10 Things Your Deer Hunting Mentor Hates

By author of Brow Tines and Backstrap

For the Love of Bows and Bulls-Eyes, Don’t Do These Things

The future of hunting depends on us sharing the outdoors with those who may not have the knowledge, means or access to do it on their own. So there’s no greater act in the outdoor lifestyle than introducing someone to hunting.

If you’re new to hunting, and have a mentor who's showing you the ropes, pay heed to the following advice. As these 10 things are some of which deer hunting mentors despise the most.

You Not Being On TimeYou Not Being On TimeYou Not Being On TimeYou Not Being On TimeYou Not Being On Time

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1 | You Not Being On Time

Be on time. It’s easy. Decide on a time and follow it. There are few things worse than consistently making your mentor wait on you. They’re taking the time to help you get acquainted with the outdoors. Don’t keep them waiting.

Photo credit: Bill Konway

You Act Like You Know It AllYou Act Like You Know It AllYou Act Like You Know It AllYou Act Like You Know It AllYou Act Like You Know It All

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2 | You Act Like You Know It All

Really want to tick off your deer hunting mentor? Act like you know everything. That’ll get ‘em good ‘n’ red in the face. The best thing to do? Keep your mouth closed and listen to what they have to say. Don’t act like you’re the next Fred Bear of deer hunting.

Photo credit: Realtree

You Talk More Than You ListenYou Talk More Than You ListenYou Talk More Than You ListenYou Talk More Than You ListenYou Talk More Than You Listen

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3 | You Talk More Than You Listen

There’s a reason you have one mouth and two ears. Listen at least twice as much as you talk. And when you talk, ask questions and verify things you’ve already learned. Use this time to soak up as much knowledge as possible.

Photo credit: John Hafner

You ArenYou ArenYou ArenYou ArenYou Aren

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4 | You Aren't Willing to Work

Nobody likes someone who isn’t willing to work but is eager to reap the reward. Spend time working and preparing for deer season with your mentor. Invest time in it. Earn your keep. And show your interest and willingness to work. Plant food plots. Help hang treestands. Contribute to the scouting effort. If you do, he or she will be more eager to keep you involved.

Photo credit: Josh Honeycutt

You Step on Every Stick in the WoodsYou Step on Every Stick in the WoodsYou Step on Every Stick in the WoodsYou Step on Every Stick in the WoodsYou Step on Every Stick in the Woods

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5 | You Step on Every Stick in the Woods

Try to be quiet. It isn’t hard. Just walk slowly. Be light on your feet. And watch where you’re placing your feet. Walk heel-to-toe and if you feel a stick under your boot, slowly lift your foot back up and place it in a spot without debris.

Photo credit: Realtree

You Never Pay AttentionYou Never Pay AttentionYou Never Pay AttentionYou Never Pay AttentionYou Never Pay Attention

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6 | You Never Pay Attention

Keep your attention on the task at hand. Stay focused. Don’t let your attention stray to unrelated matters. Use this time to learn. Free advice is rare these days.

Photo credit: Brad Herndon

You Stay on Your PhoneYou Stay on Your PhoneYou Stay on Your PhoneYou Stay on Your PhoneYou Stay on Your Phone

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7 | You Stay on Your Phone

A slight variant from the former slide, staying on your phone is a real downer for a hunting mentor. They’re selflessly taking time out of their day to share their passion for the outdoors with you. The least you could do is put the phone away for a few hours.

Photo credit: Realtree

You Hunt for the Wrong ReasonsYou Hunt for the Wrong ReasonsYou Hunt for the Wrong ReasonsYou Hunt for the Wrong ReasonsYou Hunt for the Wrong Reasons

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8 | You Hunt for the Wrong Reasons

Your mentors aren't spending all that time in the field with you just so you can kill something. They aren’t out there to put you on a giant buck, either. They’re there to show you the ropes, introduce you to deer hunting, and to pass on what the outdoors is truly about — connecting with nature.

Photo credit: Josh Honeycutt

You DonYou DonYou DonYou DonYou Don

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9 | You Don't Have Good Ethics or Safety Awareness

Always practice quality ethics. Respect the game laws. Respect the resource. Respect other hunters. Be safe. When in doubt, don’t do it. Ask your mentor for advice and learn the best practices in certain situations.

Photo credit: Realtree

You DonYou DonYou DonYou DonYou Don

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Image 10 of 10

10 | You Don't Learn from Your Mistakes

It’s okay to make mistakes. In fact, you’re going to make them. A lot of them. But that’s okay. What isn’t alright? Continuously making the same mistakes over and over. It’s hard for your mentors to continue teaching you new tips, tactics and concepts when they’re constantly having to reinforce something they’ve already taught several times. Pay attention and try to retain everything they convey to you. You'll benefit more and keep them happy if you do.

Photo credit: Realtree

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