Fishermen are known for their tall tales but those who really love whitetail hunting are equally as liberal with exaggeration and hyperbole.
We are also prone to thinking we have it all figured out when in fact the deer have us pegged much better than we understand them.
Here are some tips on keeping thing in perspective when deer hunting and realize each hunt is an opportunity and few of us will ever shoot the type of deer you see on hunting television programs unless we can afford to go to the mostly high-fenced ranches where such deer dwell in large numbers.
Let’s take advantage of good opportunities presented to us.
#Bird in the Hand: If you have an opportunity to shoot a decent buck, take it. Don’t wait around for the mythical 40-point buck of your dreams when whitetail hunting because chances are it will not come out. East Texas hunters would be wise to take the first legal buck that steps out. Your best shot at getting a buck is on opening weekend or during the rut (it is sweet if they coincide) so take the opportunity that comes your way
I’ll never forget passing on a huge, older six-point buck on our family’s old McCullough County lease. It was during bow season and I had it eating only 10 yards away for 15 minutes. I knew there was a big eight-pointer around so I waited.
Well, the bigger buck came out, stuck his head out of the bushes, looked on the trail right past me and bolted.
A bobcat was coming down the trail and spooked it.
Don’t let a bobcat spook a nice buck away from you when whitetail hunting. Take the safe, ethical shot and enjoy some fresh backstrap this weekend.
#Timing:You can’t kill a deer if you’re not in the woods. If you get to your blind early and let things settle before they start moving and then stay until dark your odds of scoring go up astronomically.
Several studies show that most large bucks that haven’t turned nocturnal move between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. when hunters are back at camp. Don’t be at camp. Be in the woods if at all possible.
You might even want to consider setting a timer on your feeder (if you have one) to go off about noon. I can pretty much guarantee you no one else in the area will and it could give you a needed edge.
#Don’t Stink: If a deer sees you it might leave. If it hears you, it might bolt away and come back. If it smells you, it is over. The nose of the whitetail is incredibly sensitive and is their first line of defense.
Position yourself downwind of where you think the deer will come and use scent eliminators. A small dose of a masking scent does not hurt either.
#Moments: There are few things more peaceful than being in the woods-whitetail hunting or not. After all that is what it was like in the beginning. There were no asphalt roads, cities and technological gadgets. It was just the creation and its incredible majesty.
I spend as much time praising God in the blind as I do viewing the surrounding because I am in awe of the things I see. I am so grateful for the opportunity to see things that stir my imagination.
Never let the drive to shoot a big buck deter you from enjoying the sight of a red-tailed hawk swooping down to take a rabbit or a beautiful red cardinal sitting on a limb outside your stand.
If you will only be pleased by pulling the trigger then your happiness will be fleeting. If however you chose to take in your surroundings and be thankful for the little things in the woods you will have a sense of joy that lasts far beyond the day’s hunt
Now if that big buck does come out, your day will be all the better.
Chester Moore, Jr.