With all the different kinds of ground blinds out there, choosing the one that's right for you is a shot in the dark unless you know beforehand what to look for. The two most popular types of ground blinds out there right now are hub style and pop up style. A chair blind is your third option, in a somewhat different category than the other two styles. In order to decide which type is best for you, first you need a sense of what to look for overall in a hunting blind. Then we'll cover the pros and cons for each type of blind. Depending on your hunting strategy and personal preference, one of these types may fit your needs better than the others.
One of the first questions to consider when it comes to looking for a hunting blind is how portable it is. If you drive out to your site, the size and weight of your blind may not be an issue. On the other hand, if you hike several miles out to your lucky spot, you're going to need a lightweight folding frame. The longer you carry your blind, the heavier it's going to feel-not to mention the extra weight of your gun or bow, shooting chair, and other equipment you have to haul. Look for a blind with carrying straps that weighs under 20 pounds.
The camo pattern is also a major consideration. Pick the pattern that blends in best in the areas you typically hunt. You can always add natural cover to the stubble straps as well. Another feature to look at is the dimensions of each blind. Can you sit comfortably inside without brushing your head on the top? Is there enough room for the number of hunters who will be using it? There should also be enough space to handle your firearm or crossbow. If you can't get off a good shot because you're cramped for space, then the hunting blind becomes a weakness instead of an advantage.
The next question to consider is what type of features you want. The list of available features is endless, but here's a look at a few of the more common and practical ones.
• Shoot-Through Mesh - Great for added concealment. If the mesh is camouflage, even better.
• Waterproof - One of the major benefits of commercial blinds over natural cover. Stay dry and warm even in bad weather.
• Scent Proof - Keep a low profile with scent-masking carbon protection.
• Wind-resistant - Keep your blind from flapping in the wind and alerting game of your presence. Features such as tie-down flaps and stakes help to anchor your blind in place.
• Blackout Interior - A dark interior swallows your shadow and makes it harder for game to spot you inside the blind.
• Stubble Straps - Add natural cover to your blind for the ultimate camouflage protection.
Now let's take a look at the pros and cons for each blind type.
The hub style blind is one of the most popular choices for hunters. It gives you the most room to move around, is tall enough to sit comfortably in, and is quick and easy to set up and take down. It also has the best visibility, with full windows on all sides. On the downside, its large size may limit where you can set up your blind and it may stand out more in locations with little natural cover.
The pop up blind takes up less space than the hub, but that also means you have less room to move around inside. Like the hub style, you are able to look out and shoot on all four sides. Setup is quick and easy. Takedown can be a little tricky to fold the hoop frames, but once you get the hang of it, you can fold it up in no time.
The chair blind is a different animal altogether. Its best asset is the convenience of a blind and chair in one. It's also one of the easiest types to set up and take down. The downside is that you can't move around inside and you can only see and shoot to the front or side, so if the game sneaks up behind you, you're out of luck.