All posts by Randy Hynes

Christ follower, husband, father and founder of 365 Whitetail. Randy is the former Online Editorial Director for Petersen's Bowhunting, Petersen's Hunting, North American Whitetailand Bowhunter Magazine. His passions include fly fishing, photography and exploring wild places.
Missing a deer

Can’t Let A Miss Get In Your Head

“Dad, I missed!”
I swallowed hard and nodded.
“Shhhh… it might come back, it can’t smell us and just walked away. Be patient, we might get lucky.”
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The cold snow pelting my face wasn’t the only thing I was feeling at that moment. This was the second deer my son had missed this season. This was unfortunate on several levels. My stomach was in knots.
“What did I do wrong?”
“Dad, how much are Elite bows?”
Yes, I wanted him to be quiet but I had to think about what he needed me to say at this crucial moment.

A Traditional Challenge

Traditional archery has to be one of the most challenging forms of bowhunting. My son knows this. I’ve watched him practice for hours every day. At 15-yards he can easily put three arrows in an apple sized target. I have no doubt about his proficiency.
Both misses have been identical. The shot windage is perfect, but in both cases he has shot a couple inches over the back of the deer. Whether it’s the angle of the shot when shooting from a treestand or his adrenaline is getting the best of him, one thing was for sure, this was not an issue of “What did I do wrong,” this is an issue of him making a course correction and continuing to focus on what he knows to do right.
After packing up our gear, we walked in the darkness together. Neither one of us said anything. As we neared the truck I turned to my son and placed my hand on his shoulder.
“Can you consistently hit the target at 20-yards?”
“But Dad, I missed!”
“Can you consistently hit the target at 20-yards?”
“Yes, but…”
“Are you a good shot?”
“Are you a good shot?”
“Well, I…”
“Son, in life you have to keep on believing and live on what you know to be the truth! Learn from your mistakes and move on. You can’t let a miss get in your head and keep you from being your absolute best. At one time or another everyone misses. You have to keep your focus and believe next time will be the moment. Understand?”
I watched the silhouette of his head move up and down, affirming he understood.

Keep Believing

My number one goal this year was to help my son harvest a deer with his recurve. The last thing I want is for him to get so discouraged he quits altogether. The challenge of the recurve is his choice and it’s my job to do whatever I can to keep him encouraged as he pursues the goal.
As a father, I recognize these moments go deeper than hunting or killing an animal. They are life lessons we take with us. My son needs to learn how to press on in spite of life’s misses. Berating him would have only led to frustration and frustration has never helped anyone solve a single problem.
It’s very likely there are some adults who missed this season. I‘d like to say the same words to you that I said to my son, “…in life you have to keep on believing and live on what you know to be the truth!! Learn from your mistakes and move on. You can’t let a miss get in your head and keep you from being your absolute best. At one time or another everyone misses. You have to keep your focus and believe next time will be the moment. Understand?”
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. – Galatians 6:9

bowhunting skinny three

Murphy’s Law And A Buck Named ‘Skinny’

