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17 Tips for Bow Hunting Deer (That Skyrocket Your Shooting Skill TODAY)

17 tips for bow hunting deer - 3

Are you a first time bow hunters who looking for effective tips for shooting as well as hunting? Or an experienced one who searching for better archery tricks ? No matter what, I have all things you need here. Just carve out a few minutes with one of our 17 tips for bow hunting deer, and you can improve your shooting skill within day.

Check this out:

Tip #1: Scout 1000s of Acres for Whitetail at Once (45 minutes)

Gone are the entire weekends wasted scouting deer blind spots and coming up empty. With aerial mapping you can find thousands of acres of prime hunting territory from your mobile phone during lunch break and have the whole route planned before you clock in. You’ll be ready to put up a new deer stand this weekend in a spot you’ve never seen and come home with more wall hangers than ever.

Step #1: Install Google Earth: Go to https://www.google.com/earth/desktop/; download and install. It will launch automatically when finished installing.

Install google earth

Step #2: Search for a property. In the upper left of the Google Earth window, type the area you want to scout into the search bar. For public land, type in its name and the map will go directly there. You can also type in coordinates or an address.

Search for a property.

Via toxiegivens.com

Step #3: Learn the land - Zoom in on the area. Once you get close enough, it will change from looking like Google Maps to a three-dimensional view. Use the adjusters in the map’s upper right hand side to change the angle. Find the key areas.

Learn the land

Via Wiredtohunt.com

Step #4: Find your hotspots. See any places that look ideal for a stand? Any good potential bed-down locations and valleys? Mark them with digital push pins. Google Earth will give you the exact latitude and longitude, so you can plug them into your GPS device to use on location.

Find your hotspots

Via pexels.com

Step #5: Measure distances. Use the “Ruler” feature, click your starting point and then your destination; you can trace the entire route and its topography.

Measure distances

Via Flickr.com

Step #6: Map with your phone. Use the Google Earth app or plug into your GPS. If you’re in an area with spotty coverage though, it’ll drain your battery and the deer may have heard you cussing and run by the time the images load.

  • Try creating a custom map overlay, export it and email it to yourself.
  • Then when you have the file from your email, open the file in Google Earth before you get to your bad coverage spot.
  • Once it’s in Google Earth, you can use it anywhere.
Map with your phone

Via idownloadblog.com/

Tip #2: Get Acquainted with Low Light Shooting (1 Day)

practice bow in low light

For those who are not aware, deer usually comes out when the sun is about to set. Meaning there will be less light. If you do not have that talent to view things in the dark, then you need to practice aiming at your target with low light before you go on hunting.

Step #1: Practice when the sun is about to set.

Step #2: Create a target as big as a deer. Get a box as big as a deer. Stuff it with plastic, papers, insulation foam or anything on it.​

Step #3: Seal the box using a packing tape or duct tape. You have just created a portable target for your practice bow for free or very cheap components.​

Step # 4: Draw your target points on the box​

Imagine a deer. Which part of the deer do you want to target first to disable it? Mark the box your target points. This will be the parts you will aim your bow at and hit. Accuracy and precision are important so make sure you hit the right part.​

Step #5: Position your target as far as possible

​Position your target at a distance that you have mastered already. If you have been practicing regularly, 50 yard is a good distance to start with. Throw a few shots aiming at the target points. If you think you got the grip on how to shot your target at that range, move your target even farther.

Step #6: Aim at the target points

Keep in mind, the target points will help you disable the prey so make sure that you focus on it. Continue aiming and targeting those points until you can hit them effortlessly. Your target deer is not always in the open, it could be hiding behind the tree so it is best to consider this while practicing.

Tip #3: Purchasing a Used Bow For Half Price (30 minutes)

check old bow

Via Archerytalk.com

First-time buyers can get a good used compound bow for half off retail - more if you’re lucky. The usual recommendation is to purchase a new recurve, but when for same or better prices you can get a good condition compound, make the worthy investment so you don’t have to upgrade so soon. In this tip, I will show you what to look for in a used compound bow:

Step #1: Now where to find a good used bow? You can check pro shops, pawn shops, used sporting good stores, or online classifieds like Craigslist. Do NOT purchase a bow online unless you can see it before buying. It’s way too valuable a purchase to risk that it may not be the right bow for you.

