I cannot blog about buck bachelor groups, as I did earlier in the week, without my mind going back to John Schmucker and the enormous buck he killed in Ohio way back in 2006. That summer, John spent many evenings sitting on the roof of his carriage house in his backyard, watching an unbelievable buck through his binoculars. “I saw him almost every night when he’d come out into that bean field,” he said. “Some weeks, I’d see him 5 out of 7 afternoons.” Every time John spotted the 36-point giant, the deer was traveling with 3 smaller bucks, and he filed that away in his subconscious. When the Amish hunter went out with his crossbow on September 30 that [...]
Buck Group Size: Two to 4 to 8 bucks hanging out together is typical in mid-August, but I have seen as many as 10 velvet-racked bucks in a late-summer group. Knowing how much I love to watch and study bachelor clubs, hunters from all over have emailed me with reports and pictures of 12 to 15 or more bucks feeding and posturing together in a field. Last year, a guy from Maryland reported seeing 30 different bucks in a soybean field most every night! Truth is, these mega-groups are rare. Big numbers of bucks are actually 2, 3 or more different bachelor groups that happen to come together and loosely comingle. Summer groups are comprised of bucks of all ages, [...]
To reduce hand pressure and torque that can throw arrows off line, hold your bow with a relaxed, open palm grip. When you relax your bow-holding hand your entire body tends to follow suit and loosen up, which makes you shoot more accurately. Screw broadheads into the 5 arrows you’ll carry in your hunting quiver. Shoot every arrow into a broadhead. You’ll find that 2 or 3 of those arrows fly truer than the rest, especially if you still use fixed heads. Mark those shafts 1,2 and 3. Those should be the first ones you hunt with. Is your peep sight right? To find out, clip your release to the string, close your eyes, draw your bow and anchor. Open [...]
As a general rule, hang 3 to 5 tree stands across a 100-acre block of whitetail timber. Spread out those stands to cover as many food sources, travel corridors and staging/bedding thickets as you can, and to have options for hunting all the different winds. Keep these 5 things in mind when setting those stands: A solid tree about 15 inches in diameter is perfect. It is easy and safe to get your arms around as you set steps, climb and hang a perch with a strap or chain. Once you’re up, a tree as wide as your body breaks your silhouette, but it is thin enough so that you can turn and look around for incoming deer. Once you’ve [...]
It's that time of year when we’re shooting and practicing long and hard for upcoming deer season. The pros at Hoyt Archery answer 3 FAQs you might have: How often should you replace a bow’s string and cables? When wear is evident or every 2 years under normal-use conditions. How often should you lubricate a bow’s cams? Lightly lube the axles where they pass though the cams every 1,500 to 2,000 shots. When hunting in dusty or rainy weather, lube wheels or cams daily. Always use a silicone- or Teflon-based lubricant. How often should you wax a bowstring? Once every 2 weeks during peak-shooting times.