When I bought the Source Jacket, I hoped that it would become a go to piece of gear that I wore all the time, after all, it wasn’t cheap. Since that day I have hunted whitetail deer, ducks, geese, turkeys, and more wearing this jacket. It has become my all around, all time, favorite hunting jacket. It’s not perfect, but I can honestly say, if I lost or ruined this jacket tomorrow, I would buy another one to replace it.

The First Lite Source Jacket is engineered to be the ultimate lightweight deer hunting jacket. A thin, light, ultra quiet puffy jacket that has both stretch and resilience. It is a combination of benefits that sounds too good to be true. And it is too good to be true. It doesn’t quite live up to all of that. But it does pretty good. In this review I am going to cover the features, benefits, performance, pros and cons, and the HUGE MISTAKE that First Lite made with this jacket.

Let me just start by saying that this review is not sponsored by First Lite. I bought this jacket with my own money, because I wanted to, and have hunted with it for a year before doing this review. 

Why The Source Jacket

From the first moment that First Lite even mentioned the release of the Source Jacket, I wanted it. I read about it and their marketing had me hooked. It was the perfect combination of features and was exactly what I had been looking for. And ultralight weight outer layer with Primaloft insulation that could double as a mid-layer was something my gear setup was lacking. I had an older piece of gear I was using to fill this niche in my setup but it was taking a lot of wear and tear and need replaced, and it was not very quiet. The Source Jacket had my full attention.

I didn’t have the spare cash handy enough to order it that day so I waited a few weeks after release to buy it. However, by the time I got around to it, the jacket had sold out for the season. I guess it was more popular than First Lite anticipated. I checked back weekly until finally just singing up for a notification when it came back in stock. It wasn’t until the following spring or summer that it did, and I ordered it right away. I had kept this spot in my gear unfilled, waiting months to get this thing, and thankfully I was not disappointed with the jacket. I don’t know if it was really worth the wait, but it felt good to finally get it. 

Features & Benefits

The The First Lite Source Jacket is marketed as packable and versatile. And both are true. It weighs just 17 ounces and is stuffed with Primaloft Gold Stretch Insulation. For more info on the insulation, check out my podcast episode: Making Sense of Insulation For Hunting Gear. The fabric does have some stretch to it and it comes with a DWR treatment to repel moisture. It has thumb loops and a harness pass through, along with a very comfortable versatile collar. The specs pretty much end there. But that does not tell the whole story.

The genius of this jacket is the internal and external fabric. It is very quiet, ideal for the bow hunter and the still hunter alike. It’s also great for the turkey hunter, and anyone else that relies upon silence, like the duck hunter who is trying to sneak within range for a shot. But beyond that the fabric is perfect for both an outer layer and a mid layer. Most other gear I’ve used that is multi-purpose like this does not do both jobs well. It’s either a good outer layer or a good mid layer, never both. But this jacket changes that.

The outer fabric has just enough friction to give you good fit underneath an heavier outer layer like a coat, parka, or rain shell. The outer layer does not slip and slide around awkwardly overtop of this jacket. Likewise, the Source Jacket has enough room and perfect fabric to accommodate a base layer and even a mid layer underneath it.  So you can comfortably wear it over a base layer like First Lite’s 250 weight Merino Wool Kiln Crew or their heavy duty 350 Furnace Quarter Zip. Each of those links goes to my review for each layer.

I can also fit a fleece layer in addition to the base layer, enabling this jacket to work really well in cold weather. Also, because the insulation is Primaloft instead of down, it retains its insulative properties even when it gets wet. Which gives it alot of versatility and also enables it to function better than down as a mid layer. And also, unlike down, it does not compress much under a heavy coat, enabling it to insulate better than down as a mid layer. 

So this jacket really does thrive as both an outer layer and a mid layer. It’s a genius design. 

Pros & Cons

I wish I could say the The First Lite Source Jacket was totally flawless but that would be overselling it. Its strengths are certain stronger, but I have some things I’d like to see improved.

Pros

  • Lightweight and packable
  • Very warm, even when wet
  • High warmth to weight ratio
  • Truly doubles as an outer layer and mid layer
  • Very quiet outer fabric
  • Perfect amount of friction on the inner and outer fabric
  • Good camo pattern
  • Perfect fit. I wear a large in everything and a large fits me perfectly, with room for layers underneath but not too loose.
  • Wind resistant, though not quite windproof
  • Useful for almost any temperature range as a mid or outer layer.
    • For an external layer I agree with First Lite’s rating of 45+ degrees Fahrenheit if you are sitting still all day.
    • If you are on the move all day and have 2 layers under it, this is viable down to 20 degrees.