Step #2: Ask lots of questions and get a feel for their patience. Make sure you trust your seller too. If they just want to rush you out or appear to jump over your questions, either they’re only interested in moving it as fast as possible or it’s a bad deal and they know it.

Step #3: Look at her strings and cables. Are the strings fuzzy? They’re worn and need replacement. Pinch the string between thumb and forefinger and inspect the string up and down the entire length. You’ll feel any cuts or nicks; it feels like a chunk missing and is rather surprising a sensation to feel in a string, but these strings are more coarse and durable than found in linens. Whether you’ll still want this bow or not depends on the final price - you’ll need replacement strings and cables, and they can cost more than $100.

Step #4: Check cams and lower edges. A bow owned by a careless hunter will show damage on its bottom. They get used as walking sticks or dropped from tree stands, so check for scratches, stress marks, nicks, and other damage. If it’s damaged it will need replacement and should rule out a bow just based on price, unless you’re getting an amazing deal.

Step #5: Inspect the bow’s limbs. If the bow is wood, check the varnish and reject a bow if it’s flaky, cracked, or chipped. A fiberglass bow with a chalky appearance is also a no-go. If it’s passed so far, now take a cotton ball over all surfaces of the bow. If it snags anywhere, reject it.

Step #6: ​Check the draw. Do some test pulls and make sure you’re satisfied; an adjustment may cost over $100. So when drawing the bow, ask yourself if it’s smooth or awkward. Are you straining? Where does the bow break? If your arms are shaking, you won’t be able to hold the arrow for enough time.

Step #7: Inspect the accessories. If you’re lucky, the bow you’re looking at has the accessories already mounted. Check to see if the gear works and is properly installed. Shake the bow - if you hear a rattle, don’t purchase it because the sights, rests, and stabilizers may be broken or incorrectly installed.​

Step #8: Negotiate the price. Does the bow pass your test? Make sure you know the retail price and aim for a price around half of that - if you don’t know what bow you’ll be looking at when you go in, a simple Google search can give you the standard pricing. Depending on the bow’s quality and your bargaining skill, you may part with more cash, or hopefully even less.​

(source: abovetopsecret.com)

As far as purchasing a used bow I would suggest going to an outdoor shop and/or a Bow shop as you mentioned so they can help set up draw lengths and make sure the bow is at full set up. Bows coming from pawn shops or Craigslist are just asking for disaster because those people are just wanting to make a couple bucks and don't care about helping the "customer".

Tip #4: More Precise Aiming with Consistent Breathing (2 minutes)

Let’s Talk About Breathing

One surprising factor expert archers will tell you is the key to a great shot is the consistency of breathing. Sporadic breathing forces a short draw and will throw off aim, while a rhythm helps maintain calm, concentration, and the rhythm while preparing the shot.

Here are three breathing techniques to try, keeping in mind that each technique won’t work for every person, depending on the person’s normal breathing patterns and other factors that may come into play like lung capacity, stress levels, etc:

Step #1: Classic breathing. This is a similar breathing style to how one would breathe to shoot a gun / bow. It works well for many people, but if you feel rushed on the last breath, try another style.

  • Take a deep breath
  • Completely exhale the breath
  • Take a half breath
  • Let it out while you aim and shoot

Step #2: Breath and a half. This is actually a yoga technique! You’ll feel steadier through this if classic breathing doesn’t work for you. If you feel oxygen-starved though, try the third method.

  • Take a deep breath
  • Let half out
  • Hold it through the shot

Step #3: Super saturate. This method gets oxygen and energy to the muscles and fills the lungs, steadying and relaxing the body.

  • Take a deep breath before the draw
  • Take a second breath while drawing
  • Take a third breath while setlling the pins, exhaling a quarter of the air

(source: pushingthewildlimits.com)

Tip #5: Practicing A Perfect Stance (5 minutes)

Developing the proper stance in bow hunting is critical to a perfect shot that hits square in the center. Even the best bow can only be as good as where you point it and how you send off the arrow. There is a wealth of information about correct stance in hunting and much of it is contradictory. What many archers fail to realize is that it will be different for each one. The hunter will need to find his body's natural center. There's a squared, open, and closed stance and you can determine yours.

Step #1: Prepare the shot. Place a target in the center of a wide target wall, then assume the stance that feels natural to you.

Step #2: Without moving feet, twist away toward opposite wall.

Step #3: Close your eyes and aim the shot. Do not release and do not keep your finger on the trigger.

Step #4: Confirm the shot. Have someone with you confirm that your shot will actually hit the target - that your twist did not throw you off so much or your shot will stray.

Step #5: Release the shot. If you're standing in the right stance, you'll hit the target. If you're in the wrong stance and right-handed, you'll most likely hit right of target.

Step #6: Adjust your stance to another and keep trying until you hit the target consistently.

Step #7: Once your feet are in the right position, find your standing torso position. In the previously determined best stance for you, bend knees slightly, then look at the target. This is your natural position.

Step #8: When shooting, keep the position you've just discovered and keep your head still and centered.​

Tip #6: Practicing with Broadhead Arrow Without Destroying Your Target (2 hours)

Broadhead Arrow Practice

Broadhead arrows are for the hunt, not target practice. If hunting large game, the best and quickest kill comes with a broadhead. They have a cut edge that gets better entry and does more damage, ensuring the kill. Practice with what you shoot with, and you’ll have greater success.

Hunters don’t like to practice with broadheads because they destroy the targets and are more expensive, but how else will you ensure you are prepared for the hunt? Check out our bow hunting tips on how to practice with broadheads:

Step #1: Tune your bow with bow tech. Have it done professionally and shoot the bow in front of the bow tech. The tech can note any problems when in your personal use that you may not notice or that may not be detected when being used by someone else.

Step #2: Mark your sight with tape and marker. This is to differentiate field points and broadheads. Both will group but not in the same place.

Step #3: Do NOT move your rest. Some hunters try it to give the same downrange point of impact for broadheads and field points. Moving the rest will change the tuning you just worked so hard on (and paid for!).

Step #4: Shoot practice arrows one at a time. Use a broadhead just like the one you hunt with, making sure you’ve spun the head on straight before shooting. Practice with all of your arrows.

Step #5: Once you’re satisfied, mark it. Mark them consecutively “#1,” and so on, until you have worked through all of them.

Step #6: Replace it with a sharp head and test it. Repeat this process through all of your arrows.

Step #7: All sharps that pass the test can go in your quiver for hunting. Now you have a full quiver and you are ready to hunt using broadheads instead of field points, ensuring more effective shots and quicker kills.​

(source: onlineathens.com)

Tip #7: Putting Trail Cameras to Increase Your October Odds (1 Day)

Trail Cameras for Increasing Your October Odds

Setting up your trail cameras at the right place and at the right time can help you monitor the movement of the bucks, track the whitetails and locate the possible destination of your trophy.

Step #1: Find Open Areas like a Meadow Near the Stream

Places like this can attract deer easily because this is where the food and water are found. Another strategic location to position your game cameras are trails and game path.

Step #2: Setup your trail cameras at least 5 - 10 yards away from your target.

Step #3: Position the camera to the north so it will not face the sun.

Step #4: Make sure that it is free from distraction like weeds, trees and others that could affect the images.

Step #5: Set the date, time, name and modes for trail camera. It may be boring, but is a must.

Step #6: Use Wireless Trail Camera for Scent Free

Using this type of trail camera can keep your scent off the area. Human scent can drive the bucks away thus you will not get good videos or pictures. Images captured on wireless trail camera are sent directly to your mobile phone.

Step #7: Replacing batteries every 2 - 3 weeks

Download and empty memory cards for clearer and accurate pictures and videos. Maintenance is often overlooked as a result you will get poor images or worst you will not be able to see any visit of the bucks at all.

Step #8: Use a cable lock for your game cameras to prevent the trespasser from accessing and stealing the equipment.

(source: bonecollector.com)

I would also suggest them going and running the cameras every 2.5 weeks and taking a portable card reader with them so they can see what kind of activity they are capturing. If there isn't any activity they need to move the camera and/or place attractant there if it is leagal in their state.

Tip #8: Good Form for Shoot Better (45 minutes)

Form is Everything

Via fieldandstream.com

To get an accurate shot, you need to have a good form. The right stance isn’t always the position that comes naturally, so you’ll need to practice until you can do it without even thinking about it. Once you have it right after repetition, you’ll be able to feel when you’re in the right stance for you. Here are four steps to the perfect form:

Step #1: Put your feet shoulder-width apart perpendicular to the target. If you feel unsteady, turn your lead toe out for balance. Shoulder-width is the most natural stance but after repeated attempts, if it doesn’t feel right, try slightly closer or wider apart.

Step #2: Find the anchor point and hold it. At full draw, note where your hand almost touches your face. This is the anchor point, so note it so you can take care to put it in the same place every time. You can drop your nose onto the string or use a kisser button for more consistency.

Step #3: Grip the bow handle palm up with the grip on the palm heel. The bow will rest between the fleshy pads of the palm, and the hand should be relaxed and open. Fingers go under the shelf. Avoid a tighter grip, as it adds torque.

Step #4: Draw and push toward the target with the bow arm. Pull away with the string arm while squeezing the trigger and make sure your follow-through is smooth.

Step #5: Don’t move your head, drop your arm, or make any other movement until the arrow hits. We anticipate our movements, especially for something we have rehearsed repeatedly. This means that if we use fluid movement and immediately move to next form after the previous, we may - for example - send our arrow down if the habit is to drop the arm, or send it left or right if the urge is to move the head.​

(source: fieldandstream.com)

Tip #9: Pinpointing Deer Spot with Right Bowstand (3 hours)

The most important thing you’re going to do all season is to find the right stand to hunt from. You need to find the travel routes of the deer, and within sight, a place with cover and terrain that get you your shots. Here are a few tips to set up the perfect bowstand:

Step #1: Check food sources. Don’t be too aggressive, as the deer will notice the activity, but check where deer are feeding. Take an hour every few days and ride around known spots, seeing where they’re eating.

Step #2: Consider the top edge. If you’re at the top of a ridge, the edge of a ravine, or the edge of a plateau, you can position yourself either topside or downslope. If the wind is pushing past the drop, your scent will drift over downhill deer, so look up.

consider top edge

Via fieldandstream.com

Step #3: Consider the long edge. This is a common spot - on the edge of a woody area next to a road or other spot such as a field or water body, there’s a natural wildlife travel corridor. You can slip in and out without detection, and the road discourages the deer from moving downwind.

consider long edge

Via fieldandstream.com

Step #4: Consider the corner. In inside corners, feeding bucks cross. In outside corners, you find passing bucks. Figure out where the two trails connect, and put your stand downwind. Watch them because a short way away they also bottleneck, giving you access to plenty of deer.

consider corner

Via fieldandstream.com

Step #5: Consider the hub. Learn the deer’s bed to feed pattern and study aerial maps. Find the route where two areas (or more) meet - fencelines, ditches, wood edges, ridges - and set up shop there.

consider hub

Via fieldandstream.com

Step #6: Find the right tree. Keep downwind and perpendicular, out of line of sight not in their direction of travel. Distance it about 12 to 20 yards away and offers good entry and egress. It should be wide enough to hide the silhouette but small enough to climb, with several branches for cover.

Step #7: Hang the stand early in the season or even before it begins. If they get accustomed to seeing it, they won’t think anything is amiss.​

(source: fieldandstream.com)

Tip#10: Tracking Buck Locations When Acorns Dropping (5 hours)

Acorn Scented Deer lure

If your trail camera is empty and you no longer see traces of whitetails in the greenfield for food at the beginning of bow season, they are probably somewhere where acorns are dropping. You can easily track where the bucks are going when it is time for white oaks tree to drop those acorns.

Step #1: Check the green field. If the number of whitetails flocking the field has reduced they are probably heading in the hardwoods.

Step #2: Follow them in the hardwood and listen to the dropping acorns. Just like squirrels bucks favorite food are acorns.

Step #3: Look for deer droppings, little funnels, and trails in the leaves where the whitetails have been utilizing their noses to look for acorns, as soon as they start to fall.

