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Tips for first time deer hunter?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by NoirFan, Nov 7, 2018.

  1. Sniper66

    Sniper66 Member

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    And whatever you do, no matter what happens, and a record deer steps out in front of you and you bring the gun to your shoulder....DON'T GET NERVOUS!!!.. I'm sorry, I couldn't resist. Have fun.
     
  2. Stew0576
    • Contributing Member

    Stew0576 Addicted

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    Brush your teeth with baking soda, has no smell and cleans teeth really well just don't swallow it, have fun and good luck
     
  3. KYregular

    KYregular Member

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    Hunt with the wind in your face or get busted for sure. Slugs are fine, but ethically good for a first time hunter out to about 30 yards. Dress in warm layers, in particular keep your feet, hands, and head warm. It's the extremities that get cold the fastest. When taking your shot squeeze slowly while maintaining point of aim. My best shots are always a surprise to me. Have fun and be safe
     
  4. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    Ill share with you what i always told my boys. :
    *This isnt war, dont take any chances whatsoever with safety of yourself or others.
    *gun, knife, ammo, permit. Dont everdo it.
    *find a good spot and stay there. All day.
    *spend enough time practicing witn your slug gun to be confident.
    *enjoy having tne day off work, even if you dont get a deer.
     
    foxmeadow, KYregular, NoirFan and 9 others like this.
  5. Random 8

    Random 8 Member

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    Great advice here. You're in Michigan, so cold weather will likely be the rule. Dress in layers. Walk in light, put on the heavy stuff after you get to the stand. A cheap orange construction vest works well for this to wear over your base layers. A lot of people shy away from cotton, but I like the old fashioned cotton long johns for a base. I add heavier wool/polypropylene longies over the top of this. After that comes wool pants and a wool-blend shirt. 1 pair light merino wool socks, if needed in severe cold, a heavier pair of Alpaca wool socks. Did I mention WOOL? The old timers wear it for a reason. Don't sock up so much that your boots feel tight, you're better off with less sock if your boots are too small. These are all breathable layers, suitable for your walk in. Over the top of the wool goes my heavy bibs and coat. Non-breathable wind and rain resistant. These go on after I'm in my stand. Wear the warmest hat you can tolerate. The head and groin are the 2 largest sources of heat loss. Keep your ears clear of hat as long as you can stand it. Hearing is one of your most valuable senses when hunting, often giving you time to position your body and gun to get your deer without him seeing you first. If you're comfortable, you'll be able to stay in the stand longer, and the way to a deer is to put in your hours.
     
    Glockula likes this.
  6. BigSteve57

    BigSteve57 Member

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    You mentioned you would be hunting from a stand. Might that be a tree stand?
    If so I wouldn't worry too much about the scent issues as you would likely be above the scent line.
    If you will indeed be in a tree stand DO worry about having a good safety harness and a light to get up to it in the dark.
    For that I like the headband mounted lights by Petzl with a red light option.
     
    Stew0576 likes this.
  7. Dibbs

    Dibbs Member

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    Tree stand seat padding. If your butt goes numb in 20 minutes, you're in for a
    miserable day.

    An extra t-shirt. Chemical hand warmers. Those little packets you knead. I'd bring four, at least,
    so you have 2 to stuff down your boots. This sounds crazy, but pantyhose are cheap, light, and give your
    legs an extra air-filled layer, for warmth. Might want to have spare socks and underwear in your car.
     
    BigSteve57 likes this.
  8. Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave Member

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    Couldn't agree more.
    If it's dry then you might hear the deer moving. If it's drizzling you won't hear the deer, but the rain "scrubs" your scent from the air.
    Pay attention to the wind, worry less about your scent. I take a bar of plain lye soap, and grate it with a cheese grater. I add this to warm water in my washing machine. No dyes & no scent. IF you think you need a cover scent, make a small hardwood fire and smoke your outer later for about five minutes. ;) This actually works quite well, and lasts.
    Oatmeal cookies and or granola bars as rations, but take them out of the wrappers, and put them into a cloth bag. Stay a bit hungry, it keeps you sharp and you won't dose off.
    Warm = good, but sweating = bad. Don't get so warm you start to sweat.
    STAY ALL DAY (as above), especially when hunting weekdays. Folks will tell you that deer don't move in mid-day..., funny how many I've gotten when the guys doing half-day hunts in the morning, have left the woods, and deer moved at around 1-2 p.m. ;) The colder it is, the more food they need, and if it's damp too, even better.

