The wind argument….

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MichiganMike
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby MichiganMike » Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:05 am

PAbowhunter10 wrote:
<DK> wrote:You may have been busted on the off wind setup but you were also in the game. Thats what it takes!

The deers mentality and habits w the wind will vary based on pressure. How they use the wind on/entering food sources is always tough for me. Thats one reason I like hunting the beds or right before staging areas bc the deer seem to have a different mentality. I know for a fact deer 1+ mile deep into public act differently than the ones close to access.


Very true statement. That’s why I have failed much more than I have succeeded. Wind is completely unpredictable and can change at a moments notice. Thanks for your input.


Well said. Where I hunt in Michigan, I am always hunting in a swamp or marsh. They do act much differently and seem to be a bit more casual coming out of their bed. Them ENTERING a bedding area or food source is a different story and you likely will get busted. I will set up along one of their exit routes (hopefully its the right one!) around 80-100yds from their bed. Catch them on their exit- not their entry.


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Dewey
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby Dewey » Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:04 am

I keep track of all the details and have since my first kill. Overwhelmingly most of my buck kills were on deer that came in with wind to their back and completely in my favor. I'm sure this is likely due to the swamp and marsh terrain I generally hunt and not nearly as common when hunting food sources, hills or even big woods. I must say after experimenting more over the years with a just off wind I have seen quite a few more deer moving earlier likely due to having a slight scent advantage causing them to be a bit more at ease. The key to using a just off wind is you need to know the EXACT location of bedding or bedding exit trail. Sometimes it’s only a matter of a few feet where a buck will either not wind you or will catch your scent stream and bust you. Pretty exciting when it works.

Every deer is different. Some are more relaxed and not nearly as observant it seems and others are wound super tight. Only thing for sure is if your scent is going directly where you expect deer to come from your hunt is usually done before it starts. Know the wind and always pay attention to what it’s doing now or may do for the duration of your hunt. Constantly monitor wind currents with milkweed.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby HuntingParadise » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:42 am

tim wrote:Well one could argue however a deer travels the wind is to his advantage or would he travel that way? But I hunt to give the deer their wind advantage and setup to capitalize on it. But don’t forget accessing that spot . You have to acces in such a way you aren’t detected so they feel safe traveling that route…..


Just curious but how close to you think you can get if trying to circle around a buck where the wind is blowing towards his bed?
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Lockdown
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby Lockdown » Wed Jun 09, 2021 7:02 am

greenhorndave wrote:
Lockdown wrote:I think the wind is by far the most important in hill and mountain terrain. What I’ve seen out west is the wind dictates WHERE they lay... not how they leave it.

Around here, most of the bedding I see is not wind dependent. The bedding AREA isn’t. But the bedding within it often is. Again I don’t see bucks leaving bedding a specific way because of the wind. But they will absolutely scent check an area first if it’s convenient to do so.

Last fall the drop tine used the same bedding on a NW and also SE wind. He exited the same way both times. My 2019 buck (and the bachelor group he was with) was bedded on a cattail transition with the wind blowing from the cattails to him. The opposite you’d expect.

In my opinion hunting pressure has a lot to do with how they use the wind for bedding. The higher pressure is, the more defensive they are and the more they use the wind to their advantage. If they don’t they get shot.

When pressure is really high I do think having a just off wind will help. It could be the difference in getting that little bit of extra movement that you need. High pressure or not, if I think I have a good chance to kill a buck and I know he’s home, you can bet I’m not staying home because the wind is in my favor.

Do you mean not in your favor? Because why would you stay home if it’s in your favor? ;)

That aside, really good post. Some food for thought there. I don’t want my wind knowingly blowing right into bedding, but I think I’m sometimes guilty of overthinking it.

Does it seem to you like their bedding is situated as such to check where most pressure comes from? Like maybe that cattail example has a parking lot across from it or something that would carry the scent over the cattails so the deer can tell when someone is there.

Just hypothesizing and curious about your theories. Thanks.


No I’m saying I’m not staying home because I don’t have a “just off” wind. If my memory serves me correctly, Stanley has mentioned all the bucks he used to kill that were traveling wind to back.

