How to Avoid 6 Common Early-Season Deer Hunting Mistakes

Avoid these common errors made by hunters during the early deer season to help shift the big-buck odds in your favor for the whitetail pre-rut period

How to Avoid 6 Common Early-Season Deer Hunting Mistakes
Preseason planning and adding some strategy to early-season deer hunting will help increase odds for big buck success. (Travis Faulkner photo)

Without question, the early-season can be one of the best times of the entire year to pinpoint, pattern and connect with a massive-rack wall-hanger. Pre-rut bucks will generally be following a predictable feeding to bedding pattern that hunters can exploit with the right strategies and setups.

This is especially true, if you’re able to identify, avoid and correct commonly-made errors that routinely prevent hunters from hitting pay-dirt during the early pre-rut period. Here are some of the mistakes you’ll want to correct and sidestep this season.

Deer Hunting Mistake 1: Inadequate Scouting

Just because bucks are typically following textbook feeding to bedding patterns doesn’t mean you can slack on doing your homework. The availability of multiple early-season food sources, sudden increases in hunting pressure, and pre-rut pattern shifts are all factors that must be addressed and handled with precision scouting techniques. Glassing early-season food sources, like soybean fields, locating a potential shooter, and throwing up a treestand sounds pretty good in theory, but that kind of effort will not produce consistent results year after year.


Correction: Utilize Precision Scouting Strategies


Glassing early-season food sources during the late evening hours is definitely a good first step. Once you’ve located a target buck, it’s time to roll-up your sleeves and really get into his head. Study aerial photos, such as Google Earth, to locate possible staging zones, travel corridors, bedding areas, watering holes, other transitional food sources and escape routes. Next, monitor these key locations with a series or network of game-cameras. This will help you piece together a complete daily pattern, establish routines, and identify habits and tendencies that can be exploited.

Read the rest of “6 Early-Season Deer Hunting Mistakes: How to Avoid and Correct” at TheSportsmanChannel.com.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Minn Kota's Brad Henry shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead that there's much to like in the new Minn Kota Riptide Terrova saltwater trolling motor that comes with I-Pilot and an 87-inch shaft.

Berkley

Berkley's Frittside Crankbaits

World Fishing Network show host Chad LaChance had a chance to visit with legendary crankbait master David Fritts about his new Frittside crankbaits from Berkley. LaChance, host of the Fishful Thinker on WFN, also got a few cranking tips from Fritts, the former Classic and Forrest Wood Cup champion.

Mustad

Mustad's New Tungsten Weights

Long known as one of the world's premiere hook makers, Mustad's Reid McKinstry shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead that the company is now one of the leaders in making tungsten terminal tackle products for anglers.

BPT Points Champ Edwin Evers Talks New Berkley Baits

BPT Points Champ Edwin Evers Talks New Berkley Baits

After making the switch to Berkley products heading into the inaugural BPT season, Edwin Evers tells OSG's Lynn Burkhead why Berkley baits played such a key role in his recent angling success.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Unless you live in Antarctica, the only continent they aren't known to inhabit, there is a species Catfish

10 Biggest Catfish World Records of All Time

Jack Vitek - December 08, 2014

Unless you live in Antarctica, the only continent they aren't known to inhabit, there is a...

We found 10 secret (and proven) catfish baits that have the staying power to attract catfish time after time. Catfish

10 Secret Catfish Baits You Didn't Know About

Anietra Hamper

We found 10 secret (and proven) catfish baits that have the staying power to attract catfish...

The colder waters of early spring are prime times to use bait rigs for stripers. Other Freshwater

3 Deadly Bait Rigs For Stripers

J.B. Kasper - April 21, 2005

The colder waters of early spring are prime times to use bait rigs for stripers.

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish. Records

Upon Further Review: 70-Year-Old Catfish Record Voided

G&F Online Staff - May 22, 2019

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish.

See More Trending Articles

More Hunting How-To

Always put safety first when hunting waterfowl. Waterfowl

Things to Keep You Alive this Duck Season

M.D. Johnson - November 28, 2019

Always put safety first when hunting waterfowl.

Modern duck-hunting technology has changed how we hunt. What do we really need to be successful? Waterfowl

Ducks: Go Old School to Get Your Quack On

M.D. Johnson - December 04, 2019

Modern duck-hunting technology has changed how we hunt. What do we really need to be...

Fall hunting isn't just for deer; it's prime for pork as well. Hogs

High Time for Hog Hunting

Terry Madwell - November 07, 2019

Fall hunting isn't just for deer; it's prime for pork as well.

It's not over after the deer rut, and your best whitetail hunting may still be ahead. Whitetail

Make Late Season the Great Season

Mark Chesnut

It's not over after the deer rut, and your best whitetail hunting may still be ahead.

See More Hunting How-To

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.