Step #4: Check the images on your trail camera to see if they are going to the white oaks. By doing this, you can easily follow the path of the whitetails where they are heading when they go away from their feeding areas.

Step #5: Choose a stand site on the trail between the bucks bedding and feeding areas. Note scrapes and any rub in the area.

Step #6: Be on the lookout for other wildlife activity and listen for acorns hitting the leaves and squirrels feeding. It’s likely deer are also using the area.

Step #7: Mark the preferred trees, record the dates and a timeline of seasonal use of the bucks. Every year the data will show the trend and your chance to succeed if you prepare for the upcoming hunting seasons is high.​

(source: bonecollector.com)

Tip #11: Utilizing Mock Scrapes (1 hour)

deer mock scrape

Via thesportsmanchannel.com

Scrapes are created by bucks and it serves as their home all year long. Utilizing mock scrapes during bow hunting makes the bucks nervous and start to guard their neighborhoods.

Step #1: Look for funnels, pinch points, areas near the body of water, place where two trails meet or ridgelines intersect. These areas are the perfect spot to build your scrapes.

Location is probably the most important aspect of the mock-scraping technique. Bucks usually hit what they cannot find, thus it is best to setup the scrapes in areas where cover or terrain dictate that whitetail will naturally use.

Step #2 - Make the Mock Scrapes

Setting up the mock scrapes is simple. Before you start building it make sure that you are scent free when entering the scrape.

First, tear up the area around 4 feet in diameter. There will be overhanging branch available in your location. You can cut a branch and wire it where you set up your scrape if there are fewer branches hanging.​

Step #3: Add a good amount of whitetail urine to the freshly raked soil. Bucks are attracted to the fresh earthy scent. Some hunters would fill a dripper with 4 ounces of their favorite lure so it will last for a week or more.

Step #4: Check the scrape after every a few days to ensure its freshness. However, if the buck has visited it already, you don’t have to worry about keeping it fresh as he will do it on his own.

Step #5: Score the bark of the nearby trees. If a deer missed the lure, scoring the bark of a few nearby trees to create a mock rub can help attract the whitetail.​

(source: bonecollector.com)

Tip #12: Attract Deer to Your Decoy Easily (45 minutes)

deer decoy

Via Bowhunter.com

You can hunt deer with or without decoys, but you’ll double the bounty if you use one and triple it if you do it right. Once you have the perfect decoy, you only need a few minutes to set it up.

Step #1: Choose a full-body buck. A doe will work too, but bucks attract other bucks, often even if the live buck is in pursuit of a doe. A doe tends to attract a lot of other doe and fawns, to the point there are too many deer and the crowd makes one another nervous. If you like the idea of attracting so many at one time, use both a doe and a buck.

Step #2: Purchase one. You can order online or go to you local archery store.

Step #3: Glue glass eyes over the plastic eyes. Glue glass eyes like the kind taxidermists use over the painted-on eyes. A decoy with unaltered eyes will still work but a buck wants to look another in eye, so a really good decoy should have realistic eyes. It will make a difference!​

Step #4: Make your decoy move. Some expensive decoys have this feature. But if you don't have, you can attach a lightweight white garbage bag to the backside of the decoy. Attach some fishing line in case there’s no wind, and keep the other end of the line. It will move in the breeze or with your pull, and attract bucks.

Step #5: Plan decoy hunts from mid-October to end of November. Timing is everything. Decoys work all the time, but mid-October to end of November is best in most of the country, pre- or peri-rut season. If you use the decoy too early in the season and you tend to use the same territory over and over, you’ll train the deer to the presence of the decoy. Plan your decoy hunts in the right time.​

Step #6: Choose clearings, field edges, and little-used logging roads - and a rise is best if one is available. Remember that the best spot is seen clearly from a distance, The best places have entries that are ridges of timber, where deer prefer to enter and exit. A placement that the deer won’t see until at close range will only spook it away.​

Step 7: Place your stand downwind 20 to 25 yards. Face a buck decoy to your stand because the buck will want to face it head-on and it gives you a clear shot. A doe decoy should face away because the buck has more interest in the back end. ​

Step #8: Handle the decoy with gloves and spray it with Scent-Away after set-up.