    Speaking of safety and taking chances..., Consider taking an extra Blaze Orange knit hat with you, especially in a stand. You put that on the side of the tree opposite to you, whether in a stand or not, and you put it at the same height with your head. It's knit material so won't make noise if a breeze flutters it. You see...you can be dressed head to toe in orange, like a walking talking roadway cone, but the other guy can't see you through the tree if you're on the opposite side from him, right? It's big enough to give somebody else a good chance at not shooting in your direction. EVEN IF you're supposed to be the only hunter out there.

    When you make your shot..., wait 10 minutes (seriously wait)..., let the deer lie down and pass. No need to "push" the deer. THEN move that second hat to where you were sitting and climb down. THIS gives you a highly visible reference point to judge where you were vs. where the deer was when hit. You'd be surprised how the change in perspective when you get down and start to move may cause you to err. I've had to help several guys "track" their deer, and the problem wasn't a bad blood trail or bad tracking skills..., they simply were off when it came to finding the starting point. Marking the spot where they stood helped every time.

    GOOD LUCK :thumbup:

    AND WE EXPECT PHOTOS OF YOUR DEER DUDE ! :D
     
    Armored farmer and SoonerMedic like this.
  9. George P

    George P Member

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    The easiest way to do that is to wear electronic muffs; they not only keep your ears warm, they also amplify sounds so you will the deer even earlier
     
    Loyalist Dave likes this.
  10. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    Listen to Nature Boy.
     
    SoonerMedic likes this.
  11. entropy

    entropy Member

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    1. Learn deer anatomy. Shoot for the aorta. (top of the heart.)
    2. Know what your shooting abilities are, and don't exceed them. Use a caliber that does not exceed your abilities.
    3. Hunt with someone experienced in tracking.
    4. Be conscious of the wind; you don't have to obsess about it, but be conscious of it.
    5. Know what you need to do after the deer is down before you down it. (Licensing requirements and dressing out.)
    6. Being able to shoot off both shoulders is a plus; something to think about for next year.
    7. The Four Rules still apply in the woods, particularly know what is beyond your target.
    8. Read Armored Farmers list.
    9. Good Luck!
     
  12. ohihunter2014

    ohihunter2014 Member

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    If your in a tree stand wear a harness no matter what!! Don't skimp on one either!
     
    SoonerMedic and entropy like this.
  13. SoonerMedic

    SoonerMedic Member

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    Like everybody else said...WEAR YOUR HARNESS! Wear it all the way up and the entire time you're in the air. Hunter Safety Systems makes excellent rope tether systems. I think they're around $30 for the line that stays in the tree and has a particular knot that slides up and down to allow you safety the entire way. You push the knot up as you go and pull it down as you decend. NEVER climb down with your hand on that knot though. Climb down a rung/step or two and slide the knot. Climb. Slide. Climb. Slide. Trust me, you'll feel much more confident using this system.
     
  14. Jinx0760

    Jinx0760 Member

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    Enjoy the silence of the woods, if you are fortunate enough to harvest an animal give thanks for your blessings.
     
    Duster340, George P, Bfh_auto and 3 others like this.
  15. NoirFan

    NoirFan Member

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    Hi all thanks for the great tips so far. To answer some of the questions above: I am using my Mossberg 590A1 smoothbore with factory ghost ring sights. I am no crack shot with Foster slugs so I’ll be sighting in this weekend at 25 yards and won’t take any shots beyond that. My friend is an experienced lifelong hunter so I’ll be sure to follow his lead in everything. We will be in a tree stand so I’ll pay attention to safety when climbing and such.

