How do you consistently take big bucks? There are as many theories and techniques on how to take big deer as there are deer in the woods. In my personal opinion staying in the woods as long as you can increases your odds the most. I can’t say that I am enthused to sit in a stand all day for 10 to 12 hours when the weather forecast calls for a high of minus 5 degrees Fahrenheit. However, I have found that the colder weather usually increases animal movement and more movement means more opportunities. The best way to do this is to dress properly for the conditions you will be hunting.
Boots: One of the most common complaints among hunters is getting cold feet on the stand. Boots are made in several weights and styles. Every hunter has their own comfort level. When purchasing heavier weight cold weather boots make sure they are not too tight. Tighter boots cut down on blood circulation which contributes to cold feet. Try new boots on with heavy wool socks.
Socks: When it comes to socks forget cotton. Cotton socks are usually thin and once they are wet from any foot perspiration your feet will get cold quickly. Consider a good wool sock.
Base Layers: When hunting any type of cold weather you need to dress in layers. Base layers are simply a fancy word for undergarments. RedHead’s EnduraSkin bottoms and mock turtle neck shirt are both made with the Visa Endurance odor control fabric. This great product keeps you warm with its moisture wicking power and at the same time helps eliminate body odor through its advanced anti-microbial technology.
Layer two: After your base layers are on, the next layer depends on the outside temperature and how high the humidity levels are and what the forecasted wind-chill temperatures are for the day. Polar Tec Gold fleece is a favorite of mine. It provides a lot of warmth without the extra bulk.
Protection from the elements: After the second layer is on it is time to put on the outer layer. This layer is crucial to staying warm. When choosing an outer layer make sure to find something that has the desired level of insulation you prefer, yet is quiet. Something that is moisture resistant is crucial. It is important to always carry an extra layer more then you think you will need for the day. Weather can change in a hurry when you are in the woods.
Gloves and Mittens: The colder it is the more I prefer mittens. Drop a Hot Hand in each mitten and you are set for the day. Hats:Your mother was right, you need to wear a hat in cold weather. If you are not wearing a hat you are losing valuable body temperature. Forget the baseball style caps when it is cold and put on a good stocking cap.
Hot Hands: Just because they say Hot Hands doesn’t mean they are just for your hands. Try putting one on the back of your neck, on the back of your knees, in your boots and on your lower back.
Stay Hydrated and Eat Snacks: Avoid dehydration by drinking water on the stand. To keep sugar levels up try snacking on hard candy. The hard candy will release a steady level of sugar into your blood stream which helps keep you warm.
Don’t forget your safety belt: Make sure to always check that your safety belt will fit over your additional layers of clothing before heading to your stand. You may look like the Michelin man but you don’t want to take a chance that all that extra clothing will protect you if you fall—it won’t.
Don’t worry about what your buddies say:Only you know your ideal comfort level. Dress so that you are comfortable. It doesn’t matter if your hunting buddy is wearing a t-shirt and you put on a down parka. Everyone has their own internal thermostat.
This season stay in the stand longer for increased success.