Elkin High, Gray Stone Middle win YHEST top honors

Willow Stokely competed in the 2021 YHEST state championship with Northeast Academy for Aerospace and Technologies. (NCWRC photo)

The Youth Hunter Education Skill Tournament was held April 24

A high school from Surry County and a middle school from Stanly County took top honors at the 2021 Youth Hunter Education Skills Tournament (YHEST) on April 24. This pre-collegiate tournament allows youth to showcase outdoor skills and demonstrate safety techniques that they learn in the Commission’s Hunter Education program.

Elkin High Elks team won the overall senior division, scoring 3,676 points out of a possible 4,000. Gray Stone Middle team won the overall junior division with an overall score of 3,476.

Students competed in four events, including rifle, shotgun and archery marksmanship and a hunter responsibility exam. Teams compete on senior (high school) and junior (middle and elementary school) divisional levels, with overall team and individual awards based on aggregate scores in all events.

A full report of district standings is available on the Commission’s YHEST webpage. Names of the individual district junior and senior winners were not released because they are minors. 

Approximately 210 students from 18 teams participated in this year’s state tournament. They advanced from their district tournaments, held across the state in March. The teams are made up of individuals from public and private schools, as well as homeschool associations and 4-H clubs.

While YHEST is for students 18 years and younger, the Commission offers free hunter education courses and advanced hunter education on a regular schedule for all ages. For more information, go to ncwildlife.org/huntered or call 919-707-0031.

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