I do think a just off wind is better. It’s extra insurance. But it is not a requisite.

Edit: and I do see bedding areas monitoring human pressure. Around home it’s not normally a visual advantage. Often they’ll lay down wind of where they expect danger. Or they’re in a thick area where you can’t get in quiet. But that doesn’t mean they’ll only leave with the wind in their nose.
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greenhorndave
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby greenhorndave » Wed Jun 09, 2021 7:07 am

Ah, ok. Gotcha
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby Usi05 » Wed Jun 09, 2021 10:35 am

Great topic.

I hunted way closer on bedding last two years and have seen much more movement and had some great encounters but I haven’t done much with an off wind.

That is part of how I’m planning some of my setups on bedding this year.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby dan » Wed Jun 09, 2021 9:27 pm

Here is a link to an article I did about how deer use the wind https://www.realtree.com/deer-hunting/a ... e-the-wind
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby Deerkins » Wed Jun 09, 2021 10:44 pm

I often see deer feeding in fields and clearings, all facing the same direction, with wind to back. But, I believe it’s something they prefer to have only when they arrive at an area and they’re actively feeding; not during their regular travels.

I think the very best setup, as far as wind goes, is setting up on the outside edge of where a buck makes an abrupt bend in their travel route. In the perfect scenario , you either get a broadside or quartering away, with minimal risk of being winded.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby Coalcracker » Wed Jun 09, 2021 11:13 pm

dan wrote:Here is a link to an article I did about how deer use the wind https://www.realtree.com/deer-hunting/a ... e-the-wind


Very informative article.

I haven't killed a bunch of mature bucks. However, one thing has definitely raised the bar on my ability to close the distance with mature bucks. Paying more attention and purposely hunting thermals instead of the wind in hill country.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby dan » Thu Jun 10, 2021 12:29 am

Coalcracker wrote:
dan wrote:Here is a link to an article I did about how deer use the wind https://www.realtree.com/deer-hunting/a ... e-the-wind


Very informative article.

I haven't killed a bunch of mature bucks. However, one thing has definitely raised the bar on my ability to close the distance with mature bucks. Paying more attention and purposely hunting thermals instead of the wind in hill country.

exactly, wind direction in hills terain based on a weather report is more of a rough estimate than reality. Hills and terrain twist and turn the wind direction all over the place, combine that with hill country thermals ans you just need to get close and check the wind direction, think about access, and what the thermals are goimg to do, and set up accordingly... Its not something you can accuratly do from home or the truck
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby Lockdown » Thu Jun 10, 2021 1:12 am

Deerkins wrote:I often see deer feeding in fields and clearings, all facing the same direction, with wind to back. But, I believe it’s something they prefer to have only when they arrive at an area and they’re actively feeding; not during their regular travels.

I think the very best setup, as far as wind goes, is setting up on the outside edge of where a buck makes an abrupt bend in their travel route. In the perfect scenario , you either get a broadside or quartering away, with minimal risk of being winded.


I have noticed this too. I see it the most on really windy days. And it can especially be seen on rainy days... but that is to help keep from getting pelted in the face by rain drops. My dad has horses and they’ll do the same thing. Block the rain with their body.

I think blocking the wind with their body accomplishes two things. It keeps them more comfortable... who wants the wind blowing in their face? It also allows them to watch what they can’t smell.

If it’s a light wind, they’ll often be facing all directions.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby NateK » Thu Jun 10, 2021 1:52 am

Most of the areas I hunt are flat river bottom country with lots of mature trees. Outside of weather fronts the wind tends to be extremely low and variable which makes it difficult to get in close without spreading scent everywhere. This does result in most of the bedding being more related to food/cover/pressure than wind and I believe the bucks in my area tend to rely on sound for first warning particularly in the still morning and evening hours when they move extremely slowly and stop often to listen. I have had the best luck not getting winded by waiting until we have a decent front moving through with steady winds (that gusty stuff gets all sort of mixed up in flat timber) or by playing the thermals right next to creeks, sloughs, etc. when available.
I have one stand in particular on a private farm I hunt that sits about 30 feet off of a bend in the creek and as long as I don't sit too high in the tree even a slight breeze towards the creek in the evening will result in my wind sucking right down to the water and heading downstream. I also access through the same creek which has 8' plus banks to hide me visually as well.

