Article by Brandon
Put it in the book's folks, were
done! The sweet fragrance of newborn flowers and the reincarnation of mother
nature has surceased. All the painstaking effort for the wild gobbler is now
history as we know it. The many hours, days or even weeks of intensive turkey
hunting has surpassed us.
Whether you ate your tag or your bird, I believe us as hunters virtually have no words to exhilarate the sensations and true-feelings of hunting. If you're like me, your heart feels like a sponge during the season. You soak up every beautiful event that took place and thrive on every moment it offered. Closing time arrives almost too fast. That's when your heart cringes and the once plump sponge rings out until an anemic stage of presence. All the fond accomplishments and unfortunate bungles abruptly settle into the back of your head to rest for ages. But, I'm a baron of good news... Although the spring season is coming to a yield, summer isn't afraid of butting in. Which foreshadows my favorite time of the year! Put away the turkey calls, vests and shotguns and dig out grunt tubes, bows and arrows. My good friend, its whitetail time! The 2004 fall archery season has started already for some of us. Hopefully it has for most of us.
- Open Your Eyes -
Nonetheless, we're in the midst of June and heading to July, a times where many families are taking ventures around the country or kicking it back and sipping lemonade, this isn't a time for fun and games just yet. First things first, the preseason scouting. It's never too early to achieve a better understanding of the deer herd and structure before your neighbor pokes his nose into the picture. During the muggy summer months deer are plentiful. I mean if you don't see a deer out in a lush green field, you better be calling 9-1-1 for an emergency. Males are in bachelor groups, sprouting velvet-covered bones out of their head. It's only fate to view a wide array of different bucks at one time. These bucks are like teens who haven't eaten in a week! Indulging on succulent alfalfa and binging on any green colored food in the vicinity, stuffing their bellies to pack protein and key nutrients to aid in the development of their body mass and antlers. More importantly, bulking up for the high stake battles that occur during the rutting season or even the seldom early season pecking order. Females on the other hand are supplementing their bodies with rich, quality foods to welfare their offspring. Whatever mother consumes transfers to the milk that the fawn digests.
- Deer Chow -
Many hunters plant food plots that are supercharged with protein and nutrients that a quality whitetail herd requires. I personally prefer Jurassic Seed Products. The last couple years I've planted the seed has had a magnitude difference in the deer herd. The infinite spikes and overgrown bodied fork horns evolved into ungodly sized bucks that are pleasantly pleased to carry head gear the size of coat racks. My uncle appreciates the whole food plot theory also, for that his alfalfa and corn fields aren't mowed to the dirt anymore. This at least keeps the majority of deer out of agriculture fields and modifies their eating patterns to food plots of gold. Sanctioned inpreferred locations throughout the woods. It lets deer feel the tranquility they relish.
- Nose v.s. Hunter -
I'm going to be unquestionably honest with you. There is no possible way as we sit in the 20th century that we can journey afield without being scent-free. And don't even bother telling me differently. Of course, companies do in fact create quote ends quote, "scent free" clothing. Wash your body in scent-free soap all you want, scrub until you bleed. Once out of the shower, into your cloths and into or on your truck/four-wheeler following the walk to your hunting location you are bound to activate an odor. A distinct odor, in which we presented ourselves in primitive early stages of life. Even nowadays, with expressing ourselves to mates with tangy cologne and aromatic perfumes. A nose of a deer is its weapon, as ours is a bow. It's only proof that this one on one battle isn't lopsided to say the least. There is one company I swear by and that's Elimitrax. "The problem is that hunting boots and apparel constantly shed molecules of their composition. The rubber, leather, cordura and fabrics that our gear comprises, each has an inherent odor. With every step we take, these material odors as well as human odors, contaminate the environment spooking game sometimes days after we have passed. After literally years of research, patenting and field-testing, the solution is here. Through new plastics technology, we have created a total and completely odorless barrier between hunter and environment and much, much more. Elimitrax protects you where it counts most, from ground level up to your thigh, if necessary. Now you can hunt confidently knowing that you are leaving absolutely no ground scent. Even the taller foliage and CRP areas that you have walked through remain as if you were never there." This was quoted by the mastermind who invented it all, Mr. Scott Whitlock. Need I say more?
- Find them -
As the summer progresses you will usually find the bucks usual, notice I say usual traveling patterns. All deer cannot be fully patterned. In this case were dealing with world class whitetail that has survived the tormenting of hunters for years. They know their ins and outs of the woods. What I have done many times is obviously find the buck. Second, record where they are coming and going. Lastly, on a rainy day with Elmitrax over the boot system; walk straight in from where you last seen the specific deer. Hop on the trail and it will lead you to the most pivotal spot in the forest . . . his bedding area. You will jump the buck, but that is the whole point of the mission. Considering you abide the rules and only scouted inside the woods on a rainy day the buck cannot smell what you were and he was probably so shook up that once he saw a big camouflaged bush veering his way, he took off not knowing what happened and he will most-likely come back. I haven't had a single buck leave the area yet from doing this operation. I urge you not to do it twice.
