It’s a sure sign a person is getting older.

It’s not a sign I’m proud to admit, either.

Nevertheless, I believe most people eventually hit that point in their life when they feel they have enough “stuff.”   In particular, I’m talking about outdoors stuff.

Now, don’t get me wrong…a new fishing pole or a new shotgun always gets the juices flowing.   Yet, the fact remains when a person has been enjoying the outdoors for nearly four decades eventually they start running out of storage space.   The desire to acquire begins to fade.   Maybe a deeper sense of practicality actually sinks in to one’s maturing psyche.

Okay, I’ll admit something I never thought about in my younger days.   Now, as I amass a new bunch of fun toys I begin to think about what will happen to them when I’m out of the picture.   Seriously, at some point a person grows old and the toy either gets permanently stashed away until the estate sale…or, it gets liquidated at a fraction of the purchase price at some garage sale encouraged by your spouse.   The bottom line is the decision process for buying new outdoors equipment evolves as a person ages.

Case in point.   It’s been over a year since I last purchased a firearm.   That is quite a departure from what life was like several years ago.   At times during my past I would purchase a new gun almost on a whim.   Didn’t take much arm twisting at all.   Oh, have times changed in my life.

Today, I have little to no room to store additional guns.   My philosophy is if you can’t store them safely you don’t buy them.   Gun storage is not an afterthought…it’s a primary consideration BEFORE ever shaking the dealer’s hand and beginning the paperwork process.   Nope, even beyond storing the guns you need to take the time necessary to care for them…and it all takes precious time as “stuff” accumulates.

It really doesn’t matter what the “stuff” is, either.   It can be guns, fishing tackle, camo hunting clothes, ATV supplies, campfire accessories, knives, game calls, depth finders, waders, decoys…hell, the list goes on and on.   I think you get the idea.   If you’re young I understand being on a mission to acquire all the fun gadgets you think a person needs to fully enjoy the outdoors.   I’m here to tell you over time those attitudes change.

Now, you might think how much of this sounds a bit negative and perhaps somewhat defeatist that old age is winning the battle.   Quite the contrary, my friend.   While age is certainly a factor influencing this thought process…truth is as a person matures I think you better realize how the outdoors can be enjoyed without modern gadgetry.   Oh, I will never deny how many gadgets are integral and enhance the outdoors experience.   Still, the older a person gets the more apt they are to ask themselves the all-important question…”Did I really need that?”

Going to Cabela’s to buy new “stuff” is always fun.   Having a buddy give you his old “stuff” is always exciting.  Discovering “stuff” on Craigslist at fire-sale pricing is always awesome.   Getting new “stuff” for your birthday or Christmas is wonderful.

But, when you get to that point when you discover new “stuff” you’ve forgotten you purchased last year…well, that could just be the first sign that maybe…just maybe…it’s time to cut back on buying more “stuff.”   At least for a short time.