The number one best tip for whitetail hunting today is, be a mobile stand hunter.
Stand hunting is still the best way to hunt mature whitetails, especially trophy bucks, but if you’ve been stand hunting during the past 20–30 years, you’ve doubtless noticed stand hunting isn’t as near as productive as it once was. Nowadays, you mostly see younger does, fawns and yearlings. Why? Because during the past 20–30 years stand hunting became so popular that today there is hardly a whitetail that has survived two or more hunting seasons anywhere in America that has not learned how to quickly find, identify and avoid stand hunters without abandoning their ranges. Climbing higher into trees hasn’t improved matters and using bait only provides temporary improvement (about two hunting seasons) because today’s mature stand-smart whitetails soon realize it is dangerous to approach bait sites in daylight hours during hunting seasons (fresh human airborne scents and trail scents being the primary tip-off). Despite all this, the addition of the word “mobile” to “stand hunting” can make stand hunting method as productive as ever, if not more so.
The word “mobile” in “stand hunting” means you should quit being the permanent, long-familiar, hunting season fixture known by every mature whitetail living within the square-mile or more surrounding your stand site. Mature stand-smart bucks living within that square that do not know you yet, being new residents, will generally discover you very soon, usually without your knowledge, during some brief moment in the first 1–30 hours after you once again begin using your stand, thereafter becoming another mature buck in the area that regularly detours widely around you.
The only practical way to stop this from happening is to quit stand hunting at the same site longer than 1–2 days per hunting season. Even better, change to a new, yet unused stand site 100 yards or more away every day or half-day. When you do this, every mature whitetail, including every mature buck, in the surrounding square-mile must find you all over again to be safe from you. Sooner or later, if you are well hidden by natural cover or man-made cover that closely blends with surrounding natural cover and downwind or crosswind of where you expect a deer to appear at each new stand site (absolute necessities when hunting older bucks these days), one or more mature bucks and other deer will approach within easy shooting range before they realize you are near.
Watch for best tip No. 2