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Do you practice scent control?

kyler1945

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I don’t wear my hunting boots anywhere but the mud I’m hunting in. Besides that, no scent control besides wind, and not walking where I expect deer to travel on their way to die.

learn to go into an area blind and not walk past the set, while avoiding where the deer will walk. This is a game of inches sometimes. Can’t always be avoided. At worst, be able to shoot to where a deer will hit your ground scent. And be drawn when they do.

don’t leave stuff at base of tree. If you can, get set up to climb a hundred or so yards downwind of your set. Walk up to tree ready to climb. Getting dressed at base of tree releases a ton of scent. Ever get that deer that looks at base of your tree, then looks right up at you? He probably smelled the cloud of your stink, and looked that way and put you in his field of view.
 

Noonespecial

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Big buck killer, that all depends. I normally shoot 3.5 year old or older deer some are what I consider big 130"s or more but many are a 115-120"s as well. Its all about where you hunt. In the last 5 years I have killled a 183" a 168" and 148" in Kansas. In those same 5 years I have killed a 115, 108 and 122" deer here in NY. I used to be a nut about scent control. I still use a commercial ozone unit for my clothes and some gear but mainly cause I am hunting away from home and it saves washing them too often. I have learned a few things in 40 plus years of killing deer. Number one is hunt the wind, the second which to me is the most overlooked is your ground scent. If you are entering an area and walking deer runs or crossing them you just reduced your chances of seeing deer. I wear rubber boots and I do use Scent Killer on them but thats about it. John is a great deer hunter but when it comes to his scent control methods he is full of ****e!! I promise you he hunts the wind and he knows exactly what the thermals are doing and when they are doing it on every set he has!! Its been proven over and over again that matures deer nose is impossible to beat. The biggest issue is your breath, unless you can hold it for a couple hours you are producing a ton of stink every time you exhale. Also another tip is bigger deer rarely travel with the wind in there face. They a lot of time travel into a quartering wind as well as with it at their backs in areas where they can see a long ways. I did not read the whole thread but I know this, if you live in the Northeast or along the east coast and consistently kill a mature buck every couple years than you can and should go to the mid west and hunt. Guys get upset when I say this, but much easier to kill mature bucks in states like, Kansas, Iowa, Illinois,SD and ND as well as places like Colorado, Wyoming and Montana. I know cause I am
proof of that. Hunt the wind, watch your ground scent and figure out what the wind does with the thermals and it will help a whole bunch. Shawn
I have talked to John several times, believe me he doesn’t hunt the wind he picks a tree and hunts it no matter the wind direction. When I hear people say, “play the wind” I chuckle a little. The wind plays you! I hear all the time, “I can’t hunt that spot because the wind is wrong” and really how many of you can honestly say that when you’re in a spot the wind never shifts and know exactly where the deer will be coming from. With 30 years of archery hunting that’s NEVER been the case for me. Also it’s funny that most guys will say, “I only play the wind” but also use some form of scent control on top of that. I’ve never heard someone say I strictly play the wind and don’t use anything else. Someone please tell me that they never use scent free soap on their body or hunting clothes during hunting season and just, “plays the wind” and has killed multiple high pressured big mature bucks. If people say you can’t beat a deers nose then why bother with anything that will help eliminate your scent. I’ve said earlier in this thread that everyone uses some form of scent control it’s just what lengths you will go to help reduce it. I’ve learned what to do so I can just pick a tree and hunt it. Been winded just like everyone else but I am confident enough with my scent regimen to just pick a tree and hunt it when I want and that is way nicer than waiting for the right wind.
 

Plebe

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I have talked to John several times, believe me he doesn’t hunt the wind he picks a tree and hunts it no matter the wind direction. When I hear people say, “play the wind” I chuckle a little. The wind plays you! I hear all the time, “I can’t hunt that spot because the wind is wrong” and really how many of you can honestly say that when you’re in a spot the wind never shifts and know exactly where the deer will be coming from. With 30 years of archery hunting that’s NEVER been the case for me. Also it’s funny that most guys will say, “I only play the wind” but also use some form of scent control on top of that. I’ve never heard someone say I strictly play the wind and don’t use anything else. Someone please tell me that they never use scent free soap on their body or hunting clothes during hunting season and just, “plays the wind” and has killed multiple high pressured big mature bucks. If people say you can’t beat a deers nose then why bother with anything that will help eliminate your scent. I’ve said earlier in this thread that everyone uses some form of scent control it’s just what lengths you will go to help reduce it. I’ve learned what to do so I can just pick a tree and hunt it. Been winded just like everyone else but I am confident enough with my scent regimen to just pick a tree and hunt it when I want and that is way nicer than waiting for the right wind.
I use some scent control, I do OK.