Cons

  • Not as durable as the marketing makes it sound, it also came with some loose threads.
  • The seem inside of one of the pockets tore from putting shells in there. It can be easily sown, but pockets should be stronger than that.
  • Only comes in one camo pattern, I’d like a solid color to wear to work.
  • It is expensive for a jacket, even an outstanding jacket.

Performance

I did not just buy and unbox this jacket and do a review, I hate reviews like that. I hunted in this for a year. I hunted deer, waterfowl, turkey, and more. I have used this on the coldest days of the year all the way up to 60 degrees. And I have been thoroughly impressed with the The First Lite Source Jacket. I have worn this under my parka at dawn on windy snowy mornings in the duck blind, only to later remove the parka and hunt ducks on foot for the rest of the day wearing only the Source Jacket and the Kiln base layer under it at 32 degrees with wind and snow. 

I have hunted with this jacket in pouring rain, which I don’t recommend, but it kept me dry enough long enough to sneak up on and take the game I was after. I have worn it sitting still and walking miles. I’ve worn it on trails and in thick brush. And while heavy brush puts too much wear and tear on it, the jacket is so quiet that I want to wear it all the time and I have to remind myself to be gentler with it than I normally am to my less expensive gear.

The camo pattern is also better than expected. People on my YouTube channel are constantly commenting how I blend into the background when I wear the jacket on camera. In the woods, I’ve found the camo great for hiding from just about everything. I normally don’t comment on camo patterns, but this one performs better than usual. 

All in all, the Source Jacket has the highest warmth to weight ratio of anything I own save heavy down outer layers, but those down layers are not useful for how I normally hunt. They are too loud, cannot be worn under another layer well, and are too fragile for anything but sitting still. The Source Jacket could use a little more durability, but wow do I like it. It beats anything else I have.

I think this jacket performs just as well or better than anything competitors like Sitka Gear, Kuiu, Cabelas, and others are producing.  They are making some good stuff, but First Lite nailed it on this one.  Once I got this jacketed I quit looking at what anyone else was selling in this niche. I was totally satisfied. It’s as good as a jacket can be that doesn’t have magical properties. 

First Lite’s HUGE Mistake

First Lite made a huge blunder with this jacket. And honestly, I cannot believe they have not fixed it yet. And the blunder is this, they are marketing this jacket as a deer hunting jacket and only a deer hunting jacket. It only comes in one color of camo with no other options. This is utterly ridiculous. I used this jacket more hunting waterfowl and turkeys than I did for deer last year. It is so versatile and so useful for hunting so many things, that to only offer it in one color is a massive lost opportunity.

I would wear this jacket to work often if it came in a solid color. I might buy a third jacket in Typha camo to wear waterfowl hunting alone. Yes, it has a harness pass through on the back, which is only applicable to deer hunting, but so what? Its just as good, if not better for hunting other things. This jacket is a gold mine that First Lite should start marketing across the board. It is one the best things they ever made, and I want it in more colors.

Recommendation & Conclusion 

The price on this jacket is significant. But I do wear it more than three cheaper jackets I have. And it does go on sale a few times a year.  I do not have a ton of First Lite gear because it’s not cheap, but this a piece I am very happy that I bought and I would honestly buy it again. I recommend the The First Lite Source Jacket wholeheartedly if you are in the market for something that matches the features and benefits this thing provides. Treat it with a little care, and it will likely become your favorite hunting jacket also.

Be sure to listen to The New Hunters Guide Podcast and check us out on YouTube

Till next time. God bless you, and go get em in the woods!

George Konetes Ph.D. – Founder and Host of the New Hunters Guide.

The New Hunters Guide is simply what George wishes he would have had when learning how to hunt; a single place to get practical hands on knowledge about different kinds of hunting, gear, strategy, and tips that can improve your comfort and fun factor in the woods.

Turkey nuggets are many people’s favorite part of taking home a turkey, but what is the best way to cook them? Well, I do not think there is a “best” way but there are lots of great ways to do it depending on what you like. On this episode I share five different ways to cook and prepare this spring delicacy. 

