How to hunt the wariest deer in the woods
Strategy 7: Avoid other hunters
The ultimate strategy for hunting Booner bucks is to find properties where there is zero hunter pressure. Simply, hunters who find their own secret haunts have the highest probability of shooting breeder bucks.
Even though hunters may share the same goal, they don’t all approach it with the same strategy and attention to detail. Even one hunter can have a hugely negative impact on daytime whitetail movement on a property if he’s careless about scent management or minimizing noise and movement.
The ideal scenario is to have two or three substantial properties—500-plus acres each—where deer have a significant forest for daytime shelter, ample food resources and a water supply. If you don’t already have such a whitetail haven to yourself, do some scouting. And it never hurts to simply ask landowners or farmers if they allow hunting on their property, or if anyone is already hunting it. If they’re uncomfortable with gun hunting, they might be open to having you bowhunt on their land.
Tactical tips: Once you’ve gained permission to hunt a property that hasn’t been pressured by other hunters, it’s time to develop a scouting plan. Google Earth can quickly provide a visual of the land, allowing you to see where the deer might bed down, travel and feed. Follow this up by hiking the property with the aerial printout in hand, making note of any rubs, scrapes, tracks or trails you discover.
To determine the calibre of any bucks in the area, place a couple of trail cameras near active sign, especially scrapes. No-glow infrared cams are best for not disturbing the deer, because there’s no flash when a picture is taken. Some models can even instantaneously transmit photos to your smartphone or home computer. But when it comes to actually putting a trophy buck on the ground, you’re still going to have to do things the old-fashioned way, and that means matching wits with the wariest animal in the fall woods.