The Real Secrets to Deer Hunting Success

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Published on: Oct. 2, 2003

Last revision: Nov. 16, 2010

This is the story of a young hunter who suffered annual deer hunting failure before learning the secret. From that moment on, he enjoyed years of deer hunting success.

The story begins when I was a little boy. I wanted to hunt, but more than anything else, I wanted to hunt deer. Unfortunately, without any relatives that hunted, I never received any encouragement.

When I was 17, and living in Pennsylvania, I bought a license, borrowed a gun and joined some friends for my first hunt. We walked about half a mile into some woods and then scattered several hundred yards apart near the top of a ridge overlooking a well-used deer trail. The morning was cloudy, cold, and windy. I almost froze, but I kept watching that deer trail, waiting for my big deer to arrive.

I had heard shots all morning, but by noon, all was quiet. Suddenly two shots boomed in the valley below me and several hundred yards to my left. That perked me up, and my eyes zeroed in on that trail. Half an hour later some movement down in the valley caught my attention. It was two hunters dragging a deer.

I went down to congratulate them and see the deer. It was a nice 8-point buck. The man who shot the deer asked me where I had been sitting. When I showed him, he asked why I hadn't seen the deer, because he had watched it walk down the valley just in front of me in fairly open woods. I had been leaning against a tree watching a spot 50 yards in front of me all morning, but never looked to see what was going on farther down in the valley.

I went back to my spot and decided to work on observational skills. Then it started to rain, but I was too mule-headed to quit. An hour later the rain turned to sleet. It was looking more and more like I wasn't going to get a deer this season, but I kept waiting and watching in front of me.

After an hour of sleet it started snowing. It snowed hard for about 30 minutes, and by the time it stopped I had lost all hope of getting a deer. I decided to head back to the truck.

I turned around and walked about a hundred feet when, there in the fresh snow, I saw the tracks of several deer. I

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