As usually is the case each year, I never get out doing as much rabbit hunting as I would like. Life is busy, and sometimes it’s hard to find the time. I definitely plan to get out much more this rabbit season. Of course, I’ve said that every other year too, but this time I mean it.

All I need to do is think back on my only rabbit hunt last year as a good enough reason to plan more trips this year. My son, brother and a couple of buddies gathered up for a go at some bunnies.

We knew before heading out that the conditions for rabbit hunting couldn’t get much worse. The light skiff of dry snow, coupled with the windy, overcast day meant that the snow on the ground would stay dry and powdery, making it extremely difficult for the beagles to follow any kind of scent trail. We also surmised that under such conditions, the bunnies would likely stay very tight to cover – not moving from it unless they were literally almost stepped on.
Our predictions rang true throughout the afternoon. The dogs had a difficult time tracking any rabbits under the circumstances, and we only kicked up one rabbit. Not good in a place where kicking up dozens is the norm. 

All in all we each had a great time though. The dogs did manage to get good runs on a couple of bunnies, running them right by us. But, the weather wasn’t the only thing that was off that day; our aim was too!  By the end of the day we had each missed shots at the rabbits that the dogs ran. We should have easily had a rabbit or two, but we got to laugh at ourselves, which sometimes is a lot of the fun in hunting – as long as you don’t take it too seriously and have a good sense of humor.

On the walk back to the truck, someone mentioned that if the season wasn’t coming to a close or if we had several more days that we had available to hunt that we would have likely scratched the bunny hunting for that particular day given the weather. All agreed, but none of us had any complaints either. It just happened to be the only chance that we all had to get together at the same time, and we didn’t regret our decision. We had to hunt when we could, and in doing so, had the chance to let the dogs run, converse, bond a little, and laugh. Isn’t that the essence of what hunting is all about?

I typically feel – and have often stated – that when there is only precious little time to spend hunting that it is best to plan that time wisely. By this I mean to do your best to try to make it out when the weather conditions and/or time of year suggest that it is optimal. In real-life however, I also understand that sometimes the best time to go hunting is when you can!  The times you get to go out may not be the best ones, but with a hectic schedule, they may be your only ones. This was the case with our rabbit hunt last year, and it couldn’t have been any better.

This year though, I plan on going more often, so I will have the luxury of choosing my days more wisely. I will, you just wait and see. I mean, rabbit hunting is just way too cool not too.