Jump to content

Strengths and weaknesses as a hunter?


Recommended Posts

One of the best ways to improve at anything is to recognize your weaknesses, and work at improving upon them.


Of course you don't want to just be hard on yourself, so I think we should list some of our strengths as well.


So what are your strengths and weaknesses as a hunter?



I would say my biggest weakness is closing the deal on big bucks. I have screwed up on too many big bucks over the years. I can think of so many misses and unfortunately a number of wounded big bucks that I had dead to rights. If only I could close the deal better.


I think I have finally recognized why the last few seasons, and it's just plain "rushing". I usually afford myself one or two opportunities each season at a big mature buck. Which is something I'm proud of....BUT...when I have that opportunity present itself, a lot of times I feel rushed to get a shot off. I guess you could call this "buck fever" but it really has nothing to do with nerves, I'm pretty cool and collected, just like on doe opportunities, I'm just rushing the whole process before he walks away. Maybe I've seen too many big bucks walk off before I could even get drawn back....but something always makes me think "HURRY up and shoot him before he leaves"....I want to waste no time. I need to slow down on big bucks. That has to be my biggest flaw as a hunter and it has a huge negative impact.


Another weakness I have is sometimes over-thinking conditions. I think it's good to study how weather and such effects deer and hunts, but I find when I do that too much, I find too many excuses NOT to go hunting, rather than reasons to be in the woods. I still always pay attention to wind directions and weather, but I try not to let it stop me from hunting at least somewhere on any given day. I've overcome this one for the most part, but occasionally find myself falling back in that trap.



As for strengths, it probably goes back to getting those big buck opportunities basically every season. I'm pretty proud that I have been able to figure out big bucks to the point I can look at a map of an area I've never been to and nearly pinpoint where big bucks will live and then how to successfully slip in on them. There will always be room for improvement there as well, but I've definitely come a long way in that department.


Maybe another strength is restraint. I do pass up a lot of younger bucks on public land, some pretty nice, but try to hold out for what I believe to be 3 or older. Sometimes my trigger finger gets itchy, but I have done a pretty good job of holding off. lol There are times though when it get's really difficult and I swear I'm shooting the next deer anyway. I don't but...lol I want to. 



So how about you, what are your strengths and weaknesses?




“I have always tempered my killing with respect for the game pursued. I see the animal not only as a target, but as a living creature with more freedom than I will ever have. I take that life if I can, with regret as well as joy, and with the sure knowledge that nature’s way of fang and claw and starvation are a far crueler fate than I bestow.” – Fred Bear

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I fall into the same over thinking trap with reason not to go over reasons to go. My recently developed physical limitations has greatly helped ths along. I never had trouble finding mature deer. Getting to them now is another story. I have to rethink a lot of it to make it work in new, easier to access spots where I might be able to take a mature deer.  Could really use an electric cart or bike for the known spots, but where is that allowed on anything other than private ground?


I also find myself rushing at times. Not the shot, but the subconcious little movement at the sight of a deer has burned me a few times. I have learned to collect myself in their presence and get away with quite a bit. Now if I can only control the wind and keep it from turning at the worst possible moment I'd be golden. My restraint is also a strength although there are times when I ask myself if I'm being too picky.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

   Interesting topic, not many are willing to admit their flaws or weaknesses but those that are humble enough to do so are usually the ones that are successful so ok I'll give it a shot.

   I'd say one of my best strengths is being able to identify the sign left by a mature animal. When I say this i don't mean just finding big rubs I mean becoming familiar with "his" tracks, beds, etc. then being able to backtrack to find his bedding area, preferred travel route and escape route. Some have laughed at me and others asked how I find "his' sign but few are willing to put in the time and effort once I explain how I do it. That's a whole other topic anyway.

   I guess my biggest weakness is being to cautious. Not hunting when the wind isn't just right and no longer having the time to set up different stand sites and entrance strategies to those sites to hunt them properly. To many times I've decided not to hunt because things didn't seem right only to find trail cam pics of "him" or sightings relayed by the landowner on the day I chose not to hunt. Oh, one more weakness...choosing the wrong weapon for a given day. Three times in two years I brought the recurve instead of the compound only to have "him" at 25-30yrds. A simple shot for me with the compound but out of my range with the recurve. Oh well...it is what it is


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great topic!


