I recently was talking with our friend Scott Schultz of Scentblocker who has hunted our home state of Oklahoma a bunch of times, matter of fact his two largest bucks have come from the Sooner State. He talked about a stand he hung in Oklahoma he called the "King Stand" which was 38ft to the bottom of the platform (yes we have a few trees that tall!). From the nose bleed section Scott killed a booner. The question each of us have to ask on a property is where will we hang our stands and blinds and why would we put them there. No matter if you are hunting from a blind or a treestand here are some tips on choosing the best location.
Lots of times we look at a tree or the perfect spot for a stand and we don't think about how we will actually access the stand. You have heard it said that big bucks don't get to be big by being dumb. Well, dumb mistakes by hunters keep those big bucks alive. When choosing stand or blind placement we have to factor in where the deer will be when we are accessing the property. Finding good access to the perfect setup might mean you have to walk an extra half a mile to keep the wind in your favor, to keep walking through a feeding area in the dark or a bedding area in the afternoon. The perfect set can be ruined by imperfect access.
2) Wind and Thermals
Rarely can you fool the nose on a mature buck. I understand what its like to get that trail camera pic of the buck you are after in the daylight. You want to hit the stand or blind as soon as possible! But if the wind is wrong you might be assuring that you never get a picture of that buck in the daylight ever again. We recommend actually hanging multiple sets or blinds in an area to hunt it with different winds. This way you are assuring yourself a chance to hunt without ruining your future chances at your buck!
3) Use Natural Cover
When we find the perfect stand or blind placement we need to use the natural cover around us to make sure we are not sticking out like a sore thumb. With a treestand I like to have some cover around me, under and above to help break up our set in the tree. Another factor is what is behind you. You can't think about what the stand looks like from your perspective but from the deer's! If you don't have good cover behind you then deer will easily make our your silhouette and the gig is up. Having good back cover is huge in increasing your odds of going unnoticed. For a ground blind, I like to use natural shad when possible. Tuck under a tree or a cedar. That's not always possibly but either way take the time to conceal the blind properly. Don't get lazy! You have come to far to let a cut branches keep you from being successful!
4) Use the Sun
The sun can be your greatest ally or your worst enemy. No one likes to have to look directly into the sun. Deer don't like it either! Having the sun at your back keeps it from being in your eyes and puts it in the deer's eyes if he looks your way. This can be a huge advantage for you as a hunter! You are on top of the food chain, hunt like it!
5) Prepare for the Shot
Trim limbs, trim limbs, and trim limbs. I'm not saying cut down the forest here but I've seen so many hunting shows where a buck came from a different area and no shooting lanes were cut. The hunter watches a monster buck walk off without getting off a shot. Look at every single scenario and then trim limbs, brush and grass in preparation for it. I like to get into my stand and have a buddy walk around my tree from different directions giving me an idea of what I will be looking at if he was the buck I am after. I then trim accordingly.
For hanging stands and setting blinds we highly recommend you check out the Zippo Outdoor 4 in 1 Woodsman! Check out the video below!