Starting from scratch

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Brad
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Starting from scratch

Unread postby Brad » Mon Sep 24, 2012 2:30 pm

I thought I knew what I was doing bowhunting. I have killed 7 deer (6 bucks) with a bow so I thought I had a clue what I was doing. I have been hunting good private land and trying to go in blind (well going in on good spots in the past so not totally blind), and I am getting on deer, the problem is I have never bumped so many deer in my life. I have been doing no scent control at all, I have been just monitering the wind and setting up accordingly. The problem is I spook more deer than I don't. I set up with the wind right and then it switches, and then it goes back to the other way, then it goes up, then down etc etc. I always followed a pretty good scent control technique and I can count on one hand the deer that blew in the past 10 years, not its almost every deer I see. I am getting frustrated, I am playing the wind better than other years, and the results are terrible. I know the scent control products don't work, so what am I doing wrong?

Also, this sounds like a stupid question but I am 100% serious in asking, how do you always know where the deer are gonna come from? I can see it a public swamp where you know where the bed is etc, but in the timber they can come and go from any direction it seems like. I have been going into a spot and setting up on the down wind side of where I expect deer to come from, but in all honesty I see deer from all directions in most of those spots, so I am always cutting off 25% of the spots with my entry scent trail.

How about during the rut where the deer can come from anywhere?

Here is a mistake I made last night/this morning. I hunted near the top of the ridge about 1/3 of the way from the top. I angled up from the southeast (wind in my favor) and set up. That was fine and I saw a nice buck. So I decided to leave the stand up and come back this morning and try again, well when I left last night I walked straight downhill to the hay field and then out to the truck. This morning I came back in and went back the same way, which I realized was stupid because I left two different scent paths, so I was not surprised when 5 does came through and bolted when they crossed my scent path, so I understand now what went wrong in this case.

Also, how do you deal with parking a vehicle or 4 wheeler and how far away should I be keeping it from where I hunt? If I get too close obviously the noise and sight of its a problem, but the further away it is the longer the scent trail. This particular property is way deep, almost a mile deep in places so thats a lot of scent trail to leave behind.

I feel like I am on the right track and I like having a fresh sit each time, but I am just not understanding part of this and I am getting frustrated. I am going to keep doing like I have been as far as no scent control, I told myself that my goal for this year is to improve and build a foundation off to work with, but it sure is not coming easy.

I look at a map and pic the wind direction and access from a "safe" direction where the wind can't carry scent where I expect them to come from, is there more to it than that?

I have hit rock bottom and it will get better, I have a positive attitude but this has been bugging me, especially the last two nights.


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Crazinamatese
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Crazinamatese » Mon Sep 24, 2012 3:09 pm

I use little scent control myself. Some probably think thats the wrong thing. I do take certain measures though. But, the wind is everything. Like last evening for me. I seen 3 does inside a cornfield. They were going fine until they hit my scent stream and they stopped. They got right directly downwind and they did not go any further. A buck walked underneath my tree almost at the same time and I was about 10 feet off the ground. He didn't even notice me.
The cave you fear hides the treasure you seek!!!
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magicman54494
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby magicman54494 » Mon Sep 24, 2012 3:39 pm

Lots of stuff to cover but i'll make a few comments that might help.
If your getting winded by bunches of deer I would guess your hunting too far out of the "staging area" and too far into the feeding areas. Another problem could be the spot you picked for your set up. Some spots are almost unhuntable because of the swirling winds there. Is this a spot like that? Another problem could be that you can't always go by the wind direction but you have to know what the wind in your spot does with a wind from that direction.... and thermals.

Again you ask how I know where a deer will come from and I say you may be too far from the staging area. The further from staging you get the more the deer branch out and harder to predict their movement. I always set up tight to bedding to avoid getting picked off.

The rut: I like to set up using an obsticle like water to make the deer be down wind when they pass. If hunting a funnel I position myself on the down wind side.

scent trails: Pick your entry/ exit to avoid bumping deer. Again I'm only worried about the deer that are leaving bedding. If other deer hit my scent trail as they are out feeding so be it.
hope some of this helps. Good luck and keep at it.
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Zap
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Zap » Mon Sep 24, 2012 3:57 pm

I hate getting busted....

I think folks need to put alot of thought into set ups and only hunt where you have a good chance of being undetected.

I like the following combination of circumstances.

Wind direction is just for an example, any wind direction can work if the topography is correct.

West wind.
Set up just off a short crop field on the west side over fifteen feet high.
Timber to the west slopes down and crop field is level to the east.

West wind comes up slope and takes my scent up over the field.
Evening hunt of a sunny day....upward thermal magnifies upward scent travel.
As downward thremal begins west wind counters it.

This is a bulletproof set up.
I have a stand set like this.....two P&Y bucks and six doe in the last four seasons from that stand..all on a west wind.

The two bucks came from the west at sunset.
A few of the doe were due east of me and did not know I was there.
Passed a mom and two fawns on Monday eve from that stand...they walked past east of me at twenty on a west wind.

Watch the milkweed seeds.....
"Forged in fire lit long ago. Stand next to me and you will never stand alone".
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BigHills BuckHunter
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby BigHills BuckHunter » Mon Sep 24, 2012 4:05 pm

Zap wrote:I hate getting busted....

