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The Cure for 'Rut Hands'
By Tim H. Martin

The Cure for 'Rut Hands'

When I think back to the time I shot and field dressed my first buck — nearly 35 years ago — I can still remember the frustrations of trying to get the stink off my hands.

Mind you, these were extra funky rut hands, because I’d somehow managed to grab the buck’s hock glands while dragging it out of the woods, the classic rookie mistake.

So my hands were off to a bad start, even before diving into the whole gutting thing, which involved perforating the buck’s paunch, popping the pee sack and forgetting to use rubber gloves, among other first-timer errors.

Two nights later, the funk would wake me up from a deep sleep whenever my hands got too close to my nose. The smell made it hard for me to eat, too.

No matter how many times I washed my hands with soap or dishwashing detergent, I couldn’t get rid of my rut hands.

Three days later, a friend dropped by with a big mess of north Alabama crappie that needed filleting. I helped him clean them and told him I didn’t mind stinking up my hands with fish if it would help override the stink of hock glands.

He asked me if I’d ever tried shaving cream to remove deer funk. I told him I hadn’t, so after finishing up with the fish, he showed me how he took a can of Colgate shaving cream, squirted a generous portion on his hands and wrists, and let them soak for a minute before rinsing clean.

Much to my surprise, not only was the crappie smell gone, but my rut hands were gone as well!

My buddy explained how the shaving cream’s alcohol content, chemicals and fragrances break down bacterial odors quickly, while masking smells at the same time.

This shaving cream tip has been a part of my game cleaning routine ever since, and I’ve found it also works on fowl, rodent and onion hands.


Duct Tape - An Old Army Tip
I learned a lot about how to stay quiet while I was in the Army. In the field, we constantly refined our equipment in ways that allowed us to move silently, without giving away our position to the enemy.
 

Old Socks = Arm Guards and More!
Here are a few ideas for turning your old, wool hunting socks into something useful. You'll want to save them for a multitude of purposes you can use in the field; even that pair with holes in the toes.
 

Deer Drop Off Tactic
One of the advantages hunters have in areas frequented by vehicles and farming equipment is that deer are often completely unafraid of machinery. They are used to seeing and hearing equipment go by, so watching a truck, tractor or ATV ramble past ...
 

Old Deer Calendars = Educational Targets
At the end of the year, don't throw away your deer calendar. You know, the ones with the beautiful whitetail photos for each month of the year. Deer calendars are perfect for teaching youth or beginners shot placement and various hunting situation...
 

How to Prevent Cold Weather Firearm Condensation
When temperatures plummet to well below freezing, one of the most common mistakes hunters make is bringing their firearms indoors at night. The indoor temperature and moisture in the air are vastly different than those outdoors, and condensation fo...
 

Use Binoculars as a Camera Zoom Lens
While muzzleloader hunting in Ohio in 2010, I witnessed extremely wide 10-pointer bedding down in the rain. It plopped down about 70 yards behind and to the side of my ground blind in an area out of my shooting lane.
 

Cutting Down On "The Fidgets"
The challenges for taking a child hunting, especially for the first time, are vastly different from those of an adult beginner. Anyone who's tried to sit quietly with a youngster can tell you about the fidgets.
 

Set "Big Picture" Pre-Season Goals
As a female who has been hunting only for a few years, I've found that setting reasonable goals prior to each season has helped me develop my passion for hunting over time. If someone had told me to make shooting a monster buck my biggest pre-seas...
 

Election Sign Target Holder
One of the cheapest and easiest target holders I’ve found is a small election sign. I’m talking about the kind with metal frame and slide-in signs made of corrugated plastic. To use, make sure you have a safe backstop, then push the metal stakes i...
 

Watch Your Stinky Watch!
Hunters spend a lot of money and time trying to eliminate human odor and stay scent-free. We shampoo with special soaps, dress from head-to-toe in Scent-Lok, launder our clothes with odorless detergent and hose ourselves down with scent-eliminatio...
 
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