Step #9: Use deer scent around and under the decoy. A deer that smells human odor will be gone in a flash.

(Source: outdoorlife.com)

Tip #13: Reducing Your Scent to Get Closer to Whitetail (2 hours)

Control Scent For Deer Hunting

Studies have shown that deer have noses anywhere from 2,000 to 10,000 times more sensitive than a human’s, and they use the to interpret what’s going on in their environment, using a gland located in their mouths.

This complex system is far more sophisticated than what humans can even begin to comprehend, and it alerts them easily to presence of dangers, including humans. So how do get close enough for hunting? A good hunter has a multi-step process:

Step #1: Use hunter’s detergent for laundry. The body’s natural scent isn’t the only concern. Scent-A-Way MAX odorless laundry detergent and Hunter’s Edge with Silver are two good brands. They’ll get rid of the scent build-up in your clothes, whether it’s from smoke, gas, human scent, or product perfumes.​

Step #2: Dry your clothes on a line outside. The dryer collects scents from detergents, dryer bars, and softener sheets. If you lack the space for this drying method, at least air out hunting clothing before you use it.

Step #3: Store dry clothing in an air-tight container. Plastic containers like storage bins work well. If any moisture is still in the clothing, odors will increase due to chemical reaction. Fill a sock with baking soda and place it inside just in case, to absorb bad odor and moisture. Change it out every month to make sure it’s still working.

Step #4: ​Shower in Scent Killer Body Wash & Shampoo. It attacks and eliminates human odor and works long-term. It isn’t harsh on your skin while being so effective either; it has a gentle formula with moisturizers. This can be found in stores like Walmart or Amazon but in the sporting goods section, not with soaps by the pharmacy. It’s fairly cheap, under six dollars for twelve ounces.

Step #5: ​Use unscented deodorant, brush your teeth, and avoid other scents from sprays and gels. Avoid any scents that make you more noticeable - invest in unscented deodorants, hair gels and sprays, and whatever other toiletries you use. Obviously avoid colognes and perfumes. Some people are horrified at the suggestion one wouldn’t brush their teeth and others think it’s best not to - after all toothpastes can be minty!

But there are baking soda-based toothpastes out there with little to no odor, and honestly, have you ever been with someone who didn’t brush their teeth? Sometimes the odor is strong and noticeable. Minty wins over bad breath any time, but there are non-scented options available too.

Step #6: Don’t put your hunting clothes on until you go to the hunting area. Don’t even take them out of their airtight container. A deer’s nose is far more sophisticated than ours, so if you put those clothes on at home, then play with the kids on the way out, stop for breakfast, and pump gas, you’ve blown your whole cover.​

Step #7: Use a quality scent elimination spray. You’re still not done - THAT is how sensitive the nose of the deer is and how hard it is to get rid of your own smell. Try Scent Killer Gold; spray your clothes the day before. Allow it to dry then put the clothing back in the container. Spray each layer, especially where scents gather like in the armpits and crotch. The way the spray works is by adhering to odor molecules and making them too heavy to form a gas. Spray it again when you put on the clothes.

Step #8: Wear rubber boots and avoid touching things. You’ve now effectively dealt with the scents you’re taking into the woods, but remember not to leave scents behind either. Otherwise you’ll let the deer know where you’ve been and that you’re there, even if they aren’t sure where. The strength of the scent and how long it lingers are determined by weather, temperature, and surface, among other things, so you could have the deer on guard for a long time.​

(source: gamekeepersclub.com)

Tip #14: How and When to Use A Deer Call (5 minutes - 2 hours)

When to Use A Deer Call

Deer have several categories of calls - mating, social, territorial, or distress - and knowing the difference and how to effectively use them will help you in the field.

  • Social calls are year-round calls used by all deer; they are relaxed grunts and bleats that normally simply alert to location. They’re good in early season to coax deer out to look for food.
  • Mating and territorial calls are pre-rut or rut stage, in which does let out long bleats to let bucks know they’re ready to mate. Bucks respond with short deep grunts. Using a combination of these will attract other deer.
  • A strictly territorial call is a roar or snort that sounds like a wheeze. They are for intimidation and can scare off deer. Only use these to get reaction out of a buck.
  • The distress call is a blow and usually means you’ve been spotted and the hunt is over. If you hear the danger call accompanied by stomping, they’ve alerted all nearby deer to an interloper.