    As for ammo, I bought a few boxes of these which I'll use to sight in. Anyone have any experience hunting with Herters Slugs? Should I step up to something higher-velocity?
    bc914185e97bddcdaaeaef407b0b10d0.jpg

    I’ll be sure to have fun whether I get a deer or not :)

    Thanks
     
    Duster340 likes this.
  16. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    Those will do fine at the range you will be shooting. Nothing would be gained with higher velocity except more recoil. Even those can be brutal when shooting from a bench because your shoulder takes all the recoil. A foam pad or sandbag between your shoulder and the gun helps. I know a bunch of guys that are way to tough for such nonsense. None of them can hit the broad side of a barn shooting from inside it but that could be a coincidence.
    Make sure you have a good shooting rest for all directions from your stand. In addition to a shooting aid you may have to rest your gun there for several minutes as a deer approaches. Tree stands help considerably for concealment but contrary to old myth's deer do look up. As long as you stay still and they don't catch any scent they usually are not alarmed.
     
  17. MikeInOr

    MikeInOr Member

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    Dressing for a freezing cold day is foolish. You should dress for a hot day, warm day, cool day, cold day, freezing cold day and a wet day. Have many layers that you can put on and take off so you will be comfortable. The temperature will most likely not stay even through out the day.
     
  18. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Don’t get nervous and don’t shoot the first thing that walks up. The longer you watch them mill around the calmer you will get and you can pick the best one vs whatever the first one is.
     
    ohihunter2014 and mustanger98 like this.
  19. J-Bar

    J-Bar Member

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    I have hunted whitetails since moving to Missouri in 1982, mulies in Colorado before that. I’m just enjoying the h..l out of this thread! Thanks for getting it started and sincere hopes that you have a wonderful hunting experience! :thumbup:
     
    Duster340 likes this.
  20. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

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    Yup. Just sit back and enjoy the show. Old big buck walks out into a group of smaller bucks and antlerless... you'll be glad you waited... he'll have more meat on him and likely a bigger rack. Don't neglect to notice so much not-a-deer, also.
     
    ohihunter2014 likes this.
  21. 98Redline

    98Redline Member

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    Dress like it is a temperate fall day for your hike in. All of your cold weather gear goes in your pack.

    When you start your hike in you should be saying to yourself....damn, it is a cold out here. If your stand is any distance away and/or has any terrain, you will be plenty warm by the time you get there.

    Once you get to your spot, spend about 15-20 min sitting still before you put your cold weather gear on. You will still be sweating for that time, and you don't want to trap that sweat in your gear. I typically wait until I start to feel "cool". Not cold, but definitely cooling down.

    My rule of thumb for packing my heavy "on stand" gear is I prepare for about 20 degrees colder than the actual temperature. This has kept me pretty warm over the years. Seems like overkill, however you will appreciate it after not moving on stand for 2 or 3 hours.

    The harness has already been covered in previous posts. Make sure you wear it, especially during the climb up into and out of the stand. Most hunters fall during these transitions. It is particularly dangerous after sitting in the stand al day. You are stiff, cold, tired, and it is likely dark. Not a good combination.

    As long as you don't freeze your ass off all day and come home safe, the rest you will figure out by being in the woods.

    Good luck!
     
    NoirFan likes this.
  22. NoirFan

    NoirFan Member

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    What can I expect to see after the shot breaks? With a 12g slug hit, is the deer likely to run or just fall right there? Should I carry my .357 Ruger as a sidearm for a finishing shot?

    Thanks again everyone
     
  23. Taurus 617 CCW

    Taurus 617 CCW Member

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    If you do your part and don’t rush the shot you won’t need a second shot from a sidearm.
     
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  24. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    Don't count on a deer dropping in it's tracks. It can happen but most often with the ideal broadside double lung shot the deer will jump and kick then run 50 yards or so before it falls.
    What you don't want to see is the deer hump up its back and run off. It means a hit in the guts or liver, a long tracking job and a real mess if and when you find and dress the deer.
     
    NoirFan, ohihunter2014 and Nature Boy like this.
  25. J-Bar

    J-Bar Member

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    We unconsciously tend to shoot for the “bullseye”, the center of the target, which will put your slug around the diaphragm/stomach/liver. If you get to take a shot, force yourself to keep the point of impact in a vertical line with the front leg. The deer is not going far if your shot lands in the forward part of its chest cavity.
     
    NoirFan and Fine Figure of a Man like this.
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