We here at MeatEater love to receive your questions and thoughts whether supportive or not. Here are Steve’s answers to some questions put forth by someone who wrote in:
Do you ever go out just to appreciate the wild?
Steve: Yes, quite often, though that’s not what the show’s about. It’s like asking if Anthony Bourdain ever just stays home to eat.
Do you ever observe nature & all of it’s living animals without thinking if you have a clear shot?
Steve: Yes, again quite often. I’m an avid viewer of wildlife, and do that often during the off-season. You’ll find that any good hunter spends a lot of time studying his quarry.
In one of the episodes I watched [of your previous show The Wild Within], you killed a beaver & moose. That should have provided you with enough meat for several months, but from the way I perceived the show, it seems that you hunt far more than what you require to feed yourself & your family.
Steve: I share all the meat with the crew, the crew’s families, and some of my own friends. At last count, a total of thirty-four people had eaten that moose’s meat. A beaver doesn’t go quite so far.
My other issue is the fairness of any hunt with modern weapons. I just don’t see any fairness in shooting a moose or deer from 150 yards away with a rifle & scope. Actually, I don’t even think the modern compound bows are very fair.
Steve: If you study anthropology, you’ll see that hunting cultures have always adopted the most effective means. With the introduction of the horse, Plains tribes quit conducting buffalo jumps and began riding buffalo down on horseback. Much earlier, hunters largely abandoned spears and atlatls in favor of bows. Later, they abandoned bows for flintlocks. Then flintlocks for percussion cap muzzleloaders. Then those for breech loaders. Then those for repeating rifles. It’s a continuum, and to pretend that we’re now frozen in time is a little weird.
Have you ever carved your own bow?
Have you ever flint-knapped your own arrow heads, arrow shafts, & feathers?
Wouldn’t that make the game of hunting fair play?
Steve: It’d make it plenty tough, yes.