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First Time Hunter... Anything I should know?

Old 08-12-2009, 03:16 PM
  #21  
Ava
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I'm going to buy a hunting suit <I don't have one> and wash it in baking soda a couple times and then after it dries, put it in a bag with leaves and dirt as some of the hunters here suggested in another thread. Seems like a pretty good idea.

I'm also going to stop washing my hair a few days before just to make sure I get all the fruity/smelly smells out from my conditioner. I'll look for baking soda deoderant too.

Dad says he always packs an extra socks when he goes. Says once his feet get cold, he's done so the socks save him. I found insole foot warmers at WalMart the other day along with Super HOTHANDS hand & Body warmers that stay warm for up to 18 hours. I'm going to go pick up several more pairs of the insole foot warmers this Friday. I hate cold feet. I'm a chronic sufferer. I will also be getting more of the hand and body warmers too!!!

I don't think I'll hunt with a stand this year because dad doesn't. He has before but he stays more on the ground now a days and I think I'll be better off on the ground for now while I learn the sport. In a few years, I may change my mind as I get a feel for the hunting.

Does anyone use UnderArmor? My SIL says it's better than long underware and let's your skin breathe better and you stay drier. That there is an investment in itself but it seems it would last from season to season. I dunno.
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Old 08-12-2009, 03:43 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by driftrider
It's probably a .257 Roberts or a .257 Weatherby Mag (opposite ends of the quarter bore spectrum, but both will certainly do the job on deer). There is no .237 caliber. And don't worry about it. You're learning. If you want to really melt your brain, consider that the .38 Special and .357 Magnum cartridges both use the same diameter bullet. Or that the .44 Magnum is actually a 43 caliber (0.429-.430").

Mike
Okay it's 243 Winchester, bolt action, with a 3x9 varible scope Remmington model 788.

I bet that sounds alot better huh? Still learning... I'll get it after a few mistakes... It's how you learn.
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Old 08-12-2009, 03:46 PM
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I won't jump your case for not knowing all the gun lingo. We all start somewhere. What I actually respect is that you're willing to admit that you know you don't know.

Mike
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Old 08-12-2009, 03:57 PM
  #24  
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That's one of the reasons I came here. I want to learn. I'll admit when I'm wrong. Always have. It's who I am. I'll make mistakes and own them, even if they are embarrasing.

Gotta start some where. Dad never really taught me alot about his guns. I want to learn now. I want to start buying guns of my own too so I don't have to say, Hey dad, can I borrow....
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Old 08-12-2009, 03:58 PM
  #25  
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Much has been covered, but don't forget to have fun ..
There will always be more to learn when it comes to hunting/wildlife behavior, but over time and as you learn more, you will only become more interested. O yea, wear a saftey harness every time when hunting from a stand!

Good luck to you
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Old 08-12-2009, 04:41 PM
  #26  
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You guys have been great! Thank you for your advices.

Today at work, my newphew and I sat on the handicapped ramp and watched a fawn eat corn on the cob. I slowly walked down the ramp, little by little very quietly. Every time that baby looked at me, I froze and it'd go back to eating as if I weren't standing there. I got about 25 yrds away from it before she got spooked. It was fun. Big Daddy wasn't around but I saw Mama or an older one was close by. I took pics but I have to save them yet.

I've only seen the hind end of Big Daddy but the nephew says he's a 12 point. I told him, I'm sack'in him right in front of ya! I laugh at him when he says Na-ah!. Ya-ahhh! <If I don't get my buck with dad... 8 point or more in 2A OR 6 point or more in 2C>
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Old 08-12-2009, 04:46 PM
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The things it takes to be a good hunter is patience. You might have to stay in the blind or stand from dawn till dusk to see or hopefully shoot that big buck .

Welcome to the great sport of hunting and the forum .
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Old 08-12-2009, 04:54 PM
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Thanks for the welcome fishinty. Patience! Yes! I am quite aware that I may not shoot anything this year. Anything's possible though, either way. I'll just be that much more better at it next year. I remeber just two years ago, dad didn't get anything. I'm sure it's disappointing though. Least I will get experience if nothing else.

Glad I found the forum.
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Old 08-13-2009, 04:19 AM
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Here is an article on Human Scent and Deer, from my book The Complete Whitetail Addict's Manual. It might help.

