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Hiding Human scent whie hunting

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/28/2016 at 21:09
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I don't use scent products or scent blocking clothing.

When I have used them in the past, I wasn't convinced they did much.

I hunt into the wind.  That works.

I don't hunt in a stand.  Maybe some guys experienced with that type of hunting will chime in.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2016 at 07:46
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I've had success using the various odorless scent killing sprays.  HS and others market these.  I hunt primarily from elevated box and tree stands (ladders and climbers).  I've had deer so close I could have spit on them.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2016 at 10:37
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I've used Scent blocker in the past when hunting from tree stands in North Carolina, but was always a secondary measure.  Wind direction dictated what stand we hunted from and were fortunate enough to have different stand locations or portable ground blinds we could use.  A number of our hunts ended prematurely when the wind shifted.

Scent blocker sprays or clothing isn't a bad insurance step to take, but I've always been skeptical that I can rely on it entirely.  Friend of mine is a bow hunter and he swears by it.  Showering with the no scent soap/shampoo, washing his hunting clothes with no scent detergent, bagging his clothes and getting dressed at the hunt site.  I think he is nuts but he has a lot of deer in the freezer.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2016 at 14:26
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I've tried most of the "scent elimination" and "scent blocking" products at one time or another, including the clothing, sprays, soaps, deodorants, detergents, shampoos, etc. I have given them an honest evaluation time. I've been winded by deer multiple times while using all of them. So, I'm not a believer, and won't waste my money anymore. Others may have different experiences. Perhaps I stink more than most; I don't know. What I do know is paying attention to wind direction and positioning yourself downwind from where you expect to see game animals always works. In my opinion, it is the only foolproof way to fool a member of the deer family's nose.

If I'm still hunting or in an "open" ladder stand, tripod, hang-on stand, etc., I will only hunt them when the wind is right. Most of my deer hunting in TX nowadays is done in totally enclosed box blinds, and I've found that at least the ones I hunt out of do a good enough job of containing my scent that wind direction has become totally irrelevant. I've had deer walk within spitting distance downwind of my box blinds without detecting me.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2016 at 16:23
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Hunting in a blind is so weird.  lol.  I typically hike miles and miles when I hunt, typically spot and stalk.  I can't imagine just sitting all day waiting for a buck to come in. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2016 at 18:21
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It's the difference between our terrain, game habitat, and land use here in the south vs where you live, ST. Here, most of the best hunting land is privately owned, so to get access to it, you must lease (unless you own the land or have permission to hunt for free). We don't have the wide open, steep country where I hunt either; it's pretty thick and in most places comparatively flat. Finally, whitetail deer don't range very far from where they're born here, seldom ever straying out of a square mile from their core territory, even when pressured. Because of the smaller acreage typically leased (where you simply don't have the ability to hike miles and miles to spot and stalk), thick habitat, and local deer herd that doesn't migrate great distances like elk and mule deer do, stationary stand/blind hunting is much more effective, provided the hunter located the blind in a good spot that takes advantage of natural travel patterns. Actually, stand & blind hunting is the predominant method for whitetail deer hunting across most of their habitat. The best whitetail habitat is on farmland, where a guy may have permission to hunt less than 1000 acres. I lease 1266 acres, and I know people who deer hunt on as little as 10 acres. You can't spot and stalk on small acreage like that, where shot distances are very close and the dead leaves on the ground make your every step sound like you're walking on corn flakes...at least not if you expect to be successful.

It's a different story for elk, mule deer, and some other big game species in the west. You adapt to what works best for the game and circumstances.

Edited by RifleDude - November/29/2016 at 18:29
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/29/2016 at 21:01
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You can't really control scent to the point where the deer won't smell you if the wind is blowing from you to it. You have to play the wind. Trouble is the wind switches directions a lot. Best way to combat it while on stand is to only hunt a stand when the general wind is right. Approach and leave from downwind. Do not walk where you expect deer to walk. And hunt high. 20' works alright from keeping them from winding you if the wind varies for a second if you don't stink too bad.

