Blaze orange

lester2

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First, some back ground. I’m 58, been deer hunting since I was 14. It took me a lot of years to warm up to blaze orange but now, in every state I hunt firearms seasons in, whether it’s required or not, I wear an orange hat and vest, period. It is beyond me why it’s not law in every state. It’s just so much more visible to humans, and not to deer that to me there’s no excuse. This season I had deer several times within 20 yards of me with the wind right and standing still and they had no idea I was there. It pains me to no end seeing picture after picture on social media of successful hunters, many of them youths, posing with their deer with not a stitch of orange, or red for that matter, in sight. Knowing that most accidents happen between friends and relatives (I’m a trained hunter safety instructor) I just cannot imagine the anguish one would go thru should they wound or kill someone accidentally. So I guess what I’m saying is that my opinion is that for all big game season, less turkey, VT should require blaze orange. The Maine and Massachusetts requirements of a hat and vest seem reasonable to me. There, I’ve said it...

Lester
 

JDK

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Here in Maine you do not have to wear orange if it goes against your religious beliefs. You do have to wear red however
 

lester2

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Ok, I’ve got to chuckle at that one. A religion that says you can’t wear orange, but red is OK? Really, now I’ve heard it all...
 

JDK

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David McCrea from Fort Fairfield wrote the legislation and it was signed by Governor LePage in 2017. It was supposed to address the concerns of the Amish community.
 

JDK

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So, religiously speaking, I'm comfy in my red plaid coat.
 

JDK

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A new law designed to appease an Amish community in northern Maine has created a loophole. Amish leaders in Fort Fairfield informed state Rep. David McCrea that they would no longer wear blaze orange while hunting.

Their objection was in line with the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993. McCrea went to the Legislature with a law which allows hunters to now wear bright red if they have strong religious conviction.

"It's a problem for them," said McCrea, who noted that not all Amish communities in Maine live so strictly.

The Legislature passed the bill and Gov. Paul LePage signed it into law.
 

NorthMaine

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I would never go without it either. Too many crazies out there.
 

RememberBaker

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I usually wear an orange vest, sometimes a hat, sometimes not. A surprising number of people that I see in the woods don’t wear any, a lot of them aren’t wearing red either. It’s interesting that no one seems to be clamoring for a law here, I don’t know if it’s been taken up by the VT legislature recently but if it has it didn’t get anywhere. It’s hard to make a case for it when hunting accidents are so rare.
 

sneaky_pete000

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I wear a vest and a hat, and I'm pretty strict about it with my family. I don't have any data to support it, but I FEEL like there are more hunters squeezed into less acres, including a ton of inexperienced hunters. However, its my choice, and I don't care for any laws requiring it.
 

WetWool

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First, some back ground. I’m 58, been deer hunting since I was 14. It took me a lot of years to warm up to blaze orange but now, in every state I hunt firearms seasons in, whether it’s required or not, I wear an orange hat and vest, period. It is beyond me why it’s not law in every state. It’s just so much more visible to humans, and not to deer that to me there’s no excuse. This season I had deer several times within 20 yards of me with the wind right and standing still and they had no idea I was there. It pains me to no end seeing picture after picture on social media of successful hunters, many of them youths, posing with their deer with not a stitch of orange, or red for that matter, in sight. Knowing that most accidents happen between friends and relatives (I’m a trained hunter safety instructor) I just cannot imagine the anguish one would go thru should they wound or kill someone accidentally. So I guess what I’m saying is that my opinion is that for all big game season, less turkey, VT should require blaze orange. The Maine and Massachusetts requirements of a hat and vest seem reasonable to me. There, I’ve said it...

Lester
I think a lot of times on social media sites they shoot the deer wearing the orange but then shed it for F.B. pictures strictly for vanity.
 

NH Hunter

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I'm in the same camp as you Lester. I WILL NOT even think about going in the woods without a blaze orange vest and hat. When I was guiding moose hunters I also made it mandatory if I was guiding you, you wear orange. Don't like it..... find another guide.
 