My uncle uses none, smokes cigars, does pretty well.

We hunt pressured deer.

I think I have an edge,IDK, does cigar smoke count as scent contro?
 

BackSpasm

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Middle Tennessee
I have talked to John several times, believe me he doesn’t hunt the wind he picks a tree and hunts it no matter the wind direction. When I hear people say, “play the wind” I chuckle a little. The wind plays you! I hear all the time, “I can’t hunt that spot because the wind is wrong” and really how many of you can honestly say that when you’re in a spot the wind never shifts and know exactly where the deer will be coming from. With 30 years of archery hunting that’s NEVER been the case for me. Also it’s funny that most guys will say, “I only play the wind” but also use some form of scent control on top of that. I’ve never heard someone say I strictly play the wind and don’t use anything else. Someone please tell me that they never use scent free soap on their body or hunting clothes during hunting season and just, “plays the wind” and has killed multiple high pressured big mature bucks. If people say you can’t beat a deers nose then why bother with anything that will help eliminate your scent. I’ve said earlier in this thread that everyone uses some form of scent control it’s just what lengths you will go to help reduce it. I’ve learned what to do so I can just pick a tree and hunt it. Been winded just like everyone else but I am confident enough with my scent regimen to just pick a tree and hunt it when I want and that is way nicer than waiting for the right wind.
Dan Infalt.
 

Robert loper

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How many of you consider yourself successful big buck killers? And do you practice scent control or not? Ive always thought you aren’t beating a deers nose! So I’ve just done my best to play the wind, but I don’t have any serious bone on the wall to prove it. Sometimes I ponder trying to be better about it, but it’s a headache.... seems to work for some, but I’ve seen others not have a care in the world and be successful too.
I consider myself a buck sighter. Lol. Ive alway been able to get on deer. But most of my mature big bucks are just out of range.
ive killed numerous deer from all ages. No fawns though. And its always in my mind putting it together and seeing him. Thats my successful hunt
Winds? I hunt a ton of just off winds or winds that just miss the deer. Its a gamble but it usually works for seeing deer
 

raisins

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I have talked to John several times, believe me he doesn’t hunt the wind he picks a tree and hunts it no matter the wind direction. When I hear people say, “play the wind” I chuckle a little. The wind plays you! I hear all the time, “I can’t hunt that spot because the wind is wrong” and really how many of you can honestly say that when you’re in a spot the wind never shifts and know exactly where the deer will be coming from. With 30 years of archery hunting that’s NEVER been the case for me. Also it’s funny that most guys will say, “I only play the wind” but also use some form of scent control on top of that. I’ve never heard someone say I strictly play the wind and don’t use anything else. Someone please tell me that they never use scent free soap on their body or hunting clothes during hunting season and just, “plays the wind” and has killed multiple high pressured big mature bucks. If people say you can’t beat a deers nose then why bother with anything that will help eliminate your scent. I’ve said earlier in this thread that everyone uses some form of scent control it’s just what lengths you will go to help reduce it. I’ve learned what to do so I can just pick a tree and hunt it. Been winded just like everyone else but I am confident enough with my scent regimen to just pick a tree and hunt it when I want and that is way nicer than waiting for the right wind.
I'm going to have to disagree with a lot of this. Not about the John E part as I don't know him.

The Hunting Public go on multi-day camping/hunting trips and they complain about being ripe. You see them get up and just go hunt. No offense to them, but they look dirty and stinky; and they slay public land bucks like no other.

