A deer is there. Can you make the shot?
We view the rut as the magic time when deer will come to us and our luck will change. Sometimes this happens, but oftentimes it doesn’t and we still need to scout and hang new stands to find fresh action. If this is the case in your woods, heed this advice – carry a handsaw and visualize your shot opportunities.
When I hang a new stand on private ground, I always draw my bow and aim at any place I believe a buck could walk. I do this standing and sitting down. If limbs or foliage might get in the way of the shot sequence, I trim them. This is a simple step that might make the difference between making a shot and jockeying into position to try to make a shot.
This happens more often than most of us admit, but the buck that was supposed to follow the beaten deer trail 15 yards away doesn’t read the script. Instead, he walks through at 25 yards behind the stand, and it’s necessary to maneuver into an uncomfortable position to try to shoot. This tends to end poorly.
At the very least, when you’re in a new set, you can make sure that any feasible way you might have to draw and hold won’t put your top or bottom limbs in contact with any branches or leaves, which is a good step toward hitting what you’re aiming at – a pair of lungs.