Missouri public hunting land can be successful so long as you do your due diligence. Some of the best practices that can help you immensely are pretty easy yet highly overlooked. As with so many things in life, hunting public land starts with the basics, and these foundational aspects of the hunt can make or break your success.
Getting to your spot early in the morning is crucial, especially when hunting public land. By early, we mean 3:00 AM - 4:00 AM. A good rule of thumb is to arrive about 1.5 hours before first light. For some people, this seems like an insane plan, particularly if the first time doing it doesn't bear results. There is a method to the madness.
The advantage of getting into your spot super-early is that others hunters typically show up 20-30 minutes before first light. By getting there so early, chances are, those late-arriving hunters can push deer to you, and you might get a crack at them right at first light. The key is to get their early and get far back - way far back in the woods.
If you don't get messed with other hunters or if a buck happens to come through your area, and you get in there 1.5 hours early, the buck won't know you are there and won't get spooked. A lot of times, those same deer will come back through those areas later in the morning. If you're in your spot early, the deer won't know your there, and the deer will not be pressured. He's going to come back through there likely, and you're going to have a chance. You're not going to have that chance if you're the classic guy who shows up right at shooting light.
Let's face it; when hunting public land, you're starting off behind the eightball. You're dealing with pressure from other hunters, bird watchers, nature walkers, and non-hunters. You must be persistent any time you're hunting, but especially when you're hunting on public grounds. Listen to what the deer are telling you. If the deer are telling you that they are in your area, be persistent. Most likely, it will pay off at some point in the season.
Don't Broadcast Your Spots
Don't blab about your spot to your hunting buddies. If you're hunting public ground, you need to keep it secret. The second you tell somebody, they will tell somebody else and so on. Pretty soon, everybody will be hunting there, especially if you have a really good spot. When you're hunting public land, you have to learn to keep secrets not only about where you're hunting but how you're getting to your spot. Don't park anywhere near where you hunt. Take the long walk there and the long walk back. If you kill a deer, don't drag it straight back to your truck.
Hunt at Oak Creek Whitetail Ranch
Fortunately, Missouri public hunting land is some of the most under-hunted public lands in America. If, however, you want a more controlled hunting environment, contact Oak Creek Whitetail Ranch. We are located in the heart of Missouri, and we have some of the largest Whitetail deer on the planet.
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