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July: Time to Set Stands

July: Time to Set Stands

By Bob Humphrey and Yamaha Outdoors

It’s July during some of the longest and hottest days of the year. Deer season, in most cases, is still months away. What better time to set your stands? It might sound a bit crazy, but right now is actually a great time to get some of your larger treestands in for the coming season.

First and most importantly, whatever disturbance you cause will be long forgotten by the time hunting season rolls around. We all know how keen the whitetail’s sense of smell is. At the slightest hint of human odor they’ll vacate the area immediately and might not return for hours, days or even weeks. If you wait until a week or two before the season, it could be too late.

By going now, you don’t need to be as concerned about how much you disturb the area. That can make the job considerably easier if you have a lot of equipment to haul in or have a long way to haul it. I can bring my small lock-on stands later and my climber when I hunt. But I try to install my ladder stands at this time of year, especially my two-man ladders.

There’s more than one reason they’re called two-man stands. In addition to being able to support two people, it takes that many to carry them in and erect them, unless you have some equipment. That’s where the Yamaha Rhino comes in. I can break my stands into sections, strap them on the Rhino and haul them way back into areas no foot-bound hunter would ever consider bringing a large stand or blind.

Load the gas, oil, chain saw and other tools into the Rhino and head for the hills. Bring a cooler with lunch and some cold drinks and you can stay all day, get more work done and potentially only have to make one trip. It might bother the deer initially, but they’ll return eventually, particularly if the area has the right food and cover.

Setting stands early pretty much requires that you already have a destination in mind. That means going back over your notes from last year, assuming you kept notes, or trying to recall where you saw the hottest sign or the most deer. Remember where you saw that big buck last year? It was too late to haul a big stand in during hunting season without blowing everything out. But get it in now and you could be sitting on a deer hunting gold mine come opening day.

Editor’s Note: For more tips from our partners at Yamaha, visit their website.

Polarizing the Deer Woods
As a longtime fisherman, I've discovered that a piece of my standard fishing equipment is very useful in certain hunting situations. Several years ago, while guiding my son on a deer hunt, we had difficulty seeing into the brushy woods due to the h...

Vanilla on the Rocks?
Many deer hunters have caught on to how effective vanilla is as a curiosity and cover scent. Vanilla-based sprays can be expensive, so I started making my own.

The Stick in the Eye
I recently read Buckmasters Tip of the Week about how flashlights save lives. This reminded me of something that happened to me last year while walking to my treestand in the dark.

Look Out Behind You!
We've all hunted stand locations where deer will approach from any direction. It's incredibly difficult to monitor several areas at once, especially if a trail is directly behind you.

Just Look at the Time!
Part of ethical hunting is being fully aware of legal shooting time and adhering to the rules, but keeping up with the time can be a challenge for hunters.

Step Up to Your Climber
Here's a dilemma most hunters have dealt with when setting up a climbing stand: You're scouting a new area and finally locate the right tree to give you the perfect vantage point.

Fishing For Bucks?
We often think of fishermen as hunters seeking game in the water, but why not reverse this way of thinking? I like to bring my Ugly Stik ice fishing rod into the treestand with me. Some of you might think this is a weird tactic, but it works.

Spray Those Platforms and Steps
Have you ever noticed how even a small amount of moisture can make your treestand steps and stand platforms slippery? Rain, frost and even dew can cause this, and especially if mud is stuck to your boots. Mud can make your steps slick as a whistle...

Flashlights Save Lives
I edit hundreds of stories written by hunters each year and am constantly amazed at how many describe walking to their treestands in the dark with no flashlight. This is one of the most dangerous things a hunter can do because other hunters only s...

Dry Pull Your Bowstring
When I get to my stand, I do a dry pull of my bowstring. This means I attach my release and draw my bow then let it back down quietly. This simple measure helps take the popping noises out of a cold string and bow limbs before an animal arrives.
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