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Ghillie Suit Hunting
Tried ghillie suit hunting last night and it was the hardest thing I've ever done deer hunting. My back felt like I had been doing dead lifts for an hour straight. Set up on a field with a ton of activity and literally had to hold still standing up for two straight hours. Only one deer out of about 30 made me (10-12 withing range)and she was a mature doe straight down wind. I hung a bow hanger on the tree I was standing behind so at least I didn't hold the bow the whole time. Wondering if anyone else has tried this with success and if they have any tips to be more comfortable while doing it.
Don't have a ghillie, just 'regular' camo of various patterns, with Predator Gray preferred. I've had lots of success on the ground using a stool. The best situation to me is to be on a hillside, not for the height but to have rising ground behind me so I'm not skylined. I also want brush with shooting lanes in front of me, and a good facemask. Windfall trees are the best.
I strongly believe deer are wary of 'big dark lumps' in trees and watch them carefully for movement. Treestand camo should look more like sky than anything, especially when the leaves are down.
Let me ask you, were you using any carbon scent stopping clothing? Just curious, not to start an argument or even discussion.
Yes I had my scent lok suit underneath. I'm to the point where I don't totally trust it anymore but still wear it regardless just in case it makes an iota of difference on that monster that comes from down wind.
you want to stand with the cover behind you, not in front. I like to have something wider then my shoulders like a trunk or cedar tree. I also use a little netting in front to hide some of my movement if I have to shift my legs for a shot or rattle. Practice shooting off of your knees and flat off of your butt. Hunting off the ground shouldn't be that stressfull because you can always stretch the legs out or even lay down. To me its much more relaxing then sitting on a little platform. Another tip is to remove all the leaves, sticks, grass and anything else that will cause noise when you shift your body. I don't use any scent blocker/shield/spray/ozone machines/or other snake oil products. Just wash my clothes in baking soda and call it good. The wind will either be in your favor or not, and you have to learn how to use the wind to your advantage.
Hunting off the ground gives you a big advantage in being able to hunt in areas that the treehugger hunters can't hunt because there is no good trees for a stand.
The photo is a buck I shot on the 4th. He came to within 2 yards of me before moving to confront my decoy.
Good hunting Matt Houska
Thanks for the advice. Do you typically hold your bow for long periods or set it on the ground? Also how long do you stay in one set up? Do you prep areas in advance that you know you'll use? That's an awesome deer, I'm pretty sure I might have soiled myself having a deer I was going to shoot 2 yards from me. Great job.
The main problem/mistake you made was trying to stand still for all that time. Sitting on a stump or stool or log would have made it much easier on your back and body.
Just give it some more time and you will see what works for you.
If I am sitting against a tree I use a bow holder that screws in above me, otherwise I lay it on the ground. I will hold it more when it is closer to the magic time or if I am in an area where visibility is limited. I usually don't prep my areas in advance. Some areas I hunt repeatedly so they are already prepped from previous hunts.
Bowhunting off the ground is fun and the challenge is being able to draw when the deer is in range.
Have fun and enjoy it, after a while it will get easier and you will want to hunt more and more off the ground.
One thing I always carry is a small folding saw and pruning shears to cut away limbs and leaves if needed.
Good luck Matt Houska
my only problem was it kept snagging every thing on me and every thing that touched me.
Don't put it on till you get where your going to hunt
RE holding the bow. I have a hook that is on the end of my cable guard that engages a paracord sling around my neck and shoulder. I can hang the bow on that. Helps standing/sitting/walking.
Ole Thumper I learned that lesson about 5 minutes into my walk when I was sweating profusely.