grampy

In Hand? Hung? Or Just Laying To The Side?

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When deer hunting, where is your bow or firearm? In hand, hung up, or just laying nearby?

I 'ALWAYS' have mine in my hand, or in my lap, when hunting. I learned the hard way to always be ready to shoot!

  After I started deer hunting, I used a combination of all three for years.  Until one cold, morning with light snow falling, a day or so after Thanksgiving. I was sitting under a large hemlock tree. Had my hands in my pockets, my Ithaca leaning against the tree next to me. Had been there for four or five hours, and not seen a deer. Then I heard a stick break, way off behind me, so I slowly turn to look back, behind me through the hemlocks. So I'm looking, and don't see anything. I turn back around to see this giant buck, in front of me! Looking at me from 30 yards or so! Here we are in a staring contest, my gun leaning against the tree to my left. My heart is pounding! This was, at the time by far, the biggest buck I'd ever seen!!!  And like big bucks do, he just appeared out of nowhere!  I am trying to "slowly" move my left hand to my gun, but every time I moved even an inch this buck would do the head bob, and stomp, while facing me! I'm sure by this point my eyes were like dinner plates, with my mouth hanging open!! He finally turns broadside, looking right at me, as my left hand grips the Ithaca! (I'm right handed) It is at that time, he runs right at me, To within a few feet, full speed to my right! I grab my gun, spinning around, to see him disappear behind a large hemlock tree, and then another! I would almost get on him, and he'd be out of my sight picture again, till he was gone! Without me firing a shot. Had my gun been in my hands, I'm pretty sure the outcome could have been different. 

After trailing the buck a couple hundred yards, I saw the tracks of a lone doe, and his come together. The source of the noise I heard in the beginning, no doubt.  Never saw that buck again. Not from lack of effort I assure you!

From that day, my bow or gun is always in my hands, when I am hunting!  And it surely has made a difference, many times, in hunts that came after the one above.

Since it's the off season, figured I'd post something deer hunting related. Along with a lesson I learned a long time ago.

Figured the title would bring some attention to the subject!!!.......................................grin

 

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I like it in hand, but when its really cold, I will tend to hang it and keep my hands in a muff.

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Depends on what stand Im in, and what the situation is, but mine are usually hanging up. I always try to have the hanger in a position to put the weapon close to where my hands will be so that there is very little movement involved in taking it off of the hanger. If Im a sitter involved in a drive, my gun stays in my hands.

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Usually hung up close where I can grab it with out moving a lot. Other times I'll have it in my hand for hours on end, but it get's tiring on all day hunts.

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My bow stays gripped to the bow, with the arm powered off.  If I am in my double ladder, I like to have a screw in tree hook, where I can hang the bow, so i dont have to hold all that weight, and tire my arm incase I need to shoot.

 

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My bow is always hung.  With a firearm, I keep it across the arms of a ladder stand (basically in my lap).  In a hang-on stand a rifle is hung.  I might keep it in hand the last 10 minutes of shooting light.  

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gun in hand or on lap. bow may be hung or in hand depending on weather ..if hung its always in front of me very close


I've hunted almost everyday of my life.. the rest have been wasted!

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I almost never hang up a gun or bow  or lean against something unless I am doing something that I need good movement for and don't want to risk knocking out of the stand. It is in my hands or on my lap. 

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"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin

"The trouble with Socialism is, sooner or later you run out of other people's money." - Margaret Thatcher

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It’s always hung up or leaning against something. I’m out there to enjoy myself and hanging onto the gun or bow for hours on end is not my definition of enjoyment.

I’ve had deer sneak in and had no time to grab the gun and I honestly think if it was in my lap it would not have mattered I still would have had to get it to my shoulder to fire and they would have seen that movement as well.


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Too many times a deer pops up by me with no sound, most times I am ready, except when the big buck comes in lol.  Murphy's law!  I always try to have it ready if not in my hands and close by, always happens when you least expect it and the dam weapon is 3 ft away! 

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Geez, when I read this header, I thought if was an awfully personal question. But if you must know, it's usually off to the left when not deployed...

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When I hunted with a long gun always had  it across my lap in a ladder stand , or laying across my climber rails when in my climber. 

Now my super red hawk is allways  on my chest in my bandolier holster. 

My bow lays on my lap in a ladder stand. I just installed a third hand archery bow holder on my climber. Used to lay it across the top rails but learned my lesson when I adjusted a bit in the stand and knocked my bow 22 feet to the ground. Not happy I did that at all, but I will  say this there’s a reason I shoot Hoyt’s , did zero damage to the bow.. 

