What separates luck from skill?

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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby Uncle Lou » Sun May 31, 2015 12:33 am

OK, Ill take a stab. I didn't realize the 2013 until I got to the bump. Good read.

Luck is something I hope and pray for, skill is the work part. Even if someone is born with skill they still have to work to utilize it. Perserverence (sp?), is will not skill. Now you put all three together, then you have something.


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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby rizzo999 » Sun May 31, 2015 2:18 am

I have friends who also hunt that call me lucky (almost) every year after I send them a pic. These are the same guys who rarely hunt weekdays 'cause it would take them out of their daily routine of hitting the bar after work. They also don't hunt Saturday or Sunday afternoon 'cause that is when they need to be glue to their TVs watching a football game they have no control over. Amazingly (sarcasm), the last time one of these 3 buddies scored on an archery buck was back in '07 on a spiker in SW WI.

For me personally, I believe the properties I hunt have increased my skill level in addition to the tips I've picked up here and in the scouting workshop. The properties I have access to here in northern IL the deer herd has been drastically reduced by unlimited tags and sharpshooters in the name of CWD. In the 2014-2015 season I saw a total of 6 deer on these properties. The public lands I hunt are also hit hard. If I can locate a parking lot with less than 6 trucks it is a good spot!

Although, I do not believe that I am as skilled of a buck hunter as the majority of the hunters on here, I feel that my skill level is now outweighing the luck level so I am hopefully heading in the right direction!

Lou, I agree with the skill, luck and perseverance formula you mentioned!
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby Stanley » Sun May 31, 2015 3:52 am

WKPTodd wrote:The property you hunt!


This is 100% correct. Putting yourself on good properties and the best places on those properties is the whole game to success. For example the best whitetail hunters in the world will not be killing big bucks in Arizona. If you put this example into your game plan you will be more successful.

I have talked about this before. Knowing your own limitations. Most guys don't want to talk about this because it can be very humbling. We are taught from a young age that we can do anything if we put enough work into it. With this mindset you can actually regress in life because you work on things you are incapable of doing.

A few examples would be; I'm going to become an entrepreneur and become as wealthy as Bill Gates. News flash, it won't happen. Now Bill Gates says I'm going to study the game of chess and become as good as Magnus Carlson (he did play chess with Magnus and got slaughtered). Reality check, it won't happen. I'm going to take up golf and become as good as Tiger Woods. Guess what it won't happen. You say I'm going to take up Big Buck Bed hunting and become as good as Dan Infalt!!!!!!!! Enough said.

Confidence is a good thing, don't let that confidence override reality. Yes, you are killing bigger bucks than a guy in Michigan (with the exception of Rompola LOL) on your paid for lease, manicured private ground, or with an outfitter here in the corn belt. Is this skill or luck? I used to hate guys that boasted about how good they are . I don't mind it one bit now days if they can back it up. Often skill takes luck of some kind to succeed.

As for myself I rely on luck on every hunt I go on. I have no idea if a buck I have patterned is where I think he will be. I sneak into an ares and rely on luck that I don't bump the buck before I get there. I rely on luck that the wind wont switch and blow my hunt. I used to think I was a pretty good hunter. I now realize it is more luck, than how good I am.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby stash59 » Sun May 31, 2015 4:10 am

Good topic. Great bump. I feel there is a lot of luck involved. To a point. Would Dan have honed his knowledge if he grew up somewhere else. Or under different family circumstances growing up. Maybe if his family had more money he wouldn't have been introduced to "living off the Land" which peaked his interest in hunting in the first place.

He could have been born with thinking abilities like me. I believe Dan and other successful members have a better ablility to think things through.Yes they nalso have great desire, but what caused Dan to start keeping a journal/records of what he was seeing while out hunting or scouting. I have the desire. But keeping a journal never crossed my mind. I didn't realize how much I could learn about deer in the off season until I read books by Rothare and the Wensels. When I read or now watch something about tactics many times I think why didn't I think of that. Many times once I learn something it seems like a pretty simple thing in the long run.

As far as shooting a bow under the stress of trying to take a big buck. I unforetunatly inherited some of my mothers nervousness/anxiety. Why did I couple this with using a recurve at the same time I started to seriously hunt for big bucks. Which meant many misses and no bucks to show for my scouting efforts.

Can all these outside influences br overcome? YES!! with hard work and desire. I personally had a strong desire to hunt elk. There were no elk in Wisconsin in the '80's. With my consteuction job I couldn't always come up with money for nonresident tags because of little or no work thru the winter. So I just moved to Montana.

I realized that shooting a recurve in hunting situations wasn't my thing. I got lucky and met and became friends with the owner of a bowshop. He taught more about shooting and tuning bows. Then by taking the hours upon hours of time to learn how to shoot a compound corectly made me more confidant.

