Enlist in the Blaze Orange Army

By Sam Gascon | PUBLISHED November, 17th 2021


No, that’s not the population of some U.S. city, nor is it the number of times I’ve said I’m gonna start working out again. That whopping number is in fact the number of registered hunters there were in the state of Wisconsin for gun season… last year alone.

Needless to say, with the annual November trip to deer camp being such a staple to Wisconsinite culture, it’s not shocking that there is such an astonishing number of hunters roaming the woods of the Dairy State each fall. 

However, while it may not be surprising, the sheer number of individuals who take part in this yearly conquest is still wildly impressive— it’s nearly 100,000 more people than the population of Atlanta. Putting the number into this perspective naturally raises the question, with so many armed outdoorsmen, how would Wisconsin hunters fare as an army?

Gun deer hunting season

Well, many have pondered this thought, and it’s estimated that if all Wisconsin hunters were to band together, they would comprise the eighth largest military in the world. Now, that’s an interesting thought, and most would stop there, however, I want to take things further.

Let’s start by contemplating this with a touch of realism— if Wisconsin hunters went to war with an actual military today, it probably wouldn’t even be close. I mean, rifles are great for taking down a buck, but not a tank or a drone. Have you ever seen those things? They’re insane!

However, just because the “Wisconsin Outdoors Militia” wouldn’t be able to compete with a modern military, that doesn’t mean that it couldn’t put up a fight in the past.

I’ve done a fair bit of research and “philosophical thinking”, and I’ve concluded that to find comparable militaries of old, there need to be three standards that are met: 

  1. The military used muzzle-loading weapons or less (hunters have rifles, not MG’s)
  2. There needs to be a total force of 450,000 individuals or less (the difference of 100,000 is to accommodate the lack of training)
  3. The military did not use advanced technology (such as tanks, planes, etc.)

So, using these three standards as a guide, I did some digging, and without further adieu, here is a list of militaries that I truly believe Wisconsin hunters would have a shot against:

  • The Roman Empire while under Tiberius, Trajan, Hadrian regimes
  • British Forces during the Revolutionary War
  • British Forces during the War of 1812
  • Confederate Army/Navy
  • France during the French Revolution

What? Did you expect us to be able to beat some super-legit military force? We drink beer, fall asleep in the woods, and forget basic things like toilet paper. Now if there were free beer and bourbon for pulling out a W, then the list above might include a few more armies in present day. 

All that said, the forest wants you to enlist in the blaze orange army to get deployed to the deer woods! Put that beer belly to the test and see how much fuel is in the tank when the time comes to drag that shooter buck or "eater doe" back to your tailgate. Never pass on making memories afield, have fun, and most importantly stay safe! 


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