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Stalking Whitetail
Field Guide -Deer

6 Tips for Stalking Whitetail

Harvesting whitetail is nothing short of challenging. Whitetail not only have some of the best sight but also some of the best hearing out of any species we hunt.

It not only takes skill but persistence and dedication to harvest that big buck on your trail cam, and that's where HuntWise comes in.

Stalking whitetail is tricky business. However, it can become a big advantage when sneaking up on an old, mature buck. So, here are six stalking tips that we feel will not only improve your stalking techniques but also help you land that big buck.


A whitetail buck in the woods, stalking whitetail concept.

1. Take Advantage Of All Types Of Weather

More often than not, as hunters, we hear that it is not worth it to hunt in the rain, snow, or gusty winds. However, when stalking, that idea is completely wrong.

Although the bad weather might not be ideal for you, it dulls the deer's senses and makes it easier for you to stalk properly. Take advantage of these types of weather – it might just work out for your good.

2. Wear Proper Camo

As always, you should plan ahead and make sure you pick out the proper camo to match your terrain as best you can.

Although the right camo clothing should always be taken into consideration, it is especially important when you are stalking, as you are going to want to match the oaks, bushes, snow, and other foliage as best as you possibly can.

3. Learn How To Track a Deer With Your HuntWise Markers

This one may seem self-explanatory, but when stalking, it is crucial to understand the behavior of the deer. You will not always spot the deer you are after, and it is very important to understand how to follow tracks, pinpoint scrapes/rubs, etc.

Utilize your HuntWise markers to note these key elements when you pinpoint them, and make a walking path so you do not lose the track.

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4. Try "Glassing" If Accessible In Your Area

Glassing won't be accessible in every type of terrain. However, if you have hilly or more mountainous land with a vantage point, this can be a good place to start whitetail stalking.

Try starting up high and just observing the land. You might witness a lake, river, other game, or even the big buck you've been hoping would be there.

Again, if this is accessible to you, glassing is a great place to start before you start the stalk.

5. Use The Wind

A headwind is stalking's greatest advantage. This will not only carry scent away from deer but also help protect your movement with swaying branches and shrubs if it's blowing hard enough.

Monitor the wind by periodically checking your ScentDrift in the HuntWise app. Plug in your ideal wind direction and assess whether the wind is working to your advantage.


And finally . . .


6. Stay Calm and Patient

Remember, good stalking requires protecting yourself from deer visibility and staying patient when you see your shot. Once you spot your whitetail, do not immediately pursue the shot.

Instead, stay calm, observe the animal, and go from there.

The whitetail could still be moving, feeding, etc. Whatever the case may be, do not let the sight of that big buck get you so excited that you spook it. Stay calm, keep your composure, resume the stalk, and take the shot when necessary.

A buck lowers its head in a field, whitetail stalking concept.

Practice Stalking Whitetail with HuntWise

As always, the key to stalking is to stay calm and confident and practice often. Still-hunting can be extremely challenging, as you have to focus even more than you would if you were hunting in a stand on your camo, your composure, and the sounds around you.

Many components of hunting are 100 times more important when stalking, and that just means you have to be on top of your game. However, you can do it.

With these six tips and the HuntWise app in hand, you are more likely to be successful. Good luck, hunters, and shoot straight.

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Content updated June 13, 2024.

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