Avoiding Detection by Scent
Scent gives away many hunters, and they never realize it. Most hunters are careful to wear camouflage, go to their stand in the dark or when the animals are not expected to be near it, and they are quiet when they approach their hunting sites and while they hunt. Because they don't see game at these times some hunters believe they have gone undetected. However, they may have been smelled by the game, either from the scent they left behind, or from the scent they gave off at the stand. Any big game animal that smells human or other unnatural scents in its home range will become wary or avoid the area where it made contact with the scent. Because scents go directly from the nose to the amigdula, which sends stress hormones to the body without being interpreted by the brain, any animal that smells a scent that they relate with danger causes the deer to take immediate action, by either freezing or fleeing. Scent left behind by hunters has caused many deer and elk to avoid the area where they smelled the scent, or to become nocturnal.

To be successful as a big game hunter you must take precautions so the game will not detect you by the scent you give off or leave behind. I have seen hunters place their clothes in a plastic bag to protect them from contamination, take them out of the bag once they get to camp, put them on, and then wear them while eating and sitting around the campfire (collecting cigarette and wood smoke, bacon grease, spices, alcohol and other odors). I have also watched in amazement as hunters wear their boots when they stop to eat at the local restaurant and gas station. Wearing the same boots they intend to hunt in they get out of their vehicle, step onto the gas and oil covered concrete, and fill up the gas tank, sometimes spilling gas on their hands, clothes and boots. Next they go into the restaurant (filled with its wonderful odors that cling to their clothes and boots), order a meal, and head for the rest room (where they step in Lysol or detergent washed floors, urine and cigarette butts). All those smells travel with the hunters to the field where they will be immediately discovered by even the dumbest yearling.

Body and Clothes Preparation
There are several ways to keep from being scented by game; avoid, eliminate, suppress, cover up, and block. You can avoid being smelled by staying down wind of the animal. This is not always possible, especially when the wind swirls or the thermals change, so you must take other precautions. You can eliminate the source of some human odors (sweat and bacteria) on your body, by using antibacterial/deodorizing body soaps such as Scent Killer or Scent Shield. To eliminate odors on your clothes wash them in unscented detergents designed specifically for hunters. After you have eliminated the source of most human scent from your body and clothing, you can suppress more of the remaining odors (that build up while you walk to your hunting area or at your hunting site) by using Scent Killer, Scent Shield or other body and clothes sprays.

You can also cover up any human or unnatural odors with another stronger, natural scent. Many companies offer earth, sage, pine and cow urine cover scent. Each of these scents should be used in areas where they would naturally occur. Use pine scent in areas where pines occur, but not in oak woods or agricultural areas where there are no pines. Coverup products that can be worn in almost every situation are earth scents and cow urine. Most animals are familiar with cow urine, often in conjunction with human odor, and smelling the two scents together does not alarm them. I have used this product successfully for elk and deer in the Rocky Mountains, and for deer in the wilderness, agricultural, and even the urban areas of Minnesota.

Hands and Feet
Hunters often forget two areas that transmit a lot of human and other odors; their hands and feet. Very seldom do I see hunters (including my own clients) wearing gloves as they walk through the woods while they push branches, grass and weeds out of their way. Every time they touch an object they leave scent behind, scent that can be detected by the game. I always wash my hands thoroughly, spray them with an odor killer, and put on gloves before I hunt. If I intend to put out scent or hang a dripper, put out a decoy or make a mock rub or scrape, I wear rubber gloves so I don't contaminate the area. When I remove my gloves for shooting I take the odor killer out of my jacket or day pack and re-spray my hands, clothing, the inside and outside of my hat and my boots.

Most hunters take the precaution of wearing rubber bottom boots to eliminate odors but, they don't realize that the boots themselves may produce odors. New rubber gives off an unnatural odor that can alert deer, elk and other game. Before wearing new boots they should be cured in the sun for two weeks to eliminate the odor. If you wear leather boots, or boots with leather uppers and water proof them, the scent can be detected. Deer and elk will spook at the scent of mink oil and other products. I use Sno Seal beeswax to waterproof and preserve leather because it is a naturally occurring substance that does not alarm game animals. I also use silicone on my boots and clothing, and have never seen an adverse reaction to silicone if it is applied a few days before hunting. I use all-rubber knee high boots from La Crosse if the weather is nice. When it gets cold I switch to La Crosse pack boots treated with Sno Seal and Silicone Water Sealer. When I wear nylon upper Danner boots I treat them with the same products. To help eliminate any foot odor I sprinkle baking soda in the boots on a regular basis and wear Odor Eaters with polypropylene socks to wick away any moisture. I also spray my boots on both the top and bottom with an odor killing spray before hunting.

