Ground blinds

Normally, when taking a stand, some sort of additional concealment is placed at the selected site. It does not have to be much, a few fallen branches built into a “wall” around your location is generally sufficient. Ideally, the branches selected are strong enough and placed securely enough to serve as a shooting rest. In addition, care should be taken so that the branches used do not interfere with a potential shot.

Having the extra concealment likely will allow a novice hunter the luxury of being able to slowly adjust their position to remain comfortable without being spotted as easily. Seat cushions, or small chairs will add to the comfort.

The area enclosed within your “natural blind” needs to be large enough to accommodate the mentor/guide and the participant, plus their gear. It is also a good idea to rake the area within the blind to eliminate potentially noisy sticks and leaves. Be sure to leave room to set up shooting sticks or shooting rest.  Spending a few minutes practicing mounting the gun and aiming at a few distant targets soon after getting into the blind will help make these movements quiet and confident when the time comes.

Ideally, these areas should be prepared in advance of when you are planning on using them. However, they can bed created on relatively short notice, if done discretely.

A more modern version of the “ground blind” is a “pop-up blind.”  These look like a camouflaged version of a backpacker’s tent. They provide excellent concealment, which allows for more movement and comfort, as well as shelter from inclement weather. However, they may restrict your view of the area being hunted. Ideally, they should placed in advance, as well being as “brushed in” so they blend into the area. Because they provide almost total concealment, some states require these blinds to be marked with “blaze orange” when they are occupied.

Because deer movements likely will change during hunting season, some spots that looked promising when you scouted the area will “go cold” and a new spot will be needed. If possible multiple spots should be prepared during your pre-season scouting.

However, it is OK to find a new spot during the hunt and sit at it as soon as you find it. Care should be taken to not disturb the area too much. These impromptu locations can be very effective because they are based on immediate scouting knowledge. However, because they are not as well concealed as stand sites prepared in advance, they are likely will require the occupants to sit more quietly and be more still than in a prepared-blind location.

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