Where I hunt-the 2 small parcels I have access to, it`s a matter of seasons.
One area I hunt is a small woodlot, less than 10 acres. The other is a long, narrow strip of timber, that seperates 2 crop fields, one elevated, one much lower. This strip of timber is maybe 700 yards long, and likely 30 yards wide at it`s widest point.
In the long strip, we`re simply at the mercy of the deer-we`ve found the points where they seem to use the timber to cross most frequently, and we`ve put up ladder stands. Either they show up, or they dont.
In the small woodlot, we`ve identified the prefered travel routes, and again, put up ladder stands, but since every other year, the fields have adifferent crop, it changes the travel patterns, even within the very same woods.
We have the usual travel patterns, the funnels and inside corners, saddles, etc. But depending on which crop is in which field, and even when these crops are harvested, determines how, and even when these travel routes are used.
Having said all that, I look for runs passing though thickets in farm country. The thicker the better, especially in small parcels. Depending on where these thickets are in relation to the field edges, they may be a staging area. Staging areas are incredible. However, depending on the deer density and lay of the land where you hunt, there likely is no such thing as a "staging area" that is used as such on an on-going basis.