Turkey nuggets are almost always fried, but there are many ways to fry a good nugget and there are other ways they can be cooked.

  • Deep frying is the most common approach, this involves using enough hot oil to completely submerge the nuggets in some kind of a pan or pot.
  • Pan frying is another option that requires enough oil too to partially submerge the nuggets in the pan and then flipping them halfway through cooking.
  • After this you have the sauté method that requires a small amount of oil or butter. This is one of the only cooking techniques that you can use butter for. Here you end up with a little bit of a healthier product and possibly more flavorful, but it does not have that regular deep fried nugget texture.
  • The next way too cook turkey nuggets is with an air fryer. These contraptions are very useful, but they take up a lot of space and are harder to clean. Here you can use very minimal amounts of oil and a much more controlled cooking environment that will enable you to find a good recipe and replicate it easier every single time. But there are those downsides which I mentioned.
  • The last technique is the sear method. Rarely used for nuggets because you are not able to use much breading, searing the nuggets can still product a very flavorful dinner but this technique needs a little moisture to shine its brightest. So, consider pairing it with a sauce, such as a blueberry wine sauce, finished with a little butter. More details are in the episode.

Beyond the actual cooking technique, you have a variety of breading approaches that you can pair with each, such as dipping in flour, using milk or egg wash to get more flour to stick, or even double breading them. You can use corn starch instead of flour, breadcrumbs, or gluten free flour as well. Some people will dry dip the meat into corn starch, then dip it in buttermilk before dipping into flour. 

Every breading method has pros and cons, I personally prefer less breading because I don’t want it to soak up too much oil and initiate a bad post meal experience…

Listen to the entire podcast episode for all of the detials!

Every now and then you find really high-quality piece of gear that also comes at an impressively low price point, this is the TideWe Ranger Finder, and this combination of qualities is exactly why I bought one. Sometimes gear like this does not live up to your expectations, but the TideWe Range Finder truly impressed me.

I have long used a range finder for hunting, scouting, setting up duck blinds as well as tree stands for deer, and of course making all of the test videos that I do on YouTube. It is a core part of my gear and I use it regularly under many different conditions. All that to say, I have some experience with range finders. When I discovered the TideWe Hunting Range Finder, I thought it could fill a specific niche for me and decided to test it out.

This review is not sponsored by TideWe. I bought the TideWe Range Finder with my own money because I wanted to.

TideWe did give me an 18% discount code for my audience when I reviewed their see-through hunting blind over a year ago, so of course I took advantage of the code and used it on this purchase also. That 18% off code is GK18, you can enter it at checkout. That discount is in addition to any sales they are running, so I was able to get the range finder for about $65. Yes, I typed that correctly, a quality range finder for around $65. I will come back to that number a few times.

Why The TideWe Range Finder?

I have owned and been using a more expensive range finder for years now. I use it for scouting, hunting, etc. But I also use it measure distances to my targets when doing all the ballistics gel and pattern testing videos that I make for YouTube. I do a lot of tests so I need a quality range finder. However, I have been hesitant to take my more expensive range finder hunting on rainy days. I did not want to risk it getting damaged by the water.

When I saw the TideWe Range Finder in the $60-$70 dollar range I thought it sounded perfect to use in higher risk rainy hunting applications. As long as it was reasonably close on accuracy, it was cheap enough to not be a huge deal if I broke it. So I bought the range finder. Within five minutes of taking it out of the box I realized something very surprising. It was not every bit as good as my more expensive range finder, it was better.

Features

The TideWe Range Finder comes in a 700 yard and a 1000 yard version. I opted for the 700 yard model because it was cheaper and I don’t even own a gun that can shoot anywhere remotely close to 700 yards. That is so far away that it is essentially a fictional distance for me. So 1,000 yards doesn’t gain me a thing. If it helps you, you can pay a little more for it.

You can find all of the exact specs for the TideWe Range Finder here but the highlights include 6x magnification, +/- of 1 yard, its tiny, has nearly instantaneous measuring, has IP54 water resistance, has three different modes, and provides you the measurements to a tenth of a yard.

This thing will tell you the straight line distance to your target like just about any range finder on the market. But it will also tell you the angle, vertical distance, horizontal distance, and even the speed of your target!

So if you are an archery hunter up in a tree stand and you are aiming down, it will give you all the distance measurements you need to calculate how high you need to hold. And if you are a waterfowl hunter and you keep seeing ducks or geese speed by you can determine how fast they are flying and at at what distance so you can calculate how far you need to lead the shots. 

