For those of you archery antler hunters that Hunt Hard like myself, it feels like the season was months ago and the next season is forever away. But in actuality, it is what you do in the “off season” (if there is such a thing) that really makes the difference.
Now is the time that a lot of guys are setting on the couch and dreaming instead of putting boots on the ground and preparing. I am a MO native and spend the majority of my outdoor office time here. We have a long archery season and we see a lot of environmental changes from the opening in Sept. to the close in Jan. One of the largest changes we experience and need to plan for is the foliage we hunt in. During the early season the greenery is lush and full and provides a lot of cover and concealment. As the season progresses and the weather turns, the tree canopy and ground cover start to open up. It is very common to have a stand set and placed perfectly in late summer that is fully exposed in the dead of winter. It can be very detrimental and wasteful to spend valuable hunting time, which we strive so hard for, stumbling around the timber and laying down scent with every step to find a new tree or area to move a stand to compete with the changing conditions. Now is the time to be out exploring the area looking for that perfect set once all the leaves are on the ground. You will get a true look at the open-air environment that you won’t get when setting stands in summer. If you are fortunate enough to have extra stands or ground blinds, it can be very beneficial to place stands for early and late season hunting. If not, you can have your trees and areas picked to move stands once winter sets in. This little time invested now will pay dividends in the future. And if you’re lucky, you might even come across a shed or two. Until next time; Hunt Hard Or Stay In Bed.
The Last Desperado