Michael Hunsucker fell in love with hunting long before he was old enough to hunt. The weekend of rifle hunting season was Christmas come early, every year. “The fire, the grilling, cooking out, camping and kind of roughing it for the weekend. That whole experience was what did it for me,” Michael said. “That was my favorite weekend of the year in elementary school. That’s what drew me in and got me started, and I got so hooked. I wanted to do this more than just one weekend. That’s what led to me picking up a bow.”
At first it was a longer season that appealed to Michael. But it was the nature of bow hunting that sucked him in and never let go. “I just got so hooked on being close to the game, and bow hunting is a more intimate sport, not to take anything away from hunting with a rifles. I always appreciate the challenge more than anything. It’s more challenging for us. We hunt a lot of our own properties, friends properties, properties we have permission on. We have to be successful in the field, and we’re trying to portray what bow hunting is like. We like to show the work that goes into behind the hunt, the ones you remember the most are the ones you work the hardest.”
Michael and Heartland Bow Hunter co-host Shawn Luchtel met in high school and hunting together led to filming hunts. Both Michael and Shawn studied business management and entrepreneurship in college and saw an opening in the market. “We thought we could do this differently, tell a good story,” Michael said. “We ran with it, and we were fortunate it gained traction really quickly.”
“We were on a mule deer hunt in Western Nebraska in the fall of 2012. We stalked up on this buck and we were literally 10 yards from, but there was no way to get a shot with the way he was laying down. My friend said, ‘Give me your range finder. I’ll toss it over him and he’ll see it land.’ The deer must’ve heard his arm swinging and runs. He ran about 10 yards and looked back long enough for me to get a shot off. The shot hit its mark, and he only went 100 yards.
We had it all planned out, and it didn’t work out how we planned, but it worked out good enough to end up with a buck at the end of the day.”
- Multiple Outdoor Channel Golden Moose nominee, including: 2016 — Best Show Open, Best Deer Hunting; 2015 — Best Series Open, Best Comedy, Best Deer Hunting
- Sportsman Choice Award winner: 2010 — Best Hunting Show; 2011 — Best Bowhunting Show