Big Deer Hunting Preparation

The season may just be over or just about to be over but start preparing now if you want to increase your odds next season hunting big deer. There are many different things to help you do this and each hunter will have different things that will help him or her. I would like to share a few of things that have helped me over the years. The thing is make you a plan and start executing that plan now.big deer

One of the biggest factors I believe is, there have to be trophy bucks where you hunt to be able to kill trophy bucks. The more brutes you have in the area the better your chances are. It doesn’t matter if you are on private or public land with a little homework, hard work and preparation you can increase your odds of taking taking big deer.

Grow Big Deer

I have hunted public and private land over the years and preparation is the key on both. Whitetail habitat and quality deer management are key factors that make a huge difference key factors that make a huge difference deer hunting. If you hunt public land make sure it has good whitetail habitat and if you hunt private land practice quality management. The Quality Deer Management Association is a great resource to help you learn to manage your property and herd.

Illinois big deer

I took this big deer in Illinois.

If you plan on hunting public land do your homework and hunt the places that have high success rate of hunters taking trophy bucks. Years ago I put in for a very tough draw hunt in Georgia and although it took me three years to get drawn I finally got it done and killed a nice nine pointer. It was a three day, seventy five hunter quota and I was the only hunter to kill a buck and it was all because I did my homework and was determined. I increased my odds by being where there were a good number of trophy bucks and I prepared.

Here is a list of some things that will help you prepare for next season.

  • Locate Prime Whitetail Properties: Locate properties known to have good whitetail habitat and get access to hunt them.
  • Scouting: Scouting is a great way to help you increase your odds and the inter-net can help you find whitetail hot spots before ever stepping foot on a certain piece of property. You can locate pinch points, saddles, travel corridors, water, elevation changes etc.. Google Earth is a great way to scout properties and help you figure out where to start your search once you arrive to do you scouting on foot and can save you a ton of time and walking. Once I do my inter-net inter-net scouting and first foot scout a piece of new property I like to walk the complete boundary and look for trails entering or leaving the property and try to figure out where those trails are leading to and from and why. Don’t over scout, keep human activity to a minimum, the less they have to deal with you the safer they feel and the better your chances are of seeing a monster.
  • Equipment Checklist: Having good equipment is a must and making an making an equipment checklist will help you prioritize what equipment you need to upgrade or purchase. By doing this early you can get the things you need throughout the year and not have to purchase it all right before the season and it won’t take a chunk out of your wallet at one time.
  • Archery Practice: You need to practice, practice, and practice some more. Simulate hunting conditions when practicing such as shooting from elevated spots, wear the clothing you will be wearing in the field, shoot at life size targets and practice shooting in all weather conditions etc…
  • Quality Deer Management: Learn about and implement strong quality deer management practices where you hunt. Plant food plots, implement supplemental feeding programs, manage the herd with antler restrictions and manage buck to doe ratio etc…
  • Trail Cameras: Use trail cameras to help you survey your bucks and to help you decide the best locations to place stands.
  • Hunting Tips And Techniques: Learn as much as you can about whitetails behaviors and feeding habits.  Learn tips and techniques from the pros  by attending seminars at hunting shows to help you in the field.  Learn whitetail vocalizations and what they are saying when they make those sounds and learn how and when to make those sounds.
  • Get Fit: The better shape you are in the better hunter you will be.
  • Deer Stand Preparation And Concealment: Get your stands put out early and leave the area alone. Make sure you stands give you plenty of cover when you are in them.

These are just a few things to help you get ready, the season will be here before you know it. If you are like me you are already wishing opening day was here. By starting to prepare early you can give your self a much better chance at getting that buck of a lifetime when next season rolls around. When you get that buck of a lifetime all that hard work and preparation will be worth it… I promise!

I wanted to share a hunt I filmed during the 2011 season in Kansas, preparation helped us to get a shot at this once in a lifetime buck.

 

 

First Buck Taylor County

Payton's deer

Payton Everett and his father Rick proudly pose with Payton’s big deer his first buck.

My cousin Rick’s son Payton recently harvested his first buck. He sent me the story to share it here. Congratulations Payton on a fine buck deer hunting in Georgia.

Payton’s First Buck

It was another hunting trip down in Taylor County Georgia. Me and my dad were following his hunting buddy and long time friend down to his deer camp. We left on Friday afternoon as soon as my dad got home from work. It was a two and a half hour trip down to Taylor County. We got to camp at about 10:00 p.m. We knew as soon as we stepped out of the truck that it was going to be a cold weekend. We found something to eat and then jumped in the bed.

       I woke up at 5:30 a.m. and bundled up it was about 16 degrees. We ate breakfast and headed for the woods. My dad’s friend dropped us off at the double ladder stand we were going to hunt and headed to his stand down the road. That morning an 8 point walked by my dad’s friend’s stand. It started off in the opposite direction of our stand so he grunted at it to get it to come our way. I guess he thought that the big boy was after him so he took off towards our stand. We heard him coming and spotted him bolting our way. I threw up my 7mm-08 Remington Model 700 and tried to find him in the cross hairs. It was so thick I couldn’t see anything so I reluctantly clicked my safety back on and watched him walk off. We headed back to camp to eat and get ready for the evening hunt.

       After we ate and opened up some more hand warmers we headed back out. I hunted the same stand that I had seen that 8 point that morning and my dad hunted another double ladder stand in some thick pines on the other side of the road. I went all evening without seeing anything. My dad saw a doe and told me that that was the spot he wanted us to hunt the next morning. I was beginning to wonder if I was ever going to get a shot at a deer. We grilled out steaks that night and headed to bed.

       I woke up the next morning and decided that today was the day. I bundled up and my dad and I walked to the stand where he had seen the doe the evening before. After a long walk through the thick pines we got set up in the stand and I knew that this was the place where I was going to kill my first deer. I hunted hard all morning and about 7:43 my dad told me to get ready that here comes a deer. I spotted the movement and found him in my cross hairs. My dad couldn’t see him but I told him that I had him in my cross hairs. I took my safety off and shot. He tucked and ran. My dad asked me if I hit him and I told him that I made a good shot. My dad’s friend called on the radio and asked if that was me that shot and we told him that I had shot a buck. He told us to hunt for about thirty more minutes and let him see if he could kill one.

first buck

Payton Everett harvested this big deer.

       I was so anxious by the time he got to us. We climbed down and went to where I shot him to look for blood. We looked for fifteen minutes and couldn’t find a drop of blood.  All we found was some cut hair and some kicked up pine straw. I knew I made a good shot but I was beginning to second guess myself. My dad’s friend told me and my dad to check some thick stuff and he went back to where we found some hair. He told us that he might have headed for a gully that was close by. He called on the radio and told us that he had found him. The deer headed for the gully just like he thought he would. My deer had run 80 yards. I was so excited when I found out that he was down. We walked to where he was and I couldn’t believe it I had shot an 8 pointer. I had made a good shot right behind the shoulder he was quartering on us so it exited a little far back on the other side. We back tracked him and he didn’t start bleeding until right before where we found him. I was so happy I had finally killed my first deer.

Hunt Details

Payton Everett

My first deer

8 point

11/23/08 7:43 a.m.

Taylor County, Georgia

Remington 7mm-08