Ole’ Murph and I have never got along. As much as I enjoy visiting with people, Murph’s not one of them. I genuinely try to befriend everyone, but Murph doesn’t quite make the ‘everyone’ list. Ole’ Murph has made my life downright miserable one too many times, therefore I ignore him like the plague.
But Murph hasn’t caught on.
He still shows up at the most inopportune times. And he always wants to slow me down, stall me, irritate me, or break something of mine when I need it most. Murphy is an expert at being a pain in the gluteus maximus. In case you haven’t caught on, being an absolute nuisance is the only thing Murph is good at.
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I have no idea where Murph came from. All I know is he’s been around for a long time. My grandfather is in his mid nineties and he had a few run-in’s with ole’ Murph over seventy years ago.
Unfortunately, I ran into Murph again this year. He got as close as I’ve ever seen him—15-yards to be exact. And today I despise him more than ever. If he wasn’t so good at appearing and disappearing, I would have made sure he got a good education on just how unwanted he is.
Over a week ago I had an encounter with a buck we nicknamed ‘Skinny.’ This buck earned the name from being tall but lacking mass. I had decided early on to put Skinny on the hit list. Only because if I didn’t the shotgun hunters would and I don’t have control over the other guys who hunt this same property. So when Skinny showed up and bedded only 20-yards away, I knew we were in for a good day.
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bowhunting skinny four
But then my archenemy showed up. I couldn’t believe it. That old codger hiked three quarters of a mile just to pester me. First, Murphy convinced Skinny to lay down behind three trees. What a nemesis! If Skinny had walked just a couple yards in either direction I would have had a shot.
But that’s not all.
For over 40-minutes I had to watch Skinny’s shadow. Every time his antlers moved it looked like 300-inches of bone stretching over that bed of leaves. And while Murph kept tantalizing me, (he can drive you nuts) I tried to remain positive knowing Skinny would certainly get up and move to where he could scent check for does—but he didn’t.
Ole’ Murph had slipped in behind those three trees and convinced Skinny to go the opposite direction when he left the bed. Furthermore, Murph got in that buck’s head and told him to circle behind my stand instead of going the direction I had expected him to go.
bowhunting skinny
By the time I could discreetly turn around, I had one small hole to shoot through. And you guessed it, Murph stood there thumbing his nose at me as two small limbs rested right over Skinny’s vitals.
The only thing I have up on ole’ Murph is eyesight. Must be due to his age, but he didn’t notice my trail camera was right in front of where Skinny bedded. So I have all the proof I need that ole’ Murph is the culprit.
So here’s my offer. If you’re lacking excitement or disappointment in your hunting season, invite ole’ Murph to hang out with you for a while. I’m sure he would be happy to spend time with a new ‘friend.’

rattling big bucks

Rattled And Rewarded

“Dad, I want to move my stand. I’m not seeing any deer.” Those words reflected a mixture of teenage enthusiasm and boyish impatience. As a father, my response was simple. “Son, every main ridge on this farm leads to your stand. Just be patient, you will see deer.”
But as anyone who’s raised teenage boys knows, repeating oneself is a necessity. So there have been a multitude of conversations that revolved around moving my son’s stand and if he relocated, would he have a better chance at killing a buck?
These debates usually ended with me saying what I had already said a dozen times or more. “Be patient. It’s the rut and the bucks will be cruising those ridges in an attempt to find a receptive doe.”
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On November 8th, the wind direction prevented us from hunting in the morning. Anxiously waiting for the wind to switch from it’s southerly direction to a more westerly one, I quietly wondered if this day would end in a bust. A bright moon had illuminated the previous evening and the deer had no doubt been very active throughout the night. “Would we even see any deer at all,” was the nagging question as I walked to my stand.
Around 2:00 in the afternoon, almost at the exact time the moon was underfoot, I saw a button buck feeding in the nearby corn. Not long after I heard deer running and saw a flicker of tail. The deer were moving. This was a sign of good things to come.
Meanwhile an impatient teenager was sending his father regular inquiries and asking if I was seeing deer or not. “C anything,” seemed to appear every five minutes on my phone.
Knowing the timing was right and all things were in his favor, I texted my son and told him to try rattling and grunting.
rattling whitetails
Literally in a matter of minutes, my phone was ringing.

A shaky voice on the other end of the line said, “Dddaadd, I jjjusst shottt the biggesttt buckk of my life!”

The rewards of a rattling sequence and a well-placed arrow had him rattled (in a good way). Matter of fact we were both a little excited, to say the least.
As a father, my emotions were sky high! I couldn’t help but think how 400-yards away from my stand was a boy who had practiced shooting his bow nearly every day. He eats and sleeps archery. He doesn’t play sports—he hunts. He’s never been interested in video games—but he has watched dozens of educational videos on whitetail hunting. He lives to be outdoors in God’s creation. And today he was rewarded with a respectable whitetail that he rattled in himself. My son had just been rewarded for his dedication and persistence. Rewarded for doing what he loves to do even though others may not understand.
As I walked up to a grin that stretched from ear-to-ear, we hugged and shared the moment together. Sharing this experience with my son was the ultimate reward.
Rattled and rewarded never felt so good.
how to rattle bucks