My method for not stinking too bad: Wash all clothes in baking soda and line dry. Store hanging outside or in a plastic bin. Get dressed in outer layers after you get out of the truck or off the atv. Keep hunting boots, preferably rubber with mold release agent washed or worn off, only for hunting. Do not wear them anywhere but in the woods; not even in the truck. Spray boots and hands with scent killer spray before entering woods. Scent killer soap works real well if you use it every day for about a week prior to hunting season. 

Reducing your scent also helps minimize deer becoming aware of general hunter activity and becoming more nocturnal.

And the biggest thing is sneak around so other people in your hunt club don't find out about your spots and the deer you're seeing. One trip by a cigarette smoker on a four wheeler will ruin a honey hole.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: November/30/2016 at 05:56
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Using the anti-scent regimen is a religious experience.  I've tested the highest rated products over a number of years and found, BLUF: IF you do everything just right... wash your clothes (always) in anti-scent soap (all of them, including gloves, underwear and socks and have all clothes totally devoted to hunting and always separate from other clothes, NEVER washed in "ordinary" detergent which contains brighteners that deer read like quinine under ultraviolet light), keep them completely separated from other clothes in plastic containers and with Oak or Earth scented wafers in the container, LAYER, carry significant portions of anti-scent or "woodsy" scented spray with you, wear different clothes to the hunting area and dress on-site, spraying yourself down with anti-scent before dressing, taking enough with you to "refresh" every couple of hours... it works, reasonably well.  Moving slow, being still, downwind of where the game is... works, too.  I also had an old hunter tell me the best thing is get a campfire going, get it to smoke and stand in the smoke for as long as you can stand it (turning to make sure you are fully "smoked")...it seems to work as well as all the scents.  There are conflicting thoughts on this... some say deer run from what smells like a fire, but I've found that some deer are curious about the smell and try to see what it is that is burning...

I prefer the anti-scent detergents and sprays and a use Oak and Earth sprays as "touch ups".  If you exert a lot, creating a lot of sweat, very difficult to overcome... have to basically wet yourself down with the scent blockers... I use scent blocker clothing, as well, with all the other stuff... seems to add a bit more protection, slows the onset of odor from sweating... however, one cannot COMPLETELY cover oneself with scent blocker clothing... there is always some skin exposed somewhere. 

Nothing, except a full dose of the smoke, seems to completely eliminate odor so that deer won't at least be suspicious.  Smoke works, but also creates some skittishness.

There is no "odor invisibility cloak" that I have found.  Using all the available products may allow one to get closer before the critters catch the scent... if used a lot (and as mentioned above at least several days of showering with the anti-scent soap (or maybe several showers) before going), the products have some effectiveness.  It is up to the potential user to determine if it is "worth the time and effort".  And don't use apple scent if there are no apples growing in your area... deer are dumb, but they aren't stupid... a smell they don't ordinarily smell is as big a flag as anything... they will avoid it.   

The human body is LOADED with bacteria which are constantly producing odors, specific to humans, that deer identify... unless you kill them all(the bacteria), I don't think scent elimination can be fully effective... and if you do that, I think you may have killed yourself in the process...  which creates a whole new line of odors...

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 05:53
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The Indians did use scents of animals (most often mentioned in period writings is deer urine, raccoon urine, fox urine) and flora as scent cover and used skins as concealment... and scent cover. They used smoke from a fire as scent cover, as well.

However, they were extremely well skilled at being downwind of their prey...

Today's scent blockers actually eliminate bacteria which produce "human odors", as well as providing camouflage scents and that somewhat extends their useful time.  They are effective under proper conditions.  They are not "magic"...  If one washes off with scent eliminator soaps, sprays on the best "oak" scent, then walks into "Billy Bob's Country Breakfast Emporium" for breakfast before the big hunt (which I have seen occur on MANY occasions) or just cook breakfast and drink coffee... you just wasted whatever money you spent on your scent eliminators...definitely need to stay downwind.  However, if you don't now exactly where your prey is, staying downwind can be difficult as well. 

If scents are not working for you, 1) you are probably expecting too much, 2) you are not using them properly.  They are NOT a "do all", "end all" product...no magic here... they are an aid when used properly.  They delay and confuse the sensory mechanisms of the game.  That's the BLUF...


