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The Grip n’ Grin, the trophy shot or whatever else you want to call it has been a part of hunting culture since we could click a camera. It is second nature to want to capture the triumphant moment that is the culmination of your hunt. And why not? Contrary to how the hunting community is often painted, we are not a bunch of barbarians that do this just because we love the thrill of the kill. On the contrary , a true hunter understands the complexity that goes into hunting. Its the early mornings learning animal patterns, late nights preparing gear, months of training with weapons of choice, and adding to years of personal knowledge every time you go out. Its long hours of stalking, waiting, and watching punctuated by short bursts of adrenaline filled moments that often happen so fast, you later question if you actually experienced those amazing things.

So it is natural to want to capture some of those moment so that when time has faded our memory of the event, we can refer back to these mini-time capsules and refresh cherished moments, moments that more often than not include family and friends, some of whom may no longer be with us. So absolutely take those pictures, post them on social media, capture those moments. But as you do, do so with some things in mind. I don’t care who you are or what your beliefs are, the simple fact is these animals are living breathing things. When you pull that trigger or release that arrow, you are taking a life. The ending of their life brings continued life to those who consume them. Based on those facts alone, that animal deserves your respect.

So when you are taking those pictures, do so with some respect. If possible, limit the amount of blood shown. Not because we are afraid to show blood, but to help you remember how magnificent the animal is. If you want to sit as far back from the animal as you can to make the antlers look bigger, that is your choice, but your not fooling anybody. And further more it is the opinion of Nada Grande Outdoors that we need to re-define what we view as a trophy. Sure a big one is nice, but like my dad always used to say, you can’t eat antlers! I think that every animal that is harvested is a trophy, proof that you outwitted mother nature herself. Respect, that is what it all boils down to.

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