Whether you bag a big deer or not, deer hunting is virtually always a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Of course, your ultimate goal should always be an on-target, quick, and humane kill, but sometimes all it takes to lift your spirits is simply communing with nature in the great outdoors.
Here are some vital recommendations as a guide for hunting deer if you want to maximize your chances of success while having fun.
Choosing Your Weapon
The first step in deer hunting is to settle on a strategy. Do you wish to be a rifle hunter or a hunter who uses other methods (bow, atlatl, pistol, etc.)? Many of us began our hunting careers with rifles because they are the most accessible. Because this is a beginner’s guide to deer hunting, we recommend beginning with a rifle and expanding as your interests dictate.
When selecting a deer rifle, budget and fit must be considered. Going to a gun store and “trying out” potential weapons is well worth your time and effort. Pick up the guns, put them on your shoulders, play with the actions, sight-in an object on the floor or ceiling, and see how you like them.
The Scent Control
When hunting whitetail deer, never underestimate the importance of wind direction and scent management. Their noses are highly sensitive protection mechanisms that enable them to detect predators, including you! Can you just walk into the woods with a smoking Marlboro Red in your mouth, pick a tree stand or blind at random, and hope for the best? There’s always a story to tell. Taking this method, however, will not lead to hunting success.
You must be as “invisible” to the deer as possible if you want to maximise your chances of catching a whitetail. This is why our list of deer hunting advice includes being preoccupied with scent control.
The best technique to cope with it is determined by your hunting style and location. Imagine your smell as a cone emanating from your body, with the cone becoming wider and less concentrated as it travels away from you.
The Right Gear For The Weather
Making sure you’re dressed appropriately for the weather you’ll be hunting in is an important element of smell control. When considering what hunting attire to wear, a good rule of thumb is to avoid wearing anything that will make you sweat.
Whether the weather prediction calls for hot or cold temperatures, sweat is not your friend when it comes to whitetail hunting.
Odor develops as germs on your skin begin to break down the perspiration your body produces. Of course, we’ve already discussed how a whitetail reacts to your B.O. Why give them another motive to apprehend you while going through the woods or in your deer stand?
Even in chilly weather, excessive clothes, especially when carrying hunting gear on a lengthy walk, might cause sweating. You’ll stink, and after your body temperature returns to normal, you’ll have a very cold day in the deer stand.
When walking to your deer stand or permanent blind on a cold day, one strategy to avoid sweating is to dress lightly. You may feel cold at first, but your body temperature will rise as you walk. You can layer your light apparel after you get to your hunting location. You’ll be ready for a long sit if you haven’t sweated and can keep your head and feet toasty.
Place your stand so that your smell cone is directed away from where you expect to encounter deer.
You have the option of sitting in a treestand or a ground blind. I prefer to hunt from a treestand because it gives me a better perspective, although ground blinds are as effective. A ridge or slope provides a superb stand in a more mountainous environment. Just make sure you have some open shooting lanes before you get started. It makes no difference how many deer you see if you can’t obtain a shot due to too many branches or vegetation in the way.
If you’re going to hunt from a treestand, make sure you have a sturdy safety harness and a mechanism to let yourself down if you fall out. Also, be certain that your stand is secure and sturdy. Don’t rely on rusted nails and screws or weathered webbing and straps that have been out for weeks or months.
Taking The Shot
When taking a shot, you must always wait for a deer to stand broadside, which means that they are parallel to your rifle barrel. Bring your sights to the deer slightly beyond the front shoulder when you can see from nose to tail, since you want to hit the lungs and/or heart. Take the gun off the safety, take a deep breath and exhale slowly, then pull the trigger evenly until the pistol fires. Rack the bolt and chamber a live shell right away.
If you’ve hit your target, keep an eye on where the deer flees. Before tracking and pursuing, wait anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes. The deer will have plenty of time to lie down and die as a result of this. If you try to chase the deer down as soon as it is shot, you will put the animal under unnecessary stress.
Ethics In The Woods
When out in the woods looking for deer, it’s critical to maintain a high ethical standard of conduct. Practicing with your weapon of choice is one of the finest ways to do this. The more at ease you are with your firearm, the more compassionate you will be toward the deer.
Respect the land in its entirety. If you bring something in, be sure you take it out. Unfortunately, there are some hunters who do not care about cleaning up after themselves. If you come across trash (shell casings, food wrappers, leftover odours, and so on), pack it out as well, even if it is not yours. The more we all fight to protect our natural resources, the longer they will be available for us to enjoy.
Even if you are hunting alone, be sure that safety is always in the forefront of your mind. When you’re alone, accidents might happen, so be extra cautious and obey all safety guidelines.
Also Checkout: Best Pellet Gun for Hunting: Safety Use Tips