Among all hunted wildlife in North America, the deer is the most commonly pursued.
Deer also are one of the most difficult animals to stalk. Their noses are keenly in tune with their surrounding scents, their eyes always fixed by what lurks around them. Most of the time, you cannot expect to walk unto the woods with your firearm and just happen to see and shoot a deer. I only wish it was that simple. No, this must be done with patience and excellence.
The best times to stalk and hunt deer is when they are feeding, either early in the morning or right before dark. When a deer is feeding, it typically turns its head from the wind, so it can keep watch for any predators approaching. Yes, we hunters are predators to the deer. It also relies on its nose to sniff any predators nearby.
First, purchasing and using any sort of hunting scent-remover will be ideal. Using scent-less deodorant and soap also is recommend. Of course, wearing camo that blends in with the deer’s natural surroundings will be good as well.
While stalking deer, always keep your eyes peeled. Never get distracted and never look in non-targeted areas. Always look around for any wildlife movement. Also, look for any deer footprints within the snow or mud. That might lead you to the deer’s feeding or nesting grounds. If you find an area with deer activity, stay there. Signs of a good stalking location will include scat, deer tracks, water, and any source of food. Get 25 to 50 yards away from the deer’s area. Stay there and keep watch for any deer activity.
If on the ground, once you spot a deer, slowly and quietly crawl toward it. Keep your head down. Crawling on your hands and knees may be quieter. If the deer sees you, stay motionless and be as quiet as you possibly can. If you can remain still and quiet, the deer will find no danger and continue its routine. However, if you make a noticeable movement or sound, it will run off. Also, try to refrain from being nervous. People tend to shake when nervous. If you shake too much, the deer will take note and run off.
When you find yourself close enough to the deer, take good aim. Again, try to be as motionless as possible. If you think you’re in a bad position, quietly re-position yourself. Aim your scope or sight and take your shot. Hopefully, you now have that wonderful, prized deer that you have been waiting all season to hunt.