Also, doing some easy scent control stuff (like I do) is just barely practicing it (according to those serious about it), but it obviously can help in marginal cases and reduce the overall size and intensity of the scent cone. I only do stuff where it isn't a pain and it just replaces something else I'm going to do anyways (I'm going to shower, so I use hunter soap, etc). Saying "why do anything if you don't think it works really well?" (edit: or "why do anything if you aren't going to go full bore and get a scent lok suit and get neked on the side of the road in the cold?") to me is like saying "why do you lock your door if someone can just break the window?" Because it slightly helps my odds and is easy to do.

The wind does switch, but there are dominant wind conditions and it usually deviates around that most of the day (in some areas, more later). You have to pick a spot with a dominant wind direction that works for what you think the deer are doing. It is also highly terrain specific. I hunt the mountains, so I know a lot about swirling winds. Certain set ups, the wind is more stable. For instance, if you are in a large valley and the wind is flowing parallel to it, on a ridge and the wind is flowing parallel to it, or you are on a plateau or other large flat spot that is preferably higher elevation. Certain armpit of the hill areas, forget it (the wind direction there is such a balance of opposing forces that different ones keep winning and if you could watch it it would be like a random psychedelic screensaver). But big deer often survive there just for that reason. Also, certain days are more likely to have swirling winds. You can look at hourly forecasts and pick out patterns and know days when the wind is going to be less steady. The biggest indicator for me is if wind speed is changing up and down during the day's prediction, they are basically telling you "expect gusty and erratic winds". The best are medium wind speeds (5 ish MPH) where the wind prediction is from the same direction and at the same speed all day, and it was like that the previous day and is expected to be like that the day after also.

On the other hand, I find the "can't beat a deer's nose so I'm not going to try and won't even do easy stuff" to be too far also. Unless price is an issue, why not buy 1 thing of hunter detergent and 1 thing of body wash and use it instead of other soaps and then keep your clothes in plastic bags or somehow away from household smells. And then be semi-careful (like don't go pump gas and eat in Bob Evans and have dogs jump on you right before you go hunt near a buck bed in marginal winds). If it might give me a 10% help and only costs $30 over a season and a few hours of my time, then I'm all about it.
 
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raisins

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I consider myself a buck sighter. Lol. Ive alway been able to get on deer. But most of my mature big bucks are just out of range.
ive killed numerous deer from all ages. No fawns though. And its always in my mind putting it together and seeing him. Thats my successful hunt
Winds? I hunt a ton of just off winds or winds that just miss the deer. Its a gamble but it usually works for seeing deer
It's okay, dude. You can admit being a fawnslayer to us. We don't judge that here. It's a safe space.
 

Rangermatthews

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Chassel MI
Scent reduction isn’t about eliminating all odor. For hunting it is only important how the deer react to human odor not wether or not they are capable of detecting it. Deer are less likely to react negatively to a smaller amount of odor than a larger amount. Scent reduction is not needed to be successful but there can be a benefit in certain situations.
 

DroptineKrazy

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To all you just play the wind guys. So if I invented a pill that you could take that would keep you from emitting any human scent at all for say 24 hours your telling me you wouldn't buy it. Bs. Less scent is always better than more scent.
 

St.CroixArcher

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To me it’s not the scent control doesn’t help it’s the amount of time and dollars it takes. In the early 80’s my dad used to collect apples, pine cones, dirt and leaves and put it in a garbage bag that he stored his hunting closes in. This is what I still do. Cheap and easy. If I have time to shower before I go out great, if I don’t oh well. If my clothes are wet after a hunt I hang them outside if I can but if not they hang in the garage and then back into the garbage bags when they are dry.
 

kyler1945

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To all you just play the wind guys. So if I invented a pill that you could take that would keep you from emitting any human scent at all for say 24 hours your telling me you wouldn't buy it. Bs. Less scent is always better than more scent.
I probably wouldn’t enjoy hunting to the degree I do if the deer’s only advantage was me not being able to see it most of the time I hunt. Thinking most people would take the easy way to an end result, and continue to play the game, is a fool’s errand. You’re not wrong that a whole bunch of people would take the pill. Just like they started using guns, elevated positions, gps, any other technology. But I’m pretty convinced the only thing that still makes deer hunting much of a challenge is their sense of smell. I can shoot cows on the side of the road if easy is what I’m looking for.
 

