Learning the Lay of the Land

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From the books that I have read, there is a lot of importance in knowing every nook and cranny of your hunting territory as well as the animal that you are hunting.  So scouting as much as possible, just walking the land, will give you a good idea of what's around the corner or what's on the other side of a hill.  Which can be very beneficial.  

Making your own maps of human and deer trails,  and different types of foliage such as group of pines, oaks, or poplars.  Marking certain areas that could be for feeding, staging or bedding.  And don't forget water sources.  This way you can start to pattern the movement of the animals that you are hunting, by getting an overhead look you can begin to piece these different parts of the puzzle together.  Before long, as you map everything out, you can begin to see "the big picture." 

Some people incorporate the use of topography maps and satellite imagery.  I prefer to use Google Earth.  I'm slowly beginning to learn how to use the program.  It not only shows detailed imagery but; you can also see the topography as well too.  What a tremendous help this has been to help me get more aquainted with the area that I'm hunting.  Patterning the deer has also gotten a bit easier too.  I also have a plat map that shows me where the the property lines are.  I've used that map to outline the state land boundary lines where I hunt.  This way I won't end up trespassing on accident. 

You can even save and print images so that you carry them with you while out in the feild.  I'm sure that there are many other benefits to using Google Earth, it's just a matter of learning how to use the program better.  I've attached a saved image of where I hunt.  You can see the red lines that I drew, showing the state land boundaries.  Where I hunt, the Flat River State Game Area, is very large, so I only made the boundaries where I hunt the most.


Rem2arms's picture

Great tip. I also use google

Great tip. I also use google earth to find out more about an area. Even then on the ground it takes me a year to learn it better. good 1

groovy mike's picture

good tips

Good tips thanks for the reminders.


jim boyd's picture

excellent tip and one I have

excellent tip and one I have used a lot

i print off 11 x 17 maps and laminate them and then - i can write on them, etc... and they are waterproof and roll up very easily

if you like googleearth try acme.mapper.com also - it has built in topo, usgs maps etc and is a great complelement to googleearth

many times I have gone to an area that is new and had a great idea of what I was going to find once I got there

it is a great tool and is fun.... you can "scout" from the comfort of your help while sitting in your pajamas!

great tip


numbnutz's picture

great tip, thanks

great tip, thanks

Critter done's picture

Great Tip

great tip

ManOfTheFall's picture

Good tips, thanks.

Good tips, thanks.