Alan Jackson sung about it in the 90’s, and many hunter’s live with it still today: summertime blues. It’s that period of time when it heats up outside, it’s months
from any hunting season, and it seems there is nothing to do but wait until fall. Wrong! There are many things hunters can be doing now to help make their hunting season a better one, and make the summer doldrums disappear quicker than a spooked buck. So here are our top 3 things hunters can do right now to kill those summertime blues!
1. PUT ON YOUR EXPLORER HAT: I’m talking Daniel Boone, not Dora here, as this is a great time to find some new hunting spots. Maybe you wanted to do it in the winter but just couldn’t find the time or didn’t think about it. Still, it’s not too late to pull out the maps, boot up google earth, and strap the boots on and start exploring some new areas to hunt. I usually start with a map of some sort and look for my favorite haunts. Pinch points, travel corridors, food sources, funnels..trying to figure out an existing property or find good areas on a new property is a bit of a fun game and can really help you narrow down options and find new areas you’ve overlooked. Once you have pinpointed some good looking spots, grab the boots and hit the woods (just make sure to have a mosquito net and some good tick repellent) and see if those spots you identified on the map look as good in person. Foliage may hide some sign from last year, but with a keen eye you can still see old rubs, trails, and have a good idea of how deer have used the area and how they probably will come fall. It’s always exciting to find that next hot spot and even if you don’t, you’ll at least have a better idea of the area and potentially a new spot to give thought to come fall.
2. BECOME A TOP SLEUTH: I used to love reading The Hardy Boys growing up because they were so good at sneaking around undetected by their wary foes. They were master sleuths, and you need to become one too if you want your success rate to increase! Now that you’ve identified some new areas, making sure all gear is silent before you hit the woods to hangs sticks and stands should be of high importance. The most important area most often overlooked is making your gear and equipment soundproof, enabling you to hang sets, and slip into and out of those new spots undetected. Errant sounds made by your gear can travel hundreds of yards, effectively ruining that spot before you even start hunting it. I take the summer months to get all my stands and climbing sticks dead silent, so I don’t make this mistake and ruin a lot of work I’ve done finding those key hot spots. Covering all contact points with Buck Bumper Thick eliminates that inevitable clang from metal on metal contact when carrying or setting stands. Further, encasing the rest of exposed surfaces on all gear with Buck Bumper ensures I’ll be completely silent when it matters most. It’s quick and easy to do, and eliminates noisy mistakes that can kill a hunt and hunting season (Check it out HERE!). Now is the best time to do it, and take stealth to a new level by becoming a master sleuth!
3. STRAP ON YOUR CLIMBING BELT: Since you’ve identified new spots and soundproofed your gear, why not climb some trees and get a stand in there well before season? If state regulations allow, this is a prime time to do just that and beat the crowds to the woods. If you do make a few mistakes or bump some deer, they will have adequate time to readjust and hopefully not totally move from the area. Remember though, the patterns deer are on now are NOT ones they will be on come early fall (unless your state opens season in summer), so you’re going to want to hang stands based on fall sign you discovered during your summer scouting. It may not be fresh sign, but if deer continue to do what they’ve done, these can materialize into great spots. If you need to trim shooting lanes, remember when leaves fall this will leave you more exposed, so don’t over-trim.
Doing these 3 simple things can really get you energized and in the fall hunting mood - a great way for beating those summer blues!
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