Over the past few years, bow hunting from a pop up hunting blind has grown in popularity due to the reasonable cost of pop up hunting blinds and the ease of sitting them up. Pop up ground blinds provide bow hunters with mobility and the opportunity to hunt in areas that will not support other blinds such as tree stands. Bow hunting for whitetail deer from a pop up ground blind, needless to say, is a challenging prospect. However if you follow four simple tips, you are sure to maximize your chances of a shot at a trophy whitetail buck. The four tips to ensure a successful bow hunting trip include the following topics:
3. Blind set up
4. Scent elimination
First and foremost, scouting the area you intend to hunt is critical. If there is no sign of deer in the area, then guess what, your chances of seeing that big buck, yet alone getting him into bow range are slim to none. When scouting an area to hunt, you want to look for evidence that deer are actually traveling through the area. Look for tracks, game trails, droppings, scraps and rubs. These are a good indication that deer are traveling through a particular area. If you do not see any of these signs, it is best to avoid hunting that area as deer are creatures of habit and most likely are not going to travel in places they have not traveled before. Once you come across an area with deer tracks, deer droppings, scraps or rubs, you know that you are in an area where deer frequent.
After you have identified an area that you believe has sufficient deer traffic, you should next think about where in the area to set up the pop up hunting blind. You should avoid placing the blind too close to game trails or feeders. Place the blind in an area where you believe the deer are likely to come into bow range. Try to find a location for the blind that is near the brush or under a low hanging tree limb. Do not make the mistake of placing the blind out in a wide open area. You also want to keep in mind wind direction. Place the blind downwind from where you believe the deer will be traveling. This will decrease the chances that the deer will smell you.
Once you have determined a good location for the blind, you want to set up the blind. If at all possible, it is best to do this a day or two before you intend to hunt to let things calm down in the area after all the commotion you have caused. Once the blind is popped up, you want to try and blend the blind into its surroundings. I usually will cut brush and tall grass and place it on top of the blind and along its sides. Don’t be bashful when doing this. Pile it high and thick. You have to remember that you are in the deer’s environment and they have a keen sense of their environment and can spot things that are out of place much like you can spot something out of place in your own house. Some hunters will assume that since the blind is camouflaged, the deer will not notice it. That’s not the case. If you step back from the blind that you have set up and you notice the outline of the blind and the straight lines created by the windows of the blind, you can bet the deer can see them as well. Continue to brush in the blind until these lines are not so apparent.
Finally, you should make sure that you do all you can do to mask you scent. Even though you might be downwind from where the deer travel, the wind often swirls your scent throughout the area. Before you enter your hunting area, you should spray your clothing with some type of scent eliminator. There are a number of these products on the market and most seem to work fairly well. I would also recommend using a cover scent to further eliminate the possibility that the deer will smell you. Not only should these scent eliminators be used the day of your hunt, but also when you are scouting and setting up the blind. I’ll give you an example of why. On a recent hunting trip, after I had set up my blind, I picked up a stick and laid it down on the ground to mark 30 yards from the blind as I didn’t have a range finder. During the evening hunt, a doe was walking towards my stand. Her travel took her about 5 yards from where I had place the stick on the ground. She turned, walked right up to the stick and literally placed her nose on the stick and smelled. She then turned and walked straight into the brush. She smelled my scent and knew she was probably in an area that she shouldn’t be. So, my point is, make every effort to reduce your scent.
By follow these four tips, you will maximize your chances of seeing deer and hopefully getting a shot. Pop up hunting blinds are great for bow hunting when the proper planning and precautions are taken into consideration.