Here's a detailed look at the updates to DeerCast that Drury Outdoors just released to an already awesome app just in time for deer season to start.
It's been a busy couple of years for the folks at Drury Outdoors. Not only are they in the middle of their 30th Anniversary Celebration, but they also just unveiled a bunch of changes to the revolutionary DeerCast app that they originally released in 2018 after many months of development. The app was a big hit with hunters last year (over 500,000 hunters installed it) and Drury Outdoors just released a series of updates to DeerCast aimed at making it an even more useful tool for deer hunters all over North America.
The new version of the app will have a lot of the same features as the original version unveiled last year (check out this article for more details), but here's what's new.
First, they are constantly tweaking the DeerCast algorithm, and the latest version incorporates a number of minor adjustments to the way DeerCast analyzes environmental factors (like the impact the dark of the moon has on deer movement). With that in mind, the new app should provide a more accurate prediction of deer activity than the original algorithm, which was pretty darn accurate itself.
Second, they've released a desktop version of the app (DeerCast.com) that's synched with the mobile version. So, not only will you be able to do some more detailed planning and analysis (or just watch some of the videos included with DeerCast) on a larger screen, but you can go back and forth seamlessly between devices.
Third, they've introduced a couple of new membership levels of DeerCast: Free, Pro, and Elite.
The free version of DeerCast gives users access to DeerCast desktop, the library of DOD TV Videos, the DeerCast news feed with hundreds of hunting articles, and a one day DeerCast with the tuned up algorithm.
DeerCast Pro costs $9.99 per year and users get access to the same features offered in the free version (DeerCast desktop, DOD TV Videos, and the DeerCast NewsFeed) plus access to the Drury Outdoors VHS/DVD Library, DeerCast NOW kill shot videos, and a five day DeerCast.
Basically, this is about what was available with the free version of DeerCast first released in 2018, just with a better algorithm and access to the desktop version of DeerCast. Additionally, the updated version of DeerCast provides a more detailed look at things on an hour-by-hour basis for all five days of the forecast (instead of just the next 48 hours).
And in case you were wondering, DeerCast NOW is a peek at all the hunts from everyone on the DOD team as they happen and before they're released elsewhere.
Finally, DeerCast Elite costs $19.99 per year and includes the same features as DeerCast Pro (DeerCast Desktop, DOD TV Videos, DeerCast NewsFeed, DOD VHS/DVD Library, DeerCast NOW), plus a ten day DeerCast and access to two new features: DeerCast Custom and DeerCast Track.
DeerCast Custom is pretty simple: it allows you to customize your DeerCast forecast to the specific spot where you'll be hunting. Have you noticed that the regular DeerCast forecast is a little optimistic or pessimistic for your spot?
The original version of DeerCast only allowed you to customize your forecast by changing the peak estrus date. You can still change the peak estrus date in the new version of DeerCast, but DeerCast Custom also lets you fine-tune your deer movement forecast for each specific area where you hunt to more closely match actual conditions on the ground.Now let's talk about DeerCast Track.
This is the feature that the folks at Drury Outdoors are most proud of and it's clear they put a lot of work into developing it. While DeerCast in general is designed to help increase the odds of getting a shot at the buck of your dreams, DeerCast Track is specifically designed to increase your odds of recovering a deer you just shot.
Everybody wants to make good shot that results in a quick and ethical kill as well as an easy tracking job. However, no matter how much you practice, things don't always work out as planned. Fortunately, DeerCast Track is an excellent resource that should be both interesting and useful to most deer hunters.
Just select your point of impact on the deer model in the app and it will help you break down the shot by peeling hide back to show bone structure and vitals of deer.
Additionally, based upon the point of impact you select, DeerCast Track will also pull up a bunch of shots from hunts that Drury Outdoors has filmed over the past couple of decades that closely match your hit. They'll show the hit, tell you how long it took to find the deer, and how far the deer in the video ran.The app also provides expert advice from skilled deer trackers Bobby Culbertson and John Engelken (aka Tracker John) on how long to wait, what organs you likely hit, and what to look for in the trail. Those are the two guys that Mark and Terry Drury go to for advice on dealing with a questionable hit on a deer, so now you'll get to tap into some of the wisdom they've accumulated from trailing literally thousands of deer over multiple decades of work.
While the app only allows you to select your point of impact on a two dimensional, perfectly broadside deer at this point, Mark Drury offers some insight into how things change with a quartering towards shot and Terry Drury does the same thing for a quartering away shot in each video.
Finally, DeerCast Track also has several videos that cover general tracking tips, common mistakes many hunters make, what to do after the shot, analyzing blood, analyzing the arrow, etc. All told, the app has over 100 DeerCast Track videos at this point and they're continuing to update that extensive database.
So, you can study up on the wealth of knowledge contained in that part of the app before deer season and have it all available at your fingertips right after you take the shot. Open up the app, put the reticle where you think your shot hit, and see what the experts think about it.
Not only will this hopefully help you make the right decision on how to follow-up, how long to wait, and whether or your you need to get some help first, but it will also give you something to do while you're waiting after the shot.
Pretty cool right?
I don't know about you, but I'll be using the latest version of the DeerCast app this deer season.
Oh and by the way, if you decide to use DeerCast this fall, make sure you sign up for the Drury Outdoors farm giveaway inside the app to be entered in the drawing to win a 60 acre farm in Missouri as well as the monthly prize giveaways all year long sponsored by some of the other big brands in the outdoor industry.