HORNTAGGER: Welcome to the Missouri Sportsmen, my special outdoor guest this week is country music star Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry.
How are you doing today Troy?
TROY GENTRY: Doing pretty good my man, sittin' back relaxing little bit, watching a little Outdoor Channel.
HORNTAGGER: Well have you got to hunt any this year?
GENTRY: I have got to hunt a little bit this year. I went on my first bear hunt in Minnesota this year.
HORNTAGGER: Was it buggy up there?
GENTRY: It wasn't too bad; actually I was expecting that every time I talk to someone about bear hunting. They always say mosquitoes and big black flies come into play. It wasn't bad up there at all. I had a really good time.
It was a rushed hunt; it was a 3-day hunt. I had one bear come in the second day. He came to me like a whitetail, since I was so use to hunting whitetails; he noticed that something was wrong. They told me he might have been checking the wind and coming around this way or another.
He was making his way out of the woods and I thought this would be my only opportunity for a shot.
So, I took a shot through a hole in the woods, about the size of a basketball, and it seemed like as soon as I hit my release he stopped right in mid-track, and it shot right in front of him. He left me a souvenir - a broken arrow on his way out of the woods.
I did get to see a bear and had a great hunt. I am looking forward to going back next year.
HORNTAGGER: When did you start hunting? Did you grow up around hunting or are you just now getting into it?
TROY GENTRY: I kind of grew up around it. My father introduced it to me as a kid. He took me on my first squirrel hunt, first rabbit hunt, and my first fishing trip. He grew up in the country and everything. He grew up with hunting as a part of living to help feed the family and stuff.
As I got old enough to get out into the woods he started carrying me with him and everything. He turned me on to it. As I got older and in high school, finding new friends, that was in the outdoors and involved in the outdoors and everything. That had different places that I didn't have, to go hunting and got invited to go hunting and hang with them. It kind of grew on me as I got older.
HORNTAGGER: It's always good to have friends that have land isn't it?
TROY GENTRY: That it is. That it is. I am not knocking public hunting land. That is one of the greatest benefits hunters can have, especially if they live in towns and busy towns that people don't have friends that have land to hunt on.
HORNTAGGER: You went on a big elk hunt last year. I have a nice picture on the web site of you and your elk with your bow.
TROY GENTRY: I started doing a lot of bowhunting. I grew up gun hunting, and I still do gun hunt and blackpowder hunt. I try to take advantage of all the seasons. But there is something about bow hunting that I have really gotten into the last 4 or 5 years.
HORNTAGGER: It is humbling!
TROY GENTRY: It is humbling, it's the fact that you have to be that much more aware of your surroundings to be close enough, to get a shot with your bow, compared to gun hunting and everything else.
I just like the challenge of it. With that too, I am out on the road and I am able to bring my bow. Get in the back of the semi and shoot my bow year-round. There's a lot to be said with that!
HORNTAGGER: I meet you at Nashville, TN., at the Andy Griggs archery tournament. You had to go up against some other dandy bow shooters.
TROY GENTRY: I sure did. I got the opportunity to shoot in the back of the trailer, which is not very long. There was a lot of talented shooters their from 3D professional shooters to guys like me, that just shoots around in the back yard, that just gets out and hunts and doesn't do a lot of competing. It was a lot of fun and great experience and I hope I get invited back again next year.
HORNTAGGER: Hopefully I will get to see you next year. When you can't hunt we just do the next best thing.
TROY GENTRY: That's exactly right, get out here and play some music, and get to watch hunting on TV.
HORNTAGGER: Got anything about tonight's show you want to tell the audience? Anything new you are bringing to the show?
TROY GENTRY: We have some new songs we have been doing. We are working on new albums. Who knows? It's all by the seat of the pants. Go out there and have a good time. It's going to be a great show. It's always something different, it's a lot of fun. We interact with the crowd a lot, try to get the crowd into it. The more fun the crowd has the more fun we have.
HORNTAGGER: Do you have any more hunts planned this year?
TROY GENTRY: I got to go out to Montana and do a buffalo hunt with Kirk Dooms. He has a show on the outdoor channel TV. I go out with him and do a 4-day hunt with Buffalo. The rest of the time will be in Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky doing whitetail hunting.
HORNTAGGER: Any big boy scouted out to hunt?
TROY GENTRY: I haven't got to get out and scout. I got a bunch of guys I hunt with that have seen a couple of nice bucks. I do have one spot, that I have a bunch of guys on a lease back home. I do have one ridge that I have taken a couple of nice bucks on in the last couple of years. I have a zone for myself. They call me to give me some grief, tell me they are going back to my stand and hunt tonight. They try to give me as much grief on the road as they can. I get that ridge for myself this year.
The deer are just now putting out some sign. I got some buddies out there looking around trying to find them. They know that my life out here keeps me from doing a lot of homework in the woods. They're going to try to help me out and put me in a decent area I am sure, so that I get the opportunity.
HORNTAGGER: Any body else hunts that is on the road with you.
TROY GENTRY: Eddie hunts a little bit; he likes to get out and rabbit
hunt and squirrel hunt a little bit. He has a big farm back home and wildlife on it. He tends to let the kids do the hunting, when he gets back home he has so many chores you know on the farm, like bush hogging and getting other things done that he is unable to get done when he is out here that he takes care of.
HORNTAGGER: Well we will have to take Eddie on a good old fashion Southeast Missouri swamp rabbit hunt, let him see what the big rabbits look like.
TROY GENTRY: I am sure he would enjoy it.
HORNTAGGER: As far as family goes, do you take any of them out now?
TROY GENTRY: I got a ten-year-old daughter that wants to get out in the woods and do a little deer hunting. I have taken her out the last couple of years. She's kind of fidgety and everything, but I am trying to break her in right. I have been taking her out just long enough and as long as she wants to be out there. She starts to get cold we leave, last thing I want to do with any of my kids is to make them miserable, where they don't want to come back out.
My wife couple of years ago, Santa Claus brought her an over and under for Christmas. Matter of fact he brought me a matching one too. We have a couple of friends in Livingston, Alabama. They have plantation that they managed quail on. That New Years I took her out on her first quail hunt. She killed her first bird. She was very excited and got it on tape. We are going to try to get back down there and do some bird hunting. Santa Claus last year brought her a brand new Mathews Bow. I think Santa Claus is a big outdoor enthusiast too.
HORNTAGGER: Matter of fact Santa Claus brought my boy a brand new Genesis bow last year.
TROY GENTRY: Right on. The more I am able to get my family out in the woods the more I am able to get out in the woods. It's a win - win situation for all of us.
HORNTAGGER: Thanks for the time Troy. Hope to see you in the woods or the water.