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 06:25
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None of the scent control measures tried fooled Chase, the drug-sniffing K9, for a second in this test:
http://www.fieldandstream.com/articles/2014/07/sniff-test-do-scent-control-measures-really-make-a-difference
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 09:03
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When I used to Field Trial and hunt Test a couple of bird dogs, the dogs always had a harder time finding dead birds vs finding live birds. The breath of the bird was the difference. A hunter can't stop breathing and that is a huge volume of scent to adsorb or cover up. That's why playing the wind is so important imo.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 11:51
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[QUOTE=RifleDude]None of the scent control measures tried fooled Chase, the drug-sniffing K9, for a second in this test:
http://www.fieldandstream.com/articles/2014/07/sniff-test-do-scent-control-measures-really-make-a-difference[/QUOTE]

This type of test is meaningless, other than showing that a dog, highly trained to find "variations", does that very well.  It is exactly what I would expect, including the shortened "location" times...  good looking dog, though.

Agree that human breath is a major factor. 

As I stated, the scents/de-scents, are not magic... they are aids... they don't really eliminate scent, they confuse it.  Different test, different circumstances.


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 12:40
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 13:27
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Scent blocker, Dead Down Wind, etc are the biggest farce ever brought to the American hunter IMO.   Hunt proven tactics like the wind, shade, sun behind you, etc instead of a gimmick created to line the pockets of the manufacturer and these idiots on TV hunting shows.  They know it doesn't work too, as they all wait to hunt specific stands until the wind is right.  An absolute joke this scent eliminator stuff.   
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/02/2016 at 14:32
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Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

[QUOTE=RifleDude]None of the scent control measures tried fooled Chase, the drug-sniffing K9, for a second in this test:
http://www.fieldandstream.com/articles/2014/07/sniff-test-do-scent-control-measures-really-make-a-difference[/QUOTE]

This type of test is meaningless, other than showing that a dog, highly trained to find "variations", does that very well.  It is exactly what I would expect, including the shortened "location" times...  good looking dog, though.

Agree that human breath is a major factor. 

As I stated, the scents/de-scents, are not magic... they are aids... they don't really eliminate scent, they confuse it.  Different test, different circumstances.



Well...perhaps. The dog's training notwithstanding, the fact is, the products weren't effective as per the reason for buying them in the first place. Whether or not a deer would have olfactory acuity rivaling that of the dog is beside the point. The products used didn't eliminate human scent or even cause the dog a millisecond of pause or confusion. A dog's sense of smell is very similar to a deer's sense of smell.

I'm just not a believer. Even if the products did work under some narrow, strict regimen of precautions, most people, me included, are not realistically able to safeguard against all the random smells that we can encounter in the time between the application of the products and arriving at our hunting spot that will render our efforts useless. There are numerous things that can contaminate our carefully-prepared scent "elimination" regimen en-route to our hunting spot. Just walking generates perspiration. Gun oils aren't scent-free. Vehicles transfer a multitude of odors.

The bottom line is I've used the scent elimination and cover scent products a lot over the years, and I've never seen conclusive evidence that they worked. The % of time I've been winded by deer has not shown a noticeable reduction during the times I've used these products vs the times I've done nothing other than pay attention to wind direction. At the same time, I've had no shortage of hunting success by doing absolutely nothing to try to eliminate or mask my scent besides paying attention to wind, so what compelling reason would I have to spend more money on more stuff I have no faith in? Sometimes the wind changes direction or critters appear from directions I didn't expect, they're going to smell me and I'll get busted. It happens; it's part of the challenge of hunting. I don't expect technology to compensate for neglecting basic hunting skills I learned long ago, and wouldn't want it to.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2016 at 07:40
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Originally posted by xavierx xavierx wrote:

at least most of us can agree the scent products dont work.

Well, at least we can agree that they don't work for you and others.  