limiting impact pays

The Results Of A ‘Stay Out’ Strategy

Back in September we wrote an article entitled, Minimizing Impact: The Strategy Of Staying Out.’ The article simply mentioned a few reasons why we were going to be very deliberate about ‘minimizing impact’ on our various hunting properties this year.
This meant reducing the number of trail cameras we placed, paying additional attention to scent control (such as using a rainy day to check trail cameras) and waiting until the end of October before we spent a considerable amount of time in our stands.
While the strategy was somewhat experimental, the amount of deer we have seen while hunting, along with the number of bucks on our trail cameras, seems to suggest the strategy definitely works.
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Throughout the summer we spent many weekends knocking on doors and building relationships with property owners—it paid off. And although we received permission to hunt some new properties just prior to bow season, we resisted the temptation to do in-depth scouting in an effort to leave core areas undisturbed.
Due to getting permission late in the year, we did a considerable amount of peripheral scouting in order to minimize the overall impact on these areas. Some of the information we needed to form a strategy was gathered from the property owner, other info was collected from topographical maps and satellite imagery, and most of all we relied on experience. The whole objective was to mitigate risk and increase the chances of reward.
minimizing hunting impact
Based upon these factors we set up a limited number of cameras and placed stands in areas we believed would be the best place for both hunting the rut and the late season.
We also limited our camera usage on properties we have hunted in the past. Instead of trying to place multiple cameras and risk leaving more scent over a given area, we hung strategically placed cameras in funnels or pinch points. These cameras were only checked once every 3-4 weeks and we have been exceptionally careful about scent control when doing so.
limiting hunting impact
At this point I could not be happier with the results of the overall strategy. If we are seeing this type of activity with a few cameras, obviously there are additional bucks we are not seeing. Since these are agricultural areas, once the corn is out we expect see more daylight activity as deer move into the timber to feed on hard mast. We are also right on the heals of the rut, so anything can happen in the next couple weeks.
limit impact in hunting area
Post season we will be scouting these farms to a greater extent, but for now, I think this is a lesson in just how important minimizing impact is.
What are your thoughts on minimizing impact and its rewards?
(While there are more bucks and some daylight photos, we won’t share all the trail camera photos in one post.)

silently transport rattling antlers

Tip: How To Silently Transport Rattling Antlers

Most whitetail hunters consider this to be, “…the most wonderful time of the year!” The whitetail rut is kicking in, buck sightings are increasing and the chances of killing a bruiser buck are at an all-time high.
This is also the time of year when mimicking the sound of a buck brawl can be the ticket for getting a buck within shooting range. But how can the bowhunter silently transport a set of noisy antlers?
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First, I have to give credit where credit is due. This tip would never have been possible had not Todd Pringnitz, Owner/President of White Knuckle Productions-Whitetails Inc and Wicked Tree Gear, handed me a package at the Indianapolis Deer, Turkey and Waterfowl Expo and said, “Try these!”
What Todd handed me was a pack of two small rubber straps made by a company called Kwik-Strap. Todd informed me these convenient straps were the answer to silently carrying rattling antlers to and from a stand.
Mr. Pringnitz (the whitetail guru) was right!
These small rubber straps can be adjusted to fit most any size set of rattling antlers and will literally ‘silence’ them. Say goodbye to accidental rattling and unwanted noise.
So, if you’re tired of your rattling antlers making noise when you don’t want them to, check out Kwik-Strap today.
These babies work!

anthony whitetail with a bow

Anthony Wrote, ‘No Bashing Please, I’m 14’

Anthony isn’t your typical 14-year-old boy—he’s a bowhunter from northwest Pennsylvania who enjoys spending time in the outdoors. Whether he’s chasing whitetails or groundhogs, Anthony can be defined as a true archery enthusiast.
Sadly, at only 14, Anthony is also well aware of the criteria set by keyboard cowards whose sole mission it is to bash anyone who kills a deer that falls under their minimum set of standards.
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Recently, Anthony posted a picture of his latest bow kill (and biggest buck to date) in a popular Facebook group, which caters to archers and bowhunters. The few words above his photo spoke volumes, “Oh, ya got a big buck. No bashing please, I’m 14.”

