Editor’s Note: Mark Davis of Sperry, Oklahoma, a fire fighter for the Oklahoma City fire department, has been a member of the Mossy Oak Pro Staff for 7 years. He’s been deer hunting for 31 years, since he was about 9-years old.
By going into the woods before daylight and before most hunters get to the woods, I ensure no one sees where I’m hunting. I come out of the woods after dark, and once again, other hunters don’t see where I’ve been. I do have an exception to the rule, in that if I take a deer during daylight hours, I go ahead and bring the animal out of the woods. I don’t mark the trail I’ll use to get to the area I plan to hunt. When I leave the road or trail I’ve walked in on, I’ll put as few fluorescent thumbtacks (Bright Eyes) into the bottoms of the trees as I possibly can to mark the route to my stand. However, most of the places I hunt, I rarely see another hunter anyway. Sometimes I use the GPS in my cell phone to lead me to my tree stand, but in most areas I can’t get cell phone service.
When I take a deer, I carry my tree stand, my bow and my daypack out of the woods, go back to my pickup and leave the tree stand and the bow there. I get my collapsible deer cart out of the truck and return to the deer. The little cart I use is excellent for carrying out whitetails, but I’m not so sure how effective it will be with mule deer or elk. My little cart easily rolls under road gates and allows me to get the deer out of the woods generally within an hour. By knowing how I’ll get my animals out of the woods, and by using the little cart that makes it easy to do, I create a big advantage over most public-land hunters. I don’t let the fear of success prevent me from going deep into the woods, where I know most of the deer have to be to survive.
Since I like to hunt from a tree stand, I’m a big fan of the Mossy Oak Treestand pattern. I’ve been wearing that pattern since it first was introduced, and most of my camouflage is Mossy Oak Treestand. However, I don’t think you can beat the Break-Up Infinity pattern for camouflage either. I don’t own a lot of Infinity, because I have so much Treestand, but I’m buying more of it. I truly believe that Break-Up Infinity is the pattern that’s working best for me, especially in the early season. Treestand works better in the late season on a clear day, because some of the colors blend-in better with a sky background.
Day 1: The Secret to Taking Deer on Public Lands with Mossy Oak’s Mark Davis
Tomorrow: Mark Davis’ Biggest Public Land Buck