7 Off-Season Must-Dos for Hunters

Are You Defeating the Doldrums?

By: Courtesy of Yamaha Outdoors


It's still fun to get outside during the off-season and enjoy God's wonderful creation. (Craig Watson photo)

As winter comes and goes, we're still a long way from deer hunting seasons. Here are five things you can do right now to make the time go faster.

Fill Your Freezer

Turkey season is right around the corner. And it's already open in some states. Get after those spring longbeards and make some spring fun happen. Turkey hunting is pretty awesome, after all.

Learn More: Kill a Spring Turkey with Realtree's Flowchart

Empty Your Freezer

Here in the barbecue months, it's a good time to pull a few wild turkey breasts from the freezer, grill and serve them to friends and family. You'll need the room later come fall.

Learn More: 5 Ways You Ruined Your Wild Turkey Meat

Get In Shape

Eating well during the summer months can put on some pounds. Try to maintain that good shape you were in back during spring turkey season by walking, running and working out with the weights now. Joining a hoops or softball team can do the same thing.

Learn More: The Body of a Bowhunter

Upgrade Your Gear

You ride your four wheels hard. Does your gear reflect the kind of preparedness to be safe, too? Take a quick inventory. Do you have good riding boots, goggles and a helmet? Hunt and ride with enthusiasm this summer and fall, but do it safely.

Learn More: New Deer Hunting Gear for 2018

Touch Up Decoys

Storm-battered duck and goose fakes can be restored with a touch of satin or glossy polyurethane spray. Don't want to do that? Simply clean your decoys with a wet rag to remove any mud, dirt or grass lingering from last season. Another cheap way to add realism is with white latex paint in areas where it reflects a natural look. Use yellow-green enamel paint for greenhead highlights and so on. Get inventive. Add visual appeal. The deal is to enhance the look of your spread come waterfowl season. Not artistic? Many of the new decoys surely are.

Learn More: Duck and Goose Decoy Clinic: Keeping Blocks in Top Shape

Start Scouting for Deer

It's never too early to get ahead for next season. Do some of the leg work now so you don't have to later. Hang cameras. Clear shooting lanes. Clear areas for food plots. Doing all of this now is beneficial because it doesn't pressure deer closer to season.

Learn More: The Most Effective Trail Camera Plan for Deer Hunting

Hang Some Stands

Admit it. It's hotter than a breakfast skillet right now, but you've got deer hunting on your mind. Early July is a great time to haul in some treestands on your Yamaha ATV or side-by-side. Place them in conjunction with some game trails and pasture corners that have proven out in the past, or take a leap of faith and secure them in some new areas.

Learn More: 8 Off-Season Land Management Tips for Deer Hunters

Editor's Note: This was originally published July 18, 2011.

Are you a deer hunter wanting to learn how to accomplish your goals? Check out our stories, videos and hard-hitting how-to's on deer hunting.

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