As the year comes to a close it is a natural time to take stock of the prior year. The question I want to pose is simple. Have you helped protect our way of life by being politically involved and supporting conservation? If the answer is no you’re not alone. As a general rule the personality traits, which lead us to enjoy outdoor pursuits, are the same traits which cause us to have a disdain for politics. However, if we fail to support conservation efforts and let our elected officials know we will not stand by idly as our privileges to hunt, fish, and trap are chipped away our way of life will disappear.

I challenge every single outdoorsmen to become more engaged in 2016. Follow the issues and contact politicians to let them know you support conservation. Become involved in one of the many conservation organizations such as Ducks Unlimited, Pheasants Forever, or The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Donate money to public land acquisitions. It doesn’t take a lot of individual money to make a substantial impact. Imagine if every adult hunter donated $10 in 2016 for public land purchases. As a nation we would have one hundred thirty million additional dollars to protect wildlife habitat.

Anti-hunters are definitely in the minority, but they pose a significant threat to our way of life. As a collective group anti-hunters / animal rights activists are vocal, organized, and politically active. They are working every single day to make sure you and I loose our ability to hunt, fish, and trap. If it was up to them you would never experience the beauty and excitement of flushing a rooster Pheasant, the anticipation of walking the trap line would be a thing of the past, and never again would you relive the memories of your hunt while you prepared your favorite venison recipe in your kitchen.

Let’s make 2016 the year of the outdoorsman! I am not asking you to quit your job to become a full-time activist. But, let’s all do a little more this next year for conservation and accomplish great things.