Tips That Will Improve Your Hunting Experience
Without further adieu, here are a few tips and tricks that I have picked up on over the years that have been a game-changer for me. Most are little things that make a huge difference.
Use shooting sticks to steady binoculars
I learned this tip while elk hunting out West. We all know that it is easier see through binoculars when hands are steady, but for some reason it never occurred to me that my shooting sticks could be used not only for a gun, but also for binoculars. After my guide shared this tip with me, I put it to the test. I noticed the difference immediately and went from spotting the occasional elk to being able to scan the area quickly and efficiently. This technique has allowed me to spot animals quicker and see them more clearly.
Use a turkey vest seat cushion during deer season
On our property we use a lot of ladder stands, many of which no longer have a cushion to sit on. There were many times I would show up at my stand in the dead of winter just to realize I didn’t bring a piece of cardboard or something to sit on, forcing me to sit on metal and freeze my butt off! Luckily after running into that problem a few times, I came up with a solution. I decided to put my turkey cushion to work during deer season. Now days I always keep my cushion strapped to my backpack during deer season so I never have to sit on a frozen, uncomfortable metal seat for hours.
Thumbnail reflectors on trees
When it is dark outside getting lost or turned around in the woods is easy to do, especially if you are hunting a new stand or a new property. How many times have you walked into the woods to find a stand in the dark, just to make a phone call to find out where the stand is supposed to be? For me this has happened on multiple occasions. My recommendation is to use thumbnail reflectors on the trees. They make finding your stand in the dark very easy as long as you bring along a flashlight.
When planning to put on a stalk, it is easy to get confused and lose track of the location you are trying to get to. The easiest way to stay on track is to pick out a distinctive object in the skyline while you are glassing the animal. The object needs to be something that you will be able to recognize when approaching it from a different angle.
Take note of the spot
When adrenaline is pumping through your body and you make a shot on an animal it is easy to get caught up in the moment and only focus on the animal. I am guilty of doing this. However, it is critical to make a mental note of not only what the animal is doing but also of where the animal stood when you took your shot. Knowing this information will help you to find the exact location quickly and pick up on a blood trail.
Store gear in a tote
After hunting season is over I organize my gear and store all of my necessities together in one plastic tote. I keep separate totes for each hunting season as my gear and apparel varies depending on the season and time of year. This makes it easy for me to find all the key pieces of equipment when the next hunting season rolls around. Also, since I am often forgetful, I like to create a checklist as I pack away my camouflage, knife, safety harness, shooting sticks, etc. That way when I open the tote I know exactly what is in there without having to rummage around or pull everything out.
These are just a few tips and tricks that have helped to improve my hunting experiences over the years. I know I have found them to be super useful – I hope you do as well.
Nikki Boxler is a small town girl whose love for hunting, fishing, food, and fitness began at a young age on her family farm.