Yes, it’s summer, but prep for fall now
With 90-degree daytime temps, it’s easy to fall into the trap of putting off tasks related to hunting season. It’s fine to take a break, bask in the sunlight and relax a little. But there are a few pressing items that hunters should take care of now to make sure they are ready when fall rolls around.
First and foremost, 2020-21 Pennsylvania hunting licenses are now available for purchase, and of critical importance, the first round of antlerless licenses goes on sale Monday July 13th. That means thousands of traditional pink envelopes will be processed by county treasurers statewide and if you’d like your top choice for a doe hunting location, your envelope had better be one of them.
July is also a good month to upgrade gear, check equipment, and make adjustments as necessary. Do some light scouting, make sure treestands are still in good working order, and start to shoot your bow. I’ve enjoyed a few evenings at the local archery club, social distancing on the 3-D course and honing my skills.
I’m also making it a goal to get my butt to the rifle range this year and put in more time with my firearms, since I had some less than impressive shooting performances late last season. It’s easy to get complacent and put that off, especially when your goal is to tag out with the bow, but you never know when you’ll need to take up the gun and still be efficient. November is not the time to make sure you’re dialed in — a lesson I learned the hard way.
There’s plenty of other things to do, too. Take stock of the freezer, see what needs to be used up to make room for another hunting season, and plan your meals accordingly. Trim some shooting lanes and access routes or build a blind. If you’re a waterfowler, practice your calling, clean your decoys and shoot some sporting clays. September will be here before you know it.
Summer is definitely a time to kick back and take it easy, but you can do so while chipping away at some oft-neglected tasks essential for success a few months from now. Yes, it’s summer, but the time to prep for fall is now.