Scouting Deer in Iowa

As the summer days begin to shorten and the anticipation of deer season builds, it’s crucial for hunters to start their preparations early. The early season offers unique opportunities to pattern deer and set the stage for a successful hunt. Full Draw Adventure Outfitters, located in the heart of Iowa, provides an exceptional hunting experience with our expertly managed properties. Whether you’re looking for a thrilling Rut Hunt, a Regular Hunt, or a customized adventure, Full Draw Adventure Outfitters has you covered. Our packages, which include lodging, ensure that you can focus entirely on your hunting experience.

Summer Scouting Techniques

Summer Scouting

Summer is a critical time for scouting deer, as it allows you to observe deer behavior and movement patterns while they are in their relaxed summer routines. During this period, bucks are growing their new antlers, and their movements can be more predictable compared to the rut.

  1. Trail Cameras: Setting up trail cameras in strategic locations is essential. Place them near food sources, waterholes, and along known deer trails. These cameras will help you monitor deer activity and identify patterns in their movement. Make sure to check the cameras regularly and adjust their positions as needed to keep up with changing deer patterns​​.
  2. Food Sources: Pay attention to the primary food sources that deer are using during the summer. In Iowa, this often includes soybean fields, cornfields, and natural browse areas. Observing which food sources are most attractive can help you predict where deer will be during the hunting season​.
  3. Water Sources: During the hot summer months, water sources become crucial for deer. Identify and monitor ponds, streams, and other water bodies on your hunting property. Deer will often visit these areas during early morning and late evening, providing excellent opportunities for observation​​.

As a client of Full Draw Adventure Outfitters, you can rest assured that we have done the hard work for you. Our team spends the months leading up to the season meticulously monitoring deer activity and patterns on our property.

Map and Track

Mapping and tracking deer movements are vital components of a successful scouting strategy. Utilizing technology and on-the-ground observations can give you a significant advantage.

  1. Use GPS and Mapping Apps: Tools like Google Earth and specialized hunting apps can help you map out your hunting area. Mark key locations such as bedding areas, food sources, and waterholes. This will give you a comprehensive view of deer movement and help you plan your hunting strategies more effectively​.
  2. Record Observations: Keep detailed records of your observations. Note the locations of rubs, scrapes, and other deer signs. Tracking these signs over time can help you identify patterns and predict deer behavior as the season progresses. Maintaining a scouting journal can be invaluable for this purpose​​.
  3. Adjust Stand Locations: Based on your scouting data, adjust your stand locations to maximize your chances of success. Place stands downwind of known trails and food sources, and consider setting up multiple stands to account for changing wind directions and deer movement patterns throughout the season.

At Full Draw, our expertise and familiarity with the land mean we have already mapped out key deer movement patterns and optimal hunting spots for you.

Gear Preparation

Clothing and Scent Control

Proper clothing and scent control are critical to a successful early-season hunt. With temperatures still relatively warm, staying cool and scent-free can be challenging but essential.

  1. Moisture-Wicking Fabrics: Wear lightweight, moisture-wicking fabrics to keep yourself cool and dry. These materials help to reduce sweating, which in turn minimizes human odor. We recommend brands known for their performance hunting gear.
  2. Layering: Wait to layer up until you reach your stand. Walking to your stand is when you’re most likely to warm up and sweat. Carrying your outer layers and putting them on once you’re settled in helps keep you cooler and reduces scent​​.
  3. Odor-Eliminating Soaps and Sprays: Shower with odor-eliminating soaps before heading out and use scent control sprays on all your gear. Pay special attention to high-perspiration areas like your hat and boots. Frequent reapplication of scent control spray during the hunt can also help manage odor throughout the day​​.
  4. Scent-Free Storage: Store your hunting clothes in a scent-free bag or container with odor-absorbing elements. This prevents them from picking up unwanted scents before your hunt.

Trail Cameras and Optics

Using the right trail cameras and optics can significantly enhance your scouting efforts and provide valuable insights.

  1. Trail Cameras: Set up trail cameras near food sources, waterholes, and along known deer trails. This will help you monitor deer activity and identify patterns in their movement. Check cameras regularly and adjust their positions based on the data you collect​.
  2. Optics: Invest in high-quality binoculars and rangefinders. These tools allow you to scout from a distance without disturbing the deer. Look for optics with good magnification and clarity to spot deer and their movements effectively​​.
  3. Data Management: Use apps or software to organize and analyze the data from your trail cameras. This can help you identify trends and make informed decisions about where to hunt.

Of course, when you hunt with us, we take all this work off of your plate so you can get straight to hunting!

Hunting Blinds and Stands

Choosing the right hunting blinds and stands and placing them strategically can greatly improve your chances of a successful hunt.

  1. Types of Blinds and Stands: Select from the various types of blinds (ground blinds, elevated blinds) and stands (climbing stands, ladder stands) based on your hunting environment and personal preference. Each has its advantages; for example, ground blinds offer more concealment, while tree stands provide better visibility.
  2. Location: Place your blinds and stands near high-traffic areas like food plots, bedding areas, and travel corridors. Make sure they are downwind from where you expect the deer to be, to avoid your scent being smelled by the deer.
  3. Accessibility: Ensure that your stands and blinds are easily accessible without disturbing the deer. Clear paths to your setups to minimize noise and scent trails. Consider multiple access points to adapt to changing wind directions and deer movements​.
  4. Comfort and Concealment: Make sure your blinds and stands are comfortable enough for extended sits and well-concealed to blend into the surroundings. Adding natural vegetation around blinds can enhance their concealment​​.

Bringing It All Together for the Early Season with Full Draw Adventure Outfitters

Preparing for the early deer season is all about strategy, the right gear, and understanding deer behavior. At Full Draw Adventure Outfitters, we’ve done the groundwork to ensure your hunting experience is seamless and successful. With our expert scouting, prime stand placements, and top-notch gear recommendations, you can focus entirely on the hunt. Our comprehensive packages, including lodging, and customizable options, provide everything you need for an unforgettable hunting adventure in Iowa. Book your hunt with us today and experience the best that early-season deer hunting has to offer!

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