How to Get Started in Saddle Hunting: A Comprehensive Guide
Saddle hunting has gained immense popularity among bowhunters in recent years. In my opinion, it is by far the best way to hunt whitetail deer getting rid of pounds of excess gear and the limitation of tree stands, climbers, blinds and other options of hunting. It offers a unique and versatile approach to hunting, allowing you to be mobile, stealthy, and adaptable in various terrains. If you're intrigued by the idea of saddle hunting, this article will guide you through the essential steps to get started. From mastering your bow skills to understanding what you'll need, we've got you covered.Mastering Your Bow Skills
The foundation of saddle hunting is archery. The very first piece of gear you'll need is a bow. It also does not matter what bow you use. It can be compound or a crossbow. There are many budget options out there that are awesome bows like Bear bows. Before you embark on your saddle hunting journey, ensure that you're proficient with your bow. Practice regularly to hone your shooting accuracy and get comfortable shooting from various angles, heights, and positions. This will be crucial when hunting from a saddle.Access to Hunting Land
One of the primary considerations for saddle hunting is having access to suitable hunting grounds. Whether it's private land or public land, understanding the deer population, their movement patterns, and the terrain is essential. Once you have identified where you'll be hunting, spend time scouting the area and identifying prime locations where you can set up your saddle.Gathering Essential Equipment
To get started in saddle hunting, you'll need a range of specialized gear:
Saddle: A quality saddle like the Bull Threat Saddle is your foundation. Ensure it's comfortable, durable, and provides the support you need. Handmade in America, this piece of a gear is something you do not want to skimp on.
Safety Equipment: Invest in a BullPath lineman rope and tree tether to keep you safe while ascending and descending trees. The lineman rope is what keeps you to the tree while ascending and descending. The tree tether is what you'll set up in, while being at the top of the tree to your saddles bridge. The final thing you'll want to buy that includes with safety equipment is a set of knee pads. You can go to any hardware store a purchase a pair of carpenter knee pads. Or go online a find some hunting saddle knee pads. There is a plethora of options.
Platform: A Tethrd platform provides a stable surface for you to stand on while saddle hunting. A platform is a must to saddle hunting. It is extremely small and lightweight to carry up in your pack up the tree. Choose one that suits your preferences for weight and size.
Climbing Sticks: Air Hawk Helium sticks are lightweight and portable, making them ideal for saddle hunting. Preferably get 3-4 sticks. These sticks will help you ascend and descend trees safely and efficiently. These sticks are a budget friendly product.
Hunting Bag: A decent hunting bag is essential for carrying gear, including safety equipment, extra clothing, snacks, and other essentials. Make sure it's designed for hunting and can withstand the elements.
Saddle hunting gear can be an expensive investment, but it's worth it. High-quality gear ensures your safety and comfort while hunting. Remember that your gear is a long-term investment that will improve your overall hunting experience and increase your chances of success. Prioritize your safety above all else and opt for reliable, American made equipment.Understanding Deer Movement and Patterns
To be a successful saddle hunter, you must understand the deer's movement and behavior. Deer have predictable patterns based on the time of day, the season, and food sources. Spend time observing these patterns, as they will help you choose your hunting locations and decide when to be in the saddle.
Successful hunting involves careful planning and adapting to the elements. Keep a close eye on weather forecasts, as it can greatly impact deer movement and your hunting strategy. Adjust your plans accordingly to maximize your chances of success.Learning from Online Resources
Lastly, harness the power of online resources to enhance your saddle hunting knowledge. Platforms like YouTube offer a treasure trove of information, including tutorials, gear reviews, and hunting tips from experienced saddle hunters. Whitetail Habitat Solutions, for example, provides valuable insights into deer habitat and behavior, which can be invaluable for your hunting strategy.
Saddle hunting offers an exhilarating and rewarding experience for bowhunters willing to explore this dynamic approach. Mastering your bow skills, understanding deer behavior, and investing in quality gear are critical steps on your journey. Remember that saddle hunting is not just a hunting method; it's a lifestyle and a passion that will take your hunting adventures to new heights. So, prepare, learn, and enjoy the journey as you enter the exciting world of saddle hunting.