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5 Tasks For Hunters To Tackle This Spring

Much of the country remains under shelter-in-place orders, which is hard on everyone – but especially on outdoorsmen and women like us. Here are a few hunting-centric activities to keep you busy this spring.

1) Clean Your Optics (and Guns)

Photo: Brady Miller

Really, spring is just a great time to clean your gear in general. It’s possible that you’re the type of hunter that cleans up as soon as hunting season ends. But if you use your gear a lot, you’ve probably got a few firearms and optics that could use some TLC. So let’s get to it.

Take a look at your riflescopes, binoculars, rangefinders, spotters—everything. Clear away dirt or any other sediment that may still be leftover from your last trip into the backcountry. That makes it far less likely to sneak into places where it’s not meant to be, like the adjustment ring on your spotting scope or the eyecup of your binocular. Clean the lenses and do it properly. And, yes, while you’re working on it, clean your guns, too. They will last forever if you take care of them, just like our optics.

For more tips on how best to clean your hunting optics, check out this story for our friends at GoHunt.

E-Scout New Hunting Ground

Your ability to get out and scout for the Fall 2020 hunting season depends on where you live, and your state’s current restrictions. Which means, now is a great time to do some E-scouting. All you need is your computer, phone, or tablet and the right resources. Google Earth is a great starting point, since it’s free and easy to use.

When you’re ready to take things to the next level, a subscription to a service like onX Hunt can be a game-changer. Their mapping services provide aerial imagery with 24K topographic maps, show you private land boundaries, and more. Ready to start planning your next big hunt? Check out this great series from Leupold Ambassador, Randy Newberg, on how to E-scout elk on public land.

Study Your Prey

Once you know where you’re going to hunt, it’s a good idea to brush up on what you’re going to hunt. No matter what you hunt, now is an excellent time to learn more about your prey.

Research what kind of terrain they like at various times of the year – and then use that knowledge to inform your E-scouting and find better places to hunt. Buy a new game call and practice, practice, practice. That way you’ll have the advantage when that trophy bull or big tom turkey is feeling extra spooky. Don’t discount understanding your prey. Knowledge is power, and the more you know about the animals you’re hunting, the better off you’ll be at getting a shot.

Restock Your First-Aid Kit

Photo: Brady Miller

A well-stocked first-aid kit is the most important piece of gear that any hunter, hiker, or adventurer never actually wants to use. But life happens, and that’s why it’s important to make sure you’re prepared whenever you go into the woods. If you’ve been trekking around without one – and no, a few Band-Aids and a lighter don’t really count – then start assembling one as soon as you’re done reading this post. If you do have one, now’s an opportune time to take stock of it.

Make sure everything in your kit is still in good shape, and that you still know how to use it all. Evaluate it for weaknesses, and add new items as required. If you’re not sure what your kit should have in it, our partners at GoHunt have a few suggestions.

Work On Your Knots

It’s great time to work on your woodcraft in general, but for brevity’s sake, we’ll focus on a singular skillset: knots. Most hunters know the basics, and it’s usually enough to get by – but “usually enough” doesn’t cut it when you’re in a tight spot in the backcountry.

Knot tying is a skill that you can become relatively proficient at without ever leaving your home, and chances are you already have the supplies you need. Grab a couple lengths of rope, preferably paracord, and hit the web. Some sites offer diagrams of simple knots, but there’s no shortage of YouTube accounts that offer detailed step-by-step visual guides.

Knowing what knots work and when could make your next hunt a lot easier – and may even save your life. Our friends at Wide Open Spaces have a list of 10 knots every hunter should know here.

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