Edited by rob-c

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Well, not holding on to your weapon can get ugly if you are up in a treestand.  I learned the hard way just this last Fall when I had my rifle fall 15 feet to the ground while fumbling for something in my backpack.  I thought I had it securely propped up on the platform and against the shooting rail, yet it slipped under the rail and down it went.  You talk about slow motion?  Well you haven't seen it until you see your favorite rifle make a free fall from a treestand!!  I thought I destroyed the scope, barrel crown and stock and God knows what else, but luckily only the stock took the brunt of the fall.  It was in one piece but had two cracks on both sides of the pistol grip.  I've since replaced it with one of those Boyd laminates, which actually makes it look like a whole new rifle. 

And the story didn't end with the rifle falling.  After going down to collect my rifle I went back up on the treestand.  I figured I'd just wait things out since I was already out there.  Of course not an hour later a nice sized doe shows itself across a field at about 300 yards.  I was almost not going to take a shot since I figured the scope probably got knocked way off, but I said what the f--k,  I had only one more day to hunt and I was pissed off enough for my blunder of dropping the damned rifle out of a treestand that I didn't have much sympathy for anything.  So I steadied myself, took the shot and the deer sprinted about 50 yards, leaped over a barbed wire fence and tumbled over dead in mid-air.  I couldn't believe it.   The gun took a 15 foot fall, yet it killed a deer at 300 yards.  I taped up the pistol grip with duct tape and took a couple of shots at a target the next morning just to see if my shot wasn't a total fluke, but the zero hadn't moved an inch from where I had set it broken stock and all.  I have always been a firm believer in installing solid steel scope mounts on big game rifles and then having a gun fall 15 feet and remain in zero couldn't be better proof of this.

Edited by steve863
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Ladder stand and climber it’s in my lap. Ground blind gun its across my lap also. .44 on chest rig at all times on the ready. ( except ML season and bow this year ) 

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I have done all three. I do prefer to have my bow in my lap. Just the thought of getting busted when reaching for it screws me up. 


"We Feed 'em"

"He Breeds 'em"

Legends Lodge, "Where Legends are born"

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Depends on the stand. In the blind or tower usually not in hand. Bow up in stand usually hanging but just a few inches from hand. Gun on ground usually across lap.

If I am in a situation where a deer can get up on me out of nowhere it is in hand or close. Otherwise I have no problem having it hang close.

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1 hour ago, Steuben Jerry said:

Geez, when I read this header, I thought if was an awfully personal question. But if you must know, it's usually off to the left when not deployed...

Yeah Jerry, I dress to left also...

That's why  my jeans always wear thin on the left leg about halfway between my crotch and my knee...If I was taller, that would be impressive....<< SIGH>>….

Edited by Pygmy
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With the old xbow, I hung it while sitting in the hang on stand mainly because it was too unwieldly to hold for hours.  From the ground, I kept it in a ready position across my lap while leaning against a tree.

Rifle would stay between my legs in the hang on or propped against corner of ground blind.  From that position, with the blind sitting atop a hill, there was plenty of time to pick up, shoulder the rifle and make a clean shot on running deer.  The key is to be expecting a deer to pop out at any time.

Of course, this all because I just want to keep my hands warm in the muff for as long as possible! xD

 

 

Edited by Jdubs

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In a tent blind, I'll rest it against one of the walls. Any other time, I have my gun or bow in my hands.

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I keep my gun and crossbow across my lap whenever in stand, or sitting on the ground. With my bow its across my lap with my release hooked up. The only time it isn't like that is when I stand to stretch, or go to the bathroom.

You never know when an opportunity may present itself and I like to be ready

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depends most of the time it's laying across my lap. in bigger more permanent stands bow is on a hanger. rifle with time of year almost always on lap or in hand.


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Bow or gun are never in my hand UNLESS things are happening. (Incredibly obvious I hope)

In most of my archery & gun stands and usually my climber I'll use a Realtree EZ Hanger for bow & gun, NOT an imitation, only the real McCoy.  The rest are junk.......

If there is a suitable tree branch stub I'll utilize that too.

Sometimes in my climber I'll just lay my bow or gun across my front bar.  

The last thing I want to do is hang onto my bow or gun for an entire set.  Purty tough to use binos with one hand.  Heck, I like both hands free to use the digital camera, rangefinder, grunt call, drink coffee, text friends, post on web sites etc etc. :)

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Please support the hunting of Mourning Dove In New York State.  For information, visit nydovehunting.weebly.com/

 

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