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Meatseeker

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Blaze orange hat, vest, pants, socks, underwear and a flashing light on my head! Maybe that's why I don't kill many deer in the MA gun season. In all seriousness if you hunt on heavily pressured private land or public land in urban/suburban areas without blaze orange on you are crazy. We had two non-fatal hunter on hunter hunting accidents last week in Eastern MA all parties involved were wearing the required blaze orange and it still happened. I can't imagine what would happen here without it. Lots of guys on a small amount of acreage with the spray and pray mentality makes for dangerous condition. I won't step foot on public land in eastern MA on the weekends or during shotgun season. Too scary.
 
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Flatlander

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1978 was the first year I hunted in Maine. The legal requirement was an article of orange visible for 360 degrees , no minimum size requirement. I saw a guy with one orange glove. Orange hats were popular. Then after Karen Wood was killed they went to an orange hat and vest as a minimum.
 

mowbizz

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If I’m hunting behind my house (never saw another hunter until this year!) I usually just wear my camo but seeing that guy still hunting past my blind (didn’t see me) made me think about donning my blaze orange ball cap when I left the blind!
 

Browseline

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I have worn a blaze orange hat and vest when rifle hunting for 30 years, whether the law requires it or not. I see a few people without it in Vt and NH, but not too often. Seems foolish not to wear it to me, but that is their business. I see hunters who cover their kids in orange when they take them hunting, but don't wear it themselves. Quite a contradiction.
 

802-603hunter

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I wear an orange Stormy Kromer hat and wool coat with a blaze cape most days when hunting up north. Exceptions being when I get rained on or otherwise soaked in the mornings and swap out for the rest of the day. For whatever reason I usually hunt in my red checkered wool in VT. Not saying its right, but maybe its because I always have, or some subconscious superstition. Not sure. I can’t understand those who hunt in full camo during rifle season with no stitch of orange. Right, wrong, or indifferent, I often wonder if its because they tend to hunt places they aren’t supposed to be.
 

NH Mountains

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It’s been 8 years since we lost Ben Birch to a tragic hunting accident in Vermont. I believe he was wearing his dull blaze orange hat. I don’t believe he was wearing a blaze orange vest. I can’t help but, think he’d still be with us if he had worn an orange vest. I know must of us think we love to hunt but, Ben truly loved to hunt.
 

VTHunter08

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Ehh I don't know how I feel about this. Should you wear orange b/c of a safety concern? Sure yes I agree. Should it be an enforceable law with penalties and fines? ehh I don't know. I agree its a good idea but I'm also an advocate for free choice, and not creating laws when there isn't a problem to start with. According to the national sporting goods association in 2017 there were 17 million hunters with firearms, and only 35 documented injuries per 100,000 participants. To put this in comparison with other sports they made a list of 28 other "sports". The only one statistically "safer" then hunting was playing pool which only had 15 injuries per 100,000 participants. way WAY more dangerous to hunt from a treestand.

yes I think blaze orange is a good idea, does it need to be a law? ehhh I think we have bigger fish to fry. Just my opinon

(side note: I wear either a blaze orange hat, or a red hat, with a green plaid jacket in very heavily hunted franklin county vermont, never felt unsafe)
 

JDK

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I agree with you VTHunter08

I'm not a critic of orange (or red) per se other than I believe too much safety emphasis is placed on it at safety courses. Not everyone in the woods in October and November is wearing orange and I believe it is disingenuous to expect non-hunters to wear it. IMHO, teaching inexperienced hunters (even if it is only applied) about orange, orange, orange is wrong.

I have not seen another hunter in the woods in nearly 20 years. I have not seen another human track in the snow in probably 5 years. This includes central and coastal Maine. I did see a guy collecting chaga a few yards ago during deer season and he was NOT dressed in orange.

That said, I wear an orange hat and vest as required by law.
 
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