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The Joy of the Bloodless Hunt

The fun of getting outside and pursuing … birds, rocks, ’shrooms and little pieces
Illustration for EW by Aren Vandenburgh • arenv.com
Illustration for EW by Aren Vandenburgh • arenv.com

I once told my ex-fiancé that I was a vegetarian because I ate only what I could personally kill. He promptly bought me a shotgun and taught me how to shoot it. However, he was unable get me to kill anything more mobile than a poorly tossed clay target. He tried — unsuccessfully — to persuade me of the joys of shooting, killing and butchering my own meals, but the closest I got to deadly force was blowing up a bottle of Coke (and then carefully cleaning up the sugary-drink-covered remains, because leave-no-trace principles apply to recreational shooting, too). Finally, a couple years ago, an avid truffle hunter explained to me how he had left the excitement of hunting animals for the more-obsessive joys of hunting elusive fungi.

It turns out there are many odd and elusive edibles and objects in Oregon that you can track down, document, write your name on or just sleep happily in the knowledge that you found them.

Welcome, reader, to this year’s Outdoors Issue and the joys of no-kill hunting.

Rock On: Local geology lovers find community in rock hunting

A Pocket Guide to No-Kill Birding: History tells us that the first birders did it with gunfire

A Modern Treasure Hunt: Geocaching

Wet, Dirty, Sometimes Fruitless Mushroom Hunting