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Scent, schment?

Old 12-15-2018, 12:07 AM
  #1  
Spike
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Default Scent, schment?

My hunt this year has made me question my previous assumptions about the importance of eliminating and covering scent. I still believe that it’s important to hunt the wind and to avoid being upwind of deer, but…

I spent every morning this past rifle season carefully avoiding sweating, using scent eliminators, not smoking in the woods, etc. And then one morning… a morning that will live in infamy… everything changed. We got started late, so I didn’t use scent eliminators. In fact, I didn’t even shower that morning. Then the biscuit one of my hunting buddies gave me that morning started to seriously disagree with my stomach. I mean… seriously disagree. By the time I was 20 yards from my stand, it took me 15 minutes to get from that point to actually being seated in the stand because I had to stop every 10 feet to pause and engage in all-out war with my butthole! I wondered how I was going to get through the morning.

Now I usually carry my heavy coat in my bag and just wear my woolen undershirt into the stand so that I’m not sweating. As soon as I’m seated, though, I’ll put the jacket on. Well it was about 30 or below that morning, and I never put my coat on because I was sweating constantly 30 minutes later due to the this epic battle with my GI tract. I was beginning to worry about getting deathly ill at that point; sweating in your underpants in 30 degrees is not good. Wave after wave of battle ensued… each time, I just barely held the line and prevented the levies from breaking. Finally, I realized it was hopeless. I climbed down from the stand and did my business not 20 feet from the stand. Decided to just kick the TP under a log. One of my greatest accomplishments in life so far is the fact that I didn’t get any dirtiness on myself, my boots, or my clothes that morning. I don’t know how I did it.

The relief was tremendous, but so was the understanding that I was totally busted. It was broad daylight at that point. So I said, “Screw it, I’m busted.” I didn’t make any particular effort to be quiet when I climbed back into the stand and put my coat on. Leaned back and even lit a cigarette, fully intending to ride the morning out without seeing a single deer. And then… an hour later, I got my only buck of the season… with a cigarette hanging out of the side of my mouth and my business lying on the ground not 20 feet from where I was.

Scent, schment?
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:33 AM
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Scent is still important but hunting the wind kind of makes that ok. Sounds like you need to watch what you eat before heading out. I use plain shampoo all he time and do not de-scent any clothes, but my biggest thing is using unscented deodorant. The stuff I like, Degree arctic edge, might as well be advertising "Hey, there is a man over there." I use Mitchum Unscented deodorant the day before hunting or all week when I am off.

Deer don't know what human poop or pee smells like. Guys make mock scrapes and pee on them and bucks still check them out. Pumping gas before you go, never. The cigarette, you just got lucky on being downwind.

Anyway, glad you got your buck. Scentlok and cover scents are a waste of money. I had to point this out to my daughter when she started. She showered, scent free everything, used spray on cover scents. Now, a deer's nose has more receptors than a dogs. She went hunting over my buddies and I went over to see him with my dog. She calls me to come get the dog. She trailed her from the parking lot to her stand while I was not watching her. covered in cover scent, freshly washed in in her rubber boots. After being busted every time a deer got downwind still I told her, they only safe scent strategy is being downwind.

Last edited by archeryrob; 12-15-2018 at 01:35 AM.
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:46 AM
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I've got a few uncle's who have all taken 100+ deer and probably had a cigarette lit for about 85 of them each.

I used to buy some scent spray stuff and use it, but I don't even do that now. I try to have a few spots picked out then hunt the wind. If the wind is bad and I don't have a spot picked out, I hunt the wind.

It's worked for me. And my bank account doesn't have to worry about all that $$$$$$$ clothing.

-Jake

Last edited by Bocajnala; 12-15-2018 at 02:39 AM.
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:48 AM
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I do make it a point to shower at least once a week though

-Jake
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Old 12-15-2018, 01:50 AM
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It sure enough makes you wonder. A buddies lease I hunt occasionally has both Boar and Roe Deer.
The Boar had been moving right down the border from the neighboring lease on a regular basis. I figured if I shot a Boar it was going to run onto the neighbors lease and cause issues I didn't want to deal with. The trail they were using was slightly uphill so I sprayed a bush near my high seat with rotten fish oil, 50-60 yards inside the lease I was hunting, hoping to lure them off their regular track, figuring the scent would go uphill. The absolute best antlered Roe Buck I'd ever seen showed up, walked up to that bush, sniffed and rubbed that bush for half an hour.
I take basic scent precautions, but have changed. I now favor cover scents. Cheap essential oils work well, a little goes a long ways. Lovage and Spruce work well.
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Old 12-15-2018, 05:17 AM
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The only scent control I use is watching the wind. Earlier this year I took my 93rd deer. I guess my method works, at least for me.
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Old 12-15-2018, 06:08 AM
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You said rifle hunt so how far was the deer when you got it ? When I rifle hunted I could care less about scent control but since I now only bow hunt I pay much more strict attention to scent control and wind direction. I have had many bucks in easy gun range but try getting them at 20 to 40 yards with not scent control and I'm not talking young deer I'm talking the big old buck you only see at dark.
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Old 12-15-2018, 08:18 AM
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I haven’t used scent cover/eliminator in over a decade. Have taken a couple dozen deer in a handful of states in that time with rifles, revolvers, and bows. Shot my buck last year at 30yrds from my blind. Shot my buck this year at 130, then the doe and her fawns with him ran TOWARDS my blind, confused by the suppressor, and hung up about 10yrds from me. They walked past my blind on MY inbound trail 7yrds from my blind, walking the same track as my gumboots an hour earlier.

Keep the wind in your face or in your ear, life is a lot easier than folks might lead on.
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Old 12-15-2018, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Timbrhuntr View Post
You said rifle hunt so how far was the deer when you got it ?
I'd estimate about 75 yards.
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Old 12-17-2018, 11:23 AM
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I had 5 shooter bucks at that distance this year and as soon as they crossed into where the wind was blowing my scent they stopped then headed for the hills. Hard to get a smart old buck in bow range even with scent control.
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