About as green as can be

Discussion in 'Intro to Bowhunting & Archery' started by Patrick Cofell, Aug 12, 2018.

  1. Patrick Cofell

    Patrick Cofell Newb

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    Hey everyone, thanks for welcoming me to this excellent forum. This is my first year hunting and I feel
    about as clueless as one can feel when starting a new endeavor. My friend gave me his old Mathews z3 and I'm eyeing public land just north of Duluth, MN. I don't really know where to start or what to do to get going. I just picked up a Moultrie trail cam and am looking for good land to post it. Hell, I'd have no idea how to process a deer even if I managed to arrow one. Should I hire a guide in my first hunt? What kind of deer stand should I get? Should I pick up more trail cams other than the one I have? If anyone could give me good advice, i'd greatly appreciate it.
     
  2. w33kender

    w33kender Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Longtime rifle hunter entering only his third year of bowhunting. Welcome aboard!

    It is awesome that you've considered "after the shot," which is when the real work begins. Lots of info on youtube on the subject, like about any other project. Doing your own deer can be a lot of fun but make sure you have what gear you need in advance. Good luck!!!

    Also, shot selection and placement is very, very important. Lots of good info on the web for that. Here are a couple links I like, sir.

    https://www.realtree.com/deer-hunting/shot-placement-on-deer
    https://bowhunting360.com/2017/01/12/bowhunting-aim-whitetail-deer/
    http://bowsite.com/bowsite/features/articles/deer/deergeometry/
     
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  3. Hogs need lovin too

    Hogs need lovin too Weekend Warrior

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    Just get ready to pour some time in and don't give up. I'm only about 5 years into hunting. Lots of trial and error when you don't have someone showing you what to do or where to go.


    Sent from my iPhone using Bowhunting.com Forums
     
  4. JasonOhio2018

    JasonOhio2018 Die Hard Bowhunter

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  5. Justin

    Justin Administrator

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    Welcome to the world of bowhunting! Hopefully you'll find it as enjoyable and addictive as we do.

    For people just getting started I like to break it down into two primary pieces - archery and hunting.

    The archery side of things is easier learned in that you can go to an archery shop, have someone give you pointers, set up your bow, show you some tips on how to shoot properly and then practice a lot before you go out and try to kill something.

    The hunting side of thing is a lot more difficult to learn because there is no practice - there is simply learning through doing. So you're going to make mistakes. You're going to get frustrated. You're going to learn on the fly. That's all part of the process. Be ready for it.

    One thing I would say is not to put too much stock in trail cameras. Sure they're fun and a great tool but they can also be very misleading at times. Rather, learn to analyze aerial and topographic maps and read deer sign first. Don't rely on a camera to tell you if there's deer around, but rather rely on your skills as a woodsman to decide where deer should be and then use the camera to confirm it.

    Bowhunting is a game of feet, or even inches. For this reason I start with concentrating on features (natural or otherwise) and funnel deer movement into specific areas which bring them within bow range. Hunting big woods like you're in up there North of Duluth you aren't going to have a lot of traditional funnels that can be seen on an aerial map so you're going to be looking at topographic features instead. Perhaps a land bridge between two marshes, or a saddle in a ridgeline. Focus on those areas first.

    Eventually you'll want to try and determine what the deer in your area are feeding on throughout the year and focus some attention on those areas as well. If this public land has any freshly logged areas or cuttings that's a great place to start. Also look for naturally occurring forage or food sources like acorns that deer love. I know there's not much for agriculture up there but if there's any sort of ag field like corn or alfalfa that's a natural place to start as well.

    As for a treestand, I personally believe that a good set of climbing sticks and a hang-on stand is the best route to go. Others will argue in favor of a climbing stand, however if there's a lack of straight, limbless trees in your area a climber may limit your options. A good hang-on with a set of sticks may take a little more technique and time to setup and tear down each time, but it also allows more versatility. When the difference between success and failure is often a few feet or less, I'd rather put in the time to use the hang-on and be in the right spot than watch one pass out of range from a climber. Just my 2 cents.
     
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  6. Okiebob

    Okiebob Die Hard Bowhunter

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    First taste is free... welcome to what will more than likely become a lifelong addiction. Patience and persistence are key.
     
  7. Kody Nehl

    Kody Nehl Weekend Warrior

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    Welcome to the addiction brother! Bowhunting is in my opinion the most fun and painful way to spend your fall!;) best advice: practice, practice practice. Then scent control. Without a good shot and being undetectable, your chances go way down. I would suggest a tree stand for archery. Deer are less likely to look up. As far as trail cams go, they are great. But, deer trails and food sources are your most reliable source to find your deer. But, scent control and practice. Make tight groups and practice minimal movement while drawing.

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Bowhunting.com Forums mobile app
     
  8. Hogs need lovin too

    Hogs need lovin too Weekend Warrior

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    I think scent control is OK but hunting a spot only in proper wind is more important. It took me a long time to realize this...
     
  9. early in

    early in Grizzled Veteran

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    Welcome! The first thing you want to do is make sure the bow your friend gave you fits you, both length and draw weight. Have fun.
     
