Hunting and fishing are time-honored traditions in Northern New Mexico. Generations of norteños have learned to bait hooks, snag a prize fish, track an animal through rugged backcountry and harvest it with one shot, ensuring it doesn't suffer. The animals and fish provided food for tables through hard winter months back in the day. And while grocery stores make it easy now to pick up a pre-packaged cut of meat or fish, the COVID-19 pandemic has proven that relying on others for food isn't always a safe bet. For weeks, refrigerated store shelves were empty of almost all types of meat and even the canned stuff was hard to come by some days. Those who know how to hunt know they can keep their own freezers and larders full for lean times.
Hunting and fishing take skill developed over time. It isn't easy. Some years a hunter can track an animal for hours and never bag one. A hunting friend once said turkeys in particular were known to delight at outsmarting hunters on a regular basis. It takes skill to shoot an animal with a bow or gun and drop it with one shot in order to avoid the possibility of only wounding it and losing it in the terrain.
It's that time once again when the Taos News honors that hunting and fishing tradition. Each year the newspaper invites hunters and anglers to send in a photo of their favorite hunt or fishing trip. Be sure and include your name, the general area where the photo was taken and a paragraph or two about why it was special. If you have a favorite recipe for cooking up the meat or fish, include that too.
Send photos, stories and recipe to firstname.lastname@example.org or text (505) 470-9843. Deadline is Dec. 13.