View Full Version : Stand Sight For Deer?
Hey guys I am new to deer hunting, I have a rifle permit and am planning on getting a bow permit. I see deer on this land but do not want to invade on their routine, Where do I put my stand? Away from where I am seeing them or where they are? Also I know that this question is kind of vague but where do you setup a tree stand for bowhunting. Along a creek, a worn deer trail, a fence line that intersects a food plot? Where? Also do you sit all day on the stand or hunt morning hours and evening only? Thanks Esox357
I would put the stand where you could get the best clear shot for rifle and bow. Consider getting even close while your bow hunt maybe even right over the trail where the deer run. I dont hunt with a stand. but consider getting out to your stand one half hour before hunting time begins stay till about 10am then head out to your stand at about 3 pm for you evening hunt. I like to get out to my spot about one hour early for my mourning hunt becuase I like just being out in the woods.
It depends...there isn't a simple answer for all situations and there are often multiple options for any given stand site. Keep in mind that bow shots are rarely longer than 40 yards and most of the deer I have arrowed have been inside of 25 yards. Rifle shooting affords you a very different capability and could very well mean you will try a different location...then again maybe not. Add to that the fact that deer are only rarely spooked off by massive numbers of hunters during bow season and that during gun season their behavior patterns will change dramatically.
I prefer a climbing tree stand because its light enough to move anywhere I care to hunt and I can be 20 feet up a tree ten minutes after I get to any location.
The two things you want to be careful about are scent and spooking deer out of their bedding areas. There have been volumes written about scent control and I take this to the extreme. Deer still will wind me 100 yards away when the conditions are right! If you push deer out of their bedding areas forget about seeing them on their routine feeding and travel routes for a day or so. Bump em two or three times and they might just leave the area for good in search of quieter locales...
Get someone who is a good woodsman to show you a thing or two. Deer hunting can be a vary frustrating experience for someone who has no idea what he's doing and you'll have to learn things the hard way.
Lastly, don't confuse target shooting with hunting. Target shooting is important because it hones some skills required in the field. But too often the only type of practice many people do is off of a bench with sandbags. That doesn't help you a bit when you have a moving target at 40 yards... How much offhand shooting have you done? How fast can you get into a sitting position?
Now is the time to get out and identify your possible stand locations and clear brush from your shooting lanes. Don't get too excited about finding deer feeding areas right now. Come Sept they will be eating something different and by Dec their feeding patterns will have changed at least twice based on what's available...acorns, alfalfa, soy beans, corn, fresh sprouted winter wheat, clover...whatever is good to eat at the time is where they will be dining. And that changes several times throughout the year.
I tend to focus on funnel areas...known travel routes that deer use year after year to and from feeding and bedding areas.
You guys make me miss hunting in the eastern US.
Figured this was more appropriate for hunting stand locations. :) The guys here probably know more too!
What Jethro said. Exactly the same thing I'd have told you. I've been at it for 38 years, and obviously Jethro's no rookie either. ;f
And Jethro's last sentence: "I tend to focus on funnel areas...known travel routes that deer use year after year to and from feeding and bedding areas" is the best advice you'll ever get. Only you can find those areas in the locale you'll be hunting. Unfortunately it can't be done in a few days, or even a few weeks. Sometimes it takes several seasons to pinpoint a good area. Once you have some experience doing this, you can walk through a section of woods, and you'll just know where the right spots are.
I suggest you subscribe to several deer hunting magazines. One of the best available is "Deer & Deer Hunting".