Human Urine
While conducting a mock scrape study Dr. Ben Koerth used human urine as the only scent in some of his mock scrapes. His game cameras recorded bucks using these mock scrapes, and urinating in them. His research showed that buck visits to mock scrapes dosed with human urine were "not statistically different" from those on which he used buck urine. Koerth told me that the mock scrapes with human urine attracted more deer than the mock scrapes with doe scent, and stated, "There is no indication that human urine scared deer at all."

Overkill
There is no question that the way I prepare myself for a hunt is overkill, but it works. But, because I saw 469 deer in 74 days one year (many of them under 20 yards) I believe in my system. and am not about to change how I prepare to hunt. In this case I live by the motto, "If it ain't broke don't fix it." Whether I am hunting elk and mule deer in the Rockies or whitetails and bear in the Midwest I prepare my clothes and my body the same way. I wash my clothes in odorless detergent that does not contain UV brighteners then hang them outside to dry. I never put my camouflage clothing in the dryer. The revolving action of the dryer is abrasive and wears down the outer layer of the fabric causing the colors to fade, and the camouflage to be less effective.

After the clothes dry I put them in a plastic bag or directly into my waterproof duffel bag. In the bag I place some of the vegetation from the area I am hunting. When I am in the Rockies I put in pine needles and aspen leaves. When I am hunting in the Midwest I use acorns and oak, maple and other leaves. I always have dirt in the bag. If I hunt out of state the first thing I do when I get to camp is put local dirt in the bag. I don't care if the clothes are dirty as long as they don't smell of human or unnatural odors, and do smell like the surroundings. The bag, with my clothes and boots, is kept outside, where it is not likely to pick up unwanted odors. Once I get to camp I hang the clothes outside to air out, and pick up the local smells. I donít air it out near the fire or kitchen.

The day of the hunt I get up early, eat a bland breakfast (usually cereal and milk but sometimes toast and peanut butter), then take my shower. If I have eaten bacon, eggs, pancakes and syrup, or eggs with ketchup, I wash off any lingering odors. I use an antibacterial, odorless hunter's soap, making sure my hair, armpits and groin are clean. I also brush my teeth with baking soda. Then I spray my skin with an odor killer, put on my underwear and spray it, using liberal amounts of the odor killer on my armpits and groin.

I dress in clean clothing (not the ones I intend to hunt in), climb in the truck (that was filled up earlier so I don't contaminate my hands, boots or clothing), and drive to my hunting spot. Only when I am at the hunting area do I open my duffel bag, take my charcoal suit out of the sealed bag I keep it in, take off my traveling clothes, and put on the charcoal suit. Next I put on my camouflage and boots (which by this time smell like the local vegetation and dirt) and spray my clothes with odor killing spray, making sure I cover the tops and bottoms of my boots, my gloves, and the inside and outside of my hat (because I often sweat there). Only then am I ready to step into the woods.

If you have more questions, feel free to ask me here, or e-mail me direct at [email protected]. I'll do what I can to help you.


God bless,

T.R.
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Old 08-13-2009, 04:37 AM
  #30  
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Ava, while scent is a very important part of deer hunting it's a little different here in Pa come rifle season. Of course in archery season while the deer are still traveling natural travel routes and not being pressured scent is of the utmost importance. You'll find however that come rifle season in Pa the deer are being pushed all over the place by the pumpkin brigade (all of the hunters wearing orange). It's not that the deer don't care about scent as much but rather that they are primarily concerned with constantly moving as hunters push them. I typically just shower the night before, get up the next day and put on my clothes. All I do is keep my clothes in a duffel bag and make sure I don't wash them in detergent.

As far as what to remember I would say your top gear priorities should be good boots (don't go cheap on these, you'll regret it), a drag rope, a knife, flashlight and hot seat. If you get cold easy you'll be glad you have one of these.
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