I think folks need to put alot of thought into set ups and only hunt where you have a good chance of being undetected.

I like the following combination of circumstances.

Wind direction is just for an example, any wind direction can work if the topography is correct.

West wind.
Set up just off a short crop field on the west side over fifteen feet high.
Timber to the west slopes down and crop field is level to the east.

West wind comes up slope and takes my scent up over the field.
Evening hunt of a sunny day....upward thermal magnifies upward scent travel.
As downward thremal begins west wind counters it.

This is a bulletproof set up.
I have a stand set like this.....two P&Y bucks and six doe in the last four seasons from that stand..all on a west wind.

The two bucks came from the west at sunset.
A few of the doe were due east of me and did not know I was there.
Passed a mom and two fawns on Monday eve from that stand...they walked past east of me at twenty on a west wind.

Watch the milkweed seeds.....


I like the way you think Zap. That West wind strategy the common hunter would think its stupid because your scent is going into the field where the deer are but I have also onberved the thermals carry your scent up and over. Milkweeds are fun. :D
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Zap
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Zap » Mon Sep 24, 2012 4:14 pm

Not just the thermal but also the wind going up the slope before it gets to you and then the field being level after the wind passes you.

Image

Redline is the wind.
X is the stand.
"Forged in fire lit long ago. Stand next to me and you will never stand alone".
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Zap
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Zap » Mon Sep 24, 2012 4:17 pm

Andre talks about these kind of spots in one of Dans dvds.
"Forged in fire lit long ago. Stand next to me and you will never stand alone".
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby jlh42581 » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:25 pm

Do you remember my post on the "perfect storm". I think the guys who are killing big ones consistently have a lot of "perfect storms"
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby PLB » Tue Sep 25, 2012 2:37 am

I agree with magicman... Get away from those feeding areas! Does and fawns meandering around will get you busted. Stay out of the hardwoods. Get in tight to the transition and hunt his staging area. You aren't gonna see many deer with this style of hunting. If you are seeing does and fawns you're not hunting Beast style. Maybe on you're private land you have boundary limitations I don't know? Beast style you are hunting a known buck bed. One deer that's it. Play the wind setup in his staging area or safe zone. If he doesn't come out or a lesser buck does, consider the bridge burnt and onto the next buck bedding area.

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Brad
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Brad » Tue Sep 25, 2012 2:47 am

This spot is Ag land and hardwoods, the only transititon is from field to woods or woods to thicker woods. I should have mentioned that, I think that might have something to do with it.

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Edcyclopedia
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Edcyclopedia » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:36 am

I feel your pain Brad an am in the same process as you...

I doubt very few can/have just plopped into a hunting tree and started wacking big deer!
If they did - either they are gifted in the deer intellect (beyond our comprehension - like some of the elite players on the Beast)
or they found a honey hole (maybe a perfect storm)

In most cases I believe 2-3 years is a good time period to figure a parcel out - basically land/movement experience will help sort your experiences outside of the rut...
KEY WORD OUTSIDE OF RUT!

You only need to worry about your patinece for this year until rut starts - then good thing will likely happen ;)
You'll build experience and confidence during the off season...
Expect the Unexpected when you least Expect it...
Brad
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Brad » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:46 am

Great post Edcyclopedia! Its hard to keep your head high, but I guess time will teach me as it goes on. I guess any day hunting is always a lesson learned, hopefully I can get better as the season goes on.

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Edcyclopedia
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby Edcyclopedia » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:47 am

Question for you...

How many hours have you scouted this parcel and how big is it?
Expect the Unexpected when you least Expect it...
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rack addict
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby rack addict » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:07 am

Personally the way your hunting I think your shooting yourself in the foot by not practicing any scent control. I may be the minority here but I think there's a big difference between smelling like axe bodywash or smelling like dead down wind bodywash. If you had success with scent control why would you change? The only way to access my property's are to walk trails that other deer are going to cross. I've never had an issue with that.

It would probably be different if you had multiple public land buck bed spots picked out and weren't having the issues with the wind. Being private land hunting that way its not going to take long to spoil the area. imo
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headgear
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Re: Starting from scratch

Unread postby headgear » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:23 am

Edcyclopedia wrote:I feel your pain Brad an am in the same process as you...

I doubt very few can/have just plopped into a hunting tree and started wacking big deer!
If they did - either they are gifted in the deer intellect (beyond our comprehension - like some of the elite players on the Beast)
or they found a honey hole (maybe a perfect storm)


I was just going to post something similar, you just don't walk in and start putting down big bucks. Hunting slo close to a bucks bed is likely one of the most difficult and challenging hunts you will find. It takes a lot of scouting and trial and error to get it right.

I was lucky enough to take a nice buck my first season as a beast hunter but it was very much one of those perfect storm deals, if it didn't play out the exact as it did I doubt I get that buck. This is my 3rd year now, I am much more confident but I still have a lot to learn. Might be a decade before I really know what the heck I am doing. Remeber if it was easy everyoen would be doing it, just be happy you recognize what is takes to get on mature deer and are taking steps to get it done. A lot of people can't even grasp these tactics.


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