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Deer Hunting Guide: Expert Tips for a Successful Hunt

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Welcome to our awesome deer hunting guide, where we’re gonna dive headfirst into the exciting world of tracking, sneaking around, and scoring that epic buck you’ve been dreaming about.

We’ve got all the must-know skills and gear suggestions covered, so get pumped for an unforgettable hunting expedition that’s gonna blow your mind. Let’s do this!


You may be asking ‘what does deer hunting have to do with homesteading?’ Good question.

In the first place, homesteaders and hunters are called to be stewards of the land. They are both self-reliant and equally self-sufficient.

While we raise chickens, pigs, and rabbits for meat as well as participate in a herd share for beef, we also like to support land management by hunting. On our homestead, hunting and homesteading go hand-in-hand.

Deer Hunting Guide and Tips

Deer hunting is an age-old tradition with deep roots in many cultures, providing a vital connection between humans and the natural world.

As a seasoned deer hunter, I’ve acquired valuable knowledge and strategies that have contributed to my success while out in the field.

The purpose of this article is to guide aspiring and experienced hunters alike in the art of deer hunting, sharing essential tips and practices necessary for a fruitful and responsible hunting adventure.

Before embarking on any deer hunting expedition, understanding the behavior, habits, and habitats of deer is crucial for success.

Familiarizing oneself with these essential aspects allows hunters to predict where deer are likely to be found and establish an effective hunting strategy.

Equally critical is the process of selecting the right equipment and utilizing appropriate techniques, which may vary based on the topography, vegetation, and other factors of a hunting area.

In this guide, I will share my insights on these topics, ensuring a comprehensive foundation for your next deer hunting excursion.

Essential Deer Hunting Gear


When I go deer hunting, the first thing I need is a reliable weapon. The two main choices I consider are rifles and bows.

A popular deer rifle is the Ruger American, which offers accuracy and reliability. If I prefer a more traditional approach, bows are a great option.

Either way, choosing the right ammunition is crucial for clean and ethical kills.

In addition to my primary weapon, I make sure to have the following gear:

  • Boots: A good pair of waterproof and insulated boots is essential to protect my feet.
  • Tree stand: This helps me to get an elevated view and better shot angles on deer.
  • Hunter orange: Wearing blaze orange is mandatory in many areas for safety reasons. I always have a vest or hat with me.
  • Muzzleloaders: These firearms offer a unique challenge and can extend my hunting season in certain states, such as Tennessee.

Some other gear that helps me during my hunting expeditions are:

  • Hunting binoculars: A quality pair of binoculars is essential for locating deer from afar. And determining whether they are worth pursuing.
  • Deer call: This tool can help me mimic the sounds made by deer to draw them closer.
  • Rubber gloves: Wearing these during field dressing procedures keeps me clean and prevents the spread of bacteria.

Does Human Scent Scare Deer?

Not only does human scent scare deer off. If that deer you’re trying to bag is an alpha doe, she’ll alert all the deer within sound that you’re there.

Scents can play a major role in my success or failure during a hunt.

To combat this, I utilize the following:

  • Scent blockers: These products mask my natural odor, making it harder for deer to detect my presence.
  • Hunting blind: A ground blind offers concealment and scent containment, allowing me to get closer to deer.

By packing these essential items, I confidently venture into the woods for a successful deer hunting experience.

Types of Deer and Their Distribution


I would like to talk about the different types of deer that hunters commonly pursue. Primarily focusing on North America, where deer populations are abundant.

There are four main species that I will discuss:

  • Whitetail
  • Mule Deer
  • White-tailed Deer
  • Black-tailed Deer

What State Has The Highest Whitetail Deer Population?

The Whitetail or White-tailed Deer is the most widespread species in North America. With a significant presence in the USA, Canada, and even some parts of Mexico.

These deer are adaptable to various environments, from forests to urban areas.

The Midwest region, including states like Michigan and Missouri, supports some of the highest Whitetail populations.

But the mac daddy is Texas. Texas has the largest amount of whitetail deer in the United states. With an estimated population of 5.3 Million.

What States Do Mule Deer Live In?

Mule Deer are most commonly found in the western states of the USA. They prefer open spaces like meadows and prairies but can also be found in forests and federal or state land.

Large Mule Deer populations reside in states such as Texas, Arizona, and Utah. However, an estimated 400,000 to 450,000 mule deer inhabit the state of Colorado. Making it the best place to hunt Mule Deer.

Where Do Blacktail Deer Live?

Black-tailed Deer, on the other hand, are native to the Pacific Coast. From California to Alaska, and prefer dense forests areas. Though not as widespread as the Whitetail or Mule Deer, the Black-tailed Deer has a strong presence along the western side of North America.

It is important to note that while these species are primarily found in North America, they are not restricted to the region. They can, in certain cases, be introduced to Europe for hunting purposes in private or government-owned lands where their populations are managed.

Understanding their distribution will help aspiring hunters plan accordingly and pursue the type of deer they’re interested in hunting.

Important Deer Hunting Concepts and Strategies


Scouting For Deer Hunting Spots

As a knowledgeable deer hunter, I believe that scouting is vital when it comes to deer hunting success.

Deer Hunting Spot Tips

In the weeks leading up to deer hunting season, I spend time studying maps and hiking in potential hunting areas to identify deer populations, trails, and bedding locations.

Research and Map Study

Before hitting the field, do your homework. Study maps, topographical features, aerial imagery, and any available hunting reports to identify potential hotspots.

Talk to Local Hunters

Reach out to experienced hunters in the area or join local hunting forums to gather valuable insights about the best deer hunting spots. They can provide valuable information on deer behavior, migration patterns, and popular hunting areas.

Look for Signs of Deer Activity

When scouting on the ground, keep an eye out for deer sign such as tracks, rubs, scrapes, and droppings. These indicators can help you identify high-traffic areas and potential bedding sites.

Deer Food Plots & Food Sources For Deer

Locate areas with abundant food sources such as agricultural fields, mast-producing trees, fruit orchards, or food plots. Deer are more likely to frequent these areas, especially during feeding times.

Water Sources For Deer

Identify nearby water sources like streams, ponds, or watering holes. Deer need water to survive, so scouting areas near these water sources can increase your chances of finding deer activity.

Natural Funnels and Travel Corridors For Deer

Look for natural features that create travel corridors for deer, such as ridges, valleys, fence lines, or narrow bottlenecks. These funneling points can concentrate deer movement and make for great hunting spots.

Elevated Deer Stand Locations

Scout for potential tree stand or ground blind sites that provide good visibility and shooting lanes. Look for elevated positions that offer a clear view of deer movement while minimizing your visibility to deer.

Scout For Deer During Different Times

Visit your scouting areas at different times of the day, including dawn and dusk. This will help you understand deer movement patterns and determine the most active times for hunting.

Stay Stealthy

When scouting, practice scent control, wear camouflage, and move quietly to avoid alerting deer to your presence. The less disturbance you create, the better your chances of locating undisturbed deer.

Safety First

Always prioritize safety when scouting. Familiarize yourself with the area, watch out for hazardous terrain or wildlife, and inform someone about your scouting plans and estimated return time.

Remember, scouting is an ongoing process. Continually monitor and adjust your hunting spots based on fresh sign, changing deer patterns, and feedback from your hunting experiences. Good luck and happy scouting!

Glassing Deer

Glassing is sitting for a long time at vantage points and spotting game from afar with binoculars or spotting scopes.

I consider glassing an essential skill for my deer hunting arsenal. With a quality pair of binoculars or a spotting scope, I can effectively locate deer and observe their behavior from a distance.

This allows me to plan my approach and hunt without alerting the deer to my presence.

Deer Stand Hunting

When it comes to stand hunting, I have found that choosing the right location is crucial. I typically position my stand near travel corridors, food sources, and bedding areas, where I am likely to encounter deer.

I am also careful to consider factors such as wind direction, noise, and visibility when setting up my stand.

What Time of The Day Is The Best To Hunt Deer?


 Although I personally prefer early morning hunts, the best time to hunt deer is during the early morning hours or late evening hours when they are most active.

During these times, deer are more likely to be out and about, searching for food and water. Additionally, during these times, the light is low, which makes it easier for hunters to spot deer without being spotted themselves.

It’s important to note that hunting laws and regulations vary by region, and it’s important to follow all local laws and regulations when hunting.

What Is The Best Method For Hunting Deer?

 there are several methods for hunting deer that are commonly used by hunters. The most popular methods include:

  1. Rifle hunting: This involves using a high-powered rifle to take down a deer from a distance.
  2. Bow hunting: This involves using a bow and arrow to take down a deer from a closer range.
  3. Spot and stalk hunting: This involves spotting a deer from a distance and then stalking it until you are close enough to take a shot.
  4. Still hunting: This involves moving slowly and quietly through the woods in search of deer.
  5. Stand hunting: This involves setting up a tree stand or ground blind in an area where deer are known to frequent and waiting for them to come to you.

It’s important to note that hunting laws and regulations vary by region, and it’s important to follow all local laws and regulations when hunting.

Additionally, ethical hunting practices should always be followed to ensure the humane treatment of animals.

What Attracts Deer The Most For Hunting?

There are several things that can be used to attract deer for hunting purposes.

These include:

  1. Food: Deer are attracted to food sources such as acorns, apples, corn, and other grains.
  2. Scents: Deer are attracted to scents such as deer urine, estrus scents, and food scents.
  3. Decoys: Deer decoys can be used to attract deer by mimicking the appearance of other deer.
  4. Cover: Deer are attracted to areas with good cover, such as thick brush or tall grass.

Additionally, ethical hunting practices should always be followed to ensure the humane treatment of animals.

Hunt In Season

Never harvest an animal out of season, unless its for self defense. To learn about when deer season opens, we have the open dates for every state. We update this article yearly so it always has the latest information.

Do You Have Deer Hunting Tips To Share?

Lastly, hunters, like homesteaders, are a community of like-minded people.

We believe in our cause and know that sustainable living and self-sufficiency are essential. If you have tips to share with others, please drop us a comment and we’ll include them in this post.

While we all love to fill the freezer with venison, we don’t enjoy deer eating our garden.

We offer some tips on how to keep deer out of your garden.


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