I have used a number of products successfully, fully understanding the pros and cons of their use.  It is true that they are not for everybody… many will never be able to use them successfully or properly.  I mostly don't use them because the process is onerous.  However, it is sometimes worth the effort.  A personal choice.  
Your experiences are NOT mine, nor mine yours… 
Just an anecdotal story… a few months ago I was scouting and checking on some coyotes perported to be in a certain area.  I used all the de-scent products with the rigor I deemed necessary.  I tried calling coyotes up… was inside a chair blind.  No coyotes appeared, but a pair of foxes came up and actually sniffed all around the edges of the blind… one stood up on it and tried to look in through the screen window.  They certainly had no fear of my scent… I did have an ozonics working as well.  
I find the products useful… at times.  My experiences show that with proper care and understanding, they can be effective.  Once again, no magic, just might be that added few seconds necessary for a good, clean shot.  I do not advocate anyone else using the products, any of them,  just relating personal, real, experience, based upon a long career of testing things, highly successfully, for a living.  


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2016 at 16:22
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I've got a cousin that is really cheap, er, thrifty! He strips down and scrubs himself with straight baking soda. Then puts on clothes washed in the stuff and line dried. He's a killer.

Items I re-use and sweat on like gloves and hats get sprayed with scent killer augmented with powdered activated charcoal. You used to be able to buy it, but now you have to mix it. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2016 at 17:09
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I've heard the that bakings soda has some effectiveness… I've not tried it.  It would certainly be a cost saver...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2016 at 18:52
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I hunt out of shooting houses or blinds or whatever you like to call them and occasionally a bale blind.

Still wear some scent clothing and use a scent crusher ozonics unit in the Explorer on the way.

Does it matter don't ask me, we get our venison every year but we aren't trophy hunters either we just love venison.

Preferably at least two in the freezer.
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Over the years, I've watched deer catch my scent and stop; turning to look in my direction, trying to pinpoint the source. That has always been a mistake on their part.

Remember those little aluminum (and later, plastic) 35mm film cans? I abandoned some in the field back in the '70s, after the 2- part- mix skunk scent which I'd added failed to stay within the can.
Now, I've learned that there really isn't any container which is impermeable to scent. I figure the same applies to no- scent products.

A dear departed hunting buddy always tried no- scent soaps and the like. I never did. We got back to his place after a hunt and he went in the house to grab some beers, while his wife stayed out and wanted to see my deer, so I showed it to her. She said, "You always get a deer and he never does". She made me nervous.

I'd just downed a couple of Hershey's kisses before going into a bar one time. I sat next to a pretty blonde and after a moment she said, "I smell chocolate". I replied, "Sorry ma'am, that's just me. My natural scent is almost like chocolate." Another successful hunt.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2016 at 19:30
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Amen!!!👍🍸
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Deer have very keen sense of smell. I use HS spray cover sent, but I also give the deer something interesting to smell my favorite being the scent of peanut butter, but I know guys who will rub an apple core on their boots before walking to their stand just to watch the deer follow the scent trail.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/05/2016 at 14:12
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I use fresh earth scent elimination spray. Wash all my clothes in that, and dry with a fresh earth dryer sheet. I keep pine baughs in my tote with my outer hunting clothes. Inner clothing goes in tote in my bedroom. My hunting boots only get worn once i get to the hunting club. I use HS scent wafers in fresh earth. Pine to me smells fake. And Doe in estrous is positively disgusting. 

When I was in college, I used to use red fox pee as a cover scent. It is all I used, and I saw a ton of deer. I never had a good handle on the wind, but have had deer right in front of me wearing it. I used to bag my outer clothes in a garbage bag. I didn't nothing else scent elimination wise, so either I was very lucky, or the red fox pee is a good cover scent. 

I try to climb high when I hunt, that seems to help. I have been told when its cold, and you hunt in the morning, wind direction is less important. Wether that is true or not I don't know, but I was busted twice during bow season by deer who were not directly downwind of me, and they didn't cross my trail either. So terrain can mess you up as well. 

Just an interesting side note. I few years ago, I was hunting at a club, and planned on climbing, but ended up sitting on the ground behind a mound of dirt. I had sprayed my boots down with Tinks Trophy Buck, or dominant buck pee. I had a small spike come out of the woods on an adjacent property and basically walk up the trail to where I was sitting. Until he crossed my trail. He turned and followed it back the way I came in. 

I try to keep as much of my body covered as possible. And I want an ozonics thing.
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Ii have two friends that had me pick up Ozonics units [ both bow hunters ] for them and both swear they work like a charm.
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