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  10. alenhard15

    alenhard15 Die Hard Bowhunter

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    First an foremost welcome to the best sport on earth!!!! I think a great place to start for you would be to pick up a relatively cheap hang on stand with climbing sticks. Personally I go with Big Game stands because they are cheap. Forget about hiring a guide it is much more rewarding to do it yourself! As far as where to set up there are plenty of people on here willing to get you pointed in the right direction. Post a screenshot of some of the public land around you and we can help you find an area to scout. One trail camera will do, the more you have the more places you can keep tabs on. With having a hang on stand you can be fairly mobile. Anything you have questions on just post on here thats why we are all on this site to help each other! Feel free to PM me a map of the gamelands you can hunt, Im not an expert but ive had some pretty good success on heavily hunted public land! Best of luck!
     
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  11. Shocker99

    Shocker99 Grizzled Veteran

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    I think everyone here told you more than I could have already, especially Justin’s post. Read that one more than once. The things I would stress, and this one was mentioned above, but as far as archery goes you have to practice until you are confident that you can consistently hit within an area (most say a pie plate) the size of a deers vitals. By that I mean the lungs and heart. Practice at different yardages angles and elevations. Learn to judge yardage’s fairly accurately. Invest in a decent rangefinder and play the guessing game where you guess an objects yargdage and then see how close you were with your rangefinder. Me and some buddies get on our roofs and shoot at 3D deer targets. You owe the animal you are hunting the quickest and most humane death possible. I emphasize this so strongly because, (and I think I speak for everyone here), everyone eventually makes a bad shot if you bowhunt long enough. Even guys who are good shots and can hold their crap together under pressure make bad shots. Imo you should at least become a semi-good archer before you try to hunt. Even if it means spending your first year just shooting your bow. Have someone at a reputable archery range observe your form. Alot of guys have helped me along the way. It’s surprising how many people jump at the chance to help and share knowledge.

    The second thing I didn’t see mentioned was treestand safety. Man you have to wear a harness and learn to climb while attached to the tree from the moment you leave the ground. It takes awhile to get proficient with hanging stands and climbing with a climber. The last thing you want to do is end up paralyzed or worse because you took a spill.

    There’s absolutely no way to learn everything in a year or 5 years or even 10. I’ve been hunting for 30 years and bowhunting for about 22 off and on. I’m still a dummy and learn something new every hunt. So don’t beat yourself up and don’t give into frustration cause there will be a lot of that. What you’ve got going for you is the vast wealth of knowledge at your fingertips. Places like this forum with firsthand knowledge from guys who are across the spectrum in experience and skill. You can google any question you might have and get pages of resources. When I started I was limited to whatever articles were in Peterson’s bowhunting that month. You’re not alone being new. There are many guys who are just starting out right here on this sight. Just try to soak it in slowly because it’s easy to get overwhelmed with information. Most important is to have fun and enjoy nature. Gods creation is forgotten a lot of times in our daily lives. Some of my best hunts I didn’t even see a deer.

    Glad you decided to start hunting, it was one of the best things I decided to do.
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
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  12. jstephens61

    jstephens61 Weekend Warrior

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    Don’t over think this thing called bowhunting. As you learn to shoot, remember the good shots and repeat everything you did.
    The animal you’re after is just that, an animal. It doesn’t think or reason, it reacts and is a creature of habit. It will learn, but that’s not thinking. Don’t be a teacher.
    They need food, water and sanctuary all the time. Breeding takes priority for a time in the fall. Be proud of any deer you take with a bow and don’t think you have to take a 200” your first year out.
    Don’t buy into the hype that you have to have this bow or camo or newest gimmick. Have you bow tuned, get good arrows and sharp broadheads, you’ll do fine.
    Above all, have fun!
     
  13. Kyle Sinclair-Smith

    Kyle Sinclair-Smith Weekend Warrior

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    I am unsure of your laws but my first piece of advice to any new hunter is to pick up your local hunting regulations and read them front to back and then reread them 9 more times. From what I've seen, some new hunters find themselves in trouble because they are breaking a law they didn't know exists. Regulations can sometime be a lot to comprehend, if you don't understand something be sure to reach out to your local wildlife officer.

    In my opinion, the most successful bowhunters are the ones with the most time. Be patient, move slow, be quite and have fun. Also, practice practice practice. Find what your comfortable max range is and be disciplined enough to stick to it. There is no worse feeling than making a bad shot and having to leave the animal lay over night or even worse, never finding it.

    Have fun, enjoy your time in the woods, be safe, and please wear a harness in the tree stand.
     
  14. Patrick Cofell

    Patrick Cofell Newb

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    Thanks for the advice everyone. I do have my states regs and have been studying them. Found some public land 40 min north of Duluth MN and have a game camera that I'll be checking soon. From what I gather from the posts above, scent control is one of the most important factors between success and failure. What is on the forefront of my mind is what I'm going to do if I manage to kill a deer. Looks like I gotta study up on field dressing deer and am gonna have to find a good meat processor.
     
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  15. Kyle Sinclair-Smith

    Kyle Sinclair-Smith Weekend Warrior

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    There are a ton of youtube videos. Depending on how far you have to pack the animal out on foot you may want to check out the gutless method. If you can get a quad or truck right to the animal then just youtube the regular gutting method. You may still want to use the gutless method.

    Sent from my SM-G930W8 using Tapatalk
     
  16. aaronschiada

    aaronschiada Newb

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    This is all great info...im about as green as it gets in the bow world and the hunting world. So im going to absorb all the info i can. Thanks all!
     

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