Show Notes:

Pheasant hunting is a great active style of hunting, it is unique, fast paced, and high energy. On this episode I talk about three strategies to get you started hunting pheasants.

Take Aways:

  • Hunting with Dogs. This is the easiest and most common way to hunt pheasants. A good bird dog can make all the difference in the world.
  • Hunting as a Team Without Dogs. No dog? No problem. A small group of hunters can do a great job flushing birds.
  • Solo Hunting. Most new hunters are likely to be on their own and this is the more difficult way to hunt, but it can be done and it can be fun. I spend some extra time going into solo hunting techniques on this episode.

 

 

Show Notes:

There can be excellent opportunities to turn a deer hunt into a coyote hunt if you think outside of the box and take some basic principles into consideration. On this episode I talk about 3 ways to maximize your time and effort in the woods.

Take Aways:

  • If coyotes are in the area or menacing an area you can convert any deer hunt to a coyote hunt.
  • Be mindful of your hunting plans, converting a deer hunt to a coyote hunt is best done if you do not plan to hunt deer in that area again in the near future. 
  • There is one tactic you can use to literally draw in deer and coyotes at the same time, and take whoever shows up first.
  • Always be mindful of your blaze orange regulations, many places require you to wear orange to hunt coyotes if it is during a particular deer season.

Show Notes:

If you hunt long enough you will find or may be a person who does not like the taste of some or all game. On this episode I talk about the top four reasons people do not like the taste of game and what you can do to change that.

Take Aways:

  • Venison may be the most common game meat available so more people will have tried it and formed an opinion, but these principles apply to all types of game.
  • Nothing says people need to like game, but I’ve found it can be something that enriches the lives of those who appreciate it.
  • There are good reasons why someone may not like the taste of game, some are very valid, and all but one can be changed.
  • Many people had a bad first impression and have never had a second impression. Or they have formed an opinion with no experience. In both cases there is hope.
  • Most of the time people’s opinion is based on poor quality meat or poor cooking. Here are two previous episodes that can make all the difference in these departments.
  • You must remember that most children left to themselves will grow up unwilling to eat anything other than pizza, chicken nuggets, and mac & cheese. 
    • It shouldn’t be surprising when adults become so used to a small rotation of food options that they find something different undesirable. But even that does not mean they actually do not like game. They may just have some growing to do before they can appreciate it.

 

Show Notes:

Once the rut is over deer behavior begins to change and so do hunting conditions. On this episode I talk about what tactics you can use to be successful at late season deer hunting.

Take Aways:

  • After the rut, bucks go back to their home range and does settle down.
  • Fewer hunters are in the woods when winter begins so hunting pressure begins to diminish.
  • The woods have less food, less cover, and less water for deer.
  • Deer are taking less chances and covering less ground.
  • All day sits are not necessary in winter and can actually be counter productive.
  • When you take all of these and more factors into account, there are some great strategies for late season hunting. Listen to this episode to hear them.

 

Show Notes:

Butchering a whole deer from field to freezer is a big undertaking for new hunters and we don’t recommend trying it your first time. But if you know what to ask your butcher for, and if you are able to cut up your own leg quarters that they prep and return to you, you can enjoy a level of quality and cooking that few hunters experience. On this episode I talk about butchering a leg quarter and how to cook each cut of meat.

Take Aways:

  • All you need to butcher your own leg quarts is a sharp knife and a cutting board. That’s it. Watch the videos below, it’s super easy.
  • When someone asked Chef Wutsch about the best type, brand, and style of knife to use, his answer was “a sharp one”.  Really, that’s all that matters.
  • Most butchers take short cuts and just chop up all the prime leg sections so you will never be able to cook each muscle in it’s ideal way.
  • The front legs are less exciting from a culinary standpoint and have less meat, your butcher can easily turn those into stew meat and ground and you can save a little time. 
  • I recommend handling the back legs and the back straps yourself.
  • Just like beef, elk, lamb, and moose, each deer leg quarter contains:
    • Shank – The most tough but most flavorful cut, braise this for 4 hours with the right seasonings and you will be amazed. But if you grill it, it may be inedible.
    • Top Round – The most tender cut of the leg, this makes great steaks.
    • Bottom Round – Very lean, but not as tender. Perfect for a roast, pot roast, or jerky. If you grill it, treat it like a flank steak, cook it to medium rare and cut very thin across the grain.
    • Eye of Round – A small, lean, semi-tender cut. Great for medallions, or searing and serving.
    • Sirloin Tip – A football shaped, less tender cut that is ideal for roasts and pot roasts. Cook it low and slow and it’s perfect.


