John's Journal...


Block Trails and Build Invisible Trails

EDITOR’S NOTE: “Many times to take a nice-sized buck, you have to force him to come to you,” Larry Norton of Butler, Alabama, a co-owner and hunting guide at The Shed, says. “By blocking trails you don’t want the deer to use, you can remove the deer’s options of where he can walk. He’ll have to come to you.”

Click to enlargeFor several consecutive mornings, Norton had seen a nice-sized buck crossing a backwoods logging road. He found three different trails the buck apparently had used. However, every morning that Norton set up to bag the buck, the deer took a different trail, each time staying out of bow range. Finally Norton parked his truck o the side of the road where the buck easily could see it if he came down either of the two trails. Then he put his tree stand 20 yards from the third trail. That morning when the buck walked under Norton’s stand, Norton arrowed the heavy 8 point.
Build Invisible Odor Trails:

Click to enlargeYou also can cause bucks to move toward you by hanging a piece of clothing on a trail. If three trails lead into a food tree you want to hunt, place a handkerchief or a sock 50-yards downwind of the food tree hanging over the trails you don’t want the deer to take. The deer will see and smell the clothing and funnel off the marked trails onto the remaining trail that leads to you.

“I hunt some public land in Florida where I knew a big deer had bedded-down in thick cover on one end of a ridge surrounded by a swamp,” Ronnie Groom of Panama City, Florida, an avid, longtime deer hunter who often teaches bowhunting schools in Alabama, told me. “To trick the buck, I walked to the bedding area on top of Click to enlargethe ridge and retraced my trail back to my stand. Then I walked from my stand to the water, remaining on the shore. When I headed back to the bedding region, I left a scent trail on either side of the bedding site, which backed-up to the water. This gave the buck a water barrier on the back side of his bedding area and two scent lines of human odor—one on the ridge and one against the water—that funneled him to my tree stand. Just before dark, I saw the buck emerge from the cover, moving in the middle of the funnel I’d made. He walked straight to me. If I hadn’t put down those scent trails, the buck could have escaped over the ridge or waded out through the swamp. But because I blocked him with human odor, I forced him to come to me.”

Check back each day this week for more about FORCE THE BUCK TO COME TO YOU

Day 1: Block Trails and Build Invisible Trails
Day 2: Make a Brush Funnel
Day 3: Cause a Buck to Come Out of Thick Cover
Day 4: Cut a Path
Day 5: Build a Honey Hole



Entry 332, Day 1