High-pressure areas are hard to hunt. But it can be rewarding to tag a mature buck when you outsmart the buck and the masses. Sometimes it doesn’t mean public land. Anywhere that hunting pressure is heavy, you will need to adjust accordingly. It’s the same old story, you bow Hunt hard early, and come gun-season, out comes the Orange Army! Shots fired everywhere, people everywhere and deer dying one by one. Every year I find piles of shed Antlers in areas you are sure there can’t be a deer left standing. So how do they survive?
Pay Close Attention to Shots Fired
First, pay close attention to shots fired and locations. While hunting a large piece of public land during the gun opener, I heard 200 shots by 12 pm. All the shots came from different areas, except for one! To the South of me lay a big weed-patch thicket. Not one single shot was fired there all day. Time to move to that spot. Deer will tend to become like big rabbits this time of year. They won’t move a lot and will sit still and let you walk right by them.
Focus on Thick Cover
You have to focus on thick cover, get in tight with the deer, and hunt where others do not. So we have a three-part strategy. Hunt where others do not, such as thick cover and where you hear less or no shots. Also, hunt when others do not. Most guys will set until 10 am then have breakfast at the local diner, then take a nice nap before heading back out at 3 pm. Thirdly, hunt how others do not. Skip lunch break and pack it in with You. Don’t worry about hunting heavy sign. Heavy sign is what brings in other hunters, and pushes deer out. You are the guy who needs to sit all day, and hunt of the wall places. Let these others push deer to you. Some of the best bucks I’ve taken have walked in front of me between 11 am -2 pm. Remember deer won’t cover a lot of ground at this stage. No shots in a 5-acre area will hold plenty of deer. To recap, Hunt thick cover, Hunt where others aren’t firing, and hunt all day. Good luck!