John's Journal...

Get a Buck Deer within Range with Ronnie Groom

Day 1: Funnel Deer to Your Tree Stand with Ronnie Groom

Editor’s Note: Nationally-known deer seminar speaker, an avid deer hunter and my longtime friend, Ronnie Groom of Panama City, Florida, has faced this problem of how to get a buck within range often in the areas he hunts. He uses these tactics, which work well for bowhunters or gun hunters, to funnel deer into their stand sites.

Click for Larger ViewMany deer hunters are accurate shots. Other hunters are superb woodsmen who identify feeding and traveling areas. But being able to locate deer and then arrow those deer are only two-thirds of the requirement for taking deer. To get a shot, the deer must come within bow or gun range.

Click for Larger ViewOf course stand position is important. However, often deer will work through an area without well-established trails to hunt over, or there may be two or three trails coming into a region with no way to determine which trail is the best one to set-up on to bag a deer. These kinds of situations occur frequently when hunting places with high deer populations.

How to Use the Five Trail Tactic:

When the white oak trees begin to drop their acorns in the fall, deer will concentrate under these trees to feed in the South where Groom primarily hunts. But when there are five trails coming into a feeding spot, how does the deer hunter know which trail to set-up on to bag a deer?

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger View“Careful scouting will reveal that even though five trails are running into a feeding area, there only will be two trails that the deer are using most often,” Groom explains. “So, I try to pick one of the two most-used trails for setting up my stand – if I’m looking to arrow any deer, regardless of sex. Next I must funnel the deer off the trails I’m not hunting onto the trail I am hunting. To cancel out trails, I’ll hang a hunting coat about eye level to a deer on the trail where I won’t be. Deer are naturally wary, and when they see that coat, they’ll usually funnel off the trail they plan to utilize onto the next-best trail. Also, to delete the lesser-used trails, I’ll lay a limb or some brush across those trails. Although deer can jump over the brush, they always tend to take the path of least resistance. They’ll generally walk around the brush and onto the trail that I plan to hunt.

To get John E. Phillips’ Kindle eBooks and print books on hunting deer, “How to Hunt and Take Big Buck Deer on Small Properties,” “How to Hunt Deer Up Close: With Bows, Rifles, Muzzleloaders and Crossbows,” “PhD Whitetails: How to Hunt and Take the Smartest Deer on Any Property,” “How to Take Monster Bucks,” “How to Hunt Deer Like a Pro,” and “Mossy Oak Pros Know Bucks and Bows,” or to prepare venison, “Deer & Fixings,” click here on each. Or, go to, type in the name of the book, and download it to your Kindle, and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer.

For information on making jerky from your deer to provide a protein-rich snack, you can download a free book from

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About the Author

John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors. Click here for more information and a list of all the books available from John E. Phillips.

Tomorrow: Take More Deer with Ronnie Groom’s Five Trail Tactic

Check back each day this week for more about Get a Buck Deer within Range with Ronnie Groom

Day 1: Funnel Deer to Your Tree Stand with Ronnie Groom
Day 2: Take More Deer with Ronnie Groom’s Five Trail Tactic
Day 3: To Take Deer, Narrow the Funnel You’re Hunting
Day 4: Successful Deer Hunting - How Human Scent Can Help
Day 5: Funnel Deer with Hunting Pressure

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Entry 842, Day 1