A successful opening day can give you a major boost of confidence for the season ahead. Even if you don’t bag a buck on opening day, getting a feel for this year’s herd can be just what you need to gauge your tactics for the rest of the season.
Consider Your Observations
Go hunting on opening day during the peak times you’ve recorded on your trail cameras. Hunting during the peak times that you’ve observed is a good way to test the skepticism of your herd. If the deer don’t show up on opening day during the hours they’re usually active, it may be safe to assume that the deer sensed your presence and were scared away. This gives you the opportunity to analyze your approach and consider what specific tactics may have tipped the deer off to your presence.
Don’t Visit Your Hunting Site Too Often
Deer are incredibly sensitive to scent and will start to be suspicious if they can smell you at your hunting site. Use a scent-eliminating spray any time you visit your hunting site. Even if you’re only visiting your blind to install a new accessory, use a scent-blocker. You don’t want the deer to have any awareness that there will be hunters in their area before the season opens. Scout the area for signs during the summer, but don’t linger any longer than necessary. Keep your scouting trips focused and deliberate.
Banks Outdoors blinds have a round design to help them assimilate into the landscape. This feature also helps keep deer clueless to the presence of hunters. Deer will recognize that a square box-blind with defined edges is out-of-place very quickly. They don’t blend in with the terrain as easily as a round blind. Deer could mistake our Stump blinds for exactly what it’s designed to mimic: a stump.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
It seems simple enough, but it is a very important aspect of hunting. Being well-rested will keep you alert in the blind so that you don’t miss any opportunities. You need to be vigilant, especially on opening day, to observe everything that passes in front of you. You may witness deer you’ve never caught on your trail camera. You need to be prepared for anything.
The adrenaline rush of opening day will be sure to get your blood pumping, but you need to keep a level head and a steady hand. Your nerves are going to tell you to take the shot before the deer runs away, but don’t let that voice sway you into taking your shot too soon. Remain calm and wait until you have a clear shot. Once the deer is in a good position, take a deep breath and draw. Punching the release too quickly will create a jerky shot that might miss. Keep your breathing even and slowly release. Controlling your shot even when your nerves are going haywire will result in a clean shot. Clean shots make for an ethical harvest and an easier trail to follow.
Deer hunting season will be open before we know it, so make sure you’re prepared. Go into opening day with the right tools and the right mindset, and you’ll be bagging bucks in no-time.
What are your opening day tactics? What usually brings you success in the field? Let us know in the comments!