Basic Hunting Skills – Preparing for the Hunt
Preparedness minded people often do very well with hunting, that’s because the most successful hunters are the ones who carefully plan and prepare for the hunt. Those who don’t prepare often find themselves struggling through the hunt, or worse yet, they may find themselves in danger due to poor preparation and planning.
Steps you should take before going on any hunt.
Know The Game
Knowing the game that you’re going after is one of the most important parts of the pre-preparation planning for your hunt. This process is really a lifelong process, one that will improve with every trek out into the field. That being said, this is also a something that should be studied in your downtime.
Understanding the game you’re hunting is not only critical to the success of your hunt, but it’s also something that you need to know to insure you’re taking legal game. For example, when hunting birds you need to be able to quickly determine the exact species, and in some cases sex of your game, to make sure you’re taking legal game.
Know The Games Characteristics
Before going out into the field, you should have at least a basic understanding of your chosen games unique characteristics. This means taking the time to study your game, study the area where you intend to hunt, and asking others who may have more experience for their advice.
Things you want to focus on include:
- Studying the identifying markings and traits of your intended quarry.
- Understanding your quarries unique behaviors, and how these behaviors can change based on the environment, the weather and even the time of day.
- Learning the Sounds of your intended quarry. Every animal makes a range of unique sounds, each of these sounds meaning something to those that know what to listen for. In your downtime, you want to study these sounds and then learn how you can use them to your advantage.
- Learning what signs to look for while you’re on the hunt.
Use the off-season to your Advantage
Just because it’s the off-season, doesn’t mean you have to stop learning. In fact, the off-season can provide valuable information that can help you become a better and more rounded hunter.
Hiking during the off-season can be a great way to scout out new trails; it’s also an excellent way to find out the habits, behaviors and movements of your intended game.
Safety, Safety, Safety!!!
The key to being a good hunter is being a safe hunter; in order to be a safe hunter, you must be prepared for everything.
- Read our article on Hiking Safety. It’s filled with useful information that you can use while out in the field.
- Know the Big Four Rules of Hunting Safety
- Learn the basics of Gun Safety
- GPS is great, but to ensure your safety while out on a hunt, you must learn how to use a compass and read a Topographic Map