John's Journal...

How to Hunt Spooked Deer

Day 3: How to Hunt Pressured Deer

Editor’s Note: Deer do strange and unpredictable things when the hunting pressure builds-up over their range. This week we’ll look at how to modify your tactics to take these spooked deer.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewTo eliminate human odor, some hunters prefer to utilize masking scents that are taken from the glands of whitetails to actually mask human odor with an odor that is common to the deer. I also believe a masking scent is most effective when put on the bottoms of your shoes or boots when entering the woods and used in conjunction with a favorable wind.

The best way to eliminate human odor from the deer’s nostrils is to hunt with the wind in your face, so that the deer approaches your stand from downwind. To do that you must know which direction the deer should be walking on the day you plan to hunt. If the wind is wrong for the stand you have picked, choose not to hunt from the stand that day, rather than allowing the deer to pick up your odor in that area, which possibly may prevent the animal from coming into the region. Hunting with a favorable wind may be one of the most-overlooked keys to taking trophy bucks.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewThe second requirement for harvesting older, bigger deer is to disguise the human form. I believe that’s one of the reasons tree stands are so effective – the hunter is above the eye level of the deer. However, if you are hunting in a region where outdoorsmen historically have hunted from tree stands, then the deer may have been trained to look into the trees for hunters. So, back cover will be critical, and the type of tree selected to hunt from will be all-important. Again, if the hunter is conscious of not allowing the deer to make visual contact with him, he will be more likely to bag an older, bigger buck than someone the deer can see moving through the woods or standing in the woods.

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 “Bowhunting Deer: 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

Share this page with a friend!

Check out our new website at

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: How Deer React to Hunting Pressure

Check back each day this week for more about How to Hunt Spooked Deer

Day 1: What’s a Deer’s Home Range
Day 2: What Deer Fear Most About Man
Day 3: How to Hunt Pressured Deer
Day 4: How Deer React to Hunting Pressure
Day 5: Where Deer Will Hide During Intense Pressure

ALL CONTENT PROTECTED UNDER THE DIGITAL MILLENIUM COPYRIGHT ACT. Content theft, either printed or electronic is a federal offense.


Entry 850, Day 3