Bowhunting Top 10 Tips for 2021

Bowhunting Top Ten Tips for 2021

In reviewing notes for my last 25 years of bowhunting, I decided to compile a list of my ten tips for bowhunting success.

  1. Hunt where the deer are, not where you want them to be. Use the off-season to study, scout, and explore promising new areas. Always have multiple areas for opportunities.
  2. Be a wilderness athlete. At the very least maximize your physical fitness—especially cardio—so you can actually make it to where the deer are. Minimize your body weight and field gear so you can go farther and  move with stealth.
  3. Learn everything about your prey. Study books, videos, and actual deer behavior. Become obsessed with the daily lives of deer, not just hunting.
  4. Avoid people at all costs (it gets harder every year). Deer hate people more than anything! As a rule, you need to put as much energy into avoiding people as you do hunting. Nothing good ever lasts, and eventually you will lose your secret spot to the crowds. So be adaptable and mobile, ready to cut your losses and find a new area at any time.
  5. Maximize time afield. Hunting is equal parts skill, luck, and time. The longer you hunt, the higher your chance of finding or lucking into a big buck. Spending a more time afield is the only way to attain the experience you’ll need to hone your hunting skills.
  6. Scout effectively. Whenever possible, locate your target buck before the season starts. Off-season scouting begins the day your hunt ends.
  7. Get as close as possible, and then let things play out naturally. Rarely can you force the situation with big bucks. They are extremely wary and fragile. Hunt them on their turf and on their schedule. Success is simply the result of many good decisions plus time and luck.
  8. Flawless shot execution. Shooting your bow must be effortless and subconscious. If you can’t shoot straight under pressure then nothing you’ve done up to this point matters.
  9. Hunt alone. The ultimate goal in bowhunting is not to even exist., to become invisible to the deer. Hunting alone reduces your scent, sound, and visibility. More importantly it allows you to focus on your instincts and innate skills rather than hunting by committee.
  10. Be eternally open-minded and humble. Great hunters learn something new every single day they spend afield. The moment you become an “expert” is the moment you stop learning.

I hope you enjoyed my tips. Did I miss anything?

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