Hunters ignore call to boycott Colorado

Gun-rights advocates had threatened to take their business elsewhere, but the state has been swamped with license applications.

By Bruce Kennedy Apr 18, 2013 10:27AM

Hunter holding rifle (© Cavan Images/The Image Bank/Getty Images)Does the hankering to go hunting outweigh the outrage over gun-control laws in Colorado?

Last month, gun-rights advocates were threatening to lead a hunting boycott against the Centennial State to protest newly enacted gun laws.

At the time, there were concerns that such a boycott might take a bite out of the $1.8 billion that hunting and fishing generate annually in Colorado. The industry not only brings in revenue from hunting licenses but also supplies income to many of the state's sporting goods stores, gas stations, restaurants and hotels. Now it appears the boycott might be showing some cracks.

Last week, the state reported a flood of online applications for big-game, limited hunting licenses ahead of the April 16 deadline -- so many, in fact, that the high volume caused the online system to temporarily crash.

Randy Hampton, with Colorado Parks and Wildlife, says the last-minute rush for hunting licenses is an annual affair.

"We won't have final numbers on applications until the first part of May," he said. "And even when we do know, it's impossible to really utilize that information and say what effect this talk of a boycott has had."

Colorado Parks and Wildlife has attempted to respond to concerns by people upset with the state's new gun legislation. It noted in press releases that the new bills will not affect existing hunting regulations, a person's ability to hunt or how the state harvests and manages its wildlife populations.

Hampton says talk of a boycott seems overstated. "As we started to hear from people (complaining about the gun laws), we'd find that some of them hadn't hunted in Colorado before or hadn't hunted here in a long time," he said. "So it's hard to assess how legitimate it is."

Scott Willoughby, who writes the Outdoors column in the Denver Post, recently reported that one group, the Tea Party Gun Owners of Colorado, has abandoned its plans to support the hunting boycott. "We as a group are pro business," says an organization press release that Willoughby quoted, "and would never want to affect the meager incomes of struggling businesses and guides operating in Colorado."

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Apr 18, 2013 11:18AM
I wonder why Obama is so pissed that his National Gun Law didn't pass?  He should be congratulating the BIPARTISAN vote AGAINST the Gun law instead of whining that he didn't get his way. That's what he wanted didn't he - congress working across the isle in a BIPARTISAN way?  Oh, that's right - only if it's BIPARTISAN in his favor.....  Idiot!  But he might do well as Governor of Colorado.
Apr 18, 2013 12:05PM
President Props.......lookin for a few good props for future rallies and agendas.
Apr 18, 2013 12:54PM
tea party gun owners of colorado. now that is a name. they must have hired someone to type for them. ted cruz built colorado. hahahaha
Apr 19, 2013 8:41AM
It's a shame the liberals from CA, and other parts of the country, immigrated to Colorado.  There should be a special tax on these immigrants.....suggest imposing the same CA state tax on these liberal immigrants.....what is the CA state tax on the highest earners, 14%?  Hell, even their buddy Maher is pissed at the CA state tax hike. 
Apr 18, 2013 12:10PM
There are lies, there are damn lies and then there are G.D. lies....this story is off the charts......
Apr 18, 2013 11:24AM
Let's be truthful, a hunter would not be going after big game with the weapons that should be banned. they were made for hunting soft targets, man that is.
Apr 18, 2013 1:19PM
Kind of makes you think that real sports enthusiasts enjoy all Colorado has to offer, while the fanatical terrorists of the South and the bought-and-paid-for-by-terrorists-dollars Tea Party has no influence there. A reminder that once... a long time ago... the NRA was a sports club association, not terrorists and an anti-American political lobby. Where is the Impeachment Form for the Party of NO in Congress that voted against the will of the voters? We don't need no stinkin' GOP.
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