July 02, 2009
Buck Bedrooms - 5
by Mark Kayser
Archery whitetail seasons start in two months or less. Do you have all your preseason chores finished? Now is the time to make your major intrusion so any mature buck has ample time to forget about you tromping through his bedroom, dining room and mass transit system.
What constitutes a major chore? Anything to do with setting up a treestand or a ground blind ambush location is a major chore. You're going to be seen, heard and smelled so why not give your intrusion away early and have everything ready for a sneaky entrance on opening day? Set up a couple of ambush locations now and save a couple to set up if you see a different pattern emerging during the season.
1. Stand Setup
Despite most companies leaning toward light and quiet treestand setups, there still is some rattling, banging and clanking that takes place when you put up a stand. In addition, getting a 20-foot ladder stand into the woods often requires the use of an ATV. Get several of your favorite ambush sites set up now and get the noise out of the way.
2. Trimming The Hedges
It's difficult not to leave scent behind when you're trimming shooting lanes and walking through waist-high brush. Get it done now and let the rain wash away your presence later. Trim your shooting lanes now when foliage is at its utmost and be sure not to overharvest the foliage camouflaging your treestand setup. In addition, make sure to clip and trim any underbrush that may rub up against your legs and waist while going to, or from your stand site. These innocent-looking saplings can hold scent and give you away during the season.
3. Mowing The Yard
If you have a weedeater or better yet, a tractor-operated deck mower, use it to make a patch of least resistance. Deer love to follow easy trails in and out of the woods. Mowing or clearing a path to and from your stand, or along a field edge is a great way to entice deer to your location. They'll appreciate the easy route and nip the new growth along the way.
4. Gardening Chores
Finally, if you have a remote stand location in deep timber, plant a mini food plot, or several around your stand. You can use an ATV and a drag or even a hand-operated rake to get the chore done. Sprinkle some seed and fertilizer on the tiny plot and you may just attract a big buck afraid to leave the timber before darkness.
Summer is a time to loaf before the rush of the hunt, but don't let the opportunity to get some preseason chores done slip away. If you have any other summer setup chores you find helpful, please share them with us.