Here are just some observations from my first quarter of the deer season. First of all, we must differentiate between hunting public hunting land, which I do, and hunting on a private lease.

Of course, on your private lease you can, to a large degree, control the actions of the individuals you allow to hunt on the lease. On public land, other than the obvious rules of the WMA or NWR, you can come and go as you please and hunt wherever you desire, again within the restrictions of that public land.

Therein, I see some problems year after year.

First, let's start with the late-arriving hunter. Yes, that guy who comes flying in with his motor running full throttle, shuts it down and then bangs around his paddle, bow/gun and anything else in the boat that can make noise. It's even better when he has another hunter with him; that way they can talk in loud voices to each other as they saunter in to their stands.

Mind you, all of this is happening at prime hunting time, either just after first shooting light or right before dark. All the time you have spent arriving early, letting everything settle down and being as quiet as possible has just been blown by these guys. Your chances of getting a deer have just decreased drastically due to the selfish, thoughtless, actions of these hunters.

Now, I fully realize that anyone could oversleep or have a problem that would cause them to be late for their hunt. But on the rare occasion that does happen, you can cruise in at low idle, be careful not to make any unnecessary noise in your boat, keep the conversation to a whisper (if at all) and quietly make your way to your stand. Because isn't that what you would want if you were already up in your stand? You know the adage to treat others as you would want to be treated? It is only fair.

I think many times guys just don't realize how much noise they are making. I don't think it is intentional by most guys, but intentional or not the damage is done. I get a lot of these exact complaints from fellow hunters about this subject quite frequently.  It can be very frustrating for all of us.

Same thing after you kill a deer. Granted, your hunt is over and you are probably very excited, but don't get so carried away that you ruin the hunts of the other guys in your vicinity. If you must trail your deer, well, there is nothing you can really do about that. But you can save the celebration for after you leave the area, just as a courtesy that you would want if you were the one who was still hunting.

On the way out, if you choose to leave earlier than most of the other hunters, just pick up your stuff and exit as quietly as possible. It is the right thing to do. Guys, if we all get to thinking about our fellow hunters first and being as courteous as possible, it will make for a much more pleasurable experience for all of us. Because isn't having a good time the goal we all start out with?

Good hunting, be safe and think about your fellow hunters!