Every hunter searches for that one product or tip they hope will lead them to the promised land of sporting success. In desperation, many of them will try almost anything. It may take years, but more often than not the hunter will conclude there is no magic pill to be had. That’s where I find myself after years and years of trying various scents intended to deceive the nose of a whitetail deer.

Oh yes; I’m well aware of the vast number of success stories involving the use of hunting scents. Still, I can’t help wondering where the facts begin and the opinions end. I mean; when it all comes together and a hunt ends successfully; does the person involved ever really know what the single determining factor was? Has any hunter ever walked up to a dying buck and the deer whispered: “hey buddy…..that doe-in-heat scent really fooled me?”

 In my humble opinion, it is best to leave no scent at all. Many biologists believe a mature whitetail buck can detect one particle of human odor if mixed with 10,000 particles of any cover scent. There are no shortcuts to covering human odor. You can’t fool a wise buck’s nose.   

 Humans use smell to determine what is desirable or undesirable; but deer depend on their sense of smell as their very basis of survival.  My dad used to tell me “deer use their noses to make decisions humans only make after using all 5 of their senses.” Hunters would do well to seriously consider scent-eliminating products, including garments, laundry detergents, body sprays, and even deodorants.    

 Using a modest but effective laundry cleanser is important. Sport-Wash has been scientifically determined to eliminate smells and rinse completely out of camo garments, and when you’ve paid the money for clothing that I have, residue elimination is important. I like that Sport-Wash does not contain whitening or brightening dyes. Who wants camouflage clothing that glows?

 Another product that helps prevent garments from glowing is “UV-KILLER”. You can spray it on laundered clothes to block garments from emitting a bluish-glow reportedly visible to animals but not humans.  There are odor reducing garments available to hunters today. I have a hunting outfit that should outlast me, and I’m convinced it works. Its key to blocking human odor is carbon technology. Silver is also used in odor reducing garments, but I’ve found the carbon lined garments work best. My outfit is expensive but I am confident it works. In fact, I’ve proved it to myself through experience.

Last year I killed a great buck on a relatively warm, early November day. The animal weighed 165 pounds after field-dressing, and since I’m no longer 20-years old, I must confess I really worked to get the deer out of the forest. When I reached the vehicle I anxiously removed the warm overcoat. Suffice it to say I knew immediately I would need a shower before expecting a congratulatory hug from my wife Karen.

Of course it is always good to reduce odor at the source. Shower with special products created to eliminate all odor. Don’t shop in the shampoo section. Good outfitters will have special products designed just for hunters.

The best powder I’ve ever found is a product known as “N-O-DOR”.  It is a great scent eliminator that can be sprinkled on the body, feet and into boots. Trust me; even your inferior human nose will realize it works. As the bow season approaches, concentrate more on scent elimination than on scent deception. I believe you’ll be glad you did.

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