A climbing stand, a bow and arrow, and a bag of buck treasures is all Brad Smith needs in his quest of one more trophy deer.
Here’s Brad’s prescription for standard big buck chasing equipment:
• Stand: A good safe stand is his most important piece of equipment because, no matter what happens on a hunt, he wants to be able to come back on more hunts.
He uses from a Treewalker climbing stand because it is a light aluminum model, has good teeth, locks solidly on trees and is comfortable enough to sit in for hours.
• Bow: Brad goes with a PSC X-Force Dream Season EVO bow he has had for five years. He doesn’t like to change bows often because it helps him be more consistent and comfortable.
• Arrows: He mainly shoots Rage Hypodermic mechanical blade arrow, which are consistent in flight, and make huge entry and exit wounds. But his main suggestion for arrows is to make sure they have enough spine for the speed of the bow with which you are hunting.
• Scent: “I don’t really use a lot of scent or cover products,” Smith said. “I just try to use the wind (so) I don’t need them.
“I do carry a Thermocell that gives off some odor, but I have never had it spook a buck that I know of. It’s unbelievable. And I never go to the woods without it in October or November.”
Where he hunts, they’ve also got trophy mosquitoes.
• Bag of tricks: Well, they aren’t really tricks, but he carries a well-stocked backpack that includes a good hunting knife and surgical gloves in case he has to dress a big buck in the field.
He also takes a Primos range finder and a good pair of binoculars, a safety belt (which he always wears), several flashlights and extra batteries, a portable phone charger and some bright eyes and flagging tape.
If there is a trick in his bag, it’s actually on his iPhone. He has the Avenza App, a geospatial PDF reader that works by satellite whether you have cell service or not: It easily connects you with spatially referenced maps to help you mark and return to exact spots you in the woods.
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