How to Maximize Your Hunting Journal in the Offseason
Offseason Ideas to Utilize Your Hunting Journal
The offseason is painful if you are a hardcore deer hunter. Those nine months from the last day of deer hunting season until the opener feels like forever. Deer season never truly ends, however. It is just the hunting part that is temporary. Every deer hunter knows the offseason is as important as the actual season. It makes or breaks your hunting season. This is where your hunting journal can help your prepare, plan, and execute your offseason prep.
What Your Hunting App Does
Many hunters have traditionally kept logs of their hunts. For instance, in the old days hunting camps would have a hunting logbook where visitors would add the game they saw, animals they harvested, or other notes of interest. The next hunters to camp would add their observations and so on until years’ worth of data was being logged. It was great to remise around the campfire but written notes were hard to compile into meaningful information to help you hunt better.
Fast forward to today and now hunting journals have evolved into digital hunting logbooks available on your computer and smartphones. One particular hunting journal, TrophyTracks, gives you the same personalized hunting journal but adds mapping, weather, and analytics. These additions transform your observations and notes into actionable insights. The combined product makes you a better hunter. Excellent, right? But few hunters are taking advantage of their hunting journal during the offseason.
5 Ideas to Utilize Your Hunting Journal in the Offseason
We have already mentioned and you already know the offseason is a critical period as a deer hunter. The way you plan and prepare for deer hunting season sets the tone for success. Similar to deer season, you need to be able to track year over year what is working and what is not so you can adapt and get better. Hunting journal ideas for the offseason like these 4 will set up your deer season for success.
- Mark and Log Trail Camera Observations – A hunting journal can be used to track where you place trail cameras (mark locations), keep track of trail camera photos, and record observations on deer movements.
- Tree Stand Locations – Use a digital hunting journal to mark new tree stand locations and track weather around these sites. That pattern building will help you determine what stands to hunt when once deer hunting season comes around.
- Record Food Plot Variations – For each food plot you create, log the seed mix, site preparation (lime/fertilizer), costs, and location. This information helps you evaluate your food plot performance. Use it to prepare for next season to recreate a good plot or know which ones failed and try something new.
- Preseason Buck Observations – Trail cameras are great but nothing beats boots on the ground for preseason scouting. Log in your hunting journal what you see while you are out scouting. Mark key hunting locations in August and September to begin to pattern shooter buck movements. Use those observations to zero in on productive stand locations for early season bow hunting.
- Shed Hunting – A hunting journal is a great way to document your shed hunting season. You can find keys locations where likely sheds could be found, collect observations for next season, and store pictures of the “white gold” to share with others.
If you haven’t already moved towards a hunting journal app, the time is now. For those that have already put a hunting journal to use, think about these ideas on how to use it during the offseason. Trail cameras, food plots, tree stand locations, and preseason observations are only a few hunting journal ideas to get your offseason preparation off to a solid start.