As many of you know (particularly if you follow our social media channels) hunting season started in Utah last month and is just beginning here in Idaho. We lucked out and got a coveted Muley tag for Utah, and even though we’ve been out a few times we have yet to find The One. We had the pleasure of sitting down and chatting with some other hunters and after hearing some hilarious hunting stories, we mentioned our continued search for our Muley. The guys and gals then started mentioning all kinds of awesome tips and tricks to help us locate our quarry and we got to thinking that we had to share some of these with you guys! So, here are some of our favorite tips we’ve gotten from other hunters, hunting blogs, and magazines; as well as some of our own awesome know-how. Enjoy!
Mule deer tend to live in more broken terrain, but they do often visit the same spots to drink, eat, and bed down. If you get a high position first off (prior to dawn), you can use your spotting scope and binoculars to glass the surrounding area. Finding the Mule deer when they are up and moving makes the actual hunt later that day more likely to be a success. However, make sure to blend in to your surroundings; a silhouette is a dead giveaway to these guys!
One tip we got, that while it seems odd is entirely accurate, is to look for groups of Magpies. Magpies love to hang out near, and on, Mule Deer in order to make a quick snack of any insects or lice on their coats. So if you keep your eyes peeled for any Magpies making frequent trips from the bushes down towards the ground, more often than not you’ll see them making a pit stop on a nice Mule Deer.
Thanks to the large size and shape of the Muley’s ears, they have very sensitive and acute hearing, so you’ll want to take extra care to keep quiet. Take an extra minute or two to scan for any errant branches, twigs, or brush that might cause unnecessary noise and make sure to step gently so you remain as quiet as possible. You’ll also want to leave any windbreakers or other noisy clothing that tends to rustle at home; otherwise they might cost you’re your prize. They’re hearing is so acute, that depending on how cool it is outside, you may even consider stalking them in socks, crawling, or creeping up on them on your belly to get into range for your shot.
Hunting Muleys is definitely physically taxing; you can track these guys for miles before you find The One. Mule deer are by nature travelers and can cover several miles of terrain each day between their preferred feeding spots and the area they like to bed down in. Since these guys also tend to prefer more uneven terrain, plan for a harder hike over several miles each day. This is where those Getting into Hunting Shape tips we put up come in handy. Last, but certainly not least, this is the perfect type of hunt to use your Pro-tracker system! Our system will help guarantee that once you’ve found The One that you don’t lose your prize due to uneven terrain. You can still track using the traditional methods, but you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that if the trail runs cold, our Pro-Tracker tracking and recovery system will be there to keep your trail hot!
Many hunters like to aim for the higher country, expecting the bucks to seek shelter to avoid the mad rush of the opening of the season and all of the noise that entails, but that is not always the case! More often than not, you can find tons of beautiful bucks that opted for smaller brush coverage (like sage) in the lower areas or basins. Depending on where the majority of hunters seem to be heading, we would recommend heading the opposite direction. Not only will it be quieter with fewer hunters out and about, but you’ll have a great chance of spotting that Muley…just remember to keep your eyes peeled!
So, those are some of the great tips we’ve both used and been told about. So, what other tips and tricks do you guys have?
The Pro-Tracker® Transmitter is a rechargeable, lightweight, water resistant transmitter that disengages from the arrow upon impact; allowing for pass-throughs. The transmitter hooks into the animal’s hide and begins sending Radio Frequency (RF) signals every three seconds for the duration of the battery life (10-12 hours). You will need the Pro-Tracker® Receiver to read and track the signal.
The Carrier is what screws into your arrow and holds the transmitter. It is aerodynamically designed to compensate for the weight and shape of the transmitter. Meaning minimal adjustments to your equipment for the same precision. This item comes in a pack of four.
The Pro-Tracker® Radio Frequency (RF) Receiver is a compact system with an easy to attach antenna. This state of the art receiver can track up to 6 different transmitter signals at the same time. Displaying signal strength, transmitter number, current time, time spent tracking, and current battery life, all on an easy to read LED screen. Available only in the Pro-Tracker® System
The Pro-Tracker® custom metal carrying case helps you keep track of your Pro-Tracker system and ensures everything stays together. Its lightweight and durable design ensures your equipment is protected while being as easy as possible to carry during your hunting trip and recovering your trophy.
This dual-charging station allows you to charge up to two transmitters at a time. It includes both a USB and outlet adapter. The outlet adapter allows you to charge your transmitters at home while the USB adapters allow you to charge your transmiters in your truck for extended hunting trips.
The patented Pro-Tracker® Recovery System will help you locate your kill with durable, state of the art technology. The compact system can track 6 different transmitters while using the same RF receiver with an easy to read LED screen. Best of all, our transmitters don’t require the purchase of batteries and can be recharged both at home and out in the field.
The Pro-Tracker® System has been field tested by top experts in the archery industry. With the Pro-Tracker® Archery System you’ll see virtually no difference in the trajectory of your arrow because of the aerodynamic carrier. Tests have shown the Pro-Tracker® Recovery System will give you many hours of use and the precision to recovery your trophy.
In the reports, we found that while many of the deer either die (Ditchkoff) or are recovered within 24 hours (Pedersen), that some can survive 5-7 days with wounds before they perish. When looking at these numbers and percentages for any individual state, the number of animals that are not recovered seems miniscule. However once you look at the entire population of bow hunters within the United States alone, the amount becomes much more significant (Ditchkoff). This more significant number of unrecovered animals has been causing animal rights and anti-hunting activists to state that bow hunting is both cruel and inhumane. It is because of this that the Pro-Tracker was invented. Our goal is to eliminate the possibility of losing even one animal while maintaining the integrity of the hunt. Pro-Tracker has been in use since 2010 and thus far we have a 100% accuracy rate in animal recovery. The Pro-Tracker system, while not ideal for every hunter, is thus far supporting the goal of striving to ensure bow hunting is appreciated for the skill it requires and given the support it deserves, rather than seen in a negative light. With technology and advancement in the archery industry, we can help in recovering the animals wounded and work to improve the loss rate. We all have a responsibility to the natural resources we are given; no one is perfect every time. Accidents do happen, and we need to be prepared for those occasions.
1. Ditchkoff, Stephen S., Edgar R. Welch Jr., Robert L. Lochmiller, Ronald E. Masters, William R. Starry, William C. Dinkines. 1998. Wounding of White-tailed Deer with Traditional Archery Equipment. Proc. Annu. Conf. Southeast. Assoc. Fish and Wildl. Agencies 52:244-248. Website: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ronald_Masters/publication/237609363_Wounding_Rates_of_Whitetailed_Deer_
2. Pedersen, Andy M., Seth Berry, Jeffrey C. Bossart. 2008. Wounding Rates of White –tailed Deer with Modern Archery Equipment. Proc. Annu. Conf. Southeast. Assoc. Fish and Wildl. Agencies 62:31–34