John’s Note: To be a more-consistent hunter, you must know everything you can about the animals you hunt, and the other people who are trying to take those same deer. However, during the short span of time that deer season encompasses when the hunter can gather this information, his interest generally is distracted by his desire to take a buck. To gain this knowledge, the very best time of the year to scout is immediately after the season is over. The only disadvantage you’ll have is you won’t be able to harvest the animal after you’ve gained the knowledge required to find him. But what you’ve learned in the post-season will become extremely valuable in all the seasons to come. In my opinion, the single-most-important ingredient to a deer hunter’s continued success is this wealth of knowledge he amasses about the sport in which he participates. One of the best ways to gain that knowledge is by scouting after the season for deer.
Once deer season ends, the woods are quiet. Gone are the hunters, their human scent and the noise of their weapons. Most of them are home by the fire watching TV, working in their basement or preparing for spring turkey season. In their absence, the deer once again have returned from their retreats of hunting season and resumed their normal feeding and movement patterns.
However, moving quietly and slowly among the trees, we may observe a tall figure dressed in camouflage. By looking closer, we determine that one lone hunter remains in the forest after the season. Through our binoculars, we study this silent stalker we assume to be a poacher at first. But through close observation, we see the man carries no weapons. Around his neck hangs a pair of rattling antlers and a lanyard that holds a grunt call. At his waist is a fanny pack, bulging with all types of gear. On the soles of his shoes is a string that’s apparently attached to some type of deer scent container. What’s this hunter doing in the woods, stalking deer with no weapon after the season? What does he hope to gain? Does he know something we don’t?
As the man moves closer, I can see his camo-painted face under the bill of his cap. His eagle-like eyes scan the forest floor for the slightest movement. When he spots a white flash in the distance that may be the inside white of a deer’s ear or the white swishing of a deer’s tail, he quickly withdraws a small pair of compact binoculars from his shirt pocket and investigates what he’s just seen. As I watch, I soon realize this man probably consistently has taken more trophy deer than any other outdoorsman in our area. To be more successful hunting deer, you must scout after the season.
You’ll learn more deer-hunting information and tips from hunters in John E. Phillips’ Kindle, CreateSpace and Audible books by going to http://johninthewild.com/books/#deer to purchase and download to your Kindle, and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer. You also can go to Nook Books at www.barnesandnoble.com to buy. Too, you can download free books by going to http://johninthewild.com/free-books.