This Sunday is opening day of deer season, marking an unofficial holiday for sportsmen and sportswomen across our great state. Although I’ve only hunted a few times, I try to get out and appreciate our state’s natural beauty as often as I can.

As an avid hiker and backpacker, I’ve enjoyed hiking hundreds of miles of the North Country Trail, backpacking along the Lake Superior shoreline in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, camping near Lake Michigan in the Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness, and going for a trail run near my home at Yankee Springs Recreation Area. I’ve been able to experience and appreciate Michigan’s outdoors without breaking the bank, just like millions of other local residents, thanks to our hunters.

Our state’s hunting and fishing community are the main source of funding for the preservation and management of our natural resources, Johnson writes.