When I moved to Tennessee from Upstate New York in 1997, I was really excited to live in a state where the opening day of bow season was in September, but it didn’t take me long to realize that it wasn’t all the fun I had imagined. With 90 degree heat and ticks that seem to hide behind every single plant, I quickly discovered I was going to have to start all over in my approach.
Face Paint No More
The first change I had to make was with my face paint, basically, I couldn’t use it anymore, at least not until late October. By the time I would walk from my truck to my stand, I would have sweated most of it into my shirt collar. I tried to wait and apply it in my stand, but that didn’t seem to matter much, because I found myself sweating anyway as soon as the sun came up. Because of this, I started to wear a face mask. Although I generally don’t feel comfortable with a face net on, I have grown used to it. It also helps out with the bug problem that I had to deal with for the first time, now that I hunted down south. That leads me into my next change….
These Bugs are Driving Me Nuts!!!
It never even crossed my mind, and I really don’t know why, but having to deal with ticks, mosquitoes and chiggers was something that I never thought I would have to deal with deer hunting. I mean, sure, maybe in the spring while hunting turkeys, but not deer hunting, but this turned out to be the biggest difference between bow hunting in the north and hunting down south. Thank god for Thermacells… that’s all I have to say! This little tool has become a must have in my pack when I am bowhunting. Before Thermacell, I would have to suffer because wearing any bug spray would surely alert any deer within a mile. Besides the Thermacell, a good face mask that keeps the bugs off your face is a good idea. When the bugs are really bad, you can tuck the bug net into the neck of your shirt and also wearing some thin gloves can keep them off your hands.
Man, I gotta Stink!!
When hunting in the month of September down south, it is almost impossible to not sweat, and we all know how important scent control is, for this reason, I never enter the woods without a big bottle of scent control spray in my pack. I am not too picky on the brand, I usually just get what is on sale at Wal-mart, but the Super-Charged Scent killer by Wildlife Research Center or the Dead Down Wind 3-D Evolve are usually what I get. I apply this spray liberally and often. You can not spray too much, because you are constantly putting off scent. Because we are putting so much scent into the air, we also need to make sure we are hunting with the winds in our favor. The best scent control is a stiff wind in your face.
Although deer hunting in the heat can make things a lot more challenging, if you take your time and do your best to control your scent, the rewards can more than make up for it……