I knew you were willing to put in the work. You just hit on an idea from Mr. Ferris's experience and figured why not hunting. I really believe hunting is a much more complicated task than learning the tango. I bet the keys to successful tango dancing is repetition. Keep repeating the basic steps until you get them to come naturally. Then add the intermediate steps until those are natural. And so on with the advanced. I can see how someone determined to do this, could learn it in 6 months.
When it comes to hunting. How can you get enough repetition in just 6 months. Especially mature whitetail buck hunting. You need to scout and hope the area has the age of bucks you want present. You have to plan an attack, setting up entrance and exits to and from stands. All based on wind/thermals and weather conditions. Throw in what food source is being used or doe group is ready to come in heat. As added variables to the bucks actual location. At best you get 1/3 of a year to actually hunt. 1/3 of a year to test your findings and theories on how the deer use the habitat they live in.
Now if you look up my posts you'd find I'm far from an expert. Right now I'm held back physically from doing enough scouting to even try tackling a 4.5 YO or bust season. Or get out in enough prime locations during the season. But I've read most everything on here at least twice. Watched the DVD's countless times. Listened to everyone's failures and successes. The best , already highly experienced and some what successful hunters on here all took at least 3 years to get it "altogether". And they're the first to say "I don't know enough yet."
I go back to my 1 1/2 year theory. JoeRE, Stanley and Bucky off of the top of my head. Use trail cams placed in strategic spots. To gather intel through the fall hunting season. They just leave them there to collect data. They don't check them. They don't hunt near them. They then use this data to hunt these bucks the next year. As long as the bucks are still alive.
So if you started record book research in July. Headed to the best areas in August. Glassed from a vehicle or observation stands to locate target bucks. Placed cams in food sources or at licking branches. Where legal over mineral licks or bait. To further collect inventories. Shine where legal. Finding as many targets as possible. You never have enough. Make note of as many of the different bucks track sizes, shapes or unique features. Then cyber scout for likely bedding areas.
Now start scouting in September. Looking for beds and places to set up cams. Forego any actual hunting that season. But spot scout and observe from afar in multiple "hot" areas. Adjusting cams as need be. But never over pressuring the area. Even check possible bedding areas since your not hunting. Take note of how close or far you got from the bed/beds when a buck spooks and heads out. Note wind direction and weather conditions. Where the nearest food source is. Doe bedding, etc.
Refine finding bed/bedding locations once season is done. Also look for more bedding in new areas. So you can keep the ball rolling for the next year. Always make note of wind direction for each bed. Remember wind over back. Usually a sight advantage downwind. Don't ignore doe bedding. Multiple beds near each other facing multiple directions. Often in thicker areas with less of a sight advantage.
Keeping detailed notes as you go. Start analyzing trail cam photos from the fall. During the winter for daylight movement in relation to time of year. Using the weather history for those daylight pics. Making note of wind directions and weather fronts/temp changes. Also food sources and doe locations during pre rut and rut.
Devise plans of attack for each bed/bedding area always with regard to wind. Start setting up entry and exits to kill trees/spots. Set up kill spots, Stanley and JoeRE make a high percentage of their kills from the ground. So don't ignore treeless areas. Doing this during spring and early summer. In the same time frame scouting the new promising areas found this 2nd summer.
Confirm bucks are still alive and find new areas with targets through the summer same as at the start in July/August of last year. Through observation. cams and shining.
During all of this time from the very beginning. Practice with your equipment. Fine tuning everything. Make sure you have great broadhead flight with a high FOC arrow combo. Shoot in highly competitive leagues and 3-d shoots. To try and duplicate the "nerve" factor of the high mental pressure. Buck fever can cause.
Practice with your sticks and stands/treesling of choice. Safety harness too. Silence any noise makers on these. Practice moving through the woods/marsh/swamp with this equipment. Staying as quiet as possible.
Come Sept look for any buck staying on summer patterns. Or locate oaks dropping acorns. Pick bedding that relates to these. Hopefully your in a state that season open around the middle of the month. If you are, hunt the afore mentioned beds on the proper winds. If you had early success. Congrats you beat my system and did it in 1 year and 2 months.
If not continue going through your bedding areas. Taking in regards the wind direction and temp changes/fronts. Hunting on the freshest sign or on beds near shined bucks where legal. Always attempting to hunt on the freshest sign. Scout more than you hunt!!! Remember to place cameras in areas with up and comer bucks for next season. licking branches/scrapes near bedding are best.
Late October start hunting rut areas. Or movement in relation to doe bedding. This is when last seasons camera intel can help the most. Hunt spots on 10 degree or cooler, hopefully cooler, days. Within a few days either side of the date you had daylight pics or sightings from the year before. Here's where you'll have high odds of making a kill. If you do congrats, you did it in 1 year and 3 months.
If not continue this type of hunting through the rut. Either hunting over fresh sign or near to days with daylight sightings on/right after cold fronts. Keeping in mind wind direction at all times. Scouting for hot sign when needed. Never "pushing" a spot if the wind isn't just right.
If you still don't connect during the rut. Start finding the winter food sources. Hopefully you found some during last seasons late season. These will be best on bitter cold days with deep snow. At least in the northern climes. Dress for success. That is dress in a layering system designed for these extra cold temps. Wear solid whites on top if staying on the ground. Despite the cold this is one of the easiest times to kill a mature buck. If you do congrats. You did it in 1 1/2 years. Stashes "fast track" to a 4.5 YO buck.
How'd I do ETNyates15. And especially any of you "real" experienced mature buck killers. How much did I miss.
Actually this turned into a good exercise for myself. Gonna bookmark this and go back and reread this to keep on track. Course for me for now all of this will be on a smaller scale with a 2.5 YO. Making me extremely happy!!!!
Wow topic stayed hot while I typed forever!!!