Now that you what the calls are, let’s talk about when and how to use them:

Step #1: Find areas where the deer’s visibility is limited. In the middle of a field, the deer can see there is no source to the sound of the call and will be suspicious, less likely to investigate. However, in a thicket, the curious animals will wander close trying to find the source.​

Step #2: Prepare a good stand placement and additional cover. A deer’s hearing is so good, it will be able to identify exactly where you are and come very close. This is great for the hunt - but bad if you aren’t properly camouflaged.

Step #3: Use a call every 15-20 minutes if you don’t yet have a deer in your sights. Use louder calls at maximum frequency but only every 15 to 20 minutes if you haven’t yet spotted any deer. This will draw in a passing buck or a group of does who were previously out of eyesight.

Step #4: Lower the volume and frequency. If the deer is in sight, keep the volume just loud enough for the deer to hear and only as often as necessary to keep interest. You’ll spook them if it’s more. If a deer is within 50 feet, keep the call in a pocket to muffle the sound more.

Step #5: ​When the deer is close and in crosshairs, take it out.

(source: deer30outdoors.com)

Tip #15: Maintaining Your Level with Bowhunting Drills (2 hours)

A true archer doesn’t stop shooting in the off-season. Most of us probably couldn’t even if we tried because we love it too much. But practice makes perfect and you don’t want to lose the first part of hunting season because you’re rusty from lack of practice.

Here are some drills you can use to keep as sharp as your arrows while waiting for fall to come back around:

Step #1: The Blind Bale​

The Blind Bale​

Via bowhunting.com

  • Remove the target from the butt. You won’t be needing it; the target is not actually our goal here.
  • Stand close. Get close enough so you can’t miss.
  • Draw back. Remember the form you’ve practiced.
  • Close your eyes. You’re not focusing on the target; you already know where it’s supposed to be - but it’s not there. So don’t even look in the direction you believe it to be.
  • Think. Envision your form - feet shoulder width apart, hands and bow in correct position.
  • Release. Don’t move until the arrow hits. Your follow-through effects final shot placement.

Step #2: Long Distance

Long Distance

Via bowhunting.com

What you’re doing here is simple - you’re finding where your shot starts to fade and then you’re going to determine the problems and perfect the shot at that distance.

  • Practice your shot at 20 yards. Back up when you are repeatedly hitting the target - at this close distance, hopefully that’s after the first few practice shots! Most kills are within 20 yards.
  • Back up, and practice it at 30 yards. Same here, back up when you’re hitting consistently, and hopefully that’s soon.
  • Back up, and practice at 40 yards. Until you’re hitting it consistently, stay here.
  • Keep going until you’re confident in your shot at 60 yards, at least. You can keep going as long as you like. Olympic archers have a range of 70 meters (about 77 yards), and outdoor competition is about 90 meters (almost 100 yards). Keep in mind compound bows usually lose efficiency after 60 yards, and a longbow can theoretically go to 200 yards.
  • Focus on your form when you get to the problematic distances. Find the flaw in your stance, anchor point, grip, positioning, or follow-through. There may be one problem, or there may be several. You’ll probably find that at 30 or 40 yards, you find one issue to correct - but at 60 you have quite a few.

Step #3: Smaller and Smaller

Smaller and Smaller

Via bowhunting.com

  • Get several pie plates and draw circles of different sizes on them. These are just disposable pie tins you can get at the grocery store. Take a sharpie and make circles from the size of a soda can’s circumference to the size of a quarter.
  • Practice shooting at the plates, beginning with the soda can sized one. Work for high accuracy.
  • Change them as you master each size. Move to a smaller circle each time you conquer one size.
  • Also change distance, moving back. Start at 20 yards and move back up to 60 yards, with 5 to 10 yards difference each time you move back.
  • Then shoot “around the clock”. This is to practice shooting where you’re not accustomed to shooting. Using the pie plate, shoot around the target, not inside. Try to hit it at 12:00 (very top center edge), 3:00 (very right side middle edge), 6:00 (very bottom center edge), and 9:00 (very left side middle edge). Obviously you won’t be able to shoot around the clock for a quarter-sized target, but start with the pie plate size and then go inward until the arrows are so close you can’t distinguish.

