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Thread: How things used to be (warning miserable old git content)

  1. #1

    Angry How things used to be (warning miserable old git content)

    Look back in anger........

    I started stalking slightly over 20 years ago. The 6x42 had just knocked the 4x32 off it's perch as the premier stalkers scope. Binos were a straight choice between 7x42 SLCs or 7x42BGATs. The vast majority of rifles were blued wood and the vast majority of them were designed to be walked with. Twin sticks were used by a few bearded types from the St Herberts, the rest of us used single sticks. Lots of stalking = muffs or deafness.

    There weren't very many of us. Our publications were delivered by subscription. People who wrote about stalking had a lot of experience in the field. Most writing was about deer and stalking not firearms. There was very little knowledge available about ballistics, loading etc unless you bought it in paper.

    With the exception of counties well known for trophies most stalking was free or for a portion of the venison. There was a lot of land available. For the most part a stalker enquiring about shooting rights would tip his hat and walk on if it was already taken. Placing high seats on boundaries was frowned upon. Venison prices from gamedealers was cheap. There were a few but relatively well known people taking clients out and very few people thought stalking owed them a living. Hind stalking was free/very cheap. Most ordinary people thought stalking was in Scotland. Hunting was something done by people in red coats with hounds. A gun was a person with a side by side on a peg and a shooter used in bank jobs.

    There were fewer deer but you could stalk them undisturbed by walkers, gamekeepers had legal powers.

    Rose tinted specs off - of course a lot of this whinging is driven by the fact that I've lost a lot of stalking but in truth I am sick of the type of stalker that is increasingly the case nowadays. Pushy, ill mannered, interested in numbers above all else, land aquired at all costs regardless of incumbents and endlessly talking complete crap about equipment as well as boasting about ridiculous long range shots.

    Curmudgeonly signing off.

  2. #2
    You've got it about right lots of people even on here who wouldn't think twice about trying to poach your land and wanting all the land for themselves to put syndicates on for stupid money there a lot of con men in this game now
    Regards Tom

  3. #3
    That was the case for me.

    I was introduced to stalking by the late "Peter Carne" and together with Peter and a few others we formed the East Hampshire DMG. (If they are members here they will know who they were).

    I "was" a member of the aforementioned club but never stalked Thetford.

    There were no formal tests at that time except the St H one.

    The BDS were just starting to look at introducing tests.

    The stalking was either free or as you say it was for a share of the venison.

    Having recently returned to stalking I was surprised at how much things have changed, but I guess that is progress !!!!

  4. #4
    Adam, good to see you posting again, even if it is a rant.

    I have not been stalking as long as you, and am nowhere even close to your experience, but you are mostly right about the gear obsessed score keepers.

    I was very close to quitting stalking completely last year because of the basic bad sportsmanship and greed I have encountered.

    Just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get you......

  5. #5
    Well said that man

  6. #6
    I still use a single stick and the Leica binos are as cumbersome as the Zeiss 8X56 milk bottles.

    Thank god for fox and squirrel.

    I sympathise.


  7. #7

    You are 99.999999% correct in all of your points and I understand and agree fully where your coming from .. other than ..

    Having been a member of The St. Hubert Club for a lot longer than you have been stalking, I must say that I have never been a bearded type or class myself anything other than a straight talking Yorkshire man, who has in the past been known to have caused a few waves within the club ( my opinions and arguments have always been first and foremost for the benefit of the club ) Find a member and ask !

    I will defend my club and what it stands for to the limits of my beliefs and my ability, and, I would respectfully request that you and any other lady / gentlemen referring to my club do so by using the correct name, I see no justifiable reason for mockery

    That`s my grumpy old man bit over with


  8. #8
    That's a tough ask! My deliberate mis-spell was intended as no more than gentle ribbing not mockery. I agree with 99% of the aims of the club but used to think male only membership a real negative. Has this changed?

    PS I'll use the U in future. As for the beard there was a magnificent photo of a member stalking in Thetford with maasive beard, 8x56s to eyes in the morning sun slanting through the trees and mist. Rifle slung front first a la continent. Still makes me smile
    Last edited by 1894; 04-10-2014 at 19:36.

  9. #9
    I`m not trying to dodge the issue but it`s not for me as a member of the club to discuss it`s politics on this site, I get into enough trouble already, without trying, so don`t want to upset the applecart by voicing my opinion and saying something that`s not 100% correct

    As for using the U in future, that would be very much appreciated, Thank you

    Out of interest where did the photograph you mention originate from ? book? magazine? would be interested to know as It`s possible I may know him

    Sorry to hijack your thread .... so to carry on with your point ,

    I have read your post over and over and I couldn't agree with you more, stalking is nothing like what it used to be, It`s now driven by quite a lot of greedy people, making big money from shooting large numbers of deer that, if they were to be managed properly they would not be shot when they are! Ker-ching comes first and the welfare of the deer seems to now come a poor second, NOT IN ALL CASES, BUT IN A LOT!

    Now that should liven up your thread a tad


  10. #10
    I shot my first deer in 79, no comment on the calibre, but we had more deer than you could shake a stick at, we ate so much venison that I would not cross the road for it now, it was all we could afford , and that was because it was free, I have never read a stalking mag, we used to skin and cut the deer up ourselves and sell a bit to neighbours for 1/ lb, so we could afford beer and a local butcher paid us the same skin off ( not much better now). We had no pointless qualifications to get a firearms licence.
    We owned a long dog and a good light for sport, and a terrier for Sunday mornings, the buck hounds still ran on a Monday and Friday , beagles on a Wednesday and Saturday and fox hounds on a Tuesday and Saturday.
    We believed in live and let live, all that is now gone, you only have to read comments on here to see that, people worried about what the bloke next door is doing, a man with a net in the estuary, we may be grumpy but not that old.

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