For the majority of us, I would figure that when one considers “tourism” perhaps we think more in the line of an area’s history, quaint shops, eateries and bed and breakfasts. However, I’m fully aware that there’s a whole other type of tourist out there that prefers the treasures of the outdoors to those found in our local museums.
I must confess that I have first-hand experience in this subject. My mother, late grandparents and aunts and uncles are all sportsmen. I remember my hearing-impaired mother along with my late legally blind grandmother going hunting as a pair—one could see—the other had impeccable hearing. With those two in the near vicinity, I often worried about the location of my late hearing-impaired grandfather who was probably hunting over the next hill or valley …
While I would figure that not too many people have a picture of their mother in full camo sporting a gun and proudly displaying deceased squirrels by their tails in outstretched arms, I admire her spirit in participating in an activity she enjoys. My husband, who is also an avid sportsman, admires her gun collection.
Things at our house only strengthen my case. The mounted menagerie of Sam Striper, the Buck Boys and Tom Turkey adorn the walls of our living room—much against me and my mother-in-laws decorating tastes. Our television set seems only to broadcast what can be referred to as “the whisper channels.” Perhaps this is the only place that you can see grown men in camo hanging out of trees “whispering” to who I would figure is a cameraman filming a potential deer’s demise. If all goes well (or maybe not so), it is again perhaps the only place you can see grown men cry on a regular basis.
So, for all of you sportsmen (and women) who enjoy the thrill of the hunt and yearn for the land of big bucks, Switzerland County is the place to be. We’re proud to report that the county is featured on the Dec. 2008 cover of Indiana Game & Fish as having the state’s “No. 2 All-Time Archery Buck.” “Laffy Taffy” as the deer was dubbed, was harvested by Chris Robbins on a farm located inside Switzerland County.
According to author Mark Hughes’ accompanying Indiana Game & Fish article, “Switzerland County is always one of the top counties in Indiana, so just knowing that you are going there to hunt gets your blood flowing.”
This isn’t the only time that Switzerland County was a focus in the sportsman publication. Just recently, the Oct. 2008 issue the county is listed as the 2007 Top Deer County in Indiana’s Southeast Zone 5 as well as number two in the state for deer harvests.
“Switzerland County once again leads the way in the zone with 3,259 total deer harvested, good once again for second place statewide,” wrote author Dean Weimer in the Oct. 2008 Indiana Game & Fish. “This deer factory produced 2, 821 deer in 2006.”
The area heavily timbered hills, wooded draws and hollows of the zone, complete with prime river bottom habitat in some areas, and intermixed with good cropland makes Switzerland County a hunting hot-spot.
If the “call of the wild” is beckoning, you can find more information on hunting and fishing in Switzerland County by calling Splinter Ridge Fish and Wildlife Area at 812-346-5596, or the Switzerland County’s DNR Conservation office at 812-427-3636. A hunting and fishing section on the Switzerland County Tourism’s website will be added soon at www.vevayin.com.
Photo and excerpts from Indiana Game & Fish used by permission.