“No bashing please…”

As a father of three boys, the thought of those words infuriated me. No 14-year-old bowhunter should ever have to say, “No bashing please…” to a group of fellow bowhunters.
There’s only one person who sets the standard for what we kill—it’s the person doing the killing. To shoot or not to shoot should only be determined by the one (young or old) holding the bow. And only the one whose adrenaline is flowing gets to dictate if the antlers are ‘big enough.’
Anthony’s words made me wonder if we’ve placed more value on antler size than the sparkle in a kid’s eye? Those words also have me asking if we have become self-righteous antler elitists who can’t celebrate with a 14-year-old unless the kill is at least of Pope and Young caliber?

What would Fred Bear say?

There is one thing for certain—if Fred Bear were still alive he would be as enthusiastic about Anthony’s kill as if he had killed it himself.
And so should we!
May God help us to get off our ‘high (score) horse’ and realize what’s at stake here. The last thing we want to do is squelch a young hunter’s enthusiasm because their ‘trophy’ just wasn’t good enough to receive accolades. Our responsibility is to make sure we’re encouraging young hunters in every way we can.
Hunting is a tradition that must be preserved. But our attitude toward those walking in our footsteps can do just as much damage as those who are against hunting altogether.
Sadly, there have been other young bowhunters who were either embarrassed to post pictures in the same Facebook group, so their parents did, or they also have made comments requesting they not be ‘bashed’ for the size of animal they killed.
Am I the only person who thinks there is something drastically wrong if we are sending this kind of message to the next generation? It’s time we stop being ‘size snobs’ and celebrate with the Anthony’s of the world!
anthony buck

More About Anthony

At only seven years of age Anthony experienced his first hunt. Since then, hunting has become his life. Anthony says, “My life is hunting when I’m not in school. I have hunted everything in PA except elk.”
In a little over three years, Anthony has taken three deer—two bucks and a doe—with his bow. He also enjoys the challenge of bowhunting groundhogs. Outside of a few trout fishing excursions in the spring, Anthony is a bowhunter at heart. With his Martin Nemesis 35 in hand, Anthony is part of a group of individuals who live for the next close encounter with some of nature’s most elusive creatures.
Obviously, he’s not a young man who deserves to be ‘bashed.‘
I challenge you to leave a comment and let Anthony know you appreciate his dedication and enthusiasm for the hunting tradition. Let’s pass on a little of what those great men before us handed down.

pre rut scrapes

Pre-Rut Scrapes And Daylight Bucks

Late October is an exciting time of year for any bowhunter. The pre-rut is well under way and the visible signs of whitetail signpost behavior—scrapes and rubs—are showing up in their usual places.
This time of year also reignites the age-old debate surrounding the hunting over natural or mock scrapes and whether bucks will use these scrapes during daylight hours. But before you reject the thought of hanging a stand near a well-used scrape, here are a few details you may want to consider.
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Pre-Rut Scrapes And Daylight Bucks

If you’ve spent any amount of time researching why and when whitetail use scrapes, you’ve undoubtedly found most biologists agree that bucks will visit scrapes primarily under the cover of darkness.
Biologists form these opinions through monitoring numerous scrapes over an extended period of time. These studies place trail cameras directly overlooking several scrapes and monitor the buck activity at these various scrape sites. What these studies do not take into consideration are the bucks that checked the scrapes from a distance.
Bernie Barringer recently wrote an article in which he addressed this very issue. Barringer penned, “I have two issues with these studies. First off, they did not add any attraction to their “sample” scrapes, which can completely change the dynamics of a scrape’s activity patterns, and secondly, they only recorded photos of the bucks that actually stepped into the range of the motion-detecting camera. That’s a big issue that few people have talked about.”
Hats off to Barringer for offering a (very uncommon) common sense approach to hunting near scrapes.

