Bowhunting Whitetail During the Hardest Time of the Season
It’s the period after the first few days of the bowhunting whitetail season until the pre-rut heats up around Halloween. This is the time that a lot of hunters are scratching their heads trying to figure out where all the big bucks went. So where did they go?
They didn’t go anywhere. Most of them are still hanging out in the same place, except only when it’s dark out. The mature bucks figured out real soon when the bowhunting whitetail season started, that its not safe to wander around during daylight hours. So if you’re only hunting mature bucks, here’s one of my bowhunting whitetail tips for the October lull…..Go Fishing!
If there’s any hunting pressure where you go bowhunting whitetail, then you can bet that in most cases, the big bucks in your area are bedded down an hour before light in the morning and won’t expose themselves until it’s too dark to shoot. They didn’t reach their 3rd set of antlers by being careless. That is until the pre-rut.
The pre-rut, which starts generally around Halloween in most regions, is when they start to think with something other than their brain. This is when you want to put your time into sitting on stand when bowhunting whitetail. And not just the morning and evening hunts but preferably midday from 11 am to 2 pm.
Here’s why. In areas of even moderate hunting pressure, mature bucks have patterned hunters better than the other way around. That’s why they bed down before the hunters arrive and don’t go out to feed until after dark. However, they also know when hunters quit hunting in the morning around 10 am. and when they go back to their stands around 3 pm. That’s why big bucks will move within areas of cover between 11 and 2.
Many hunters have a hard time believing in bowhunting whitetail like this because these bucks prefer to move within cover, so this activity goes unnoticed to most hunters.
So this year, take a morning during the pre-rut and climb into your stand around 9:45 and sit until 2:30. As long as you’re not on a field edge or in an open woods, but rather between a couple bedding areas with good cover, you will increase your odds at a mature buck. After all, if you go bowhunting whitetail like everyone else, you’ll get results like everyone else.
So going fishing during the October lull is a great way to keep you from over-hunting your area until the pre-rut kicks in for bowhunting whitetail.