- How to Start Deer Hunting | Finding a Good Hunting Spot, Gear & Learning Tips
How to Start Deer Hunting | Finding a Good Hunting Spot, Gear & Learning Tips
By: Dylan Hayward
Whitetail Deer are the most hunted animal in the United States, and it’s easy to see why. Deer hunting is a challenge unlike any other hunt. With their keen sense of smell and their paranoid personalities, harvesting a mature deer can be extremely difficult, but also very rewarding.
If you’re just now getting into deer hunting, it may seem overwhelming. It’s true that there is a lot that goes into deer hunting, however, with a few basic strategies, you can have a great baseline for this upcoming season.
Finding a Deer Hunting Spot
The most important part of deer hunting is scouting for a spot to hunt. There’s an old saying “hunt where the deer are”, and while that’s fairly general and possibly even a bit cliche, it couldn’t be more true. Finding a location that has heavy deer traffic is the key to your success for deer hunting, and there are some tips for finding that ideal spot.
Using digital maps such as OnX or HuntStand can be a great way to scout for prime deer spots by looking at the topography. You can easily identify pinch points, ridge shelfs, funnels and more hot spots for deer.
Searching for food sources can be a great way to identify where the deer activity is on a property. Whitetail deer are animals of habit and are motivated mostly by their stomach. Finding a thick oak ridge, open pastures, and agriculture fields are great places to set up to ambush a buck. Knowing how to put yourself between the deer and their food is crucial for finding deer without using bait or foot plots.
Trail cameras are a great way to scout a hunting spot and monitor the deer activity. A lot of the trail camera manufacturers offer cellular models that are great for scouting a property that might not be easy to visit consistently. Whenever I find a new piece of public hunting ground, I love setting up a Tactacam Reveal to see what might be roaming the area.
Picking the Right Gear
Whenever people tell me that they’re interested in getting into deer hunting, I always explain the importance of investing in the right gear. It’s easy to solely choose whatever is cheapest in regards to your gear, but your hunting will absolutely suffer because of it.
Read online reviews about your purchases, look for products that have great warranties, which shows that they stand by their products. GoWild has a great online store with some of the best hunting gear in the world, and each product is field tested by the GoWild team ensuring that they are solid.
Learn From Mistakes
Like starting anything new, you’re going to make mistakes while hunting. I’ve been hunting for over a decade and each season I make mistakes and learn something new. That’s the great part about hunting, you can never fully master it and it will always keep you on your toes.
Putting in as many treestand hours as possible is the best way to improve your skill set. Have patience and never get down if a hunt doesn’t go your way. Stay motivated and always be open to learning from other people.