One of my favorite hunts from season 1 was undoubtedly our New Brunswick Black Bear hunt.
With my father, Mark, being originally from the Miramichi, NB area, I saw this as a unique opportunity to bring him along for a one-of-a-kind, father/son episode.
With it being just my 2nd filmed hunt, the nerves were high. Our first show did NOT go successfully and, I’ll admit, I knew in the back of my mind that if this one did not work out, that this whole “TV thing for Jordan” may be short lived.
The hunt looked promising with our guide, Lary Matchett, having all sorts of trail camera pictures of big, mature boars. I was certain that we would have a bear on the ground within the first couple of days. Boy, was I ever wrong! I didn’t even SEE a bear throughout the first 2 days.
Dad? Well, he seemingly got the lucky stands and was littered with bears. It seemed like every bear on the planet, from Brother Bear, Winnie the Pooh to the Bear in The Big Blue House were showing up for dad. But, zero for this guy.
Fortunately, dad cashed in on a beautiful, New Brunswick bear on day 4 (after being just a taaad picky). As happy as I was for him, that definitely did NOT help the nerves. We took the next couple of days to visit family, do some fishing on the Mighty Miramichi River and just take in the activities that go with the old man visiting “home.”
With just 2 days left to hunt, I returned to the blinds determined to seal the deal and drop my personal first ever Black Bear. The “family time” and time spent fishing were crucial in me being able to relax and remember that at the end of the day this hunt was supposed to be fun and about so, so much more than a TV show.
Thankfully, with a new found mindset, I was able to play the waiting game right down to the wire and cash in on my very own New Brunswick Black Bear just in time! It was at this point that I really realized that, if I just took it easy, acted naturally and didn’t worry about completing an episode, things came together much easier and far better than constantly being on edge for both myself and the show’s sake.
This really helped set the table for the remainder of the season, and was a huge reason why season 1 of Rawhide was so successful for myself and everyone else involved, too!
Looking back, I’m sure glad I realized this early on and was able to “Just Hunt” as we headed out on 10 other adventures through 2016!