Ever find a place that would make a great hunting location except that deer always bust you there? There’s a place like that on my farm. It’s a small staging area I established in the back of a large food plot.
Based on experience, I knew deer typically entered the original plot through some thick cedars on the northwest corner. I removed those cedars and created a staging area. Deer certainly use that spot. My trail camera takes videos of deer there almost daily (see below).
However, due to the slope, relation to the rest of the mountain, early afternoon shade there versus full sun the main plot, etc., the air currents seem to be constantly swirling there. Except during days when a strong wind is blowing, it’s a tough spot hunt without alerting deer. I knew my family and friends would enjoy seeing and tagging deer in the staging area, so I needed alternative plan.
While working the area, scouting, etc., I noticed I could be about 200 yards away in the larger plot and not alert deer while they were in the staging area. Once I learned that the air currents were totally different just 200 yards away, the solution was easy.
I moved a Redneck Blind about 200 yards away from the staging area. Now my family, friends and I can hunt the staging area during rifle season without alerting deer.
The blind is placed so we can approach, hunt and exit by walking in below the ridge, quietly enter the bind, then exit again below the ridge without alerting deer.
During the early stages of my hunting career, my scouting focused almost exclusively on finding sign. Through years of experience, I’ve realized the importance of finding sign in areas where I can approach, hunt and exit without alerting deer.
These days, there’s usually plenty of venison in my freezer. Try the technique of ensuring you can approach, hunt and exit without alerting deer, and you’ll likely fill more tags, too.
Editor’s note: Be sure to check out Dr. Grant Woods and his popular on-demand web series that shares current information about deer hunting and deer management. The free videos focus on what the GrowingDeer team of experienced hunters and deer managers are doing in the field week to week, including action-packed hunts, proven hunting strategies, habitat management, food plots, trail camera techniques and the gear it takes to get it all done.
Image by Dr. Grant Woods