Evart football coach relishes hunting, fishing

EVART — Hunting and fishing are among Pat Craven’s main loves. But he has many of them. It’s just a matter of finding the time for everything he wants to do.

Craven, a Harrison native, has been in Evart eight years and is a teacher, plus the head varsity football coach. He’s coming off an active deer hunting season on family property west of Big Rapids.

While he was hunting this season, he found a buck that had been shot but was never claimed.

“We looked for (the hunter),” he said. “We looked for quite awhile actually but couldn’t find it. My uncle took a nice 8-point off of our property this year. We saw probably 10 or 12 different bucks this year.”

Craven said he saw plenty of deer during the season.

“I don’t get to bow hunt very much because of football,” Craven said, referring to the season that started Oct. 1. “The few times I bow hunted, I saw probably six different bucks. We were seeing 20 to 30 deer a night.”

Looking back, Craven recalls bagging a buck when he and his dad were hunting and had radios.

“He had a doe permit and I had a buck license,” he said. “I shot a six-point and the deer took off his way. I radioed him to get ready, a deer was coming his way and right afterwards he shot one. Whenever I can hunt with my dad, it’s a special fun time for me. I really enjoy hunting with him. Both my grandparents I hunted with have passed. I enjoy being out in the woods with my dad and doing some quality stuff.”

Craven also enjoys hunting turkeys in the spring.

“To be honest with you, that’s about it, that’s all I have time for,” Craven said. “I’ve done some pheasant hunting and I enjoy that. But there’s just not enough time for it.”

“I have some friends I do some walleye fishing with at Houghton Lake and Saginaw Bay and also in the U.P.,” he said. “We do a lot of hunting and fishing together.”

Craven finds it challenging to get the time on his schedule along with family duties.

“You have to prioritize and pick your moments,” he said. “I just enjoy being out there. I go out there, sit and most nights I don’t even draw back my bow or raise up my gun. We’ve seen a lot of deer. We’re looking for eight points or bigger. I enjoy just being out there in the peace and quiet.”