Scouting. Shooting. Running trail cameras. Hanging treestands. If you’re a serious deer hunter, you’re likely doing all of these things and more.
But here’s something I bet you’re not doing enough of.
Finding new spots to hunt.
When it comes to hunting big, mature bucks, which is what most serious deer hunters are after, nothing is more important than location.
You can be a crack shot, an expert at deciphering deer travel patterns or a professional food plot planter – but if the type of deer you’re after don’t actually exist where you’re hunting, you’re just pissing your time away. Before any of the tactical things matter in a hunt, you first need to be in the right location.
If you own a 1,000 acres of primo hunting ground, you might be all set. But for the rest of us, that means we need to constantly be working to find quality hunting locations.
Those of us without a mega-property likely fall into one of two groups. Group one includes those who currently think they have a good spot to hunt. Group two doesn’t feel so good about their spot.
So for those of you in group one, maybe you haven’t been struggling in you’re current area, but guess what? You still should find new spots to hunt. Why? Because you never know when you might lose your lease or when the landowner who lets you hunt might change his mind or when the property next to your farm might get turned into a dirt bike track. You can never have too many quality places to hunt because things change, and when they do, you better be prepared.
On the other hand, if you’ve been struggling in recent years to see quality bucks and don’t feel so good about your area, stop settling. Quality bucks are out there, you just need to hunt them where they live.
Most hunters I talk to have a property or two they’ve always hunted and they keep hunting that spot over and over and over, because it’s easy, it’s what they’ve always done, it’s comfortable. But then I hear complaints from these same hunters about how they never see “big bucks”, or how they have awful neighbors who kill all the deer, or how the property they hunt isn’t set up well, the list goes on and on. But still, these hunters keep hunting those same spots. They keep doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results, but getting the same.
Don’t be like that.
Hit the pavement. Knock on doors. Talk to locals. Make calls. Do the work.
Finding new spots to hunt isn’t always easy, but it’s almost always worth it.
So this spring, put in the work. Widen your horizons. Find a new spot to hunt. Or maybe two. Or three.
99% of serious deer hunters don’t do this enough.
Be the 1%.