This is huge. Yes, many other range finders on the market now do this. But this thing is $65. It may be the best equipped hunting range finder on the market for this price range that is made by a real brand. And speaking of real brands, TideWe has been cranking out some really impressive gear over the last few years. I have been very surprised at the quality of their stuff lately. Everything I have bought from them has been great quality and value.

This is an outstanding laser range finder for bow hunting and all deer hunting really, as well as turkey hunting, elk hunting, waterfowl hunting, and I’m sure alot more. 

Performance

Of course the biggest question is how does the TideWe Range Finder perform? Well, I tested it head to head against my long standing, much more expensive range finder and I found the measurements to be identical. That’s right, it showed the same distances as the expensive one. And actually, it showed more precise distances.

My old range finder just gave measurements in whole yards, but this one gives it in tenths of a yards. So before I would just know something was 40 yards away. But now with the TideWe, I can know it is 40.7 yards. Does really that matter for hunting? No, not really. But for testing ammo at the range, it is a nice bonus feature.

I have hunted with this range finder on dry days and wet days, I’ve made ammo test videos with it, I’ve learned the distances of all kinds of things in my neighborhood, and so far it has performed flawlessly. In fact, I actually stopped using my older more expensive range finder for everything, even test videos. The TideWe is more precise, and because its cheaper, its less risky to take it into the field or anywhere else. All in all, I don’t know how I could be happier for $65.

Pro & Cons

The list of pros is easy to write and its hard to come up with some realistic cons. This is a great piece of gear for the money.

Pros:

  • Very precise measuring, it performs above its price range
  • Durable
  • Compact and lightweight
  • IP54 water resistant
  • Measures fast
  • Very well priced and goes on sale
  • Rechargeable Li-ion battery
  • 700-1000 yard options
  • Numerous modes and features
  • Measures a target’s speed and distance
  • Measures vertical and straight line distance
  • 30 day money back guarantee + 1 year limited warrantee
  • Free shipping

Cons:

  • I  wish it was even more waterproof, to the point of full submersion for hours
  • It would be nice if it was even smaller or flatter so it fit easier in a chest pocket of a vest, parka, or waders

Value

I don’t want to sound overly sensational here but the value is one of the biggest things going with this range finder. For $65 you get a great product from a reputable brand. I am very impressed with this piece of gear and I’m glad TideWe is here filling an important niche in the hunting gear market.

Yes there are some cheaper products out there, but gear has to be good, not just cheap. TideWe is making some really high quality stuff at very affordable prices. The more I buy, the more impressed I become. 

Conclusion & Recommendation

If you are looking for your first range finder, a back up range finder, or a low cost option you can play rough with, this could be one the best options out there for you. Is it the best range finder in the world? Certainly not. But it may be the best one for $65. 

If you are considering getting one, don’t forget the 18% off discount code GK18 when you order the TideWe Range Finder. I am very happy with mine and I don’t think you could go wrong with it.

Be sure to listen to The New Hunters Guide Podcast and check us out on YouTube

Till next time. God bless you, and go get em in the woods!

George Konetes Ph.D. – Founder and Host of the New Hunters Guide.

The New Hunters Guide is simply what George wishes he would have had when learning how to hunt; a single place to get practical hands on knowledge about different kinds of hunting, gear, strategy, and tips that can improve your comfort and fun factor in the woods.

Is it possible to improve the turkey population in your local area by actually hunting more? Well, yes, yes, it is. But it’s not what you think. Killing more turkeys won’t result in a bigger turkey population, but hunting and trapping turkey predators that have grown to out of balance proportions in your area can make a difference. 

Depending on where you live, predators like coyotes, foxes, raccoons, crows, possums and other predators may be overpopulated and causing undue issues with the turkey population, and potentially the populations of other game animals. Hunting or trapping these overpopulated predators can improve the wildlife balance and give turkeys better odds at survival.

Turkeys are especially susceptible to predators when they are young and unable to fly. They are in even more danger as eggs, before they hatch when almost anything from crows to raccoons can eat an entire nest. After they survive their first winter, they are much hardier. But making it to that point can be very difficult if the predator population is out of balance.

