You think everything is going right, only to watch it all fall apart.
All the preparation in the world doesn't make up for one bad move that spooks deer off of your property.
You think everything is going right, but then at the last moment, you hear those unmistakable sounds of a deer running away at a fast pace before you even know it was there.
There's a reason that buck got spooked; fortunately, there's something you can do about it.
Watch your wind!
Getting busted by your scent is the most common story hunters tell their friends of why that huge buck got spooked on their property. This season, put the odds in your favor to not let that happen to you.
Even if it requires you to get to the field an hour before normal, under no circumstances should you walk to your stand or blind with the wind hitting your back. Always walk with the wind in your face.
This also means not always sitting at your usual stand or blind. You may have to adapt so the wind blows your sent out over a field instead of into the woods. This is why I always have a GhostBlind with me just to be adaptable.
You walked through their living room.
Mature bucks spend a majority of time during the peak of hunting season in the same spot. They have learned that hunters are in the woods and they won't move until they know it is safe. Often times you can figure out where these places are just by watching deer activity. Do not got into these areas!
Instead, hunt the paths that lead to and from those likely buck hold ups. Look for dense thickets, CRP, or small oasis woods. If you go in there, the bucks will go right out.
You are wearing the wrong cover scent.
Let's be honest about the hunting industry; most products are designed to harvest a hunter before they will ever help take down an animal. Companies spend a lot of money on marketing to get you to buy their products.
If you cover yourself in sprays that the bottle says is the buck's favorite food, but that food is found nowhere in your state, then you are sounding the alarm before you ever get to your stand. Enter, the scent eliminator.
Your best bet is normally just to go with a non scent cover spray that has no odor and stops odor. Adding another odor to overpower your human scent is a hard sell. Look for something like Bucked Scent Eliminator. You still need to watch your wind, but don't add something else for the deer to smell.
These three reasons have probably lead to at least one excuse of why a buck got spooked of your property in very recent history. Do yourself a favor and just pay a little more attention next time out, and hopefully that trophy will find itself upwind from you, instead of down.