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Stand and Field Prep
Stand and Field Prep

Off Season Deer Hunting Tips:

If legal in your region, use minerals and supplements that will not only enhance your herd’s growth, but will also give you an idea what your deer numbers are in that area. It also allows you to help condition the deer to certain stand sites and locations. It’s a great idea to run trail cameras in the off season and compare the number of off-season pictures to hunting and peak season pictures. This will help to gauge what the deer are doing, movement, etc. during different times of the year. 

Take the time to check your equipment (rifles, bows, cameras, stands, etc.) prior to season, instead of waiting until the last minute. Make a checklist of items that you use each season (on a daily or consistent basis) and be sure clean, inspect, shoot and store each item properly. Try to take a week or weekend and properly itemize your hunting gear after season. You’re only going to be as good as your equipment functions, so be sure to take the time to sight in your gun/bow, check straps on stands, clean your garments/apparel, etc.

Deer Hunting Land Management:

After each hunting season, try to begin preparing for the next season then. Some of the best months for properly caring for your land, leases, etc. is January-March/April. It’s a great time to clear shooting lanes, fence rows, bush-hog, cut timber, etc. This time of year, allows for the most visible sight as nothing has begun to bloom and turn green and makes for easier removal and clean-up. There’s nothing worse than fighting heat, briars, bugs (ticks, bees, etc.) while trying to stand and land prep in the dog days of summer. Take advantage of the cooler weather and lack of foliage.

Early Season Stand Prep

It’s that time of year again! Spring has arrived, and summer is just around the corner. That means deer season is drawing closer and the preparation phase is about to begin. With so many ideas and thoughts running through your mind about the upcoming season it’s hard to really decipher through them all or strategize how to implement them. One of the most important pieces of the puzzle is when and where to hang tree-stands each year.

Hanging tree-stands can be cumbersome and downright irritating at times. Fighting the dog days of summer, heat, bugs (ticks, bees, etc.), foliage, briars and you name it. Try taking advantage of cooler weather in the spring, before the heat and humidity are in full swing. This also allows you to beat some of the pesky bugs and overall sweating. It also gives you an upper hand as to how the foliage will look in the fall as opposed to mid-summer. We all know as the leaves begin to shed each fall our stand vision and sight becomes much different. The earlier you hang your stands the less growth and green you’ll have to deal with.

Another great tip for summer stand prep is to be sure to hang your tree-stands if possible in the afternoons as that’s most likely when you’ll be hunting. This will allow you to see and feel exactly where the sun hits in your general hunting area on those hot early season afternoons. Try to position your stands if possible (depending on shot opportunity, trails, etc.) on the opposite side of the tree that the sun is facing. The less heat and sun you must endure the less you’ll sweat. There’s nothing worse than sitting in a tree-stand when it’s upper 80-90 degrees, facing the sun and trying to enjoy an afternoon hunt. By positioning your stand away from the sun, your hunt will be much more enjoyable and maybe even more successful.

Larger trees are always a better choice as well. They help provide cover from movement, sun, wind, etc. Try to find a tree that has enough cover but is also convenient to hanging your stand. The less cutting, trimming and work needed, the less sweat equity will be needed. I good tip is to try to find a tree as wide as yourself or one you can stand behind without being seen from the opposite side. This will allow you to lean back, sit comfortably and still be covered.

Happy Hunting and Be Safe!


Matt Bullins  

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