I do it. I take my body washing, clothes washing, equipment cleaning and storage as seriously as I can.
My investment: $25 a year in spray, $10 in sodium bicarb, $7 in soap/detergent, and some plastic storage bins that I already own.
The chance to get in the woods and my feelings that I am invisible to deer..........priceless.
I still enter and leave my stands as discreetly as possible, I hunt stands that I think the wind is in my favor, and if my regime makes me even 5% more invisible, i'll take it. The investment is worth the outcome.
A little of this kind of stuff goes a long way. If you look back over the past 5 years or so, you can find the posts here where I seriously started to question the efficacy of being over-the-top on scent control. At the time, we had a major supplier of scent-control clothing getting told by the courts they had to stop telling people their stuff was effective. I was out of work at the time, and money was tight. So I wanted to see exactly how much scent control was effective.
The bottom line was that from an elevated stand, I could not tell a difference between a full blown scent regimen such as what I'd been doing for 25 years and a more simplified regimen of washing my clothes and myself in sodium bicarb and letting all the anal-retentive stuff hang. The deer still treated me like I was not there.
To me the lesson was fairly simple:
1) As stated earlier, you can't fool their nose completely any time any where, period.
2) The trick is not to fool a deer's nose, but to cut your scent signature enough that it stops being a problem.
3) Things as simple as bathing, eschewing stinky stuff like cologne, and using unscented laundry products go a long way.
Let me repeat that for clarity: Things as simple as bathing, eschewing stinky stuff like cologne, and using unscented laundry products go a long way.
Beyond that, I started to see behaviors among the deer that really got me to question a lot more than just the catechisms on scent. I don't think we know enough about what goes on in a deer's head to make the kind of assumptions we do. For instance:
1) I don't think they view death and predation the way we envision.
2) I do not think they fully understand what we're doing in our blinds and stands.
3) Even when they are exposed to real life-and-death experience, I do not think they learn the lessons we would.
I realize I'm getting pretty far out there, but what the heck! I am the shaman, right? Suffice it to say, for this conversation, that deer do not need ozone machines to make them happy.