Coyotes are one of the most widespread problems nationally as their populations have been expanding unchecked in many areas. They can not only kill turkeys but also drive them out of ideal habitat which impacts their ability to survive in other ways. If you and a group of friends are able to exert concerted efforts to hunt or trap these kinds of predators you can make significant difference in your area. But it may take some sustained effort before it pays off.

You need to learn about your local wildlife and identify what populations are out of balance first. Going after foxes for example if the fox population is average or below average will not help, in fact it could cause other issues. We do not want to kill all predators, we only want to help restore population balance, especially when the populations have gotten out of balance due to manmade situations, which is often the case.

Then you need to study your local hunting and trapping laws to see what your options are. For many of these animals, trapping is more efficient and easier than hunting. Particularly with racoons and coyotes. Whatever efforts you may take, stay safe, legal, and ethical in all that you do.

If turkeys are not gobbling, moving, or in any way detectible, how do you hunt them and salvage your season? In this episode I dig into the details of how to hunt gobblers when all else fails.

If turkeys are gobbling and not coming in that is one set of challenges, but this is different. This is when all the turkeys seem to completely disappear from the woods and you cannot find any action anywhere. I’ve been there. The answer is simple, but not easy. You have to change your mindset and your tactics from turkey hunting to turkey finding.

Set out looking for birds and sign, similar to pre-season scouting but unique in that you are looking for concentrated movement areas that you can then setup in as if you were ambush hunting. I like to start in the low lands, where there are streams, puddles and soft ground where turkeys will leave tracks. I am not just looking for a stray track here and there but lots of regular fresh tracks that will let me know that lots of birds come through this area on a regular basis and spend time eating, socializing, or trying to find mates in this spot.

The goal of this scouting is to locate areas that have birds that you can come back and hunt, but you also want to move quietly. After all the season is on and you have a shotgun, you do not want to disturb the birds that you discover since you plan to hunt them that day or the next. Instead you want to move quietly, gun in hand but being careful to analyze the ground and watching for turkeys on the other side of every hill you crest and every field you move into.

When nothing is working, you come to feel like there are no birds in the woods and it can be very discouraging, but if you can find the birds, and fresh sign, it will put wind in your sails and motivate you to get out and get after the birds. 

Also keep in mind that as the season goes on, the habits of birds can change. As one area grows up it may push birds into other areas. So a spot that is cold today could warm up in a week or two or three. Do not abandon historically good areas but diversify where you spend your time. Perhaps rotate between spots in order to keep on top of places that might heat up later but do not spend your entire turkey season in a spot with no action.

Listen to the whole podcast episode for all of the details!

How effective is modern TSS turkey ammo in the hands of the average hunter with the average choke tube? Is TSS always better than lead and worth the extra cost? How far out is TSS turkey ammo effective for turkey hunting? What is the maximum range for tungsten super shot turkey loads? In this episode I answer all of these questions and more, with actual data from my own testing. 

I recently tested seven different brands of TSS turkey hunting ammo as well as several brands of lead turkey ammo and put together a large overarching analysis of the marketplace, including Federal Premium TSS, HEVI-Shot HEVI-18, Remington Premier TSS, Fiocchi Golden Turkey TSS, Herters TSS, APEX TSS, and BOSS Tom TSS. I have also recently tested Winchester Longbeard XR, Remington Nitro Turkey, and numerous others.

I have done test videos at 50 yards and 100 yards with all the TSS loads, including ballistics gel testing. I will not get into all the details and minutia here in these show notes, but I will share one chart below along with the key take aways from numerous test.

Here are several key take aways from this testing.

First, the most expensive TSS loads were not the best performers, not even close. In fact, lead outperformed some of the more expensive loads under the conditions and at the ranges tested.

Second, some of the cheapest loads produced amazing results, above and beyond the call of duty with only average choke tubes and setups.

Third, depending on the brand and choke combo, you would get better results from lead ammo, thus totally nullifying any reason to use the TSS. However, the opposite is also sometimes true. Some brands produced results that were so great you could tailor the load to any hunting situation with unparallelled performance.

Fouth, TSS may or may not be worth paying for depending on your objectives and hunting situation. Tungsten super shot is potent stuff but for close range hunting, it provides few advantages to lead, especially considering the incredible cost.

Fifth, hunters tend to over choke their ammo, primarily TSS. This results in spending way too much money to find the best possible combination of ammo, choke, and shotgun in order to get maximum pattern density at long range. The issue is that most turkeys are not shot at long range, and hunters are missing too many short shots with the hope of making a rare long shot.

