Most hunting clubs are typically set up with permanent shooting houses or blinds overlooking every greenfield and food plot. These stands are effective, but they get hunted — a lot.
As the season progresses and hunters have shot several deer from these structures, whitetails become wise to what is going on. They become leery.
You’ve probably noticed deer begin to watch your hideaways, often holding back and observing shooting houses from just inside the woods before entering the field. They are checking first to see if anyone is in the blind before emerging onto the field.
Mature does are especially difficult to deal with as they inspect your blinds. This is because they have been on the fields multiple times while shots rang out, and being a sentinel has become their job.
If these old girls detect even the slightest movement from inside the walls, they will spook and send all the other deer off the field with a snort or two.
This is when you can take advantage of their routine and curiosity, and their focus on the permanent stands.
My trick is to set up a secondary, portable stand across the field, strategically located to ambush deer that are used to watching for human movement they normally catch inside the shooting houses.
Make sure your new stand location is downwind from the deer, yet far enough from the old stand so you won’t be easily noticed, preferably just inside the woods.
It’s best to set up your secondary stand before the season starts and save it until later in the season, but NOT using it is hard to do. And it’s inviting to other club members if it’s just sitting there.
If you own a climber or other portable stand, there’s nothing wrong with erecting it during the season, but a pre-season setup is optimal.
Another great reason to put a secondary stand on your greenfields is to have another option for those days when you arrive to the field and the wind is coming from the wrong direction.
A climber is the perfect tool-of-choice for calling an audible when the wind has shifted, because they are easily set up at a moment’s notice.
Again, it’s best to have a specific tree picked out pre-season. Trimming limbs and shooting lanes in the summertime will have prepared it so all you have to do is slap on a climber and go.
I hope my tips about secondary stands will help you gain an advantage when the deer turn spooky in the late season. But it helps to do your strategizing and tree selection well before the season begins.
Editor’s Note: If you have a unique or special tip you’d like to share with Buckmasters fans, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org and, if chosen, we will send you a cap signed by Jackie Bushman, along with a knife!
Read Recent Tip of the Week:
• 10 Pre-Season Crossbow Maintenance Tips: Crossbow hunters, here are 10 pre-season tips for keeping your instrument in tip-top shape!