One of the most successful ways to bow hunt mule deer hunt is by stalking within bow range. In recent years, one tactic that is gaining in popularity is hunting them from blinds. This tactic works especially well, when hunting on private land. A few years ago, I hunted mule deer in Colorado in a unit that has seen deer numbers drop significantly. What started out as a trophy hunt quickly turned into a meat hunt. Although we were having a hard time finding bucks in many of the areas we had planned to hunt, we found a few deer hanging out in an old apple orchard we had permission to hunt.
The problem with the apple orchard was there wasn’t any good cover where a bowhunter could hide. Because of that, we decided to put up a pop-up blind and see what would happen. Whitetail bucks are often very spooky when a pop-up blind is first put up. It can take days or weeks before they will walk within bow range of it during daylight hours. That is not the case with mule deer. Within a couple hours of putting out the blind, deer were walking right up to it.
The first night I hunted the blind, I had several small bucks and several does walk within shooting range. The several days leading up to this day were fruitless, so I decided as light started to fade to take a small buck because I had never shot a mule deer before. I have hunted that apple orchard many times over the years and for the most part, the deer pay no attention to the blind.
Matt Guedes, who has killed many monster mule deer bucks including one over 200 inches, says killing mule deer from a blind is a great option. “A few years ago, my son and I hunted over an alfalfa field and he shot a Pope & Young buck from a blind,” said Guedes. “Early in the season before bucks lose their velvet is a great time to hunt from blinds over food sources. Even the big bucks are fairly easy to pattern and they will walk right past a blind. It is a great option for kids or when you are hunting in an area with limited cover.”
If hunting from a ground blind sounds like something you may want to do, check out the new bale blinds from Redneck Hunting Blinds(www.redneckblinds.com). They look just like a round bale, have enough room for a couple hunters and a camera man, and the deer pay no attention to them. “Deer that live near alfalfa fields pay no attention to bales of hay so hunting from a bale blind is a great option,” Guedes said.
If you need a blind that is extremely portable, one of my favorite options is the Double Bull Shack Attack(www.primos.com). This hub-style blind is designed for one or two people and because of the odd shape, deer don’t seem to pay attention to it the way they do blinds that are shaped like a large square.
Regardless if you are hunting in an apple orchard, a hay field or even off the beaten path, hunting mule deer from a blind can be fun and effective, especially when there isn’t any ground cover in the area you are hunting. Give it a try this fall and see for yourself how much fun it can be.
About the author: Tracy Breen is a full time outdoor writer, consultant and game dinner speaker who often discuss how he overcomes cerebral palsy. Learn more about him at www.tracybreen.com