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Make a Buck Come to You Day 1: Block Trails and Build Invisible Trails for Opportunities to Take Deer

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Editor’s Note: “Many times to take a nice-sized buck, you have to force him to come to you,” Larry Norton of Butler, Alabama, a longtime deer hunter and guide, says. “By blocking trails you don’t want the deer to use, you can remove the deer’s options of where he can walk. He’ll have to come to you.”


For several consecutive mornings, Norton had seen a nice-sized buck crossing a backwoods logging road. He found three different trails the buck apparently had used. However, every morning that Norton set-up to bag the buck, the deer took a different trail, each time staying out of bow range. Finally Norton parked his truck on the side of the road where the buck easily could see it if he came down either of the two trails. Then he put his tree stand 20 yards from the third trail. That morning when the buck walked under Norton’s stand, Norton arrowed the heavy 8 point.


Build Invisible Odor Trails:


You also can cause bucks to move toward you by hanging a piece of clothing on a trail. If three trails lead into a food tree you want to hunt, place a handkerchief or a sock 50-yards downwind of the food tree hanging over the trails you don’t want the deer to take. The deer will see and smell the clothing and funnel off the marked trails onto the remaining trail that leads to you.


“I hunt some public land in Florida where I knew a big deer had bedded-down in thick cover on one end of a ridge surrounded by a swamp,” Ronnie Groom of Panama City, Florida, my friend and avid deer hunter who often teaches bowhunting, told me. “To trick the buck, I walked to the bedding area on top of the ridge and retraced my trail back to my stand. Then I walked from my stand to the water, remaining on the shore. When I headed back to the bedding region, I left a scent trail on either side of the bedding site, which backed-up to the water. This gave the buck a water barrier on the back side of his bedding area and two scent lines of human odor – one on the ridge and one against the water – that funneled him to my tree stand. Just before dark, I saw the buck emerge from the cover, moving in the middle of the funnel I’d made. He walked straight to me. If I hadn’t put-down those scent trails, the buck could have escaped over the ridge or waded out through the swamp. But because I blocked him with human odor, I forced him to come to me.”


To learn more about hunting deer, check out John E. Phillips’ book, available in Kindle, print versions and Audible, “Whitetail Deer and the Hunters Who Take Big Bucks,” (http://amzn.to/2bYwYOK). You may have to copy and paste this link into your browser. (When you click on this book, notice on the left where Amazon says you can read 10% of this book for free).


John E. Phillips has published several more books this fall and winter of 2020 you’ll enjoy.


1) “How to Bass Fish Like a Pro, Volume II” – available in Kindle and print at https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08LBD7M4G/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_taft_p5_i2

In “How to Bass Fish Like a Pro, Volume II,” you’ll learn tips and tactics from 21+ Bassmaster Classic winners, two Major League Fishing champions and 20+ Bassmaster Anglers of the Year about some of the dramatic changes in bass fishing.


2) “PhD Gobblers: How to Hunt the Smartest Turkeys in the World, Revised Edition” – available in Kindle, Print and Audible at https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B083V83RLG/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_taft_p4_i8

Turkeys that have earned their PhDs in the turkey-hunting wars know more about hunter-dodging than most hunters know about turkey hunting. These turkeys have built such a huge database on humans they’ve earned their PhDs.


3) “PhD Whitetails” – available in Kindle and Print and soon to be in Audible at https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1979793387/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_taft_p7_i3

To become a “PhD Whitetail,” a whitetail deer has to have gone to school on hunters. He knows when to move, where to move, and how to move to avoid detection. The professional hunters in this book have spent their lifetimes finding these bucks with doctorates.


4) “The Bowfishing Bible” – available in Kindle, Print and Audible at


This book doesn’t promise salvation or a ticket to heaven, but it does give you much of the information you need to be a happy, successful, productive and winning bowfisherman.


5) “The Briar Patch Philosopher” – available in Kindle, Print and Audible at https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MX0ZODI/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_taft_p5_i4

Some of the reviews for this book include statements like, “I find myself looking through these wonderful thoughts about life, courage, love, children and God. This collection of sayings are very useful in helping me control my emotions. Some of my favorites include:
“Feelings change, Truth remains.”
“Embrace fear, because it’s an excellent motivator.”
“Life is a race. The beginning, we can’t control, and the end can’t be determined. But how well we run in the middle is all that counts. ”

Tomorrow: Make a Brush Funnel to Take Deer

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