Once I discover an interesting buck the next thing I want to find out is where he goes after he leaves the area where I saw him. And where he goes after that, and so on. Generally, this is a morning thing for me and if I can I’ll go with him to his bedding area. That said, I always watch and take pictures and glass the area from a reasonable distance, I do not want to spook him, ever.
Portable ground blinds are usually good for this. They are very mobile. Just plunk one down out past where the buck(s) disappeared from view and you’re sure to find out where they go for another 50-100 yards or so. No doubt, it’s a slow go. Many people do not have the opportunity nor time to do this.
And lots of people have told me that they wouldn’t do it if they had the time. But, frankly, I look at it like this, I ask myself this question,
“How bad do you want it?”
Well, I want it that bad.
And one thing I guarantee you is this: to get the full picture of a particular buck’s movement, that is coming into your area — or even the deer movement in your area — you need to be near where they are, watching and learning, from as close as you can get without spooking them.
Game cameras are useful. I’ve used them for 18 years and I like using them. But game cameras WILL NOT get you the amount of helpful information that you gain by actually being in the area you want to check out. Just the ability to use binoculars or a spotting scope is a huge asset to your hunting strategy. And game cameras can not look left or right or to the rear. Or in that thicket over there, or stepping behind that tree, or coming out of that gully.
Lets find out where Y2K goes when he walks out of my view. We just might learn where some other deer go too.
I set up a portable ground blind on the outskirts of an area with tall grass where I’ve seen Y2K before.
When daylight came I was there and saw deer moving along the fence line to the north. Then nothing happened for half an hour, when suddenly I noticed movement to my right. It was a buck.
Behind the tree to my right, which is only 2 yards away, a buck’s head poked out and browsed on something growing in the weeds. I eased my camera up and took its picture. He walked around the tree and turned right toward me.
What luck, this buck was Y2K. I zoomed in on his head and antlers and took another picture.
He was very close now and heard the sound of whatever it is in my DSLR camera that makes a little noise when it takes a picture. He turned and hurried away, but stopped 20 yards away.