Learning How to Fail

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

All of us fail at one time or another. Successful hunters fail often. What separates them from the rest is they learn more and faster from that failure than everyone else does.

When you fail and you will, decide what you can learn from it so you won’t make the same mistakes twice. Hunters who blamed others for their failure will never learn from failure, because they’ve never done it.

Knowledge is the positive upside to failure.

-Jim

Blood in the Tracks

My publisher just sent me the cover image for my next book. I’m really excited about this project as it should help a lot of hunters be more successful. Book should be out to the public in late May or early June.
Jim

A Little Extra Effort Changes Everything

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

As humans we tend to think the grass is always greener on the other side of the hill. Hunters are no different. We’re always on the lookout for that secret special location.

The fact is, there are literally millions of perfect locations throughout North America. 10% more effort right here and right now might be exactly what you need to harvest that buck of a lifetime.

-Jim

Let Sleeping Bucks Lie

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

Avoid big buck bedding areas at all costs. A buck chooses his bedding site for security purposes. If disturbed in his bed, a buck will never bed in that spot again, at least not this season.

Unless a food source dries up, a buck will remain in the same area as long as he is not disturbed during day light bedding hours.

-Jim

Hunting with Doubt

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

Hunters don’t like doubt, they’ll do anything to avoid it.

If you need assurance that you’re in the right place and doing everything right, you’re giving up quite a bit to get it.

On the other hand, if you can get in the habit of seeking uncertainty, you develop a great instinct on the where’s and how’s of hunting trophy whitetails.

-Jim

True or False

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

True or false? The most important thing to do is to scout. You tell me how many times you have been scouting and I can predict your next seasons results. You need to scout more. This is true.

-Jim

Busted

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

It’s extremely difficult to repair a hunting situation once we’ve been busted.

It’s a lot easier to find a new buck to hunt.

A hunter should have several bucks located and patterned prior to the beginning of season. If you get busted, you can quickly set up on another deer.

-Jim

Lunch Is for Wimps

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

Everyone knows dawn and dusk are the periods of greatest whitetail activity. It is also when we find the greatest number of hunters afield. Typically, we hunt in the morning, break for lunch, and then hunt again in the late afternoon.

What a lot of hunters don’t know is that a deer cannot go all day without feeding. While everyone else was eating lunch I stay in the stand. It’s proven to be a great strategy. 30% of the bucks I’ve killed were between 11:00AM and 1:00 PM.

If you want to dramatically improve your success ratio on big bucks, stay in the stand.

Lunch is for wimps.

-Jim

We’re Not Hunting on Television

We’re not even living in a reality show either.
Outdoor Television has seduced us into believing that we only have to hunt like they do and we’ll be successful. Real hunts don’t take 30 minutes and big deer aren’t hiding behind every bush.
In real life little depends on what happens in the next ninety seconds. It takes more than 30 minutes to hunt a whitetail.
Real hunting is actually far better than it is on TV. It takes longer and the deer are harder to come by.
-Jim

When Strategy Drowns a Hunt

Photo courtesy of Apple Creek Whitetails

I always enter the field with a game plan. I plan the hunt and hunt plan. But sometimes following a rigid game plan has cost me a buck.

My son and I have planned a two-man push on Thanksgiving morning. We passed five does on the way in to make the push. The rut was winding down and there had to be a buck on the does.

I decided to stick with the plan and to come back and hunt the doe group later in the day.

An hour later we heard a shot and another hunter had killed a big buck off the does.

The lesson was learned. Don’t be too rigid in your strategy that you overlook an opportunity right in front of you.
-Jim