Empirical Evidence

First, I’m not a wildlife biologist, (I wish) so all the evidence I’m asking you to consider is empirical. The opinions I’m going to share with you were formed by glassing whitetail through a spotting scope for countless hours.
From over 400-yards away and over 200-feet above a primary scrape, I’ve watched how a variety of bucks (and does) have used a ‘primary’ scrape during daylight hours. Furthermore, I’ve harvested several mature bucks within the general vicinity of the same primary scrape.
whitetail scrapes and bucks

A Peculiar Place

It’s important to understand that not all scrapes are created equal. And while there are a variety of titles used in an attempt to describe scrapes and their purpose; such as secondary scrapes, territorial scrapes, boundary scrapes and so forth, the ‘primary’ scrape or hub scrape is what we’ll focus on. A primary scrape is used by several different bucks, and will also be used by does throughout the breeding season. Furthermore, a primary scrape will generally be in the same location year after year.
In their book Bowhunting Pressured Whitetails, John and Chris Eberhart write, “Primary scrape areas are my top priority because they have been my most productive hunting locations for dominate bucks. These areas are perennial unless there is a severe change in habitat such as occur due to crop rotation, logging, or property development. A stand in an active primary scrape area should be one of your best when hunted properly.”
I couldn’t agree more.

Delivered Downwind

While biologists are still baffled at what all information whitetail communicate through a primary scrape, we do know these scrapes play a part during the breeding cycle. Through urine, saliva, tarsal glands, and preorbital and interdigital gland secretions, whitetail are able to establish a very detailed social network.
Pictured below is a primary scrape at which we have seen a variety of 1 ½ to 5 ½ year old bucks visit on a regular basis. And it was at this particular scape where we watched how mature whitetail use a primary scrape during daylight hours.
whitetail scrapes
There is a caveat.
The majority of mature bucks that visited this particular primary scrape during daylight hours always checked the scrape from a downwind vantage point and never up close. Sometimes it was checked from up to 50-60 yards away or farther.
As either a doe or buck approached the scrape, they would make a semi-circle until directly downwind of the scrape. Once directly downwind they would stop momentarily, scent check the scrape and move on.
Numerous times we have watched a doe travel to the exact location a buck had visited just moments before and mimic the bucks behavior. The doe would stop where he stopped, check the wind and move on.
Again Barrie Barringer concurs with my observations. Barringer says, “The temptation may be to put a stand up right over the scrapes, and sometimes that works. But remember what I said earlier about the bucks scent-checking them from downwind—once they smell something of interest, they will make a J-hook and approach the scrape from an angle that quarters them into the wind if the terrain and cover allows it. Keep this in mind as you choose your stand location.”

Daylight Dreams

So do whitetails use primary scrapes during daylight hours? It depends on the definition of ‘use.’
I believe mature bucks will ‘check’ primary scrapes during daylight hours. This is based upon several years of watching the same primary scrape and how numerous bucks behaved when in its vicinity. (Such as the unusual event pictured below where a young buck came in to the scape and actually laid beside it for some time.)
pre rut bucks
My personal belief is a primary scrape is definitely a good place to hunt ‘near.’ Depending on how the wind carries the scent from the scrape will determine how a buck will approach it. And understanding how a buck will approach the scrape from a downwind location is of paramount importance when choosing your stand location.
For those who hang scent drippers over mock or natural scrapes, this is another element that will increase the chances of success. Fresh urine in the scrape will undoubtedly increase curiosity, odor and throw confusion into the pecking order.
Again, I’m not a wildlife biologist. These opinions are from a passionate whitetail hunter who has tried to spend time watching whitetail in their natural environment. Hunting near scrapes has worked very well in the past and I firmly believe they attract mature bucks during daylight hours.
So, if you know of a primary scrape in your hunting area, I sure wouldn’t ignore it. You may want to hang a stand downwind of it and see if you can intercept a pre-rut buck.

