By Steve Bartylla
For as much time as we invest in finding the perfect spot to set a stand, few put much effort into determining how they’ll get in and out undetected. Pulling that off is at least as important as being in the best location. Heck, it’s often more important.
Before hanging any stand, determine how you can safely access and leave the area. If you can’t get in without spooking the deer you’re hunting, a stand in that location makes no sense. If you can’t get out undetected, subsequent hunts will suffer.
When analyzing entrance and departure routes, be conscious of where deer will be during those walks. If they can hear, see or smell you, the gig is up. That means you must have a feeling for wind directions and the view they’ll have as you pass.
Finally, be creative. Ask yourself if natural structures — such as creeks, ditches, ridge tops or overgrown fence rows — can mask your travels. Also, realize that you can’t always use the same route for entrance and exit. Don’t hesitate to use multiple routes. Rarely is the easiest, most direct option the best choice.
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