Sixth, the greatest value of TSS turkey hunting ammo is that it provides the most margin of error at the greatest span of effective ranges, perhaps 20 yards to 60 yards. Lead can be geared for short, medium, or long range, but an average turkey choke enables TSS to be viable at all three. Yet most hunters are choking only for ultra long range which is not ideal for maximizing your ability to capitalize on the greatest possible number of hunting opportunities.

Seventh, nothing is effective at 100 yards, it is an utter waste of time. Don’t attempt crazy shots like this, it’s a waste of money at best, and something that may wound turkeys at worst. But it is not going to kill turkeys, there is not enough ballistic energy left to do it.  And if you use larger shot, there isn’t enough pattern density left to even hit the birds. 

Listen to this whole podcast episode AND watch the videos for all the data and insights. 

I’ve hunted from treestands and ground blinds for years, but each has its place. So I’ve written this article to help you decide if a ground blind or treestand is best for your hunting situation.

By the end of this article, you’ll understand the benefits and drawbacks of hunting from treestands and ground blinds.

Let’s get started!

Treestand Pros & Cons

There are many different types of treestands. Ladder stands, climber stands, hanging stands, and two-man stands cover most of them. For the sake of simplicity, we’re going to lump all of these together when discussing their benefits and drawbacks.

Benefits of Hunting Out of a Treestand

  • Higher off the ground
    • Better visibility
    • Better shot placement opportunities
    • Prey is less likely to see or smell you
  • Versatility
  • Allows the hunter to blend in better

Getting higher off the ground has benefits while hunting, similar to having the high ground in battle. You can see the game animal better and from further out, so you can prepare to take the most ethical shot possible. The animals are also less likely to see or smell you, though they can still spot you in a treestand and smell where you walked up to the tree.

Because there are many types of treestands, they offer hunters the versatility they need to hunt across a wide range of habitats. I’ve used climber stands when hunting public land and ladder stands when hunting private property. While I could use a climber stand on private property, I couldn’t use a ladder stand on public land because it’s too much to carry in and out each time I hunt.

Since treestands are relatively minimalistic, they tend to blend in better than a ground blind. However, ladder stands are easy to spot.

Now that we know the pros of treestands let’s discuss the cons.

Drawbacks of Hunting from a Treestand

  • Safety risks
  • Expensive
  • Lack of comfort
  • Must be still when animals are approaching
  • Need big trees

Hunting out of a treestand comes with some risks of falling and injuring yourself, even when wearing a safety harness. Always be extra careful when hunting out of a treestand.

I was looking at a new treestand earlier this year and was shocked by how expensive they’ve become. Even a cheap stand wasn’t cheap, but I live by the motto, “Buy nice or buy twice,” and this definitely rings true when buying a treestand.

I’ve sat in many treestands and never thought they were comfortable. The seat is either made of fabric that makes you sit weird or metal that hurts your rear end and cuts off circulation to your legs. Some have nice foam seats now, but they are the more expensive tree stands that make you cry a little when they’re stolen.

Treestands also don’t conceal the hunter very well. Yes, you can blend in better if you remain still while the deer approach the area. However, they can easily spot you if you make a sudden move.

Unless you’re hunting from a tripod stand, which isn’t a treestand, in my opinion, you need at least one big tree around to secure your treestand, too; otherwise, you can’t hunt that area. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve been frustrated because I found the perfect location to hunt but couldn’t find a suitable tree in which to put my treestand.

Ground Blind Pros & Cons

There are a few different ground blinds, but they’re mostly the same. They pop up, have windows, and are lightweight, giving hunters many reasons to love ground blinds.

Benefits of Hunting Out of a Ground Blind

  • Lightweight
  • Use in an open field or wooded area
  • Very comfortable
  • Little risk of falling and injuring yourself

Many years ago, on a draw hunt with my dad, I carried a ground blind to set up on an opening. Besides being a little awkward to carry as a child, I didn’t struggle carrying it because it was lightweight.

Hunting from a ground blind allows you to hunt in the forest or an open field because you don’t need trees to set it up. I’ve hunted in the middle of a farmer’s field from a ground blind. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been able to hunt that area.

Ground blinds are way more comfortable than treestands because you can bring a lawn chair and have a comfy seat. Plus, they protect you from the elements when hunting in nasty weather, while a treestand leaves you exposed. You can also move a little more and stretch your legs without being overly concerned about scaring off the deer. This can matter alot if you have limited time and limited acres to hunt deer.