DroptineKrazy

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I probably wouldn’t enjoy hunting to the degree I do if the deer’s only advantage was me not being able to see it most of the time I hunt. Thinking most people would take the easy way to an end result, and continue to play the game, is a fool’s errand. You’re not wrong that a whole bunch of people would take the pill. Just like they started using guns, elevated positions, gps, any other technology. But I’m pretty convinced the only thing that still makes deer hunting much of a challenge is their sense of smell. I can shoot cows on the side of the road if easy is what I’m looking for.
Cows don't taste so bad :tearsofjoy: But seriously, I still think deer would have a huge advantage over humans just because we are in their environment. Their hearing and sight are still superior to ours as far as survival goes. Also, they blend in to their environment so well all they have to do is stop moving in the woods and they can disappear. I have believed for years now that if my state allowed hunters to kill as many deer as they wanted during hunting season that we still wouldn't be able to wipe out the population.
 

OspreyZB

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Also it’s funny that most guys will say, “I only play the wind” but also use some form of scent control on top of that. I’ve never heard someone say I strictly play the wind and don’t use anything else. Someone please tell me that they never use scent free soap on their body or hunting clothes during hunting season and just, “plays the wind” and has killed multiple high pressured big mature bucks.
See my post on page 1. I'm not kidding when I say I put zero effort into trying to eliminate or reduce my scent. I use whatever soap is in the shower ( the one I'm using now is actually supposed to be cedar wood scented... Maybe it's an attractant... lol). I use toms of maine scented deodorant. My clothes get washed with scented detergent and I'm often hunting in the same jeans and boots I wore to work that day. Killed 2 P&Y 8 pointers on highly pressured public lands this season, one I know was 5.5+ years old based on 3 years of history with him, the other was at least 3.5 but more likely 4.5+ based on his teeth. I passed on several other "big" bucks inside easy bow range mostly 3.5 yr olds and one super old 3 legged 6 point that I actually ended up killing last week after 2 crossbow hunters pushed him out of his primary bedding on a drive and put multiple bad shots on him before they both ran out of arrows, but that's a story for another thread.
 

raisins

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Cows don't taste so bad :tearsofjoy: But seriously, I still think deer would have a huge advantage over humans just because we are in their environment. Their hearing and sight are still superior to ours as far as survival goes. Also, they blend in to their environment so well all they have to do is stop moving in the woods and they can disappear. I have believed for years now that if my state allowed hunters to kill as many deer as they wanted during hunting season that we still wouldn't be able to wipe out the population.
I know I'd do better if I was more patient and walked slower and looked around more and fully engaged 100% when in the woods and didn't round any corners because I was being lazy. I think you have to try to "out deer the deer". The deer have amazing discipline. They only think about survival and then reproduction (that last bit isn't a reference to @Plebe 's blue pill joke, by the way).
 

OspreyZB

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To all you just play the wind guys. So if I invented a pill that you could take that would keep you from emitting any human scent at all for say 24 hours your telling me you wouldn't buy it. Bs. Less scent is always better than more scent.
Nope I wouldn't. It'd be too easy. I want to earn every big buck I kill.
 

kyler1945

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Cows don't taste so bad :tearsofjoy: But seriously, I still think deer would have a huge advantage over humans just because we are in their environment. Their hearing and sight are still superior to ours as far as survival goes. Also, they blend in to their environment so well all they have to do is stop moving in the woods and they can disappear. I have believed for years now that if my state allowed hunters to kill as many deer as they wanted during hunting season that we still wouldn't be able to wipe out the population.
You realize we almost Wiped the entire population off the face of the continent in a very short period of time? A gun season in Louisiana that allowed unlimited kills would result in no deer herd in a hot minute. Bows might take an hour.
 

DroptineKrazy

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You realize we almost Wiped the entire population off the face of the continent in a very short period of time? A gun season in Louisiana that allowed unlimited kills would result in no deer herd in a hot minute. Bows might take an hour.
I said my state. The most heavily forested state in the nation. Also, whitetails were almost wiped out because of poaching and no game laws. Aka market hunting.
 
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