integrity for antler

Prostituting Integrity For Antlers

The voice on the other end of the line shared news any passionate whitetail hunter likes to hear, “I shot a giant!”
Relating the story of a 211-inch urban bow kill, the conversation was centered around a memorable bowhunt. But the tone quickly changed when the question was presented, “Do you think I could get some sponsors from this?” It was immediately apparent, this phone call wasn’t about sharing memories, it was about self-promotion.
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A few days later the story took an unexpected turn. Word came through the grapevine the heavy-horned buck was not a free range deer. It had been checked in as one, but the buck had actually been shot in a hunting preserve.
Would the hunter make it right? Or would he try to hide his obvious misrepresentation? Much like the story of Pinocchio, the antlers were not the only thing that seemed to have grown into Boone and Crockett proportions.
After receiving a text message that read, “I need to talk to you,” the real story unfolded. “I’m sorry. I lied to you. I thought I had to kill a big deer to make it in the hunting industry. I shot the buck in a preserve, it was not fair chase.”
This whole story had been a 211-inch Boone and Crockett lie.
Sadly the young bowhunter also related how a ‘celebrity hunter,’ whose show is regularly aired on one of the ‘hunting channels,’ had done the very same thing in the same preserve.
And the point is this! We should never allow someone who has no integrity to devalue our own.
Although some time has passed, those words still echo in my mind, “I thought I had to kill a big deer to make it in the hunting industry.” And there are multiple questions that linger. So a young man prostituted his integrity for 211-inches of bone? He set out to deceive his friends and family in order to make a name for himself? But why would someone allow ego to steal their integrity?
While it’s easy to be critical of the hunter, these events ought to be a warning for each of us. A fresh commentary as to how it only takes one lie and trust is damaged. A summons for each of us to contemplate how long it takes to build relationships and how fast they can be destroyed. A fresh revelation to how many reputations are tarnished over a single deer.
Just one hunt, one arrow, one lie and then what?
May this story remind us, the true worth of a man is not in the trophies on his wall—it’s in his character. A character that refuses to be prostituted for money or fame. A character founded on principals that will not be sold or squandered. A character that values and guards integrity at all cost.
Hopefully our infatuation with big antlers has not devalued integrity to the price of a pen-raised deer?
All of us enjoy harvesting a trophy deer. But, let’s remember integrity is of more value than a set of 211-inch antlers.
For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? – Mark 8:36

whitetail and barometric pressure

Whitetail Movement And Barometric Pressure

It was only one o’clock in the afternoon, yet several deer were already feeding in the field. Seeing this unusual phenomenon I turned to my son and said, “It’s going to storm!”
Whitetail have an innate sense for knowing when bad weather is approaching. A couple of days before the weatherman predicts a drastic change in the forecast—based upon radar and weather models—deer already know. But how?
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If you’ve spent any amount of time watching whitetail, you’ve seen how deer respond to an approaching rainstorm or snowstorm. Whitetails are often seen feeding days in advance of a change in weather. And those well-versed in whitetail behavior believe deer are simply responding to a change in barometric pressure.

Barometric Pressure

Barometric pressure, also known as atmospheric pressure, refers to the amount of air pressure exerted by air molecules against the earth’s surface. Combining the force of gravity with literally miles of air molecules equals approximately 14.7 pounds per square inch of pressure at sea level. It’s the increase or decrease of this pressure that is known to affect animal behavior.
Meteorologists often talk of either ‘low-pressure systems’ or ‘high-pressure systems’ when referring to the weather. These terms simply refer to increased or decreased barometric pressure within a weather system.
If the air molecules above the earth’s surface are not as compressed, the result will be a decrease in barometric pressure. The resulting low-pressure system is known to usher in clouds, rain and/or snow.
After adverse weather moves beyond an area there will be an increase in the compression of air molecules, which in turn causes the barometric pressure to rise. A high-pressure system is often characterized by a combination of clear skies and windy or breezy conditions.

Warm And Cold

Another interesting fact concerning low-pressure areas is how they produce the weather surrounding the advancing storm. The counterclockwise circulation of a low-pressure area will result in cold air forming to the north and west, while warm air is formed on the south and east.
This explains why colder winds and temperatures can accompany a north or west wind. Remember this tip when checking barometric pressure and wind direction prior to a hunt.