I think Matty copied and pasted mine haha! I'm right there with you with my strengths and weaknesses except I don't let the conditions so much keep me from going cause I have a multitude of spots I hunt and even more scouted in my back pocket. Being I use many diff spots not all these nice spots I could hunt with conjunction with certain conditions do I have easy access, so if I don't feel I can get in and out easily(meaning not busting brush and looking for tree in dark getting in or out) and quietly(meaning having a decent trail that I'm not snapping logs and getting hung up on briars) I won't hunt those most times and go somewhere I'm not as confident in with the current conditions. It's a lot of time and energy to keep all them trails maintained and in memory.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like X7 said I have physical limitations. Mine are do to age and weight. This has made me lazy with scouting new areas and scouting areas I have hunted before. I tend to go to places I have taken deer in the past.  This works sometimes and sometimes it doesn't.

Edited by 230jhp
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mine is refusing to move.

I haven't been able to use a climber for several years because of a back injury.

Articulating my self to put up a hang on takes a great toll on me too.


I have a few stands up that I can choose from but there is only one with a steep drop off that I can not cart

out a deer from. luckily I have neighbor that will drop everything if I need him.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some outstanding responses guys! Thanks for taking the time to answer.


I really feel for you guys with the physical limitations, it can take all the fun out of life when you're in pain. I hope you can continue to find ways around the pain and still enjoy the sport.


I would probably have to add health to my list of weaknesses too, but I really try not to factor it in or think about how it effects me. At the same time, I'm also pretty sure I'm not as bad off as you guys are.


My right knee is pretty messed up from an injury doing tree work years ago. My right shoulder is bad too, I've had to stop doing some things like throwing, recurves, shooting too much, etc.... but I don't think my shoulder is nearly as bad as Dougs. Lyme disease has messed me up pretty bad too, but I am also overweight. I try not to let it hold me back and I have no one to blame but myself. I've lost a lot of weight on a few occasions and felt somewhat better, but can't keep it off. Like I said though, I try not to even consider it. One bonus is I do actually stay warmer with less clothes when it's cold. LOL I'm serious, I never knew what freezing to death felt like until I hunted in the same amount of clothes when I weighed 145#'s. lol I thought I was going to die. lol


It also seems we share some of the same weaknesses, frustrations and triumphs.....and hitemnasty might be my hunting twin. LOL  


Doug you mentioned something that was interesting to me about the funnels in Ohio. Now is that a "rut" tactic or is that their year round approach?


I think during the rut, it's a great approach and it's similar to what I will do for a few specific days, where you find those great travel corridors and ride them out, especially mid day. However, most of the rest of the season, I can't imagine getting mature bucks through those pinchpoints on any kind of regular basis. I don't find they move far at all from their beds during hunting hours, especially the more pressured they are. 


Axiom, it's not at all unusual to recognize something you do "wrong" but not change it. I think that's very common. The important thing is you can recognize it. You just have to make a conscious effort to hunt different spots so as not to overhunt one. Even if you don't know the areas, just freelance once in a while and you'll build on the number of spots you use. 



Frank, once you recover from your knee surgery, get out there! Walk slow and just enjoy the outdoors. That time scouting is actually just a fun version of exercise. Good luck with the surgery and don't push until you're 100%.


I know I didn't address everyone, but sincerely thank you for taking the time to respond. I hope we can all improve upon the weaknesses that we have control over and the we can continue to improve upon and let our strengths carry us to more future success.


Good luck!


(still want to hear from more people though) lol

“I have always tempered my killing with respect for the game pursued. I see the animal not only as a target, but as a living creature with more freedom than I will ever have. I take that life if I can, with regret as well as joy, and with the sure knowledge that nature’s way of fang and claw and starvation are a far crueler fate than I bestow.” – Fred Bear

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Weakness is spending more time scouting then actually hunting.working too much not pushing myself hard enough for morning sits I think I only hunted 3 times in the morning this year.Strengths staying persistent hunting smart and not hard.covering alot of areas and keeping mental tabs and notes in wind directions patterns of deer the availability of deer esp bucks

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Weaknesses:   not putting the work/effort needed in


                        scent control could be better




strengths:   understanding deer 

                  closing the deal when the time comes

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Short and sweet . . .


I think one of my best strengths is that I am very persistent and I don't give up easily. I am determined and passionate when it comes to hunting. I am usually cool under pressure.

However, one of my major weaknesses is that I have a difficult time taking advice from others.  I would rather learn my lessons from my failures (lessons stick longer and are learned) than just have somebody tell me something.  I need to see things succeed or fail for myself, and sometimes I know what I should do and don't even listen to myself.

Edited by Ms Grit

"Well Behaved Women Seldom Make History" - Laurel Thatcher Ulrich


NJ State Federation of Sportsmen's Clubs Member
NRA Life Member

NWTF Women In The Outdoors Member

UBNJ Member


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 9 months later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...