Summertime Hunting Season Prep - Time to Get Ready
Even though it seems far off, fall hunting seasons will be here faster than we realize. Use these summer months to prepare and practice so that your fall hunting season has every chance to be a successful one.
As we inch closer to the official start of summer and vacation season, many hunters don't have dove or deer season at the top of their mind. To be aptly prepared for those season, it's better to start preparations sooner rather than later.
For many folks, their summer consists of vacations, lake days of fishing and boating, hiking, and all other sorts of warm weather outdoor activities. Often times hunting season is back of mind when on the lake or on vacation, but it has a strange way of sneaking up on you as you cast a line or hop on those water skis. Cutting shooting lanes, working food plots, hanging stands, tuning your shooting skills and scouting during the summer can be the difference between a mediocre season and the season of a lifetime. These hunting season preparations can be very worthwhile and can also be pretty enjoyable.
My first thought of fall hunting season is always dove hunting. Ever since I was old enough to walk through the field with my dad, we have spent opening day of dove season with my dad's good friend at his farm. It's a day I look forward to every year and a day that signifies the beginning of hunting season. Last season, I grabbed my gear from its respective place the night before opening day and threw it in the back seat of the truck early that morning. The doves were not flying too well, but my shooting was even worse. It was the worst dove shoot as far as hitting doves that I have had since I was a kid. As the morning went on I got more and more frustrated with my shooting. On the drive home I kept thinking to myself, I have got to get to the clays range and shoot some 5 stand. For me, 5 stand or a round of sporting clays is a great way to knock the rust off my shooting skills before the season. It sharpens my skills and is hard to beat in terms of fun. Time seems to be the limiting factor when it comes to getting to the clays range, but last year proved to me just how important practice can be to having a successful dove shoot.
As a bit of a gun enthusiast, it can be a tough decision narrowing down which one to take to the field. This can be a tough choice at times as some have some special memories tied to them of some fun and successful hunts. These are hard to pass on when narrowing down my decision. Others don't yet have that good story and are in need of a story to be made. If you are like me, my suggestion would be to narrow your decision down early enough before opening day to get to the range and hone your skills on that particular gun. Almost like a glove, each gun I have needs to be broken in to get re-acquainted so that opening day isn't one that leaves me frustrated like my last dove season.
As fun as practicing your marksmanship can be, don't be slack in those other areas of hunting prep either. Spend some extra time setting up trail cameras and scouting the woods for signs of heavily traveled deer trails. Find the pinch points that the deer use regularly and try to determine a pattern that the deer follow. Find a new spot on your hunting property to hang a stand. Manage your food plots if you have some. If not, consider spots to plant some this fall and prepare those spots early. Remember that hunting seasons may seem like a ways off, but time seems to move faster than we realize.
In closing, check out the link below and browse our In Stock inventory of shotguns in need of some good stories. Consider picking one up for yourself and making memories in the field with your new purchase. The next time you break that gun out of the safe, I can almost guarantee your mind will be filled with those memories from that special hunt and spark a fire in you to get out to the range and hone your skills for the next season.