elbows with a very inspiring outdoor enthusiast and hunting nut, Tracy Breen. For those of you who don’t know Tracy, he is a popular outdoor writer, world class archer and highly touted industry personality. He’s written for some of the biggest names in the magazine world such as Outdoor Life, Buckmasters, Bowhunting World, Bowhunter, Heartland USA and more. Not only that, his advice and in-depth analysis of archery and hunting equipment is sought out by thousands, if not tens of thousands, of hunters every year. Big companies such as Havlon Knifes and Alpen Optics routinely hire him to field test new product. He’s even made agreements with Chevrolet to test their latest trucks and SUVs geared toward hunting. In short, Tracy’s wisdom and insights are priceless.
A quick Google search and a look at all his done–that alone is inspiring. But what makes him even more amazing is that he has achieved so much while battling cerebral palsy.
Prior to meeting Tracy, I had always been aware of cerebral palsy but never knew exactly what it was. After a quick search, I learned that CP (as it’s known for short) originates in the brain and impacts movement control over routine things such as balance and posture. To understand how he hunts, and in my conversations with him, you’d never know he suffers from the disease.
But Tracy’s story and his uncanny ability to overcome life’s obstacles isn’t the only reason for my inspiration and excitement. His story resonates with me because he spoke openly about the “truths” of the hunting and fishing world.
My motivation for this blog was in large part because of the all too often, common mistakes I see people make at our lodge. From people being under-prepared to over the top, crazy expectations, I’ve seen vacations completely ruined by lack of information, ungrounded expectations, and groups that simply don’t gel well together. It happens every year, and I know 2015 will be no different.
While I created this blog to address those and other common problems, I feel I struggle with presenting the information in an upfront, no-nonsense way. Tracy, on the other hand, speaks his mind, and his candidness is exactly what I need for people to grasp what I write about.
My head was constantly shaking in agreement while I listened to Tracy talk. He discussed everything from a 9-day bear hunt, seeing only one bear for less than a minute, to people spending tens of thousands of dollars to hunt elk, only to be so out of shape they can’t make it to day 3. He also frequently talked about eating “tag soup”, a term he coined for when he doesn’t fill a hunting tag. In the fishing world you could call it “license linguine” or “license lemonade.” Regardless, if you do this enough, from time to time, coming home empty handed is a reality.
Tracy’s experiences have obviously taught him well. He’s well grounded on the realities of hunting and fishing–so much so that I’ve rarely met anyone of his mentality. He truly understands what it takes to make your outdoor adventure an experience of a lifetime.
That’s a rare trait, my friends! I’ve meet A LOT of people. I’ve talked hunting and fishing until I’m blue in the face, and I can count on one hand how many people have his comprehension of the true outdoor experience. It was truly refreshing!
So in my quest to inform and teach people about hunting and fishing in Ontario and all of Canada, I must say I’ve been re-energized. Tracy Breen is a no-nonsense, speak it how it is personality that is essential in helping us master the outdoor world. But don’t let his directness fool you. He cares… A LOT! He too wants passionately for everyone to have the best experience possible in hunting and fishing. If he didn’t, he wouldn’t spend thousands of hours educating outdoorsmen like he does.
My hope is this blog will serve people in a way that Tracy has served so many. One, by providing crucial information on the realities of hunting and fishing. Two, by helping people be prepared and plan for their adventures. And three, of course most important, by teaching people how to have an experience of a lifetime with the pictures to prove it!
Until next time…