Having decided to hunt in South Carolina, you must determine what it is that you wish to accomplish.
Some initiates begin their hunt with chief emphasis on the deer’s food value. Indeed the majority of new hunters just go after a deer, period. The primary motivation may be recreation, fellowship, a soul search, or a trophy. Reasons for the hunt may overlap one another and are vastly susceptible to spontaneous change. For example, a hunter simply intent upon bringing a deer home by shooting the first one seen may catch a glimpse of a monster trophy buck and subsequently spend the rest of the season pursuing that animal and desiring to accept nothing else.
Although just about anything can happen, the hunter should begin with a clear goal to pursue. In this fashion confusion can be minimized, as careful planning and detailed organization pay off.
What are you seeking in the deer hunt? Providing yourself with this answer will surely help you to reach your goals.
Often “What you see is what you get.” Use your wonderful, inborn creative imagination to envision your quarry from the beginning. There is something magically positive about this thought process in the hunt. Not only will this skill assist the hunter in developing hunter strategy by eliminating unnecessary steps, it may be the key to success. Knowing exactly what you are after may help you to more readily identify it when it actually appears before you.
What happens inside the head is something difficult to talk about, but any hunter who has been at it a while will tell you that there is something going on there. The continually successful hunters just have it together to be winners, and this is a total mind set and not just blind luck or the ingenious employment of techniques.
Are you after meat? If so, minimization of time and cost may be in order. A legal doe or smaller buck may be your tender quarry. You may choose an area to hunt where doe populations are relatively high and fill your freezer with comparative ease. Leave the big antlers to grow larger for the trophy seekers. These genetically superior bucks make the best breeders in the herd. Take a spike antlered deer or a puny racked deer. These are the ones that usually don’t achieve big, wide antlers anyway. You don’t eat antlers. The well-balanced deer herd requires some culling by meat-hunting outdoorsmen–the hunters who should be honored, rather than belittled by their peers. Given the choice of shooting two, side-by-side deer, one with puny, bent spikes and the other with well-shaped forks, the conscientious hunter should choose the lesser animal and allow the better formed one to go on to maturity.
In these times we can expect to see a major improvement in wise game management. Hunter awareness and participation will increase.
The hunter who enters the South Carolina woods with a defeated attitude usually leaves the wilds that way. If the voice of truth inside you tells you that you are not going to get a deer that day, you may as well stay home and do some needed chores. Save your deer-hunting energy for another day. This is positive. Separate and heed your intuitions. The positive, confident hunter has a much higher productivity level than the one who really doesn’t believe he will score. If you think you are unlucky, then you will be unlucky. Have confidence, have faith, and listen to your inner self. Hunting in South Carolina is fun and rewarding.