By: Ted Nugent
I gotta tell ya, this social media phenomenon is something else, isn’t it! I am anything but a high-tech guy, (crowbars, hatchets, guitars and sharp sticks being my specialty) but I can figure most things out eventually, and once I got this facebook thing down, look out world!
Communicating freely with tens of MILLIONS of people around the world at the touch of a finger everyday certainly has unlimited pluses. And of course, like everything in life, with pluses comes an inescapable flurry of minuses. But in my nonstop communication on facebook the positives surely far outweigh the negatives and the lunatic fringe is always left hanging there by their own noose of stupidity and hate for all the world to see.
It all works out rather nicely in the end.
Now that hunting season 2017 is upon us and building steam, I hear from a lot of fellow hunters out there on a daily basis. I hear from dyed in the wool oldtimers like you and me and also from many newcomers eager to live and learn everything about our amazing sport.
Though everyone readily grasps the inescapable dynamic of the inherent frustrations that are inevitable in the “roll the dice” hunting lifestyle, there certainly still remains a lot of pain in the rear-end frustration out there nonetheless.
It’s called hunting, not shooting afterall.
From what I can tell, most everybody understands and works hard at all the basics like scouting, practicing, picking the best ambush stand sites, scent and sound control and a well-rounded understanding of game, gear, equipment, shooting and how to best use it all in our inexhaustible quest for life, liberty and the pursuit of backstrap happiness.
Where the snag seems to be is that ever-evasive final stage “moment of truth” of actually killing that deer. Based on a pretty big number of shared stories it seems that this mystical moment of truth for getting off the shot is where most bowhunters hit a brickwall.
Since I was raised and tortured on bowhunting berserk spooky Michigan whitetails, I have learned the hard way how to improvise, adapt and overcome these phenomenal creatures near impenetrable defense radar, and let me tell you, it ain’t easy.
Which of course is why we love it so!
Obviously, even in a world of unlimited scent control technology, wind direction is everything, but so is sun direction. If the sun is shining straight onto you and making you glow like a Disney marquee, there is no way to make any move whatsoever like getting the bow up and drawn without being detected by these ultra-wary beasts.
Make certain you either have the sun at your back or have plenty of shading cover to eliminate any glowage whatsoever.
I’ve always been a diehard Mossy Oak camo guy, but it is very important that whatever you wear that it effectively blends you into your surroundings.
And whatever you do, do not denude your treestand setup in an effort to open it up for too many shooting lanes.
Minimize your limb cutting and overall cover reduction so as to provide reasonable shooting ops while retaining critically needed silhouette breaking cover.
And never, I say never let a Texan anywhere near your treestand with a chainsaw!!
All hunting takes a serious degree of stealth, but bowhunters live and die by it.
Reasoning predator stealth can best be described as the art of being invisible till after our arrow exits the animal’s chest and is sticking in the ground saturated in lung and heart blood.
The entire time we are on stand and every move we make while on stand should be executed with such grace and attentiveness as if we know the animal is looking at us.
Timing is everything, and if you can see the animal’s eye, it can see you if you dare attempt to reach for your bow or try to reposition yourself for the shot.
Fidget and squirm around on stand and you will end up buying chicken.
When everything is just right, we still must move ultra-slow and silently but with purpose and stealthy fluidity.
I typically only sit for about 3 hours on stand, and I do so sitting down in a dead-silent, solid seat so that I am comfortable and at ease, cocked, locked and ready to rock. I also make sure the seat of my stand that I am using is high enough so my legs are not overly bent, thereby forcing me to exert myself unnecessarily if and when I must stand up.
I would say that 90+% of my shots are taken from the sitting position making no movement other than lifting and drawing my bow, having placed my stand in such a way to allow this minimal stealth movement for executing a deadly shot at an unalerted critter.
Surely less movement is better than more movement.
Be sure to practice in such a way as to best replicate the conditions you will be hunting in. Concentrate on good archery form no matter the angle or contortions. Bend at the waist and be sure your bow fits you perfectly so everything is lined up for that hard-earned shot.
Some lucky hunters tag their deer occasionally violating these basic predator tenets, but those of us who know better and dedicate ourselves to ultra-stealth will have a much better chance of bringing home the bacon and all that wonderful happiness that comes from a successful hunt.
There are a whole list of make or break details that make all the difference before we are able to aim small and miss small.
Happy Happy fall 2017 to all my SpiritWild BloodBrothers out there. Hope to see you at facebook.com/tednugent whenever you can. Come share the amazing stories that we all cherish now through winter 2018. May the Great Spirit be forever at your side and may your arrows fly true for maximum FUN, SPORT, MEAT and TROPHY happiness!