Hunting is a big part of what the Eichler’s do. Most people are used to seeing Fred with soiled hands after gutting, skinning or harvesting an animal. What people often don’t see are the outdoor roots that run deep in their families and continue to drive their passion. Fred talks about their outdoor upbringings where he learned about hunting and fishing from his father and grandfather and Michelle’s outdoor education that happened as a result of being raised in a hunting family that started the broadhead company, Muzzy. Still today, their families are very active in the outdoors and it’s something that Fred says he hopes inspires others. Michelle’s mom, in her late 80’s still hunts with them and took a Pope and Young antelope a few years back. Fred’s dad is in his early 70’s and still guides elk hunters. If seeing their parents who are still active doesn’t make people want to hop off the couch and start doing something, I don’t know what does. Fred and Michelle were raised in the outdoors and they have taken the same tact with their kids who are also outdoor enthusiasts. “Everything Eichler” still has plenty of bowhunting and predator hunting action that viewers have come to love from “Easton Bowhunting TV” and “Predator Nation”, however this new show is more encompassing of their lifestyle as a whole. Fred says they are trying to show all aspects of what they love about the outdoors – fishing, shooting frogs, bird hunting, chasing big game – they love it all and want to share that part of their lives.
Turning the conversation to big game hunting Fred weighs in on trophies. A lot of emphasis tends to be placed on the size and maturity of animals today. Big bucks and bulls are the eye candy of the hunting world and a lot of hunters set their sights on harvesting record book animals. Fred is an equal opportunity hunter and champion of fellow hunters and doesn’t have a problem with trophy hunting, to each their own pursuit! The idea of a “trophy” is fluid though, and it is something that changes from hunter to hunter. The trophy is in the eye of the beholder, says Fred, and no one should ever look down on another hunter’s achievement or project their personal thoughts about trophy requirements on to anyone else. A spike or doe that one-person shoots is just as fantastic as a 190” inch deer another hunter tags, and neither should be diminished. For him, Fred says the real trophy of any hunt is the experience in the outdoors and the meat he gets to stack in his freezer.
Fred hunts with just about every weapon out there – rifle, shotgun, handgun, bow, and more – however, he says his go-to, first weapon of choice is his recurve bow. In a hunting industry that is largely dominated by cutting edge technology, compound bows, Fred still has an affinity for traditional archery equipment. Summing it up to the fact that he is a “simple guy”, Fred says he doesn’t need any of the other stuff, he can shoot quickly and enjoys the natural instinctive type shooting you do with a recurve or longbow. He’ll also talk about the challenge of hunting with a pistol. It takes skill, Fred says, as he talks about hunting coyotes with a handgun. Shots that would be easy with a shotgun or rifle are more complicated with a handgun and it’s that challenge that he enjoys.
When it comes to raising their kids, Fred says that he and Michelle teach them a variety of different skills and methods, so they can decide for themselves what they like and what they excel in. By giving them a little bit of knowledge about a lot of different things they better prepare them for various outdoor experiences and let them pursue their passions.
Be sure to listen below for a fun two-part interview with Fred Eichler as he talks about their new show “Everything Eichler”, his quest to take a Chupacabra with the dart of a blowgun, eating mountain lion and its similarities to pork and his love of bacon, the many talents of his wife Michelle, plus an introduction to her Corn Cob Jelly. Listen in, it’s going to be fun.
Be sure to watch “Everything Eichler” on Sportsman Channel, Sundays at 12:30 pm ET for a different look into the lives of the Eichler family.
Happy Chupacabra Hunting,