10 things to do to prepare for next year's hunt
Whether new initiates or experienced hunters, we’re never too prepared for our annual meeting with the king of our forests. Here are some suggestions to help you put the odds on your side.
Prepare your body
In the heat of the action, we don’t want to be slowed by any obstacle. From prospecting to displaying the trophy, each stage of the hunt can quickly become a real physical challenge. It’s better to anticipate and prepare for all eventualities: walking on rough surfaces for long distances, crossing streams, carrying a loaded backpack, and more. Do your physical abilities match your motivation?
Practice your moose call
Sure. Okay. Moose calling in your living room may seem ridiculous. However, mastering their vocalizations is absolutely essential. It will help you gain confidence, while preparing you to respond appropriately to various situations. If the sounds you emit leave you perplexed, keep in mind that there are as many ways to make calls as there are moose in the forest. The internet is full of interesting tutorials to help you in your quest.
Learn more about the game you’re looking for
Reading and videos are easily accessible ways to learn about your target game. Knowing its lifestyle, habits, and personality can pay big dividends. When it comes time to outwit the cunning creature, knowing how to anticipate its movements and reactions is a major strategic asset. Hunting movies abound on internet and on various media sites. Watching a variety of these films can help you become familiar with different situations that may come your way.
Revise your evisceration techniques
Reviewing big-game evisceration techniques is essential if you want to avoid being caught off guard when it comes time for gutting. If you came up empty during the last round of hunting, you may not have practiced this maneuver in quite some time. This short video (in French only) will refresh your memory. The last hunting seasons have been particularly hot so be sure to choose your debit center in advance and notify your butcher of your dates of activity. As you leave the woods, every hour is important to ensure the freshness of your harvest.
Territory maps are your most valuable ally in a hunting situation. Unfortunately, they are too often underused. Analysis of topographic maps, satellite images, and forest maps will allow you to identify a multitude of indicators at a glance. Coulees can be natural moose trails, for example, while escarpments can provide excellent views. By checking out a map, you can also discover how to move around appropriately, away from the prevailing winds that propel odors, and find the sites where your prey rest and feed. Maps are information goldmines! Why do without them?
Adjust your hunting gear
Checking and maintenance of hunting gear are key elements of preparation to ensure safety, assurance, and precision. Practice is also essential in order to gain confidence and be comfortable in responding to the different situations that may arise.
Plan your installations
Spring is the ideal time to start preparing your various installations, including salt licks adapted to your territory, the choice of key locations for the establishment of watchtowers, and the setting up of lookout stations.
Plan your purchases
To avoid expensive last-minute impulse shopping, making a list of the gear needed for the expedition can be an effective solution. This will give you an overview of the expenses to be expected and allow you to spread the purchases over a long period of time.
Become familiar with other types of hunting
If stepping out of your comfort zone turns you on, perhaps you’re ready to try a new type of hunting. For example, trading that firearm for a bow or crossbow could be very exciting indeed. These types of hunting devices offer a higher level of challenge and force you to hone your strategies to bring the animal within closer range. If you’re tempted by this suggestion, remember that the Introduction to Hunting with a Bow or Crossbow Course (in French only) is mandatory.
Deepen all other related knowledge
Map and compass training, a forest survival course, a certificate of motor boat navigation, and more. Why not take advantage of the time ahead of you to polish your adventurer skills? Because there’s no doubt about it, hunting is an adventure!