Barometric Pressure And The Bowhunter

Whitetail are very in tune to changes in barometric pressure and the resulting atmospheric conditions. Deer will bed, feed and move according to if the barometer is ‘rising,’ ‘steady’ or ‘falling.’
Most hunters who have made a study of barometric pressure and how it corresponds with whitetail behavior, believe whitetail are more active when the barometer is either rising or falling and most active when the barometer is rising. My personal preference is to hunt a rising barometer immediately following a storm. I generally see more deer movement following a hard rain or right after a blizzard.
These observations also suggest deer activity is best when the barometer is 29.90 or higher. Ideal conditions are when the barometer is close to 30.0 inches, is rising and has nearly peaked. This is a recipe that usually results in increased deer movement—especially in bucks.
It would seem from collective observation, when the barometer is falling deer anticipate the possibility of weather impeding their ability to feed. This results in more aggressive whitetail movement as deer attempt to feed for preventative measure.
When weather such as a snowstorm or rainstorm is about to subside and the barometric pressure begins to rise, deer will again feed actively due to their lack of eating while they waited out the severe weather. While not comprehensive, hopefully this practical application will give you an idea as to how whitetail respond to changes in pressure and a few reasons why.
A whitetail’s response to barometric pressure gives the bowhunter insight into knowing how to plan the next hunt. With numerous weather related websites and weather apps to keep us informed, our chances of being where we need to be when we need to be there should also be on the rise.
While the barometric pressure is only one contributing factor to deer movement, it is an important element that should not be overlooked. With fall weather already upon us, use the barometer to your advantage.
If you have any additional tips or would like to share how you use barometric pressure when planning a hunt, please feel free to comment below.

using rain for scent control

How To Use Rainy Days For Scent Control

Not all scent control comes in a bottle. Believe it or not one of the best forms of scent control is what meteorologists call ‘precipitation.’ And while some bowhunters dread a downpour, others have learned to use a rainy day to remain scent free.
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Most hunters don’t celebrate rainy days. Just visit the local coffee shop during deer season. If it’s raining, the shop will be filled with guys who have already left their stand and are drinking hot coffee.
But with rain’s ability to wash away human odor, use those wet days to your advantage and put nature to work for you. And there’s a bonus—rain isn’t sold by the ounce—it’s free.

1. Check Trail Cameras

Rainy days are the perfect time to check trail cameras. With hunting season in full swing, the last thing you want is to leave any more human scent than necessary around your camera.
Rain will help wash away any human odor left on or around your camera, along with helping to eliminate any scent left along your entry and exit routes.

2. Wash Your Deer Decoy

With the rut quickly approaching, use a rainy day to wash your decoy. Simply assemble your decoy and set it outside where the rain can give it a bath. You can also use some form of scent elimination spray such as Dead Down Wind – Field Spray to assist with odor removal.

3. Deodorize New Hunting Gear

Whether it’s a new hunting pack, treestand or hoist line, most hunting gear has an odor when brand new. Set the new gear outside on a rainy day. You’ll be surprised how well the rain and weather will remove unwanted smells.
rain and scent control

4. Clean Your Boots

It’s no secret that rubber boots can get a little rank during early season. Perspiring feet and long hours in the stand can make for a smelly combination.
To keep your rubber boots scent free, simply hang them upside down and allow the rain and damp air to remove odors. You may also want to add a little Dead Down Wind – Boot and Storage Powder after they have dried completely.
scent control for boots

5. Move Your Stand

As bad as we hate to, sometimes it’s necessary to move a stand after season has already started. To limit the impact in any given area, move the stand on a rainy day.
Not only will the rain wash away odors, but the wet leaves will help you enter and exit the area much more quietly.

Use The Rain

Instead of mumbling under your breath about the foul weather, use the next rainy day to your advantage. Remaining scent free is a large part of being successful as a bowhunter.
Farmers can’t, but bowhunters can ‘make hay’ even if it’s pouring.