-By Brandon Wikman
Summer seems to strike a golden chord with savvy archers awaiting the opener. It is a time when we prep ourselves mentally and physically for the dawning of a new season that lies only weeks ahead. Our goals are set, anticipation is high, and now we sit tight, holding on to last year’s cherished memories. These recollections will soon evolve into this year’s fresh moments of enlightenment as we move into the later stages of summer.
This time of the year is always my most difficult time to cope with. Like many hunters, my calendar counts down the days until opening weekend of archery season. Deer season couldn’t come any sooner, but as it often does for many of us, by September we are wishing we’d put an extra few days of planting food plots, checking cameras, and scouting. Instead of daydreaming about the season, take action to make it the best hunt of your life by successfully preparing a game plan.
During different stages of the day, my mind departs and wanders into the forest. My imagination strolls down deer trails, overlooks hunting property from a birds-eye-view, and plants rich food plots in areas I’d never step camouflage boot in. During the afternoon grind reality splinters the ceiling of my office into tiny fragments of ideas and chunks of drywall clobber me over the head bringing an unsettled ambition to create one more nutritious plot, hang another stand, and burn more gas taking rides around the block with my binoculars strung around my neck. It is these small innovations of strategy that will make us all more successful hunters.
During the next few weeks I will be taking advantage of the extra time by hanging a few more stands around a freshly planted food plot that will be monitored by my handy game camera. Deer are constantly mowing greens right now. You will find bucks juicing-up on protein rich foods that will help them build muscle for the November brawls that lie ahead. Does are not so different. They are inhaling masses of soybean, alfalfa, and clover, which helps them feed their young. I’ve always found that placing my trail camera along field edges during this time of year yields many more photos.
As the shadows of dusk blanket the horizon, mature whitetails step foot into the limelight. It is a perfect time burn a few miles and ignite buck fever by driving around the areas you hunt. I will often times park behind brush or a wall of trees to remain hidden as I drool at the velvet covered bone from the eye-piece of my spotting scope. There’s nothing like glassing fields that are speckled with monster whitetail and knowing your tree stand’s only yards away. You must ask yourself, “Are you ready?”
Many hunters sit back and relax as opening day pulls the carpet from beneath their spotless boots. Prepare yourself now so you can pull the rug from beneath that buck’s hooves!