A Free University for Everyone

The author has but one instructional video on what he calls “YouTube University,” and he makes no claim that it’s the best, but it helps viewers learn to use the turkey call he makes. Photo by Steve Sorensen.
The author has but one instructional video on what he calls “YouTube University,” and he makes no claim that it’s the best, but it helps viewers learn to use the turkey call he makes. Photo by Steve Sorensen.

Contributing Writer
Steve Sorensen

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could get free teaching videos that could take you to the next level in your hunting? You’re in luck.

Do you want to learn about calling deer, turkeys, waterfowl, or predators? A simple search on YouTube will turn up some of the best wildlife calling experts who will give you some of the best lessons you’ll find anywhere.

Do you want to learn how to hunt rabbits with a beagle? YouTube has videos all about that, which will shorten the learning curve on training your dog and hunting with him.

Do you want to learn how to hunt for shed antlers? Videos galore will teach you tactics that you can immediately use (at the right time of year, of course). Your questions on how to find the best places, when to look, and much more, will all be answered. If you have access to properties where deer hold for the winter, these videos can turn you into an expert.

Do you want to know how to field dress a deer? Your question might be where to start, or how to keep it from becoming a mess. It’s not that hard, but there are a few tips you need to know to do a fast, clean and easy job. What about butchering and making jerky? It’s all there.

Do you want to know how to set up to call predators? When is the best time? What conditions are best? All these questions and more are answered by people who don’t have household names in the hunting world, but they know what they’re doing.

Do you want to see some exciting footage, and share it with your hunting buddies? Do you want to see hunting escapades in places you’re never likely to go?

What about fishing? Where can you learn the techniques that will help you learn to fly fish, or tie flies? What about analyzing trout waters, and learning to understand what makes bass move and where they go at different times of the year?

Is your knife sharp? Knife sharpening is becoming a lost art. Would you like to know how to do it so that you always carry the sharpest knife in the hunting camp?

YouTube is free, so why don’t more of us take advantage of it? No matter what you want to learn (well, maybe not surgery) your answer is YouTube. That’s why I call it YouTube University. Building a library of DVDs is pricey, but YouTube is free. And it might be the most underutilized training resource for hunters—or for anyone who wants to learn nearly anything.

You can build a library of YouTube videos, and even catalog them on your smartphone or your tablet computer so you can watch them in the doctor’s waiting room, while you’re waiting for your wife to get off work, or wherever you go.

If you head to YouTube and search for “turkey hunt,” you’ll get about almost a million results. If you search “shed hunting,” you’ll get over a half million. Search “call deer” and you’ll get over 3 million.

You can learn just about anything from YouTube videos. No one controls the content, so some of it isn’t very good. But plenty of it is awesome and if you’re smart, you’ll make use of it. It can make you better at hunting, or whatever you do.

When “The Everyday Hunter” isn’t hunting, he’s thinking about hunting, writing about hunting, talking about hunting, dreaming about hunting, or wishing he were hunting. Contact him at EverydayHunter@gmail.com, and read more of his thoughts about hunting at www.jamestowngazette.com.

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Steve Sorensen
Steve Sorensen of Russell, PA is an award-winning outdoor writer whose column, The Everyday Hunter®, offers hunting tips, strategies, and insights on how to think about hunting. His byline has appeared in the nation’s top hunting magazines including Outdoor Life, Sports Afield, Deer & Deer Hunting, Pennsylvania Game News, Fur-Fish-Game, North American Whitetail, Bear Hunting Magazine and more. He contributes regular website content to Legendary Whitetails and Havalon Knives and is a field editor for Deer Hunters Online. Steve is also in demand as an event speaker, presenting programs on do-it-yourself Alaska moose hunting, whitetail deer, wild turkeys, and eastern coyotes, with new programs coming. E-mail him at EverydayHunter@gmail.com to invite him to speak at your next sportsmen’s dinner (or to tell him where your best hunting spot is).