At Duck Camp, we live for moments—the frigid wait for the first flock, cleaning shotguns at the table, or waiting for a bass to sip that fly off the surface. These moments make up our life in the outdoors more than any number of fish in the cooler or birds harvested. And, if we’re lucky enough, they aren’t created alone. They’re made with our fathers.
With Father’s Day coming up, we’ve been thinking more and more about this relationship—the role it plays in our lives and how it has shaped our time in the outdoors.
Author/philosopher Umberto Eco frames the relationship this way: “I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom.”
This relationship goes both ways. We learn just as much from our children as they learn from us, in those little moments, and nothing sets up those moments like time spent in the outdoors.
Just think back on memories with your dad. The “big catch” you hauled in (where maybe dad did all of the real work). Or that “short hike” that turned out to be an all-day slog through the brush. Or when you both got limits on ducks. The mosquitos. The blisters. The post-hunt burger. The “character building.”
Both fathers and their children shine in these moments. Spending time together in the outdoors gives us a chance to be our best and our worst, sometimes with just a few moments in between. It gives fathers a chance to share their knowledge and wisdom, and children a chance to let them. It gives us a chance to get lost, fill the freezer, and go through hell together—in other words, make memories.
At Duck Camp, we’ve been hard at work preparing our newest line of fishing gear for summer (check it out here), to help you start creating these memories. As the world speeds up and gets stranger, the outdoors certainly have not. We just need to give it a chance to bring out the best in us—fathers, sons, and daughters.
If you’re looking for a place to start planning your next adventure with dad, be sure to check out our Father’s Day Gift Guide. Whether he’s into saltwater fishing, fly-fishing, bird hunting, or deer hunting, we have curated collections to make your next excursion even more memorable.
Maybe consider the gift of comfort and sun protection with our breathable Hooksetter Shirts for full days on the water. Or check out our Drifter Shorts, which can really do just about anything from chasing tailing redfish to tailgating. The entire guide is built with dedicated dads in mind, so be sure to check it out for last-minute gift ideas. Plus, as a special Father’s Day carrot, any order over $50 gets Free Shipping.
Regardless, take a minute to hit pause this Father’s Day and make the most of it. Give dad a chance to lead the way, bait the hook, or get you both lost in the woods or the marsh. You’ll be surprised at what that time can do. It can heal broken relationships, strengthen others, and remind us that we’re not all that different from our fathers. So, take to the woods. Hit the lake. Do whatever it takes to create those moments together, and let dad offer up those little scraps of wisdom. You’ll both be better off for it.