Lauren Rich lives on the beach in Florida’s beautiful Panhandle but enjoys getting dirt on her camo jeans about as much as having sand between her toes.
The 25-year old host of “Destination Whitetail” loves deer hunting, fishing and being outdoors. Along with working as a sales manager for a large vacation business and hosting the show, which is up for several Sportsman Choice Awards this year (vote here!), Rich also is a model.
Here is Lauren’s “I’m A Deer Hunter” interview with Deer & Deer Hunting Editor Dan Schmidt that appeared in our November issue:
You could say that I’m not a prototypical deer hunter because I live near the ocean in Florida and work as a sales manager for a large vacation business. We offer the experience of northwest Florida’s beautiful emerald-green shores and the memories made from vacations at the beach. However, that is not where I’m originally from. I was born and raised in rural Alabama — one of the best places to chase whitetails in this great nation!
When I was 12, my father passed away from leukemia. After his death, I clung to my love for the outdoors to help me remember our good times together.
I absolutely love being outside in nature. Just sitting still and watching wildlife is awesome entertainment.
There’s also something to be said about all of the preparation that goes into each hunt. Being careful with my scent, getting to and from the stand without spooking deer, sitting still and not making noise — so much goes into it. I call it “earth time!”
My perfect day in the woods doesn’t have to end in a kill. I just like the action. Whether or not I get a shot, watching the day unfold is just so exciting and therapeutic. I seriously learn something each and every time I go out.
My hands-down favorite gun of all time is the Remington Model 700 in 7 mm-08. I grew up shooting all makes and models of deer rifles, but this one is still my favorite.
It’s really funny to hear the responses from my modeling colleagues when they learn that I’m a deer hunter. Their first reaction is usually, “No, you are not!” They become believers when I pull out my photos. My friends are usually not surprised, because I’m usually texting them from the woods!
I’ve worked as a model, but I’m not a granola-cruncher. I love venison! My friend Stephen taught me how to wrap venison backstrap in bacon with jalapenos. That has to be my favorite way to prepare deer meat. However, I also love to snack on jerky, summer sausage and, of course, you can’t beat venison in Hamburger Helper!
Hanging out by the beach definitely has its benefits, but when the tourists are in town I find myself begging to be on the water fishing. When the off season arrives? You guessed it, I will be headed for the woods!