Lastly, ground blinds don’t require climbing a tree and risking falling. You could still trip and injure yourself while walking to your treestand, so ground blinds have a lower risk of injury.

Even though ground blinds have several pros, you must be aware of several cons before purchasing one for your next hunt.

Drawbacks of Hunting from a Ground Blind

  • It is harder to spot animals
  • Eye-level with the animals
  • It doesn’t blend in very well

Being on the ground makes it harder to see animals approaching and get your 30-06 hunting rifle on target. And while they make some great 30-06 deer hunting ammo, that only helps if you can lift your gun without spooking the deer.  I have sat in a ground blind and been surprised by animals several times because they seem to appear out of nowhere when you’re at eye level with them. Speaking of eye level, this means they’re more likely to spot you.

I’ve set up many ground blinds, and they’ve never perfectly blended into the environment. They always look out of place and require you to thoroughly brush them in to look halfway natural. You’ll never convince me that the animals don’t know it’s there. That’s why I think it’s crucial to set up and leave the ground blind in place for a while before hunting it. This gives the animals plenty of time to get accustomed to the ground blind being around and not being a threat.

Parting Shots

Now that you’ve finished reading about the pros and cons of treestands and ground blinds, it’s time to decide which will work best for you. Or, you could be like me and use both since each offers benefits that the other doesn’t.

Treestands are great for solo adult hunters in wooded areas, whereas ground blinds are the best option if you plan to take your kids or don’t have large trees on which to hang a stand.

Best of luck this season!

Sam Jacobs.

Sam is a passionate advocate for Second Amendment rights and an avid historian. As lead writer foAmmo.com, he delves into the intersection of firearms, freedom, and corporate power. With a penchant for defending individual liberties, his work sparks discussions in various publications and platforms.

What makes someone a real hunter? Is it how many days they spend each year afield? Is it the quality or caliber of their gear? Is it how they talk about the sport? Or is it something more? On this episode I talk about the things that have nothing to do with being a real hunter and then reveal something bigger that matters more.

Thank you so much to everyone whose support has helped pushed the show to 300+ episodes, I really appreciate it! This episode marks a great milestone in a very exciting time. You are awesome and I greatly appreciate it!

A blunder is a big obtuse mistake that can be easily avoided. If you are making turkey hunting blunders, there is good news. It may be easy for you to stop doing things that are costing you gobblers. In this episode I call out seven big turkey hunting blunders and how to fix them! Tetra Hearing protection – Get 10% off with the code: NHG2410

Hare are 7 top turkey hunting blunders that you need to stop right now!

  1. Not testing your gear. This has to do with shotguns and patterning yes, but also shoes, boots, base layers, calls, decoys and more. Remember, you are going to be walking into the woods often in complete darkness and needing to operate everything without turning on a light. What you wear must be comfortable. What you need to setup and operate must be simple and intuitive. You need to be able to be effective, quiet, and fast at doing complex things in the dark. You will have to work with your gear in advance to be able to do this well.
  2. Not being stealthy enough. So many turkey hunters make too much noise, fidget too much, and walk openly in the wrong places and at the wrong times. Turkeys have great ears and great eyes; they are birds after all. Stealth while turkey hunting is paramount. You need to be very quiet and still at all times. This more like deer hunting than it is duck hunting from a blind while telling jokes and cooking breakfast. The turkeys could be feet away from you without you even knowing it.  
  3. Not scouting. You cannot hunt turkeys if there are no turkeys in the area. You must find birds before hunting can be effective. So many turkey hunters spend the first few “hunts” of the season doing little more than scouting, trying to find the birds they should have looked for before the season began. You need to get out and find the birds you want to hunt. Get some binoculars, a crow call, maybe some cheap trail cameras and scout before you hunt. Your hunting will be much better for it!
  4. Not being patient when you have scouted. Lots of turkey hunters are quick to move on out of an area if they don’t encounter action early on. There are times this is the right thing to do, but if you have scouted an area and know there are regularly birds around, then you need to sit tight, focus, and trust your scouting to put you in the right area. If you know birds come through during the morning most days, this will give you the faith you need to sit still and keep focused on the hunt. And well informed patience will be rewarded.

Listen to the whole podcast episode to get more details and find out what all seven turkey hunting blunders are.