Dear Santa,

As a man who has a soft spot for deer (reindeer in particular) it would be reasonable for some to assume that you may not be all that fond of us deer hunters. Personally I don't think that is the case though. I think that you see us as the family oriented, big hearted, nature loving individuals that most of us are. As a group we contribute millions every year towards wildlife management and habitat improvement as well as to charities and the less fortunate. I think that you of all people would see that and find space for most of us on the "nice" side of your list.

Years back I think I would have had just one wish every year, a big buck. As I've gotten a little bit older my wishes have changed around a bit. Now don't get me wrong Santa, I still wouldn't mind a big buck this year (I may be out one more weekend this year so if you feel like sending a 10pt by me that would be great!!) but there are a few other things that have been added to the list over the years.

Here's my Christmas List for the 2012 Hunting Season:

1. More hunts with family. My dad is the one who got me and my brother into hunting and it just seems like we didn't get to hunt together all that much this year. We did all spend a week in the UP bow hunting together and I did get to hunt with them once during gun season but it sure seems like it should be more often than that. Maybe you can find a way for non of us to have to work so we could hunt together all season!!! Or maybe I'll just have to make more of an effort to get us all together a few more weekends next season.

2. Another great trail camera season. I have come to think of summer as "Trail Camera Season" and it has gotten to be just as exciting as the actual hunting season. I definitely love to hunt but I also just love to see whitetail deer and checking the cameras has become a bit like Christmas (no offense Santa) each and every time. We learned quite vividly this year that what you see on camera doesn't correlate 100% to what you will see in the fall but man did we have fun running the cameras this summer. Speaking of trail cameras, some of the new cameras are so small they would fit great inside a stocking Santa......just saying.....

3. More interaction with our neighbors. This year we were able to get together with some of the property owners around us and got a chance to talk to them and swap stories. There was some knowledge swapped as well which always comes in handy but the biggest positive that I saw from it was just opening the lines of communication. It turns out that many of us have the same goals in mind for our hunts and it was good to find out that we are all in this together. Hopefully next year we can build on this year's start and continue to work together.

4. Some good hunting weather. Now Santa I realize that you aren't in charge of the weather but is there a chance you are Facebook friends with Mother Nature? Maybe you bump into her a few times a year at different social functions? If so could you remind her that some of us actually enjoy a real autumn, one with more than one or two crisp mornings and maybe even some snow here and there. I can't speak for all of the hunters out there but I know that I am sick and tired of seeing 50 degree temperatures in mid to late November (or December for that matter).

5. Continued support from a wonderful family. Many of us hunters leave home for days or even weeks at a time during the fall in pursuit of our prey. When many of us are gone we leave the burdens of the household on the shoulders of our spouses and loved ones. Without the love and support of our family we wouldn't be able to go and do the things we love so much.

6. Some new gear!!! (I can't make a list to Santa and not cave at least a little to the kid in me!) A spotting scope, a dozen arrows, some waterproof bibs, hip waders, a tractor and a few new tree stands would be great!!!

Well Santa, that about does it for this deer hunters Christmas list. I'm sure I forgot a bunch of wishes but I know that you have a lot of things to take care of this time of year.

Thanks Santa!!!

We had a wonderful 2011 here at Whitetail Weekly and I hope that all of you did as well. We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday!!!!

Take care, and thanks for reading!!