Use these scent control techniques to fool wary whitetails.
Scent control is one of the most important and overlooked ways of helping you bag a deer. A whitetail’s sense of smell is about 20 times better than a humans. They use this highly acute sense of smell to find mates and food and also to alert them to possible danger.
While it is impossible to totally eliminate all human scent, using this scent control system has helped me get closer to more and bigger deer. I challenge you to try this system for a season. I guarantee you will be amazed with the results.
Step 1. Avoid Contamination
The first step in my scent control system is doing my best to keep my hunting gear from stinking in the first place. Basically, I don’t wear my hunting clothes unless I am hunting.
Odors like gasoline and smoke can be nearly impossible to get rid of, so do your best to keep them off your hunting clothes and gear.
Step 2. Laundry Time
Wash your hunting clothes in one of the many scent free detergents available and hang them outside to dry. Try to think of everything that will touch your body or enter the woods with you when you go hunting and get it washed. This means socks, underwear, T-shirts, and outerwear, as well as accessories like your pack.
Also make sure you throw in a few towels, you will need them later. After your gear is clean and dry, place it in a sealable plastic tote.
Step 3. Just Add Carbon
Activated carbon adsorbs odors. It is used in commercial and industrial air filters, fish tanks, and more recently hunting clothes.
When it comes to which clothes to wear you have LOTS of options, with a number of companies manufacturing clothing infused with activated carbon. The only problem is the price.
If you are frugal (read cheap) like me, there is another option. I dip regular hunting clothes in a water and activated carbon mixture made by Carbon Synergy.
Whatever type of carbon you choose, make sure you cover your head, hands, and feet because these are the areas that produce the most scent.
Step 4. Clean Yourself Up
Step four is pretty simple: take a shower. Use a scent free soap and focus on your stinkiest areas (you know where I’m talking about). I have used a few different brands of soap and have settled on Primos Control Freak hair and body wash.
Use your scent free soap throughout hunting season to avoid residual odors from regular scented soaps. Grab one of your scent free towels and dry off. Apply a scent free antiperspirant and don some scent free under garments.
Step 5. Don’t Touch a Thing
Once you’ve showered and covered yourself enough to meet the legal requirements of your state or province, get out of the house. Your other clothing and gear should be stashed in totes in your vehicle. Once you reach your hunting location, it is time to put on the rest of your clothing. This can make for a cold ride, but the results are worth the effort.
Step 6. Spray Down
Use a scent eliminating spray to spray down your weapon, pack, clothing and boots and hit the field. When you return to your vehicle, strip down to your skivvies and put your outer wear back into the scent free totes before getting in.
Step 7. Go the Extra Mile
There is no limit to how far you can go to eliminate scent and everything you do can help up your chances of harvesting a wary, hunter-wise buck. If steps one through six don’t seem like enough, here are some other methods of eliminating scent.
- Ozone machines. These machines scramble odors by changing oxygen into ozone particles. You can purchase models for storing your clothing or placing in your treestand or blind with you. They are expensive, but those who like them swear by them.
- Eat Chlorophyll. Hunter’s can take chlorophyll tablets or get the same effect by eating lots of greens. Chlorophyll users claim that it eliminates odors from the inside out.
- Adjust your diet. Do you ever taste lasts night’s garlic shrimp alfredo the next morning? Eliminating foods with strong odors from your hunting season diet can help reduce the amount of scent you produce.