Deer Hunting

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The 2021 Western Region Deer Hunting Forecast

The West has arguably the best scenery in the nation. Hunters dream of seeing it with gun or bow in hand. And if that’s all you care about, it takes the cake. If you want a nice whitetail, it has loads of Pope and Young-class bucks. Boone and Crockett whitetails?...


The 2021 Midwest Deer Hunting Forecast

Summer is here, and deer season isn’t far off. After contacting every wildlife agency and department of natural resources (DNR) in the region, it’s clear that some states are shaping up quite nicely, while others are lagging. Luckily for you, we’ve sifted through the data to produce in-depth reports. If...


The 5 Best Bullet Styles for Deer Hunting

Today’s gun writers can make a decent living writing clickbait. Any story titled “Top 10 Calibers for (Insert Critter Here)” is about guaranteed to pull readers in and make them argue, and website publishers love that. But the truth is, for killing deer inside 200 yards — where the overwhelming...


The 2021 Northeast Deer Hunting Forecast

Deer season is knocking on the door, and it’s time to answer questions people have about the Northeast. Hunters will be pleased to know that things are shaping up quite nicely for the region. Thanks to several consecutive mild winters, solid mast crops, improved management decisions by states, and more,...


The 2021 Southeast Deer Hunting Forecast

Deer hunting in the Southeast isn’t what it once was. It’s now much better. Many southern states have taken aggressive steps — at the urging of hunters — to better manage their deer herds for older bucks and better opportunity. It’s paying off, too, as more monster deer stories are...


18 Secrets From Deer Scientists

When deer scientists talk, I listen. Men and women who make a career of studying the whitetail don’t do it for fame or money. Having worked for years to obtain a master’s degree in wildlife ecology, and in many cases a PhD to boot, they are passionate about learning all...


Prep Now For Your Best Deer Season Yet!

Depending on where you live and hunt, whitetail season will open in four or five months. Plenty of time to get ready, right? But you know how time flies. This year it’s especially important to start getting ready early. The more planning and prep work you do over the next...


How to Plan an RV Hunting Trip

Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, hunting license sales skyrocketed across the country in 2020 as folks turned to the fields and forests to enjoy outdoor recreation away from large crowds. Hunting is a great option for entertainment and low-risk for COVID-19. But if your hunting destination is a long distance...


What Will Deer Hunting Be Like in 10 Years?

When I moved on from squirrels to hunting deer with my dad in the 1970s, there were about 200,000 whitetails in Virginia. Today, we’ve got five times that many. In the 1980s and ’90s, we went from “if it’s brown it’s down” to the “big buck” era. Whitetail management was...


10 More Deer Hunting Myths Debunked

A talking head on outdoor TV puffs his chest and declares, “Man, the full moon is the worst time to hunt!” Sounds pretty good, and you buy it. Your daddy told you never to overhunt a spot, and you never doubt Pops. Stands to reason that if another hunter tromps...


Why January is the Best Month for Deer Scouting

It was a gray, bone-chilling evening, one of the last of the Virginia gun season. Steve Reynolds was fixing to climb down from his stand and call it a year when he looked up and saw a 150-inch buck inching out into the plot of brassicas he was watching. Boom!...


When a LifeLine Saved a Life

Scott Bestul was looking forward to an evening hunt in southern Minnesota. It was a 25-degree November afternoon with snow on the ground, and Bestul — a 40-year veteran of the deer woods and longtime whitetails columnist for Field & Stream — knew it was likely to be a good...


Three Giant Bucks in One Incredible Season

Travis “T-Bone” Turner knew his 2020 deer season was going to look different than most, but he had no idea what was in store. As co-host of Michael Waddell’s Bone Collector , Turner typically spends deer season traveling across the country, but this year the COVID-19 pandemic changed things. Like...


7 Serious Field-Dressing Mistakes

If you really want to annoy a veteran deer hunter, tell him or her they’re gutting a buck all wrong. Good hunters know to never bust stomachs, spill bladders, or cut the wrong spot because those mistakes ruin the meat. Right? The internet can leave you thinking that, since the...


6 Killer Strategies for Late-Season Deer Hunting

It’s mid-December, and a buck tag is still burning a hole in your pocket. Most of your buddies have killed their deer, and you’re starting to worry. Maybe even panic. I’ve hunted hard like I always do every year. What am I doing wrong? Did I miss the rut? Will...


Help a Brother Out: Story of a Mega Ohio 9-Pointer

Buck: 186 4/8 green gross, 172 2/8 green net including a 14-inch G3 Time of Year: Nov. 2, 2020 Place: Clark County, Ohio Weapon: Diamond bow with Montec broadhead To kill truly huge bucks, you sometimes have to pass on bucks most of us would consider a trophy. Johnny Ferrell...


5 Best Places for Snow Tracking Bucks

Many of us dream of hunting bucks one-on-one with snow on the ground. You can find plenty of instructions on how to do this in the popular press, but no one ever tells you where to go. To track a buck, you need room to follow him, an open gun...


31 Best Tips for Hunting the Rut

You’ve waited all year for this. It's the rut, baby! No matter which week in November you take off work, your No. 1 strategy is simple: Spend every minute you can in your best stands because you never know when a good buck will prowl by, or come running hot...


The Best Shot Placement on Deer

Look at the vital zone outlined on the average 3D deer target, and you’ll see an area that reinforces what most of us have been taught about aiming at a broadside deer: Hold behind the crease of the shoulder, slightly below centerline of the chest. Most of the time, if...


15 Tips for One-Shot Kills

One morning in the Clearwater Mountains of Idaho, I watched two whitetail bucks skirting a hillside trail across a canyon. “Two hundred sixty yards,” my friend Bob said from below his rangefinder. “Buck in back is bigger.” I rested my .270 in the crotch of sticks and watched as the...


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