All that to say I don't get very many opportunities to hunt a "just off" wind as that requires some form of wind predictability which is extremely rare for me outside of the few cases mentioned above.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby mipubbucks24 » Thu Jun 10, 2021 3:16 am

The single biggest thing I have learned from the HB is how mature bucks use the wind, and terrain. Hunting with that in mind has earned more encounters with mature bucks the last 2/3 years.

For example I hunt a tiny 10 acre plot of land that is basically a triangle point into a marsh. The prevailing thought would be to only hunt it on a Northerly type wind. The reason being the only entrance would be from the south and the deer in the marsh to the North can not smell you. Problem is when the wind is from the North, not a single mature buck will set foot near the point, they stay out in the marsh till dark.

What I have learned is that during the rut, basically Nov the 1st till the 14th. If you have a south wind or most likely a South West wind. The Mature bucks will skirt the North East side of the point, scent checking the scrapes on the main land, and scent checking for doe. Because of this I have had 2 encounters with mature bucks in the last 2 years one was in the 130s and the next year I believe the same buck was in the 150s. I shot him last year but hit him forward and did not recover him.

My point to this post is you could hunt that property 100 days straight with a North wind and you would probably never see a mature buck. You have to hunt the property based on how mature bucks will use the property and many times that is counter traditional thinking. When I hunt this spot it is land locked by property lines, and I just have to face the fact that I may have a deer cross my ground scent, there is no other way to get the wind in my advantage then to hunt the very edge of the property in the marsh and try to shoot the deer before they cross my ground scent.
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby PAbowhunter10 » Thu Jun 10, 2021 4:47 am

dan wrote:Here is a link to an article I did about how deer use the wind https://www.realtree.com/deer-hunting/a ... e-the-wind

Thanks for the link!!
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Re: The wind argument….

Unread postby PAbowhunter10 » Thu Jun 10, 2021 4:58 am

mipubbucks24 wrote:The single biggest thing I have learned from the HB is how mature bucks use the wind, and terrain. Hunting with that in mind has earned more encounters with mature bucks the last 2/3 years.

For example I hunt a tiny 10 acre plot of land that is basically a triangle point into a marsh. The prevailing thought would be to only hunt it on a Northerly type wind. The reason being the only entrance would be from the south and the deer in the marsh to the North can not smell you. Problem is when the wind is from the North, not a single mature buck will set foot near the point, they stay out in the marsh till dark.

What I have learned is that during the rut, basically Nov the 1st till the 14th. If you have a south wind or most likely a South West wind. The Mature bucks will skirt the North East side of the point, scent checking the scrapes on the main land, and scent checking for doe. Because of this I have had 2 encounters with mature bucks in the last 2 years one was in the 130s and the next year I believe the same buck was in the 150s. I shot him last year but hit him forward and did not recover him.

My point to this post is you could hunt that property 100 days straight with a North wind and you would probably never see a mature buck. You have to hunt the property based on how mature bucks will use the property and many times that is counter traditional thinking. When I hunt this spot it is land locked by property lines, and I just have to face the fact that I may have a deer cross my ground scent, there is no other way to get the wind in my advantage then to hunt the very edge of the property in the marsh and try to shoot the deer before they cross my ground scent.



You make a great point about hunting the wrong wind and never seeing a buck, Even though they may be using the area regularly. I believe that’s one of the biggest mistakes hunters are making with the wind. The feeling that they have to have a certain wind in their favor based off fear of getting busted. I have been busted many times hunting that off or quartering wind and in result have had mixed feelings about my setups. But at the same time I have setups using winds that only benefit me, not the deer, and have spent countless hours in the stand not seeing a mature buck.
This is becoming a great thread. Lots of good input and ideas being shared.


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