Plus my new friend was also a very accomplished elk hunter. Between him and a couple good books on the subject I became able to hold my own in the mountains for elk. Although my stubborness to not buy a range finder cost me a handful of more bulls.

So my long winde way of trying to show where I'm coming from comes down to this. You can consider it bad luck to be put into situations that make or made it hard to become a consistant big bhuck killer. Desire and drive can help one overcome these. Couple this with hard work which includes a great memory or some kind of record keeping. Then being able to deciifer what we see and learn into successful plans for hunts that increase the odds in our favor. There is still some luck involved because the buck and mother nature still has to cooperate. If there wasn't any of this kind of luck, good or bad, involved then Guys like Dan would kill every timr they went out.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby MOBIGBUCKS » Sun May 31, 2015 4:11 am

I'd say enjoy bowhunting for what it is and don't worry if you are more lucky than skillful.

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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby Kraftd » Sun May 31, 2015 4:57 am

I think skilled guys know when they have been lucky too. To me, I know someone is killing big deer by skill if it is clear they understand why they killed a buck, even if the answer is blind luck, which happens to everyone now and again. It is pretty easy to tell when someone knows what they are doing usually.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby PK_ » Sun May 31, 2015 4:59 am

This was a good thread.

So is there a separation of luck and skill or are the two integrated? Lack of skill more often than not = lack of luck and vice versa? Is it that simple?

Is all success peppered with 'luck'?

I personally do not believe in luck. I believe that actions cause reactions and decisions have consequences. I believe where I hunt and where the buck happens to be is nothing more than a series of decisions/actions on both parties, I do not see any place for luck in the equation.

Of course there are the variables out of our control; other hunters, predators, wind. Really again with other hunters and predators interrupting our hunt, that is the consequence of their decision, not just 'luck'. As for wind, if the wind gets swirly at prime-time and a buck winds us, that is a result of our decision to hunt an area where the wind gets shifty at primetime. It is also a result of the buck's decision to move in an area with shifty winds during shooting hours. If a buck winds us on a steady wind, it is because we chose the wrong tree or the buck chose the right trail, not just luck.

I used to use the phrase 'luck' to describe the things out of my control, but I try not to because I don't believe things happen based on 'luck'. I believe the more we know about the things out of our control the more likely we are to negate their 'unsuspected' affects. In some cases we can use them to our advantage.

So I don't think it is as simple as lack of skill = lack of luck. I believe skill is forged through experience and experience combined with skill leads to good decisions and actions which breed success. I believe lack of skill and experience leads to bad decisions and actions (or perhaps poorly executed ones) which leads to failure, aka the first step to success if you are willing to make the climb.

/rant.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby stash59 » Sun May 31, 2015 5:46 am

PK_ wrote:This was a good thread.

So is there a separation of luck and skill or are the two integrated? Lack of skill more often than not = lack of luck and vice versa? Is it that simple?

Is all success peppered with 'luck'?

I personally do not believe in luck. I believe that actions cause reactions and decisions have consequences. I believe where I hunt and where the buck happens to be is nothing more than a series of decisions/actions on both parties, I do not see any place for luck in the equation.

Of course there are the variables out of our control; other hunters, predators, wind. Really again with other hunters and predators interrupting our hunt, that is the consequence of their decision, not just 'luck'. As for wind, if the wind gets swirly at prime-time and a buck winds us, that is a result of our decision to hunt an area where the wind gets shifty at primetime. It is also a result of the buck's decision to move in an area with shifty winds during shooting hours. If a buck winds us on a steady wind, it is because we chose the wrong tree or the buck chose the right trail, not just luck.

I used to use the phrase 'luck' to describe the things out of my control, but I try not to because I don't believe things happen based on 'luck'. I believe the more we know about the things out of our control the more likely we are to negate their 'unsuspected' affects. In some cases we can use them to our advantage.

So I don't think it is as simple as lack of skill = lack of luck. I believe skill is forged through experience and experience combined with skill leads to good decisions and actions which breed success. I believe lack of skill and experience leads to bad decisions and actions (or perhaps poorly executed ones) which leads to failure, aka the first step to success if you are willing to make the climb.

/rant.


There's still some luck involved.

Take the big buck Dan couldn"t seem to find a way to kill that he evetually got by crawling up on him on a windy day with his shotgun.

Yes it took skill for Dan to figure out where his bed was. Keen observation to know when he most likely was using the bed. Determination to go out in inclement weather on thanksgiving to crawl thru wet vegatation. Skill to get close enough to the buck for a close clean shot.

But it still was luck that the buck was there. Like Dan says always isn't a word used to describe mature buck behavior. Though slim there was still a chance the buck wouldn't be there. He could have been off with a hot doe. scared away by a dog .coyote or even another adventerous hunter. The odds were hgighly in Dan's favor but it still might not have happened.

