Spring has arrived and that means it time to unpack your camouflage, dust off your climbing stand and get ready for archery season. That’s right, I said get ready for archery season. I know, archery season is 6 months away. It’s time for bagging turkey, and then there’s going to be groundhogs and even early goose season before you need to think about deer again.
Wrong! Spring is the perfect time to think deer. Conditions now are as close to those you will find during the early deer season and you need to take advantage of them.
One of the biggest problems with practicing later in the year, say during the heat of August, is that temperatures prevent practicing as you will hunt. With the mercury hitting the high 80s you will be tempted to practice in shorts and a tee shirt, rather that the heavy long sleeves, cargo pants and boots you will be wearing when the rut hits. This means that you may later encounter problems caused by sleeves getting in the way of your string, boots that change your stance etc. ,but not if you practice now. Cooler weather during April and early May closely resemble those you will find in the early deer season and this will allow for you to practice as you will hunt.
Another common problem with summer preparation is not getting an accurate picture of what conditions will be where you hang your stand. When you select a tree in August you will be doing so during the heaviest foliage of the year. This means you will be guessing when it comes to determining your fields of fire, where the best trails are and even where deer may hide closest to your location.
If you select a location now you will see many of the same conditions before the foliage blooms as you will after the leaves drop. You will also see what vegetation may provide cover, for you and the deer, throughout the season. Most importantly, you will be able to observe the trails after a winter’s worth of use – the trails that the deer use during periods of pattern rather than when disrupted by other hunters.
So, get out there and see things now as they will be 6 months from now.
Good luck and good hunting!