Have you ever tried a post daybreak stand entrance for bucks? This is one of the most important but under utilized mature buck hunting tactics that you can practice!
How It Works
I was watching XYZ Hunting Show on cable a couple of years ago and the pair of hunters were stumped with how to enter their stand for a monster buck, that was using a large cut-corn field as his food and rutting playground. They concluded that if there stand entrance route brought them through the field prior to daylight they would blow their hunt before it started; and they were most likely right! At the same time if they entered their stand during the afternoon with the wind blowing into their face and away from bedding areas, then they would spook the herd as doe family groups eventually fed downwind of their position and into the cut corn field, before the giant buck made his entrance. They weren't sure what to do but their was an easy answer: A post daybreak stand entrance.
*A Post Daybreak stand entrance is one of 3 highly critical morning Stand Entrance strategies, to help you find mature bucks this hunting season!
Entering a stand after daybreak has yielded roughly 1/3rd of our mature bucks during the past 15 years, and it could have easily worked for the situation described above. How do you do it? You just simply wait for the deer to clear the field in the morning, and then access a deer stand that is located 30-50 yards into the edge of the woods.
Why It Works
When deer clear the fields after daybreak, they typically travel straight to their daytime bedding areas after a long night of social and feeding activity. This is particularily true with doe family groups, that may have experienced a long stressful night being harassed by the local buck herd, as those bucks were on the prowel under the cover of darkness. Buck those bucks don't stop being on the prowel when daylight filters into the woods!
A mature buck during the rut typically spends the bulk of his morning hours cruising between bedding areas in search of a receptive doe. In fact through trail cam pics and personal observations, rutting bucks seem to be several times more active during the morning hours than compared to the afternoon hours. As you long as you recognize or have created defined bedding areas inside the edges of your woodlines, than accessing a stand between bedding areas to ambush a mature buck as he cruises for does, is an oustanding tactic to employ.
1. After daybreak, enter straight to your stand and perpendicular to the intended line of buck cruising movement, after deer have left the field.
2. By placing your stand on a travel corridor or recognized funnel between bedding areas, your risk of spooking deer is very low.
3. While you sit during the day, you can allow your scent to blow into the field.
4. Before deer begin re-entering the field during the afternoon, leave the stand to hunt somewhere else.
5. Adding a waterhole (if the land is mostly dry) can be a great addition to your stand location.
6. Your stand entrance for bucks should be spook-free because deer have already left the field to bed after daybreak, and you will exit the stand before they return.
Mature bucks love to cruise field edges through heavy cover just inside the timber. By cruising parallel to the food source, a buck can not only scent check into the woods 150 yards or more while he is in search of does, but he can also search for the scent of receptive does as doe family groups exited the food source around daybreak.
*Although it was an extremely difficult recovery process, the above picture reflects the conclusion of a successful hunt. To learn how good decisions after the hunt led to the recovery, try reading "Whitetail Blood Tracking Guide".
For more great tree stand tactics, checkout the video below...
A post daybreak stand entrance for bucks can allow you to observe cruising giants in tree stand locations that you couldn't possibly enter during the hours of darkness due to the high degree of certainty that you would spook deer. You can sneak in, take a several hour peak at high quality cruising activity, and then retreat before deer begin to feed behind you in the food source.
When we watched the hunting show my buddies and I wanted to jump into the screen; especially after seeing the footage of the monster that ruled the field! I am sure that some of you already use this valuable tactic, but if not I urge you to give it a try this coming season, to discover high quality post daybreak rut hunting opportunities.