The only differance of opinion between myself and Jethro is in stand type. I don't like self climbers... but that's a personal preferance. I'm larger than average in physical build, and I've never tried a climber I felt comfortable in. I prefer ladder stands. I own three... two of Cabelas basic ladder stands - $60ea, and worth twice that in quality - and a Trailhawk Osprey w/ a 4' extension. I hunt on national forest property, and they allow stands to be left up, as long as they are commercially made and non-damaging, no screws or nails allowed... and all stands must be removed within 1 day after the close of the season. I have drilled holes through where the ladder sections fit together, and use a good quality padlock in each to "lock" the stands into one piece after erection... and I padlock and chain them to the tree. I select two stand sites, and put up the Cabelas ladder stands, and I use the Osprey for spur of the moment stand sites, or for moving around some, trying new territory. They may weigh about 10lbs more than a climber, but I can put one up in 5 minutes or less, and I can put them in heavy foliaged trees for cover... like balsams, pines, cedars, and firs. Climbers require fairly straight trunked trees with no limbs below your selected hunting height. Ladders can go in crooked trees, heavily branched trees, and the trunks can be as little as 4-5" in diameter (as long as you don't get "seasick" swaying in the breeze on windy days... hehe). If the area you hunt in has lots of mature hardwoods or poplars, a climber might be best. In my area, there are plenty of these trees... but there's no big deer there... the biggest bucks rarely venture into the open woods during daylight, and tend to stick to the heavier stuff, with the conifers and smaller, younger trees. This is where ladder stands have a distinct advantage.
I also have a couple of hang-on stands that I made myself... using square steel tubing, angle irons from bedframes, and expanded metal for flooring. Everything is bolted and welded together, and I chained them permantly to some trees on private land. I have a commercially made "climbing stick", and I'd use it to access these very large (30"x 44" floor) and heavy, permanent stands. But sadly... the guy who owned the land I hunted on, recently was convicted of some "white collar" investment-type felonies, and went to prison for about 15 years... and the land was sold off to pay the people he defrauded. I shot several nice deer from these stands... and the land was so close to town, I'd walk over to a McDonalds for lunch. :)
Originally posted by Sixgun357
consider getting out to your stand one half hour before hunting time begins stay till about 10am then head out to your stand at about 3 pm for you evening hunt
True, the early morning and late evening hours are very good to hunt since this is the time that most deer are returning from and heading to feeding areas respectively. If you are hunting during the rut or on public ground do not ignore that 10am to 3pm time period. During the rut bucks will be actively pursuing does throughout the day and on public land many hunters will be following that same philosophy of leaving their stands late morning and push deer around. Of course it depends on the circumstances when hunting is best for you. I would try spending different time periods in your stand to see when you see the most deer activity in your area. In my case I hunt a state forest area and like to sit in my stand till about 9 am then walk around a while and have something to eat (maybe take a little nap :)) then sit again from 10:30am till about 1:00pm, still hunt a while then return for the evening hunt a couple of hours before sundown.
The thing to remember is that deer travel on their timetable not yours, your job is to figure out when that is. Good Luck!! ;f
Originally posted by rfb45colt
I'm larger than average in physical build, and I've never tried a climber I felt comfortable in. I prefer ladder stands.
I find that very interesting, I'm a decent sized guy also and I don't have any problem with climbers. A buddy bought a couple of the $60 Cabela's ladder stands last year and I thought the platform was too small on them. He did also and he isn't a very big guy. It was ok to sit in but the step where your feet are is not very wide and it was not easy to turn around if needed. Did you do any modifications to the stand? Hard to argue with the price.
This past spring I bought a couple of new climbers at Cabela's in the bargain cave. They are good sized "Trophy Lite Elite" with a 300lb capacity and only cost me $89 each. I haven't had a chance to try them out yet but will let you know how they work. They do have backpack style straps and are fairly easy to carry.
I do agree that climbers limit your options in some areas (I missed a shot at a nice 8 pointer last fall when the climber I was using wouldn't fit in any trees closer to where I wanted to set-up.) but I like their portability and feel that the ideal set-up for me would be to find a couple of ladder stands I like and place them in my prime areas where I would not move them during the season then use my climbers in secondary locations where I could move them to follow the deer patterns. (The Cabela's stands were pretty bulky to carry, especially if you have a long walk to your location. Also we set-up his stands together but I could imagine it being much more time consuming trying to do it alone.)
