Tips & Tactics

Flying with Guns

Flying with Guns

By Ken Piper

Traveling with a firearm can be challenging, and it’s all about following the rules. Following up on last week’s tip regarding how to protect your hunting gear in traveling cases, this week we’ll talk about flying on a commercial airline with a firearm. Some of the following information is actual requirement, and some is my recomm... READ MORE

Case Logic

Case Logic

By Ken Piper

Pack well to ensure your gun's zero when traveling to hunt. Traveling with a bow or gun is stressful. No matter how carefully you pack, you can't help wondering whether you'll still be sighted in when you get to your destination. And if you're traveling by plane, that feeling is compounded exponentially. I've traveled long distances to several hunt... READ MORE

Thank Your Mentor

Thank Your Mentor

By Ken Piper

Show your appreciation to the people who introduced you to the outdoors. Forgive me for getting personal this week, but I just lost my father and am feeling rather sentimental. My father had a hard time understanding his son's interest in things like Star Trek, sports and reading books. Truth be told, I should have paid more attention during the ti... READ MORE

The Eyes Have It

The Eyes Have It

By Ken Piper

Scent control is critical, but don’t forget deer can see pretty well, too. If you can see a deer’s eye(s), it can see you ... or at least catch your movement. The side-of-head location of a whitetail’s eyes gives them a field of view of about 310 degrees, so they don’t miss much! As good as today’s camouflage patterns ... READ MORE

Just Chillin'

Just Chillin'

By Ken Piper

Cold weather considerations for late-season die-hards. Many of us have hung up our hunting gear, but there are still some late-season opportunities to fill a tag throughout much of the country. A majority of the late seasons require primitive weapons, and cold weather can have more of an impact on bows and muzzleloaders than on other firearms. If y... READ MORE

On the Down Low

On the Down Low

By Ken Piper

There is no foolproof way to beat a whitetail's nose. I used to avoid eating meat for the week or so leading up to hunting season to keep deer from identifying my scent as that of a predator. I like to think I have more common sense today. Don't get me wrong, scent precautions are important. The fewer smelly molecules we release into the environmen... READ MORE

January Scouting

January Scouting

By Ken Piper

This is a great time to get a better read on local deer behavior. One trait shared by whitetails and humans is we're creatures of habit. If something works and we're happy, we're not likely to change. This means that, barring significant habitat changes, next year's deer will likely use the same trails, bedding areas, staging areas and breeding gro... READ MORE

It’s Not Complicated

It’s Not Complicated

By Ken Piper

A great hunt doesn’t have to include fancy, expensive gear. Getting my truck loaded for an Illinois bowhunt last fall, it was almost embarrassing how much gear I have accumulated. It’s no wonder new hunters are intimidated by all the stuff they think they have to buy to get started. Remember the old orange Hot Seats? I shot many a deer ... READ MORE

It's a Drag, Man

It's a Drag, Man

By Ken Piper

It's all fun and games until somebody shoots a deer. Then the work begins! Hunting with the folks at Mystery Ranch packs in Wisconsin in November, one of our party shot a bruiser buck that fell just 25 yards from his stand. It was only about 100 yards off a field edge, but the drag was all uphill. The shooter and a few other guys were in their 30s ... READ MORE

Same ... but Different

Same ... but Different

By Ken Piper

Tactics and tips might require modification for your location. While considering a tip for this week, it struck me how many strategies and techniques don’t always apply to different regions. Then I realized that in itself is an important point. I grew up hunting huge blocks of timber on heavily hunted public land. When I moved to Alabama, I h... READ MORE

They’re All Trophies

They’re All Trophies

By Ken Piper

Take the deer that makes YOU happy, and forget everything else. A friend just returned from a bowhunt in Kentucky, where he had several close encounters with a handsome 130-inch buck. He talked about how he struggled with himself over whether to shoot it or not and ultimately decided to let it go. His reasoning was he has taken several deer of that... READ MORE

Not the New Black

Not the New Black

By Ken Piper

Camo accessories hide from you more than from deer. A few decades ago, I found the most amazing branch clipper I'd ever used. It utilized a ratchet system and could trim shooting lanes with less effort than any other hand trimmer I had ever tried. It was expensive compared to other trimmers, but I splurged and even paid a few dollars more the camou... READ MORE

Ready or Not

Ready or Not

By Ken Piper

Getting close to deer isn't the hard part of bowhunting. The most difficult aspect of bowhunting isn't getting close enough to deer. The hard part is getting off a shot when you're just 20 yards from one of the most paranoid animals on earth. Even slight movement can be noticed by a cagey old buck or, worse, a smart and experienced doe. It's not th... READ MORE

Thoughts on Does

Thoughts on Does

By Ken Piper

Everybody wants to shoot a buck, but does are the key to deer management. Shooting does is a key component of our role as caretakers of deer and the habitat. It’s also the best way to fill a freezer. As a writer and editor of hunting publications for more than 25 years, I’ve seen quite a few recommendations about the best time and locat... READ MORE

Less Than Perfect

Less Than Perfect

By Ken Piper

Solutions to last-minute hunting problems need not be ideal. Sometimes it seems like nothing is going your way. That's what I'm experiencing right now as I prepare for a Wisconsin bowhunt with pack manufacturer Mystery Ranch. I purchased a new crossbow early this year. I shot it a few times to get it close, but I ran out of scope adjustment with th... READ MORE

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Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd