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Well now that the first week is over I’ve decided I would like the opener to go back to Monday. Camp was not the same this year, everything felt rushed. Traditionally in my family, we all go get our Christmas trees the morning after thanksgiving, then all go out for lunch. After the trees are up the guys always left for camp, usually around 3 or 4. This year we did the same, but it was stressful as heck for some of us who wanted to get it done so we could get camp during daylight. Usually guys would all show up Friday evening, some Saturday morning. We always hunted turkeys that day, and guys would go get their spots ready. There was always plenty of time to do little chores around camp that needed done, it was just a good relaxing time. Plus being at camp all weekend, with anticipation building up to the big day on Monday was pretty cool, I really missed that this year. I’m all for increased hunting opportunities, but honestly the trade off, one extra day of hunting vs losing the tradition of deer camp, not worth it. We have plenty of deer hunting opportunity here in PA, more then ever actually. I love deer hunting, and I work hard at it, but the time at camp, the camaraderie with friends and family, that is what made rifle season so great. The Saturday opener really put a damper on that. I noticed a lot of guys at local camps hunted Saturday and went home. Most of the guys at camp are really slowing down with age, and a few have passed on to the happy hunting grounds above. I don’t want to see this tradition die. Some of my most cherished hunting memories are of camp life, not actual hunting. It really makes me sad to think the kids in my family may never get to experience it. I know I can make new traditions and adapt to the times, I just don’t want to. Maybe it’s nostalgia, or maybe I’m just stubborn and set in my ways, I don’t know. Anyway, thanks for letting me rant, it’s been weighing on me.
 

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Well now that the first week is over I’ve decided I would like the opener to go back to Monday. Camp was not the same this year, everything felt rushed. Traditionally in my family, we all go get our Christmas trees the morning after thanksgiving, then all go out for lunch. After the trees are up the guys always left for camp, usually around 3 or 4. This year we did the same, but it was stressful as heck for some of us who wanted to get it done so we could get camp during daylight. Usually guys would all show up Friday evening, some Saturday morning. We always hunted turkeys that day, and guys would go get their spots ready. There was always plenty of time to do little chores around camp that needed done, it was just a good relaxing time. Plus being at camp all weekend, with anticipation building up to the big day on Monday was pretty cool, I really missed that this year. I’m all for increased hunting opportunities, but honestly the trade off, one extra day of hunting vs losing the tradition of deer camp, not worth it. We have plenty of deer hunting opportunity here in PA, more then ever actually. I love deer hunting, and I work hard at it, but the time at camp, the camaraderie with friends and family, that is what made rifle season so great. The Saturday opener really put a damper on that. I noticed a lot of guys at local camps hunted Saturday and went home. Most of the guys at camp are really slowing down with age, and a few have passed on to the happy hunting grounds above. I don’t want to see this tradition die. Some of my most cherished hunting memories are of camp life, not actual hunting. It really makes me sad to think the kids in my family may never get to experience it. I know I can make new traditions and adapt to the times, I just don’t want to. Maybe it’s nostalgia, or maybe I’m just stubborn and set in my ways, I don’t know. Anyway, thanks for letting me rant, it’s been weighing on me.
I totally agree! Now for all the “keep your tradition and just wait till Monday to hunt” talk.
 

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We're all in different situations. I personally liked the Saturday opener. I was at a camp yesterday with 15 guys hunting, not one complaint when we spoke about the opener. The majority of the guys don't have to travel very far to get there though. How many times a year do you guys get together to enjoy the camaraderie of camp?
 

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We all love the Saturday opener. Started hopefully a new tradition of Thanksgiving at camp and as always loved a extra day to hunt and didn't have to use a day of vacation !!! Keep the Saturday opener !!!!!!
 

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Only downside with Saturday is the Sunday layover day. Next year I think that will be a non issue. All hunters I spoke to like having the opener on a Saturday but most have their sights set on adding Sunday.:smile2:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
a couple guys at camp I only see once a year, at deer camp. Another thing I noticed was a huge decline in hunters in the woods on Monday. Most guys used to take the first three days off at least, usually the whole first week. With all the deer hunting opportunities before rifle season these days, plus Saturday opener, why “waste” vacation days? So many camps were empty by Monday this year it didn’t feel like deer season at all. That was another tradition I loved, visiting the neighboring camps, the poker games, the deer stories. Camp next to us was empty for the opener this year, first time ever. I know it’s different for everyone, and some people were very happy with the new opener.
 

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It’s going to be interesting next with at least one added Sunday in rifle season, maybe even 2 but I doubt it. Anyone hear anything on the increase/decrease of license sales this year?
 

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It’s going to be interesting next with at least one added Sunday in rifle season, maybe even 2 but I doubt it. Anyone hear anything on the increase/decrease of license sales this year?
The last i read, license sales were up 1% the Tuesday before the opener which is roughly 9000 licenses.
 

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We all love the Saturday opener. Started hopefully a new tradition of Thanksgiving at camp and as always loved a extra day to hunt and didn't have to use a day of vacation !!! Keep the Saturday opener !!!!!!
Just exactly who is "we all"? I hope it goes back to Monday next year.
 

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What about a SUNDAY opener next year? That would benefit everyone imo.
I seen on another thread on here that work places took away the Monday after thanksgiving because of the Saturday opener ( Most, if not all, the people I know always had to take a vacation day to hunt the opener on Monday except for some school districts). I doubt that a Sunday opener would change that, but a Sunday as the second day may be beneficial.
 

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My point with the Sunday opener is the kids still get an extra non school day to hunt, or extra non work day for adults who don’t want to burn vacation to go hunting. And it gives the guys with camps a day of breathing room. And we could still hunt turkeys on that Saturday. Starting on Sunday next year would be the same as starting on Sat this year, without the day off between.
 

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I don't go to a camp, but I heard substantially more shooting on opening day this year than any recent year I can remember.

I very much enjoyed my daughter getting more time to hunt as well.

I won't try to change anyone's mind...but I will say that to me, the Saturday opener was a positive change.
 

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I would like to hear from the business owners upstate. I would think that just like bear season starting on Saturday they see a drop off in hunters after Saturday. Put me in for the Monday start for both.
 

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I don't like the Sat. opener. But I tell you this its here to stay. For the GC to change it back would be admitting to the mistake it was in the first place and that will NEVER happen.

That being said, I have looked for and found something good to say about Sat. opener. Shoot your buck opening day and you have Sunday to take your time and enjoy processing it. My wife and I always enjoy getting the meat cut and canned or froze.
 
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