Fall hunting will be here before you know it and successful hunters know to start getting ready well before the season starts. One of the things I do when I am scouting my hunting location is gather some natural materials from the area and make my own cover scent. Expensive to buy in the big box stores, cover scent can be easily made at home. I get the best results from site specific materials but ingredients from other locations can be used. Just make sure you are following the Missouri Wildlife Code when you are gathering. About two pounds of leaves, acorns, pine cones and small twigs - these will be the base scent to your cover scent. You can either go for an all-encompassing scent, little bit of everything or be more tree or site specific; pine, cedar or oak. When you have gathered your materials, take them home and start cooking.
Once home, put a pot of water on an outside fish cooker or stove with approximately one gallon of water. Bring the water to a boil and add your materials. Continue boiling for about 15-20 minutes. Simmer for an additional 20-30 minutes to reduce the water and concentrate the essential oils of the materials. After you have reduced the water, remove from the heat and let stand till cool. Strain the larger bits of material out of the mixture and place in a spray bottle. Recycled bottles like an old scent away or other spray bottle will work fine; just make sure to clean the old bottle thoroughly before using.
Missouri is a great place to hunt and fish and Ozarkers are known for their resourcefulness and ingenuity. Making your own cover scent is one way to do just that.