Once again, Outdoor Life magazine has released its annnual list of the top 200 towns in America for sportsmen and once again, I wonder if anyone at the magazine has ever been to Oklahoma.
The only Oklahoma towns making the magazine’s list this year are Bartlesville at 91, Poteau at 159 and Elk City at 195.
Not Durant. Not Broken Bow. Not Eufaula. Not Tahlequah. Not Kingfisher. Not Woodward. Not Frederick. Not Altus. Not Grove. Not Antlers. Not McAlester. Not Guymon. Not Cheyenne. Not Kingston. All better choices in my opinion.
I got in some hot water with the folks from Poteau when I first took issue with the magazine’s list in 2009.
Here is my blog from two years ago with reader reaction then: http://blog.newsok.com/outdoors/2009/05/27/best-outdoor-towns-in-oklahoma/
Poteau can make a compelling argument for belonging on the list. I would certainly rank Poteau ahead of Bartlesville and Elk City, who I don’t think belong there.
I really have trouble seeing Bartlesville as the best outdoor town in Oklahoma. It wouldn’t be in my top 10.
Two years ago Enid inexplicably made the magazine’s top 200 list. But Outdoor Life’s list is heavily weighted by a town’s unemployment rate, average household income and cost of living, rather than its proximty to good hunting and fishing.
I am sure Bartlesville is a great place to live but I know of few people who plan hunting and fishing trips there. I think the best outdoor towns should be judged by the kind of hunting and fishing found in their backyard. Or at least over in the next county.
Anyway, here is the link to this year’s Outdoor Life list for your cussing or discussing. I said my piece about it two years ago.