Show Notes:

The taste of venison can vary a lot of from deer to deer. The more you know about what impacts the flavor of your meat, the more steps you can take to ensure the most tender and flavorful venison possible. On today’s episode I talk about seven factors that impact the taste of your meat.

Take Aways:

  • Most of this is not unique to venison, it effects beef as well. But beef is raised, slaughtered, butchered, and sold like clockwork in a well tuned and managed system that ensures quality and flavor. When it comes to deer, many of the flavor effecting factors are in your hands.
  • What happens between the hour before you pull the trigger until when the meat enters the freezer makes all the difference. Even the most skilled cooking cannot set right things that were done poorly in the field.
  • Cooking certainly does make a difference though…
  • Venison is not beef, you cannot treat it just like beef and expect to get the same results. It must be cooked differently with different recipes and methods.
  • Venison can taste better than beef, but the measure of “good” is not how much it tastes like beef. Venison is unique, distinct, and should be enjoyed as such.
  • You should not need to soak your meat in milk, vinegar, or anything else before cooking it. That should only be a last resort for if it was mismanaged in the field.
  • Listen to the episode for the seven factors that impact flavor.

 

Show Notes:

The right pair of hunting boots can make the difference when it comes to comfort, managing terrain, warmth, and scent control. On this episode I talk about how to pick the best type of boots for your deer hunting needs.

Take Aways:

Here are four major boot needs and what features address them.

  • Distance – If you need to hike a lot, more than a few miles, then you need a boot that is light enough for the distance, has enough support for the terrain, and fits snuggly for foot and knee health.
  • Warmth – Even if it’s only mildly cold, after sitting still for three hours you will find cold creeping in. A cold weather boot needs to be warm, windproof, waterproof, and have room for toe warmers.
  • Water – If you want to cross a stream, swamp, or even a little mud you need a boot that is not just waterproof but completely sealed up to your knee. Remember, wet pants can drip into a water proof boot and fill it from the top.
  • Scent – Leather and fabric can hold alot of scent and rub it on everything you walk through. A good rubber boot minimizes your scent trail and lessens the chance you will spook deer.

 

Show Notes:

The rules can change in deer hunting between the early season and the late season, and your strategies should change to boost your chances of success. On this episode I talk about tips to help you tag out this season and I share my tag out story when I took my third deer and final deer this season.

Take Aways:

  • Tagging out simply means you used up all of your game tags in a particular season and you are not able to hunt any longer.
  • Sometimes people are sad when they tag out because they are done hunting. Other times they are excited because they been thoroughly successful and can now rest satisfied. 
  • This was my best season ever so far. I took three deer in five hunts. And where I hunt, having over a 50% success rate is amazing. Thanks be to God!
  • Tip #1 – Be mindful of the wind and your surroundings. Watching the wind for you is always important but this time of year you need to think about how other people’s scent is impacting your hunt and the effect of the wind is amplified.
  • Tip #2 – Use other hunters positions and activity to your advantage. Other hunters will push and spook deer. You can capitalize on that by anticipating where the deer will move to, often they go to places they may not normally be at during that time of day.
  • Tips #3-#5 – Listen to the episode to hear the rest.
  • Bonus Tip – Morning hunts can become harder after the midway point of gun season. The easier plan may be to hunt evening food sources. 

 

Show Notes:

In general a ground blind is not the best tool for deer hunting, but there are situations when it may be the best choice for you. On this episode I talk about the best times and most effective ways to use a ground blind, including a story about a deer I just took from one.

Con’s

  • Tree stands are generally more effective than ground blinds, when you have the right tree in the right place.
  • Your scent is now at nose level in a ground blind, making wind management all the more important.
  • Deer pay much more attention to what is at eye level than what is in the trees.

Pros

  • Ground blinds can be used where tree stands cannot go.
  • Ground blinds can provide better concealment than tree stands when it comes to hiding movement and outlines.
  • Ground blinds can be safer, more accessible, and faster to setup than a tree stand.

 

Show Notes:

The goal of orange gear is to keep you safe in the woods, but it can be a drain on the wallet. On this episode I talk about the most versatile, most cost effective, and most concealing blaze orange strategy for new hunters.

Take Aways:

  • Blaze orange jackets and coats look great, fit great, and work great. But you don’t need to buy half a dozen orange coats so you can comfortably hunt in all weather conditions. 
  • You do not need to end up with a closet full of orange coats that really cannot be used for any other purpose.
  • Sure they make cheap little orange vests but they make noise, look bad, fit bad, cover your pockets, and don’t last long.
  • Solid orange baseball caps create a liability for deer hunting, there are better and equally cheap alternatives.
  • Download and listen to this episode to learn more and get the full blaze orange gear strategy.