A lot of ink is spilled each year on the topic of sitting all day for deer. The reality is that most of us can’t hack it. The first few hours of the day as well as the last few seem to fly by, but the time period between mid-morning and mid-afternoon can often drive us stir crazy and force an impromptu exit.
This is, of course, not the best way to kill a deer.
Instead, an all-day sit is the best course of action especially when dealing with the typical firearm’s season where natural movement goes out the window with the mass influx of hunters opening morning. Deer know what’s going on and they react almost immediately. However, they still get bumped around and there are still does coming into estrus, so it pays to watch a good spot all day long.
To do this, comfort is a must but what may provide a cushy, relaxing sit also might end up hurting your odds of success. To sit through all of the daylight hours it’s necessary to walk the tightrope between comfortable enough but not too comfortable as to miss an opportunity. Snoozing away the mid-day hours might be awfully tempting, but will not result in a grip-and-grin photo outside of the realm of your dreams
To achieve the all-day sit, address warmth. Extremities are the first to go, so make sure your feet have a good chance to stay toasty all day. Hands are easier, but still require some thought. Next, you’ll want to keep your core warm. Vests are perfect for this and when combined with layers and finally an outer shell that repels wind, you’ll be set.
I’ve found over the last few years that a Thermos of hot coffee is a lifesaver, especially during brutally cold sits. Nothing works faster to offer you a second wind and warm from the inside out than a steaming cup of Jo at 10 in the morning. Snacks, sandwiches, and possibly a Thermos of hot soup are also necessities. I prefer to reward myself every hour or two with some sort of snack just to break the monotony.
Playing games on your smart phone is a good way to pass the time, but I prefer a book. I can quickly set a book down if I need to and shoot, and always develop a routine of scanning my hunting area after finishing a page. Either way, entertainment is okay provided you stay alert. Deer can show up without warning and leave just as quickly, make sure you’re ready.
Lastly, make sure you’ve got binoculars to investigate the brush from time to time. A lot of hunters feel their scoped rifle is sufficient, but binoculars are safer and simply better for picking apart a distance fence-line or scanning a two-year-old clear cut for signs of movement.
It’s takes some planning and conviction to wile away the daylight hours from a single stand or blind but the result is a sense of accomplishment, and just often enough, a short blood trail and fresh back straps.