By Dale Christian
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.
As most deer hunters know, deer tend to be most active the first and last hours of daylight. Constantly looking at your cell phone or pulling up your sleeve to look at your watch can be very annoying and frustrating.
Having to dig for time devices also adds unwanted movement at a time of day you should be totally still and focused on what is going on in the woods around you. That extra movement or loss of concentration could cost you the buck of a lifetime.
My first suggestion is to purchase a small digital timepiece that you can attach to your quiver, backpack, stand railing or other piece of hunting equipment.
I like the type that comes with Velcro and stick-on tape on the back for easy attachment and removal. These are commonly found in the automotive section of most stores and are not very expensive. Make sure to get a model that will illuminate.
My second suggestion is to utilize your cell phone's silent alarm system. Simply set your cell phone to "vibrate only" and set it to go off when legal shooting time begins and ends.
By doing this, you'll always be aware of the legal shooting time and avoid the risk of a breaking the law or having a guilty conscience.
A simple clock and vibrating cell alarm have certainly helped me stay focused on the task at hand without wondering if I was shooting within my state's legal time specifications.