Tip #16: Master Thermal Winds to Setup an Ultimate Ambush Location (20 minutes)

Use Thermal Winds to Hunt Deer

A thermal wind varies in height due to rising and falling temperatures during the day. You can observe this phenomenon at moments standing among a line of trees while you feel no breeze yourself, but the tops of the trees sway wildly, or perhaps in reverse - the wind blows fiercely in your face but the trees are still.

Wind direction forecasts are important for archery deer hunting but in the case of thermals, they beg the question: at which height is this particular wind direction and at what time of day? Understanding the complexities of thermals is one of our deer hunting tips, helping you master wind direction.

Step #1: Check & recheck wind direction on Weather.com: You don’t want to be standing upwind of the deer or the deer’s destination, so know the direction before you get there to quickly and efficiently set up stand. The wind doesn’t have to be into your face, but a crosswind into a dead area will work too.

Step #2: Shower well and use Scent Away. Your own scent can blow it. Don’t forget to mask your own human smell. It’s entirely possible that with all the planning in the world, you’ll still end up upwind of a perfect buck. Eliminate your risk of missed opportunity by minimizing its ability to detect you.

Step #3: Do most of your hunting from morning to midday. In the morning, air at ground level rises. This lifts your scent away from where you are standing regardless of wind direction. But in the afternoon and evening, the air settles back down, and it brings your scent with it, mixing into the wind and alerting deer.

Step #4: In sloped terrain, choose a high spot in the morning. You’ll need to be above the deer travel route when thermals are rising. This means your scent is rising into the air above you, but they’re below and will not detect you.

Morning Thermals

Via deergear.com

Step #5: Choose a low spot in the afternoon. You need to make the change when air currents are moving downward. When the sun starts to set, you’ll notice the air cooling and moisture building. This is your time to change your stand location; shortly after, your scent will start pooling.

Evening Thermals

Via deergear.com

Step #6: Learn the exceptions to the rules of thermal rises and falls. Consider the rise and set of the sun - an east-facing slope will warm before a west-facing one in the morning, so the thermal rises hours before on the east than the west face. If the air hasn’t yet started warming because of the rise of the sun beyond a slope, you’ll want to be high until the sun rises sufficiently and the air begins to warm.

Step #7: Leave and enter the other stand appropriately. Once that temperature changes, come down from your stand, loop around, and enter the other stand from the opposite direction. (If you were on a north-facing slope, head south, for example).​

Tip #17: Growing Up Your Skill with Hunting Partners (1 week)

hunting partners

Sometimes a hunter prefers the solitude of a quiet dawn, but the truth is, we become better hunters when we hunt with partners. Just like deer, we’re really pack animals, and we learn better from one another, from others’ experiences and challenges, as well as having another set of eyes on the hunt. Use these tips to find a hunting partner for next season:

Step #1: Talk to your family, friends, coworkers, church members, and neighbors. Mention to them that you are looking for a hunting partner. You’ll usually get references, and may even find the right candidate by just in these conversations.

Step #2: Find partners in a hunter course. If you don’t know a lot of hunters, you can sign up for a firearms / bow safety course or a mentored hunt through your state’s department of natural resources.

Step #3: Look for the right person. It can’t be just anyone - you’ll want someone with the same interests and lifestyle, availability, physical fitness, and so on.

Step #4: Start the conversation. You’ll probably be able to narrow down your list of recommendations just from the names people give you and what people tell you about them. From the pool you have left over, reach out and get to know them.

Step #5: Take them for a test drive. You’ll want to see how well you get along and work together, particularly in stressful situations.

Step #6: ​Invite them to be your hunting partner. If all goes well, you’ll have invited several people on hunts and you can choose your favorite, then invite them to be a regular.

(Source: zerotohunt.com)

Now What ?

You don't have to apply all of these bow hunting deer tips in your next shooting or hunting. Just pick up one tip and practise on it now. Practise makes perfect, remember that.

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