Now on the other hand consistantly being successful year after year after year on mature bucks. Under many different scenarios show skill.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby BCam » Sun May 31, 2015 6:02 am

Some people can get on bucks and then blow the shot. Some people can hit the bullseye all day long but can't get on any deer or whatever they are chasing. Some people can type theorize with the best bit just can't translate that to the field. I don't think its a matter of if your skilled or not. Its where are you skilled. Luck is always going to play a part one way another and that will vary based on a persons perspective. Good thread by the way.

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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby Hawthorne » Sun May 31, 2015 6:14 am

They did a study on beginners luck. There is something to it that is psychological. People that have beginners luck are relaxed and have a "I don't care attitude". Or call it dumb luck. I think the people that are skillful and successful kind of have a little of that trait. Just go bowhunting and have a" happy go lucky attitude". It can do a lot.

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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby rutnbuck » Sun May 31, 2015 10:34 am

Choosing the right tree the first time. I think if you can picture and have the confidence to get the shot off your ahead of the game. It's as important as knowing where he beds. Some trees work year after year, some change by 10 yards. To me it's about killing him. I hate saying that I saw one but couldn't get a shot.

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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby Swampbuck » Sun May 31, 2015 3:09 pm

JoeRE wrote:
WKPTodd wrote:Some good points here guys. The biggest difference between myself and the other guys (that hunt around me) are from what I've observed can be best described as "lazy".


That I agree with 100%!

In regard to equating location with skill...I do not think I am more skilled just because I hunt a good area - far from it. I would say hunting a good area makes it more challenging to be skilled when you are talking about pure hunting ability and woodsmanship...because the hunter does not NEED to be if their goal is just a good buck.

When I first started hunting the north woods in WI after growing up hunting Iowa I found out how little skill I had going into that pretty fast.


That's an interesting point, I agree with it to an extent but I don't think being in a good area makes it "more" challenging to be skilled than a poor one, with a caveat... (If you have the drive).... It definitely makes it far easier to just settle for average in a good area because you can still kill good bucks versus a poor one where you need to excel just to get by. But in a poor area it is hard to have the encounters you need to gain the experience to develop the skill to take it to the next level.

So its definitely easier in a good area to settle for average, but if one has the drive to be skilled, its tougher to gain that skill in poor areas. Even if you have the drive and put in the time and effort in poor areas it can be more challenging in the demoralization factor that comes from the reality of the effort being put in yielding so little return from trying to hunt what's hardly around

I definitely see your point though that in a good environment its much easier to settle for good bucks.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby Stanley » Sun May 31, 2015 3:58 pm

JoeRE wrote:
WKPTodd wrote:Some good points here guys. The biggest difference between myself and the other guys (that hunt around me) are from what I've observed can be best described as "lazy".


That I agree with 100%!

In regard to equating location with skill...I do not think I am more skilled just because I hunt a good area - far from it. I would say hunting a good area makes it more challenging to be skilled when you are talking about pure hunting ability and woodsmanship...because the hunter does not NEED to be if their goal is just a good buck.

When I first started hunting the north woods in WI after growing up hunting Iowa I found out how little skill I had going into that pretty fast.[/quote]

Just because you can drive a car doesn't mean you can drive a tractor trailer. Hunting different terrains is the same thing. I honestly don't think a lot of hunters understand this. Great point.
You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby dan » Sun May 31, 2015 8:30 pm

A skilled hunter can go to just about any property and get on good bucks... Skill in whitetail hunting would mean understanding whitetail behavior... If you understand bedding and travel of deer in all terrains, you should have no issues..

I think I am a good "skilled" hunter cause I grew up in a time when there were not very many decent bucks around and in an area where there was a lot of pressure. I had to work hard and learn a lot about my quarry. Back in those days there were not good bucks on every property, you had to go to them, and you had to single out one deer and hunt it down.... One might argue that a skilled hunter will seek out the best property, but, I don't believe you are a skilled hunter just cause of where you hunt, and in my opinion you gain more skill in hard work and effort...

Someone above said he don't think any skilled hunter seeks out hard to hunt areas... Well, I do... At least to some degree. I love killing a big buck on the same equal playing field as every one else. Nothing is more satisfying than proving to yourself that your a good hunter by going into a public crowded area and shooting the big buck everyone there has been after. And... Along that journey, I bet it forces you to learn a thing or two...

If you guys want to call me "skilled", I would say that skill comes from diverse hunting of both pressured, and private land, and across many states, terrains, and obstacles... And a can do positive attitude that don't quit, or fall into the box of hunting or thinking like everyone else.

In todays world there are two ways to kill a good buck... You can buy it, or you can work for it.
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Re: What separates luck from skill?

Unread postby DaveT1963 » Sun May 31, 2015 9:58 pm

Persistence has worked best for me

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