While there are some dedicated bowhunters who have hung up their guns for good in exchange for sticks and a string, most deer hunters are eager to pick up their firearms as the early archery season comes to an end. They know the odds of scoring a good buck increase dramatically by using a firearm. Nevertheless, that doesn’t diminish their excitement and enjoyment of bowhunting. In fact, the simplicity of pursuing whitetails with a primitive weapon, and the serenity of being alone in the woods before the crowds show up, is the perfect start to a new deer season.
Some bowhunters are fortunate enough to be successful during bow season. This is the time when big bucks are less wary and can be caught off guard before the intense pressure of the gun season puts them in a nocturnal pattern. In early bow season, bucks are easier to pattern, and bowhunters who focus on reliable food sources often take their trophy before the first rifle shots of the season are fired. Some experts believe that bow season is, in fact, the best time to take a trophy buck outside of the rut.
Anyone who bowhunts knows that taking a deer with a bow during the early season is a tremendous challenge, especially in Louisiana and other southern states. There are many obstacles to success. The warm and humid conditions present in October and early November make scent control almost impossible. The sometimes oppressive heat has the deer sluggish and not moving much. Mosquitoes and other insects torment hunters. And even if these challenges can be overcome, the hunter must possess and execute the expert skills necessary to get within bow range, deliver a precise shot, and then track the downed deer. Those who accomplish all these steps have indeed earned a trophy.
But if you are one of the many bowhunters who have not scored by the end of bow season, don’t worry. The fun is just beginning, and the time you have already spent in the woods may be just the edge you need to take your trophy during gun season.
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