Sorry to hear about the lost land. I had a similar situation that involved a girlfriend who's grandparents had some PRIMO hunting land. I missed the hunting ground much more than I did her! LOL!! ;i
Originally posted by Glock You!
A buddy bought a couple of the $60 Cabela's ladder stands last year and I thought the platform was too small on them. He did also and he isn't a very big guy. It was ok to sit in but the step where your feet are is not very wide and it was not easy to turn around if needed. Did you do any modifications to the stand? Hard to argue with the price.
I'm 6'2", and weigh about 240. The only modifications I made was to lower the foot platforms mounting holes about 6", and I put peel and stick non-slip tape (like the kind used on stairs) on the platforms. I found that the combination of LaCrosse Iceman boots and snow on the platforms was very very slippery and hazardous. (And one more mod, as you'll see below)
[/i]...(The Cabela's stands were pretty bulky to carry, especially if you have a long walk to your location. Also we set-up his stands together but I could imagine it being much more time consuming trying to do it alone.)[/QUOTE]
I mounted bicycle type wheels to the back end of the seat supports. I usually walk the majority of the distance into the woods down old firelanes and logging trails, and pull the stand like a cart or wagon behind me. When it snows, I put them in a $20 plastic ice fishing sled that I bought years ago at K-Mart. NO EFFORT at all is needed to bring them out of the woods, as they stay until Jan 1st... and there's lots of snow by then. Setting them up is the easy part. But I was a roofer for almost 20 years, and it's just another ladder when it comes to putting them up. I could see it being difficult if you're not used to ladders. Taking them down is much harder... sometimes I have to kick the sections apart... too much weight on the top I guess...
now where did I leave that bag of donuts.... :)
The thing I like most about the ladderstands is the fact that I can set them up in conifer trees that hide my silohuete (sp?) perfectly. I'm never outlined by the sky behind me. In a climber, you're almost always "skylined"... unless you find the perfect combination of a conifer right next to a hardwood tree. Or... you do all your deer hunting before the hardwood leaves drop. I don't even START until after the leaves are down. Too busy grouse hunting.
Thanks guys, very helpful information. Good luck this season. Esox357
i tend to place my ground blinds, and tree stands on heavily travelled areas like many people have said. and more importantly areas where i get good scent cover, i bow hunt in alot of pines. and always make sure you have a clear shot in as many directions as possible. oh yeah and never put your stand on the top of a hill, lol i made that mistake once and a deer walking up was looking right at me! the best way to get deer used to your stand is to get it out there early as possible, and sooner or later it will become just another tree or item in the woods to them.
for a high-percentage shot based on your capabilities. rfb45colt, Jethro and the others have made good points about stand placement. Bowhunting is a wonderful sport but many folks take shots that stretch their marksmanship ability.
Practice often. If you can hit a 6" paper plate at 10 yards, then place your stand in a location that you believe will give you a 10 yard shot or less. When you can hit that same plate at 20 yards, your stand can be adjusted accordingly if you wish.
I love deer hunting with a rifle, but some of my most memorable hunts have been with the bow. :)
I have a friend who regularly kills record-book Whitetail bucks and rarely takes a shot at more than 20 yards. But he spends many, many hours scouting and preparing his stand sites (clearing shooting lanes, etc.)
I've attached a pic of my friend with one of the 11 Pope and Young bucks he has killed. There's some incentive for ya! :)
As I'm sure you know its important to not let the game know you are after them. Try to spend some time looking over topo maps for funnels or saddles. Deer love the edges so try to find where they are coming from & going into them. Sneak into the areas and observe. Don't move much or too fast. Look & learn where there is the most sign is and then set up a trailtimer to see when they use that trail. If you make yourself invisible & wear rubber boots & keep your scent out of the area you have greatly increased your chance for success. It isn't easy but it is fun and has its rewards. Good hunting!! Alan;b
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