- Cover-Up -
Everything is working as planned so far. Know it's time for stand placement. Placing your stand in the correct corridor is extremely important. The ticket is, is finding an enter route and exit route without spooking any game. This could be hard for some places, but with the right wind, and setup it will work. In the early season bucks are sometimes hard to come-by. Usually more than not, the shooters are in the thickets waiting like bats for nightfall. Licking their lips and waiting time out before grabbing a bite to eat. Although, some unpressured areas that haven't been disturbed amount to opposite cases. Squeeze yourself in between the bucks bedding area and his food source. Food sources consist of acorn ridges, food plots, agricultural fields and so on. With enough scouting done prior to season, it shouldn't be too hard judging where he's been sneaking. Make sure the stand is up at least three weeks before the season.
I've found myself in a pickle recently. Whenever I find a picture-perfect tree, there's no limbs or brush to break up my outline. Don't risk a tree that has no beneficial limbs to hide you unless . . . You give a holler to an unbelievable man named David Pitman, who brought the goods to the hunting industry a couple years ago. His surefire attitude accompanying his brilliant ideas combines to form a master piece. PMI Cover Systems is the name of the company, and it's a flexing artificial brush that could hide a three hundred-pound man in blaze orange. It's lightweight, easy to carry, and most of all efficient. The word efficient says it all and that is specifically why hunter after hunter has successfully bagged more game.
Lets take a break to recap the info we've talked about: Scout, scout and scout. What can I say? You need to find the buck, find his bedding area and find a tree. If you want to be sarcastic about hunting, it's a serious game of hide and seek.
- Prime time -
Well I was hoping I didn't have to go this far, but suppose you're the exclusive rutting season hunter who has been holding hunting off for a couple moths or even better, you missed the one chance to take the buck and never seen him again. I've heard many and been apart of many whitetail experiences that the buck vanished. In my opinion big bucks make Hudini look like a rookie. There is no reason to be depressed what-so-ever. When you feel the early fall winds drastically, change to a cool late fall breeze that zips through your bones; you just know another season is at hand. The once green forest has shrunk into a mess of tans, grays, and browns. Leaves litter the forest floor, like garbage in a landfill. The smell is even different along with the most significant change of all, the deer. You will see bucks' you never seen before! Bucks will do things you thought were once unimaginable! Maybe you'll take the biggest buck of your life or more likely see him!
I cannot get enough of hunting when deer are most prone to humans. If you could only make love once a year, I'd bet you would be a little antsy too. This is the one time doe go into estrous and the bucks jump all over the chance to hook up and hang out.
- The Big Stink -
Hunters get confused when it comes to deer scent. There is a broad selection to choose from. Anywhere from attractants to cover scents. Too top it off; What manufacturers scent to purchase?! I'll admit there are many different to choose from. Not naming any names, but many manufacturers use goats, sheep, or hoofed animal urine. The price of having a deer farm, filtering the urine, staying up to date and packaging all the scent is too hard along with money problems. It's known as imitation scent, don't get caught using it. I like to stay with true top of the line doe estrous. That has been taken from a single doe during her twenty-four-hour estrous cycle. Packaged, froze and sent the same day. Sounds unrealistic don't it. True estrous is going to look real and trust me you will smell the difference. When I need estrous, I call up S&P Game Farm Hunting Scents. They have an attractive facility in Portage, WI, where they keep the deer scent fresh and fresh is what a mature buck is looking for when on the prowl for doe.
Utilizing scent, calls, decoys, or feeders can have a positive effect on the outcome of your hunt. I prefer to use scent and calls.
- The sweet Spot -
One mistake hunter's make, when rutting season rolls around is where to put their stand. Think about it this way; try to think of a place in your woods that will literally compress deer to travel in a particular spot. We've all seen what they look like and I use one to fill my b-b gun. (______ Cake), (Pour), (Rivet), (Narrowing), (Channel) If you didn't find the word yet . . . I'm shocked! By employing a stand overlooking a "funnel" will maximize your hunt's result. By finding high spots, low spots, a broken fence, fallen tree, creek bottom, a couple isolated cornfields rows leading to a big field, and a small opening in the woods is known as a funnel. Whitetail will use a funnel during the rut extensively going back and forth harassing the females. I cannot stress the importance of scouting to find a funnel to use when it comes in handy late fall.
- Wrapping It Up -
With my two-cents and opinions, I would hope you have learned something different by reading this article. Simply put, don't let deer put you in your place. It shouldn't come to that if you've planned and reminisced the season over and over in your mind. Being confident and playing to win, along with having the best time of your life is what's important.
Some people hunt for meat, some for antlers, and some for the rush. Get out there and think to yourself, "what do you get out of hunting?" "What do you like best about it?" You need to find your reasons and make goals. It is crucial to stay persistent and dedicated to your goals until they have been met. Even if it's been a sour season don't let up. Just having the chance to be out in the wild where we share land with animals is a treat.
It's time to white-wash your brain from everything, but hunting. It's time to systematize and put your game face to a conscientious measure, for whatever needs to be done will be done no questions, comments or excuses just actions. Hunt until you can't hunt no more. It brings me another thought; Hunting can be crossed with weightlifting. If you want to increase the muscle size and work-out, you need to lift until failure, when hunting it's no different. Undoubtably it is essential to hunt until failure which in most cases leads to success.
"Your not gonna get nothing sitting in the house."
Time after time spent hunting will show you the different behaviors that whitetails make evident. To me, hunting is literally a once in a lifetime experience each and every time you go afield. It may be scouting, hunting or even a cool summer's walk, there's no greater feeling and rush then being outdoors with critters so complex and different from us. Finding the right corners to fit each other and piecing it all together to form the greatest feat known to man-kind... embracing your arms around the mysterious white-tailed buck. The journey continues.