Tips & Tactics

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

A Different Angle

A Different Angle

By Ken Piper

Intense practice led to a big mistake for this bowhunter. Last week we talked about habits, including how we repeat what we do in practice. That's usually a good thing, unless you're practicing bad habits. It also can work against you if you don't adapt practiced habits to the situation. What I'm talking about is exemplified by something that happe... READ MORE

Trail Blazers

Trail Blazers

By Ken Piper

Of course deer hunters set up near trails – whitetails are creatures of habit and often use the same trails to move throughout their range. As long as food sources remain relatively stable, they won’t change their habits much from one day to the next. A trail by itself doesn’t mean much, however. First, bucks and does tend to use ... READ MORE

Phone It In

Phone It In

By Ken Piper

We can debate whether cell phones have made our lives better or worse, but there's no debate about how much we use them. That includes in the deer stand. When I got my first smartphone, I used it to listen to music, read and do puzzles to pass slow hours in the stand. As technology evolved, I listened to football games and kept in touch with other ... READ MORE

Fletch Your Own

Fletch Your Own

By Ken Piper

Bowhunters will be heading to the woods over the next few weeks, which means a lot of last-minute practice and tuning is going on right now. If you're like me, you have trouble aiming at different dots - there's something pleasing about a group so tight you can easily put your hand around. The down side is aiming at one dot like that means you'll r... READ MORE

Patience, Patience

Patience, Patience

By Ken Piper

The game isn’t over until the fat lady shoots ... or something like that. Taking bucks consistently is an art. Anyone can luck into a big buck, but it takes work to harvest bucks year after year. While there is no single skill or trait that makes a great deer hunter, one thing the best have in common is patience. Whitetails, and especially ex... READ MORE

Rubber vs. Leather

Rubber vs. Leather

By Ken Piper

Is one type of boot material better for controlling scent? One of the great things about bowhunting is you get to observe deer behavior when the animals are relaxed and just going about their daily routines. If you pay attention, you also learn some hunting lessons. That was the case several years ago when I was enjoying watching a spike meander th... READ MORE

Plan B

Plan B

By Ken Piper

Have backup plans in place for essential gear. I was hunting with an outfitter in Illinois about 15 years ago. He dropped me off at the edge of a pasture with good, clear directions on how to get to the stand. And oh, what a great-looking stand it was. Even in the dark I could tell I was going to like the setup. After getting settled in the ladder ... READ MORE

An Ounce of Prevention

An Ounce of Prevention

By Ken Piper

Study indicates whitetails forgot to social-distance. I just finished reading an article that said 33% of the whitetails in a four-state USDA study tested positive for COVID-19 antibodies. Of the four states (Illinois, Michigan, New York and Pennsylvania), Michigan was highest, with 67% of the deer tested being positive for COVID-19 exposure. The a... READ MORE

Foaming at the Mouth

Foaming at the Mouth

By Ken Piper

Don't get mad. Instead, take precautions to protect your broadheads. I was fortunate to shoot a beautiful buck last year, but one thing I struggled with throughout the hunt was getting my arrows into and out of my quiver without deploying the expandable heads. I had failed to do something someone taught me long ago, and that is to carve out the slo... READ MORE

Weed Them Out!

Weed Them Out!

By Ken Piper

Now is the time to start working toward a great food plot. It might seem a little early to start talking about food plots, but prep work for a great food plot starts in late summer. Sure, there are many clubs and property owners who wait until fall to disc, plant and cultipack all in one weekend. That can work, especially on well established ground... READ MORE

Tune In

Tune In

By Ken Piper

Paper-tuning your bow is great, but you can tune at home, too. Archery seasons are approaching quickly, and now’s the time to make sure your bow is shooting to the best of its ability. As much as we agonize over broadhead choice, few bowhunters realize that a properly tuned bow can shoot any quality broadhead consistently and accurately. Tune... READ MORE

Burn, Baby, Burn

Burn, Baby, Burn

By Ken Piper

Controlled fire is the most under-used habitat tool, but maybe that's not a bad thing. Now that we no longer depend on fire to keep us alive every day, most of us look on it as something that destroys. Fire certainly can destroy, and few images are more heart-wrenching than those of a family watching their home and possessions being reduced to smok... READ MORE

Less Is More

Less Is More

By Ken Piper

Forget shooting lanes and cut shooting windows instead. Last week we discussed the importance of keeping your bow shots makeable but not too close to where you expect to see deer. The premise is it’s great to see deer, but you still have to be able to move enough to get off a shot. Another aspect of that same philosophy is keeping shooting ... READ MORE

Too Close for Comfort

Too Close for Comfort

By Ken Piper

Don’t set up for 20-yard shots if you can shoot well out to 30. One of the most common problems with stand setups is being too close. It’s natural to want an easier shot, but your odds of getting that shot off go up dramatically the farther you set up from the deer’s travel area. Early in my bowhunting days, I used to cut lanes in... READ MORE

Copyright 2021 by Buckmasters, Ltd.

Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd