Hunt the Most Optimum Window of Time

Show Notes

On this week's episode of the Pennsylvania Woodsman, Mitch sits down with Aaron Hepler for a whitetail hunting B.S. session.  Aaron is a diehard bowhunter and family man.  He spends countless hours in the offseason scouting and running cameras on public land in the big woods.  Camera data is excellent, but it becomes easy to rely on obtaining a picture first before having the confidence to hunt a spot.  Instead of reacting to a camera after a picture is taken, Aaron talks about being proactive using annual trail camera data.  This means taking historical information from cameras and hunter observation and hunting that specific window of time when things are heating up.  All that and much more.  Be ahead of the deer and don't be chasing!

Check out the Sportsmen's Empire Podcast Network for more relevant outdoor content!

Show Transcript

Mitchell Shirk: Hey everybody, welcome back to another episode. As as I'm sitting here recording this intro, it is Sunday morning. And it is early. It's it's before five o'clock in the morning, and the only reason that I am doing this intro for this [00:01:00] week's show this early in the morning on a Sunday morning is flat out because I can't sleep.

I am that excited I can't sleep, and that's because tomorrow, and as you guys listen to this, it'll all ready be over and done. Hopefully I'll have some cool stories, but... Tomorrow, Monday, will be the opening day of the New Jersey bear season. And that is the hunt that I've put a bunch of effort into, scouting, and...

Doing some work at, and I've just got a really good feeling. I've got a chance. I've been seeing a lot of bear on camera, a lot of daylight activity. There's a lot of sign in the location that I picked the tree that I picked for the wind that we're going to have on Monday morning. So I'm just flat out jacked.

I can't tell you the last time I was this excited to go and get in a tree. I'm always excited to be hunting. Don't get me wrong, but. This level of excitement that I've had for this hunt probably equates to [00:02:00] that of chasing the big Boone and Crockett whitetail that I killed in 2020. It's literally that much excitement.

And I think another reason that it hasn't, that it's been so exciting for me to think about bear is I just haven't been on anything from the whitetail perspective yet. Of the places that I have, a lot of the camera intel has gone cold, but that's not to say that they're not around. And the reason I bring that up is because we haven't had pictures at one of the properties that I hunt, my buddy and I, we haven't had pictures of a shooter in over a week.

Yet he he put a sit in this week and saw two of them. They were 50 yards just out of range and they never went anywhere close to a camera. So I'm not giving up hope by any means, just because I don't have pictures doesn't mean I'm not going to be hunting. I think I'm just going to be waiting for opportune times.

I'm hoping that the bear hunt thing,[00:03:00] I'm hoping that just takes the edge off a little bit and we can shift gears. It's funny, I was talking to another one of my hunting buddies that I do some bear hunting with and plan rifle bear hunting with and stuff, and he was like, So if you shoot a bear in New Jersey, does that mean that you're gonna lose interest in shooting a bear in Pennsylvania?

And you won't gonna want to come do that. I'm like, I have no idea. I'll be anxious to see if I would be lucky and I would be successful to kill one. I will be curious to see if that Scratches the itch or if I want to do it more because I could tell you like the adrenaline rush I've had chasing bear and scouting them and seeing them.

It's been pretty high. So who knows we'll see But as far as white tails, I did finally get some pictures on one property of a buck I had pictures of last year really neat series of pictures. I I believe he's a three year old. He was fighting in front of the camera with a smaller two year old for a long time.

He's a really nice buck. I don't know if I'll shoot him or not, but he's a really nice buck. And I'm [00:04:00] waiting on a couple of windows this season. And What I mean by that is windows of time where I see similar trends on certain properties year to year and hopefully following suit on an annual basis of what some of the deer do based on when the doe come into heat and when a buck comes to check those areas out.

And that's going to segue really well into. Introducing this week's guest. This week's guest is somebody who I've, grown a decent friendship with, and he's a heck of a hunter. He's a Pennsylvania guy and he is he's all about mountain deer. He's all about deer hunting in general, but heck of a nice guy.

Gave you the shirt off his back type person. And that's Aaron Hepler. And Aaron and I talk about a number of things, but one of the things we really talk about in Our conversation in of Whitetails is hunting windows and talking about taking camera [00:05:00] data or even hunter observation data from a year to year basis.

And if we can consider all things constant. of hunting pressure, seeing similar trends and not being afraid to go sit a spot around a week timeframe, just because we've had good Intel the years prior. Like I said, that's what I'm doing on two of the properties of two of the buck that I would like to shoot this year.

The one I'm literally, that I can sit in the tree and see him before I get a picture of him this year. I think that would be perfect because the last three years, there's a window between around October 25th and November 1st to 2nd, where this deer has showed up every year the last three years.

Assuming it's the same one, I believe it's the same buck, and the second buck, and the one that has... Quite a bit larger set of antlers. He is a, he's a deer. I only have one year's [00:06:00] worth of pictures. But so far the trend that I have noticed he's doing is very similar to last year. So hopefully that stays constant.

There was a few summertime instances of this buck last year, but I had not gotten a picture of that buck. All fall until almost mid November, and then it was like a light switch flipped, and he was cruising, he was with Doe, and it was daylight. That's mid November, so I got two windows for two specific deer.

And then beyond that, I'm just gonna be hunting by the seat of my pants. I'm gonna be hunting some good areas and see if I can run into something, and that's what happens, but... Aaron and I talk about this amongst many more things, whitetail oriented, scouting, hunting, bow hunting, philosophy.

And one of the things we touch on briefly is just our our belief in Christ and we've bring up the Sunday hunting. Ordeal and how people feel about that. And it's just a great conversation. I [00:07:00] really enjoy Aaron. I've been blessed to get to know him and hopefully we continue to make it a trend where he comes on the show.

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For a property that you don't have a lot of history with, Are you better off hanging stands with your gut feeling, or if I'm only going to hunt it, if I can count the number of times on one hand, am I better off just doing something like with my mobile setup and just hunting it the way you'd hunt public?

You just know your access. I struggle with that because growing up, [00:09:00] all I ever did was, you got to have it done by, September 1st or September 15th, I got to have these stands hung. So the way I'm prepped and this is where I hunt and my mindset's changing is do I really need to go through all that?

Hey, cause I've done it where I've hung stands and I never hunted them once. It's was it worth

Aaron Hepler: it? I guess if you shot a deer out of it, it would be worth it. But I agree. Like actually my buddy that, that owns a farm, you know them, but he he really hunts more mobile now.

He uses a climber. He's not, he hasn't really got, I haven't gotten him into a saddle yet. It's coming. But he he hunts more mobile and sees a lot more deer that way. And I, like they. They did the thing where you like hunt the same stands every year after year. Now he's always rotated them somehow. They always do a good job of rotating a few, but there's always ones that they like have year after year.

But he's been hunting more mobile and having much better encounters and getting closer to something that's more In the caliber that he'd like to be around

Mitchell Shirk: it growing up. Like I can think of[00:10:00] there was places I hunted where we'd have, gosh, 30, 30 different tree stands hang on stands prep for the season.

And a lot of them were really good stands, stuff can change year to year slightly. And a good buck in it. I learned that I would get complacent and I wouldn't be willing to move as much because I was like that's going to be intrusion to move and this and that. Hearing other people's perspective, you've done a lot of mobile hunting and there's so many people out there now that I'm in this podcasting role where I get to learn people's other tactics and stuff.

It's made me think, so I'm not sure how I'm going to handle that out there. I just know there's two spots that I know have a very good chance that I'll have a stand there. Whether or not I expand from that, it's hard to say. Yeah. But, we can getting into introductions here if people haven't noticed who I'm talking with.

I'm sitting now with Aaron Hepler. Aaron, thanks for letting me reign in your parade, crash your party here today. Yeah, buddy. Sitting in your workout den here. I'm I'm a little jealous. I'm not gonna lie. It's

Aaron Hepler: the [00:11:00] quiet place,

Mitchell Shirk: Right? It's the quiet place. I've been trying to connect with you to do a podcast now for months and It's a shame on me every time I think we're gonna find time to scout or do something together.

I feel like a broken record this year. Ah, I'm not gonna

Aaron Hepler: podcast with Mitch tomorrow finally. Like we, every time I feel like I got something going on when we want to do something.

Mitchell Shirk: It never fails. Like I said, I feel like a broken record this year. I got this going on and that going on.

So I just need to make time and make it happen. I wanted to chat with you, but from when we got here and we started talking, it doesn't sound like it's been much different for you.

Aaron Hepler: Busy. Yeah, it's been a busy summer. I think in May, we were calling it May cember because it's the holiday month.

But everybody's getting done in school. Getting ready for summer, but then it's not stopped this summer, like it's just have plans every weekend with somebody or, this and that. And I could, I told you my wife is going through like the job change and that kind of thing. So it's just been [00:12:00] very busy.

Mitchell Shirk: Yeah. I, I was telling you the construction on my house doesn't seem to end my goal was to in the beginning year I was like I want to have as much of this done by the busy season for work Which a busy season for me is like June July. Yeah, they have as much of that done beforehand as possible Now if I'll have it done before Hunting season I'll be ecstatic and the realism is that it's probably if I get it done by the end of the calendar year That'll be good Just never ends.

It just keeps dragging on but yeah, so you got a new boat. I want to hear about it What's it

Aaron Hepler: like the boats great man? You know living on live on a lake here or whatever, but I've never had I've only had John boats or canoes or, and that kind of stuff, but it's been a lot of fun. I actually didn't get fishing on the lake that I live on until this year.

Really. From the shore, we did a couple of times last year, but I didn't even have a John boat here last year.

Mitchell Shirk: And you can put boats, motorized boats on

Aaron Hepler: this lake. Yeah, there's two. So the small lake is just electric motors only the [00:13:00] big lake. You can, it has like a 40 mile an hour speed limit.

Which my boat doesn't go that far. I just have a little 40 Yamaha on it, but it's just an Alumacraft like 1650, but fishing off the, off a boat is so much better than shore and the fishing here is terrific. Like the bass fishing in June was, we caught a lot and I'm not like we're We're going to do a fish fry at some point.

Cause we were fishing for pan fish. Cause they're just like the bluegills are like. Dinner plates here. They're huge. Yeah, and there's a lot of perch and there's supposed to be a lot of walleye I haven't caught one yet. Did

Mitchell Shirk: you do any get any crappie here? Yeah, like that was my thing when we went to Canada.

We were there in 2018 I think it was we hammered crappie and had a fish fry and this is just my own opinion I'll probably ruffle some feathers saying this I think crappie is just as good as walleye

Aaron Hepler: I, as far as panfish, I've only had walleye maybe twice, so I had it in Michigan a couple of times and I thought it was delicious.

A buddy of mine gave me a couple of [00:14:00] fillets when he went on a trip to Erie and they are delicious. But yeah, crappie and perch is in the walleye family, but crappie and perch are delicious fish. So yeah, I was, I caught. I caught quite a few really nice ones, five really big ones, but then you're piles of, the smaller ones.


Mitchell Shirk: And I think my biggest thing is I just hate cleaning fish. That's my biggest thing. Yeah. So what's what's deer season shaping up for you like this year? I know you did plenty of scouting in the off season like you normally do. Yeah. I'm going to

Aaron Hepler: rely probably a lot on off season scouting this year.

I got out in the summer too. But I started hanging cameras in April this year because I had this inkling that I was going to be a busy summer. So I probably hung, I think I hung five cameras in April. And all new areas, like just going through, Hey, I'm going to, I'm going to put a camera here because expanding on some areas.

Like I actually, those five cameras, I actually just expanded on the area where I killed my buck this year or this [00:15:00] past year. And we can, I'll, I want to talk a little bit about that too. How I came across that area and stuff. But I put those up and then I did do some. I hung some cameras two weeks ago I think I put nine out two weeks ago.

So it's probably a little less cameras than I ran, but I wasn't planning on running more than 10 in like my core area. Cause I've really learned that and I honed it down. So I was going to spread, spread them out a little more. So as I I'm hoping to get out at least once more to put up a couple.

More cameras in new areas just to start building some more more hunting spots, but then As I hunt those, I'll probably just walk in and hunt some of those areas, burn, burn a hunt if it's not like a good day or something and just hang a camera in there.

Mitchell Shirk: A, sight and see, burning experience type thing.

So the cameras that you hung in April, you said it was a newer place. When you go in with a mindset there, I'm assuming you're going to let a camera soak. Do you prefer just using that for Intel to see if there's any quality deer that you're looking for? Or [00:16:00] what prompted you to say, this is an area I want to check out.


Aaron Hepler: It's not a full blown new area. Okay. So it's let's just say you hunt a block that, and this is not accurate at all, but let's say you hunt a a mile square block while I'm going to add on the next mile square that butts up to that. So it's just adding the pieces like, Hey, maybe these bucks are filtering from this way.

Cause you can get them on another camera. They're always coming from that direction, like going that way. But for new areas, I put them on obvious things. Like most of them are hung on scrapes because then I can get an idea for what. You get an idea for what deer are using that area, especially if you're getting the pictures in October.

They're not like a buck that's cruising through on a scrape line or some kind of docent that's just picking it up from miles away. You're getting that local intel of what they're coming to check that scrape every day. So you can get an idea of, oh, maybe You know, this buck's hitting it pretty close to daylight.

Maybe I'm closer to his bedding area at this scrape versus that one. [00:17:00] Or and then you connect the dots with the trails and that kind of thing, their travel routes and what terrain they might bet on. So it's just adding on, it's just an extension of something that I already know. But the reason that, so I, I killed my buck up in that area this year and we've known, we've hunted this area for three or four years now.

I think we've never ran that many cameras in there. One year we had two in there, and we put a cell cam on a scrape. I think... The one one benefit of cell cams with this is I think that because you get the pictures in like real time, not real time, but like day after or whatever, because I don't run them on real time really, mostly battery life issues.


Mitchell Shirk: like once every 12 hours is the one that's going to send you your picture you took throughout the day. Yep.

Aaron Hepler: Gotcha. I had, I think the, when you're getting pictures in that timeframe though, instead, if you get an SD card and you pull it, you're looking through everything.

You don't remember the dates that well, but if you get the [00:18:00] picture on that date, you're like, you start to remember that from year to year a lot better. It's I think last year I got pictures this day, and you look back and you're like, Oh, I was right. This is when I was starting to get pictures.

So we had a camera on a scrape in there for three years. And. You always knew it would pick up. You'd have a little flurry, like 13th through the 16th of October where you'd get some really big bucks. Checking that scary, but like eight o'clock in the morning.

Mitchell Shirk: And was that, did you, would you see that calendar you're based?

Or was there also any kind of anything weather related that sort of

Aaron Hepler: prompted that it always was probably related to a little, a little cold front, but it was all, it's always I feel like at that time of the year, a cold front might not be 20 degrees. It might just be five yesterday was 60 today is 55.

That's going to feel a lot cooler to a deer that's been living in the woods every day. You're going to be a lot more sensitive to temperature changes. And in early October, your work, your. So when it starts to cool like that, [00:19:00] even just a little bit, you get like that little flurry of activity. So maybe one year it would be the 13th and next year it would be the 15th.

But through those three years, you'd have that little window of activity and it was always daylight. And then it would you'd still have some, but it would taper off. And then it'd start to build back up around October 20th. And then. Pretty much through from like the 25th through November 1st, like you have.

Big bucks in daylight all the time on the scrape and it wouldn't know Specific time like they would usually as far as daylight photos go usually start at 8 8 30 And then you'd get maybe a picture at 10 always pictures at noon always pictures at 2 o'clock

Mitchell Shirk: It's like the location you're talking about with this scrape.

That was within security cover that you had this to correct.

Aaron Hepler: Not really. Okay. Yeah, this was a different so If you really get creative with your [00:20:00] mind, it was in security cover. So it's on an open, it was on an open Ridge basically an Oak Ridge. Yeah. An Oak Ridge. And I would say. I don't know if they burned back there a while ago, but there's a little strip of sassafras that kind of just, and it's not thick, it's not you can walk through it really easily, but there's a lot of saplings, just like a little vein of them, make basically from me to the wall I don't know, five feet, six feet Of this little vein that goes up through this through this Ritz, through this open area.

And then there's an old, there was an old clear cut, probably 15 years old. Cause it had, three, three timber, birch timber. Yeah. And that was probably maybe 150 to 300 yards down the ridge, cause it was like on an angle, whatever. But, they would always be coming up the ridge and going towards that old birch timber.

And I think they would bed down around the bottom of that. Cause it was, as far as the terrain goes, the bottom of that clear cut was a drop. So they would bed between the drop in [00:21:00] that old timber. But they just always seemed to, to cruise this thing. And they always, like I said, it was very specific times that you would get them.

Like you would always get a deer between eight and eight 30, sometimes around 10. Almost always at noon, almost always at two. And it was close. The does were using that sassafras strip to kind of bed along. So it's really nothing special, like you wouldn't walk in there, look at that scrape and be like this is the spot.

If you went through in the summertime Yeah, it's thick because everything's green and whatever so you would just be like, yeah, this looks good, but there's nothing uber there's no terrain feature that you would say all this pinches. I'm here for sure. Nothing like that

Mitchell Shirk: what you're describing is something that I get hung up on really easily in the example, I'll give 2019 the buck I killed in northern Pennsylvania with the gun.

It was a fairly new area to me and Where he [00:22:00] was bedded when I killed him Was it was I was walking a very steep side hill and this is open hardwoods. This is beech birch maple timber And I mean there's places you could see 250 yards, but on this side hill about 80 yards below me Was a pretty pronounced bench in this ravine and he was bedded on that bench And like I said, there wasn't really much security cover anything spectacular.

It was mostly like barberry Bushes type thing if there was any kind of shrub, but it was still very open when I got down to that level There was just a couple blowdowns There was a little bit of that barberry and there was just little minor differences throughout the woods that from a distance I didn't see that see much detail, but when I got into It was polluted with buck sign It was multiple beds stacked within where I killed him and I noticed on big woods Other places like I see Just a [00:23:00] little tweak in something and I'm like, ooh, this could be a place for the hunt and I'll go like almost too slow Like I'll get hung up on something that I just won't want to go to the next section because I'm like I think this is gonna this is gonna hold a good buck here Like I there's a ridge that I'm thinking of now that I go out And for two years, I kept thinking there was a section of blowdowns.

I'm thinking there's got to be something in here. And I spent more time that I ran camera there and it was pathetic. So I find myself like what you just described it. Nothing really seems that spectacular about it. I think about that Oh, this could be overlooked. And then I spend more time on it than I need.

You know what I mean? Yeah.

Aaron Hepler: Oh yeah. Totally. I do that. I do that pretty often, especially during shed, shed shed season. But I guess that's a good time to do it. Yeah. Yeah. I'll end up going in circles in the same area and then after a while you're like man I really wanted to get out to that other spot.

Why didn't I do that? You know Sometimes it's better to just put yourself on a straight line and be like this [00:24:00] looks good coming back here mark it and then move on because then Sometimes you can walk through an area and just eliminate it. I mean That for example I found some decent stuff in those that birch pole timber that we were just talking about.

I found some Okay, stuff in that. But most of the time you can just cross that off till there's nothing in there. If that browse is too high for them, they'll go in there mostly to travel, not usually to bed. If they're betting on it, they're usually around the edges. But sometimes you'll find You'll find like a little secret trail of bucks using one year and they'll be like a rub line and and it'll be huntable some, somehow, but usually that stuff you can almost cross off, you can almost cross it off the list sometimes.

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Another time that I think that I've seen that kind of highlight is better is, so when you look at the best available cover and best available grouse and stuff, that's usually what I go to. Depending on where you hunt with the amount of hunting pressure, that's also where the hunting pressure goes.

So what you just described in some of those places, I can think of a handful of places in some of the spots I hunt where those lower quality vegetation areas are actually good for hunting because people don't hunt them as much.

Aaron Hepler: Exactly. We have a lot of I don't know, is it black gum tree that we have a lot of here?

Yeah, lots of black gum here. Yeah, fantastic browse. Yeah, it's great when it's small, but when it gets big, they don't, they're not in there that much. But if you've [00:27:00] hunted it when it's small and you have it when it's larger, you'll find the funnel through it. Cause. They've been using it for years and years.

But there is a lot of a lot of black gum. Actually that one shoulder mount that I showed you, the public, the ten, the one from 2018, that was in, most of that clear cut is black gum.

Mitchell Shirk: Let me, speaking of black gum, any I've been able to, that's a fantastic tree if you're doing private land stuff to hinge.

Okay. Fantastic for that, because they'll eat the tops like crazy. It's very prolific in growth. I really like black gum, not to be confused with sweet gum, because sweet gum's the one that they talk about in the South that's just non desirable. Yeah. I'm gonna go back to your buck. You were talking about windows and I've been on a window kick too.

It's like the buck I killed in 2020 and there was a window of history I had when that deer specifically liked to show up and I ended up killing him in 2020 from that and I'm watching there's two deer I have in my mind this year on two different properties that Anywhere from [00:28:00] one to three years of history with them They show up at a very specific time and a lot of times in daylight during this these calendar dates And you were talking about windows there.

So just generally speaking, if it's not specific deer or a lot of those places you're hunting, you're confident that if I see the weather condition that I'm at, I got enough history. I'm going to go hunt this, even if I don't have the pictures there. Cause I always feel like I'm one step behind cause then I get the picture, then I want to go hunt it and I'm like a step

Aaron Hepler: behind.

So this is why I wanted to talk about this. And that's perfect. This is a perfect segue into that is I ran that camera for three years there. This year, I hung the camera in, I hung the camera really early. I think I hung it in turkey season and obviously it died in like August and it is a real hard hike to get in there in the summertime.

It's hot. There's lots of snakes and [00:29:00] It's not an area always hung a lot of cameras, so when you go in there, you're literally going to hang one camera, and then you're hiking all the way back out of there. And I was like, I'll just go do it when I go. I'll go hunt there early once or something, and then I'll hang.

And I never got back to it. And, when you get to October, you're like I don't really want to go in there if I'm not going to have a good hunt. Cause I know it's a good spot. I don't want to go jack it up. So then you just don't go in there when the season starts. And I was just like, you know what?

This spot's good because here's why we always got the pictures. Same every year same deal. Now, when I say big bucks, we're getting anything from a hundred to, in there we might have had, I'm trying to think, probably the best one we had in there was 145. But there, there's a lot of Pope and Young type, like a lot of 120s.

This mountain seems to have a lot of like tip, like 120 inch 10 pointers. That's like a, [00:30:00] there, there's a lot of them. Sure. We'd always get one real special one that was like 145 ish maybe so and me hunting public land. I'm good with. Like a hundred, 10, a hundred, 110 inch. I'm if I, if they gimme a shot, if think it's a blood pump and it's gonna get shot, I'm probably, I'm, and I'm not like a if I wouldn't shoot it on the first day, don't shoot it on the last day kind of guy.

I'm not either. I will pass up, I'll pass up a hundred inch during, on the first day. Some probably, unless I'm, unless it's something special about, but I might pass that deer on the first day, but I want to shoot a deer with my bow. That's my goal. I don't want to shoot my deer with my gun.

So I will probably shoot a hundred inch deer on the last day, 10 times out of 10, because I just want to shoot a deer with my bow. I don't really care.

Mitchell Shirk: There's nothing wrong with that. I don't, I like where you're going with this, but I got to stop you there. Cause I got to bring that up. I've been harassed by that comment so many times.

Don't shoot something on the last day that you wouldn't have shot on the first day. I completely disagree with that because. If [00:31:00] you've got an entire hunting season, if you shoot something first you, you could have better experiences. Don't even talk about the deer. Think about how much time you miss when you don't get to go.

It's to me, it's the hunting experience, but if it's something you'd be happy with the first day and it shows up the last day, to me, it's just, what does it matter?

Aaron Hepler: If I like. Doe bleeded it in or I stalked it or whatever like I'm probably gonna shoot if there's like some cool story that goes with it I'm probably gonna shoot it cuz I won't forget it.

Yeah, like a Big buck isn't much without the story To me I don't know. So a hundred inch deer can make me happy again. Like my goal this year is to shoot a buck on the opener. I might not do it, but I will lower my standards pretty low to shoot a buck. I've never done it, so I want to do it.

But I think that it, I think that is important. Like maybe I won't shoot a hundred inch deer on the first day, if it gives me the opportunity, but on the last day, it's probably going to. I like gun hunting, but I'd rather shoot a deer with my [00:32:00] bow. And I also like to eat deer a lot. So if I don't shoot that buck, it is not going in my freezer.

And then you're also saying guaranteed you're going to get one with your gun. Like you might not get an opportunity, like public land hunting, especially in this corner of the state with a gun is not, it's hit or miss it's hit or miss. And it's not really safe. During the week, you can get out during the week and probably, have less crowds, but there, it is, when everybody says the pumpkin patch, it is literally like that.

Some places, yeah. You go out, and you can just count the hillside on how many orange dots

Mitchell Shirk: You try to shoot a doe in orchard season to alleviate the meat stress for you.

Aaron Hepler: Oh, yeah. Yeah. My problem is I'll hunt for a buck on the opener, and then I I usually, I shoot a doe right after that, but most of your best time to shoot a doe is on the first day, too, because you can,

Mitchell Shirk: yeah, it's always the first day and first time in is always the most fun, but anyway, we're getting off [00:33:00] topic, we were talking about your windows and some of the places you were in for your buck last

Aaron Hepler: year.

Yeah. So I, so that camera died back to that story, that camera died. I didn't get back in there. What had happened the last couple of years is one of my buddies had gone in at the end of October, not this past fall, but the previous one and sat in there I guess actually when we first hung that camera, I did shoot a buck that was on that camera pretty far down the ridge.

It was that smaller that 90 inch six pointer that you saw up there on the wall. I killed that buck not far from that area, and it was on that camera, end of October. So he goes in there last year, and he hit a really nice buck, probably in a 130s, 140s, it was nice. And I think he ended up tracking it like a mile.

He couldn't figure out how he hit the deer. It was probably back and low, is my guess.[00:34:00] But he chased it for a mile and a half and lost blood, couldn't find anything. And blood trail was another, anything spectacular. Almost like it was like a good flesh wound that he kept pumping, but He was not able to recover that deer. And we ended up sending a buddy in there, I think a week later, and he shot his first public land buck. It was a six point little six pointer. When he was. It was funny because none of us were available to help him pack this deer out, so he ended up putting his tree stand on his back and the whole deer and hiking out with it.

So he shot this six pointer and he gets out to the access trail and a 10 pointer is standing on the access trail. Getting ready to go into where we always sit up in that area. And it is an area where you can just have people just go back to, because it's in October. You couldn't do that because it's like their home bodies, like there's a lot of consistent bucks, but as November [00:35:00] tapers on, it's where all the bucks will cruise through because we'll get a lot of big.

Pictures of big bucks, like November 14th, anywhere from the eight through the 14th, we'll get some pictures of big bucks cruising through there at noon.

Mitchell Shirk: Have you ever seen them in their deer?

Aaron Hepler: You never saw before deer never saw before, right? So you could have people just go back in there if you need to.

So I, this year I was sitting there. At the on the, at the end of October. And, I I actually hit a deer. As what I had this big buck come in and I snort. We, he was following some does. So he came up the ridge, he was following some does. Pretty typical of the pattern up there. It was 8 o'clock in the morning.

And he was following these, this group of five does that had gone through and I snort wheezed at him and he turned on a dime and started like basically trotting down the hill towards me and the thermals were perfect, like they were coming up the ridge, but as soon as they would come up, they'd go straight into the air.

So he [00:36:00] wasn't getting me at all. And I thought he was gonna circle and actually catch my wind, but he didn't. He like just kept coming and I'm like, this deer is going to give me like a five yard shot. And he he ended up being it. 10 and I had my bow drawn and I squeezed the trigger and I ended up hitting I ended up hitting a branch that just was like in my, like branches, they get a little blurry when they're, when you have that.

Mitchell Shirk: And they're probably below your line of

Aaron Hepler: sight. Yeah. That's what you're looking at, right? You're looking at your sight pins. You got, you're focused on the deer. And I remember like shooting it, hearing something crack and seeing the branch going wiggling in that breeze when I hit him. But I hit him back, like I hit him.

I probably hit him in the hip, it looked like I gut shot him, but the way the arrow was, I think it went into his knee. Because when I found the arrow, the only thing that had any type of, had like clear fluid on it was the was the broadhead. There was no meat on the arrow, no blood on the arrow, nothing.

And I had a little bit of, I actually had a little bit of a blood [00:37:00] trail. And I was talking... I think the whole time Chad props to Chad, he like talked me through Oh, you need to look for this. Look for that. Chad's really good at blood. Chad Sylvester's really good at blood trailing.

So he was helping me through it and I called some trackers and they're like, you hit that deer in the knee joint. There's no way you're going to, unless you get a D unless you keep him going, but he might go for days and but that was like, that was probably 130 inch a pointer.

So it was a big. Initially I was like, ah, he wasn't that, I was trying to make myself feel like he wasn't that big. He was probably like 115 and then I was like, no, he wasn't.

Mitchell Shirk: Yeah. Insult injury turned a knife a little bit. So

Aaron Hepler: I know the spot's good. I still don't have any pictures up there. I'm like. I'm going back. I don't think I'm going to see that deer again, but it would be nice if I did. A, B, I know it's a good spot. I know we can send people in there again. So I went November 8th [00:38:00] and I actually saved all these stories on my Instagram. You can go and see it. But it's like when I was coming in the access trailer deer everywhere, I saw a buck chasing a doe down a Ridge.

You went in the morning, right? Yeah. I went to go into my stand and there were five does standing under the tree that I was going to pick. In the general vicinity of the tree that I was going to sit in. So I just stayed on the access trail for 20 minutes until they filtered out. And I got into the spot good, didn't bust anything.

And I think I took a picture of my bow on the ground and said today's the day. And then I have like succession, like eight, and everybody was texting me, Oh, how's it going? I'm like, I didn't see anything yet, but my eight 30 is my time today. And I actually. My wife texted me about something and I responded, it was 8.

32, and I hear a deer coming, and I see his rat coming, and I drew my bow, and was like, that'll do cause it's winding down, it's the rut, and I'm like, that'll do, and I remember telling [00:39:00] myself heart shots only and he got eight yards and I pulled the trigger saw it open up in the in his heart watched him run 40 yards or 40 50 yards turned around came back towards me and fell over and I was like, holy crap.

And I texted her back. She's you didn't get like I called her and she was like, what are you talking about? You just texted me literally two minutes ago. And I was like, yeah, I know. I killed

Mitchell Shirk: it. Put your phone in your pocket. Yeah. Here it came. Yeah. Yeah.

Aaron Hepler: So it was it was a really cool morning and I've told this before on other podcasts, but it's my favorite.

It's my favorite thing to talk about, but one of my good buddies that lives, lives here in this same community. He wasn't doing anything that morning, but he had some errands to run in the morning so he couldn't hunt with me that day. But I texted him and I was like, yeah, I got one down. He's we gotta, you want me to come and help track?

I'm like, we don't need to. He's oh, I'll come help you get it out. So he didn't. He had like his he had he has a little car so he [00:40:00] couldn't drive up to the area It's to the road is way too rough for him to get in there. So my wife actually picked him up She's like I'll pick him up and drive him and he can bike in and help You know get it out.

You can bike a little bit. It's not an easy bike It's like you true blue mountain bike you can get in at least a quarter of the way and like help, you know helps relieve some of the long hike but He biked that quarter of the way, hiked the rest of the way in, and we're like deboning this deer.

Cause I pack everything. I have a quarter mile rule. If I got to drag further than that, it's getting packed out. Yeah. I

Mitchell Shirk: wish I would have had that rule

Aaron Hepler: sooner in my life. So I yeah, I agree with you cause I didn't start doing that until I hunted. Mostly public, but we were deboning this deer and he's whistling.

I'm like, Oh, is there a deer over there? He goes, no, I turn around and my wife is walking through the woods. So that was really cool. Cause she's been with me when I've killed deer on the farm and or [00:41:00] been there when I've got brought to your home and stuff, but she's never come to do help do a pack out on public or anything.

She found you on her own, right? Yeah. She logged into my Onyx and found So you didn't even send it to her? I didn't even send it to her. Because she had gone in there with me before to pull that camera. And she was like, my buddy told her my buddy Jared was like, it's round in here.

So she had an idea of where it was, but she gets lost very easily. So for her to Pick a pen and find me. And I was like, Oh, that's very impressive. She came out to

Mitchell Shirk: you and you were like, you've never been hotter in my eyes. I

Aaron Hepler: know, exactly. So she helped us. We were, she helped us like put all the meat in the game bags and she packed up, made it nice.

Cause she like put a lot of my gear and clothes in her backpack. Jared and I carried the deer out, but so it was a really fun experience, but. But all in all, I didn't, you can't [00:42:00] say that I ran a camera there and used Intel this year from that camera. No, it was all history. So what I'm doing now is I'm building that area larger mostly because it's I don't want to go hunt the same tree every time I go in there.

I know it's a good area because we get a lot of good pictures and it's good to expand on areas that you. Know are good because you can find another like sweet spot like that where they always come through. I have a question

Mitchell Shirk: on that, too So the area you're talking about you're talking about a window now when you go to hunt that is The terrain in such a manner that the thermal gives you an advantage for a certain time of day or do you have to be specific?

With the wind direction that's coming for that because I think about hunting publicly and hunting those windows certain places in certain deer I've hunted in my time like I get that window, but if I don't get the right wind, I can't hunt it. And like with public, sometimes you roll the dice and sometimes you've got terrain that, it's I was wondering your thought on that.

Aaron Hepler: So it's not, like I [00:43:00] told you, there's not, it like a gradual uphill slope where we're hunting and there is a, like a drop off the ridge, but it's it. It's not enough that it would affect your wind too much. Like it wouldn't really matter too much. Now, in early October here we get like southwest winds pretty often.

Yeah, that's like the dominant. Yeah, but then towards the end of October, those northeast, northwest winds are a little more common. Because it's getting colder, so you will sometimes get that northeast, northwest wind. In this spot, the only wind that you can't hunt is a south wind because there's a doe bedding area that if you hunt a south wind, they peg you when you're walking in.

If you're up a tree before they're in their bed, sometimes you can get it to blow over them. If it's a stiff south wind you, which never happens because south winds are down and then it drifts down. So if you had like a storm blowing up from the South and then you had a pretty good, always 14 miles an hour South wind, you might get it to blow over their [00:44:00] heads.

I don't hunt it on a South wind because every time I've been in there on a South wind, I don't see a deer. And I think it's probably because I'm blowing it out. Cause any other time you sit there, deer. That's part of just experimenting too. Like you can guess what the right wind is, but a lot of times you get it wrong.

You think, oh the deer bed over here, they feed over here, so I gotta sit here on this wind and you don't see deer. Why didn't you see deer? Probably because you were wrong. They probably bed here and feed here and your wind blew into them. Cause, either that or you're in the wrong spot. But a lot of times a lot of times if you get the wind right, you're gonna see deer.

At some point, even if it's, even if it's further away. So most of the time, I think if you're not seeing anything, either a you're in the wrong spot, deer aren't moving, which are probably less likely than your wind blew into them. I'm

Mitchell Shirk: glad you brought that up. Cause that's a good point. I think that all the time, if I'm hunting somewhere and I've got deer sign that tells me they're here and I'm [00:45:00] not seeing them.

The wind or the thermal mostly has got to be doing something that I don't realize and I'm getting busted. Because I've hunted deer where sometimes it's you drop milkweed or you puff a bottle or something and the wind direction's going this one way and then 90 degrees over here they're blowing at you and you're like, what the heck?

And then all of a sudden it just, you follow the milkweed going that direction, 50 yards down the road. It's what is going on here? And I think that all the time in terrain, like I'm probably missing something there,

Aaron Hepler: but. So the one advantage in this area, any time that I've hunted there, it didn't matter what the wind direction was.

Like I could be standing out on the access trail, which is pretty up top and flat. I'd be up there, drop the milkweed and the wind it'll go the way. Whatever the way the wind is going on your weather app is the way the milkweed would blow. Rare in this area, but that's good. You get up in a tree, in this tree for...

Rare for this area, but good. But not for this tree all the time. [00:46:00] So the only bad wind, like I said, was the south wind because it was the only wind that went the way that it was saying it was going to go when you were in the tree. If deer are bedding to your north and you're sitting on a south wind, that wind always went to the deer.

However, any other time I've sat in that tree, the wind goes the direction I want it. But the weather app says it's doing something different. If I drop milkweed, the wind, the milkweed would always tend to go towards the towards the southeast. Almost all the time. It would either go it would either it would basically be, it would be like having a northwest wind.

Or, it would go It would go straight east, which would be out the ridge drops off towards the east, not drops off, but like the gradual slope is towards the east. So everything that I was, all my wind that was blowing towards the east was going over everything's heads out to the end of wherever it was way up, and as the sun came up, it would just, [00:47:00] it would like.

Push that up to the Northwest still, and it would go straight up in the air. So all your wind in that it's almost like a bolt. It was almost like a skateboard ramp where all his wind is just going out and away from you, but it was all, you could always go in there no matter what wind it was and know which way your wind, your.

Your wind and your thermals were going to go unless you got like a pretty strong wind, which really haunt that area too much on, I haven't hunted it too much on strong winds. But like I said, South wind was the only one that I really ever had trouble with. Cause it's the only one where the wind would do what it would say it was going to do.

But then you could go in there and know Oh, my thermals are going to do this all the time. Cause I'm either going to have my wind going to the Northwest or what, and what was crazy is it would always be just off, right? The deer also came from a northwest kind of direction, but the wind would always be just a little bit to their right or to their left where they're they're just not in your scent cone, either A, they're not in [00:48:00] your scent cone or B, the wind is blowing, your wind is blowing over top of them before they get to that Area of discomfort.

The other advantages is like most of these areas around here access trip, people are so into hiking and recreation now that if you're hunting close to a trail, I don't know that they can tell the difference. Oh, this person's in here now versus this person walked here an hour ago.

So there, they seem to be a little more relaxed when you can tell sometimes when they hit people sense. And they'll put their nose in the air and lick a little bit or whatever. And they're walk slow for a couple of minutes and then they go back to normal. I think. There, these areas that aren't so far from access trails, like they, they get a little bit of, they're not dumb to human scent, but they're a little more, they don't take it as Oh, I got to bust out of here right now, because they don't put site, they tend to put site with smell more often.

So if they smell you and see you, then you're screwed. [00:49:00] But if they smell you, they do that Oh, I'm going to take my time a little bit, but they don't just automatically bust out of there.

Mitchell Shirk: Speaking of senses. This is one thing I've taken from somebody else. I heard this statement one time, like for a younger deer, a fawn takes three senses for him to bust you.

For a doe, it takes any combination of two to bust you, and a mature buck, it might only take one. You brought up a good point with the axis stuff, like I, I attribute that the same concept to like at my house, where I've got an in ground dog fence and deer know there's dogs there. But if for some reason that fence would get turned off and they can get outside that boundary, they can sense that. And I think it's the same thing they're used to human... interaction within this certain realm, if it goes beyond that into their neck of the woods, they're going to probably be on, on more full alert.

So I think about that with an access trail. First of all, people, [00:50:00] most hikers don't deviate too far off the access trail. Sometimes they do. If it's. Within 30 to 50 yards of an access trail. Yeah, that's probably a little bit different to them But I mean if you're way off the access trail and it's a strong prominent thing That's where I think the red flag goes up, but I agree with you that like you can get away The biggest thing I learned is don't hunt some of them places on a saturday when the hiking is the most

Aaron Hepler: dominant because then they're putting the sight and the smell together.

Yeah, and you're screwed But and like I said, you can tell That most of the time I have enough of the thermal advantage that it's blowing up and away from them and out over the top of wherever I'm hunting in this, especially in this particular area. So either they're so far away that it doesn't really matter or they're not putting two and two together, but anytime that it has, like maybe they're on the edge of my scent cone or something and pick up a little something, you can tell that they smell.

Something that they, you know, something's making some kind of sense, how do your get when they [00:51:00] just like get a little stiff legged and they put their head down and put their head up and put their head down and put their head up and that body language stuff that you're reading that that deer knows something's not quite right, but then they spend enough time in it that they just relax and they're like nothing happened to me yet.

So I guess I'm good. I don't know. That's probably not what they're thinking, but then they just go back to what their normal thing. Yeah. I have, I can't say that I'm not like hardcore scent regimen, but I change my clothes when I get to wherever I'm so sweaty when I get into wherever I'm going.

So it's not even just for scent. If I don't peel off that layer and get rid of it, I'm cold. Yeah. Because you're just wet when you walk into that stuff. So usually what layer you got on, it's not fun, right? So usually I'm, and I don't change at my stand. I'll change like. far enough away that scent isn't going to matter that much.

And I'll put those clothes in a plastic bag, just leave them there and pick them up on my way out. But then a, I'm a lot more comfortable because I'm not wet anymore. And [00:52:00] then B, like I'm wearing. I use that ozone closet out there. I don't know if it works, but it doesn't, it definitely decreases human scent.

It absolutely does. I use the same thing. Yeah. I'm not like a firm believer in, cover scents of work. If you have if you're going to get cover scent, that's like chemicals and sprays, you might as well just rub your clothes in the dirt when you get there, if you're going to do like a scrape center or something, but the ozone thing is definitely I'm a pretty firm believer in the ozone. I think

Mitchell Shirk: it does a good job of removing human scent from your clothing. The problem is, all of our clothing that we wear, unless it's got some kind of liner or something, it's permeable, and human odor goes through that. I still think if they get human scent...

You're probably not going to be like, I used to go through so much crazy I, this, my, my scent control process started I would do I would do the family wash that was left to do, and I would do it in just unscented clothing, or, yeah, unscented detergent. Then [00:53:00] I would do all the bath towels.

Then I would do... Only socks and stuff like that and I would do that and like I kept this process because I wanted to before I put my Main hunting clothing. I want to wash the washing machine out as many times as possible unscented things and you know I used to do you know, I always kept Separate boxes with light different types of layers throughout the season and you know I wear at one time go on the pile and I'd restart the process and I try to wash enough clothing throughout the hunting season And I just got to a point where I'm like I'm doing all this work And I'm still getting winded.

Yeah. So what point is it? Like it's just not fun

Aaron Hepler: anymore. Yeah. Yeah. Oh 100 And since we're talking about, I think it's something that can really stress and burn out new hunters is Oh, you got to send control this and do that. And there's so many products for this and that I don't have that at all anymore.

Other than, like I said, that I think changing when you get in, but that serves two purposes. If you're cold at the end of [00:54:00] October, you're not sitting for more than three hours. You know what I mean? Like you can't do it. And if you do you might have, you get like a 20, 30 degree morning, end of October, early November, and you're sitting there wet.

You're either A, ruining your opportunity, or you could cause yourself some issues if you're out there, but I did the same thing, wash my clothes and all this. Now, honestly, my wife is very good with all the with all the hunting habits. She's, we actually don't use any scent in our detergents or anything, just because, A, my daughter has like sensitive skin, so it's easier to wash and like free and clear stuff and I, that we use a lot of tea tree oil and that's actually like natural scent type, I mean it smells like It's had glycerin in it or whatever, so it's like natural kind of sense or whatever.

But I do notice like even the ozone like really takes out, you get, go ahead out, go out there and sweat your bum off in some [00:55:00] hoodie in the middle of summer or something, and then put it in that closet. You might have to run it twice, but that stench goes away. It does. And, but one thing that it doesn't take away real well is like chemical smells.

So if you wash your clothes in Tide or something and then put it in that thing, it... It takes a long time for that smell to go away. And I think it's because it's it, what it's really doing is killing bacteria. So it's a good way to, those ozone closets are a good way to extend the life of your camouflage.

Cause if you wash your camo clothes 18 times in the lawn, like they get faded, so that there's one good aspect of a, of ozone, you really don't have to wash your clothes. For most of the year because you can really get it you can really treat it well in those closets one

Mitchell Shirk: thing I'll say about ozone So my ozone closet is a little bit on the redneck side and I got this from somebody else this wasn't my brilliant idea, but literally took an old refrigerator that broke and Put racks in it and took you [00:56:00] know, your standard ozone like car cleaner thing.

Yes, it's cheaper, right? Yeah, and stuck it in a fridge. It works

Aaron Hepler: great. Oh, that's a great idea They actually probably have a little more These don't have really potent o this was a gift, but they don't have super potent oz. Oh

Mitchell Shirk: yeah. This is way more ozone than you need for that space. Like you're talking about enough ozone to cover this room and we're putting it inside of a refrigerator.

That works really well. One thing I'll say though, in that situation, and it could be because we're putting, you're generating more O two for an, O three I guess for, you're right, for for space that small, but it's really hard on elastic after a while. Yeah. Like waistbands and Yeah, if you put backpacks and stuff that has elastic stretch and buckles and stuff on it. Yeah,

Aaron Hepler: you have to be like don't put your bow in there You'll ruin your bowstring probably. Yeah I think that I think Isn't it just synthetic rubbers that it's hard on though? it could be because I think people were talking about sick of clothing having issues with like With the elastic bands and stuff getting but they fixed that so I think that it is if it's [00:57:00] natural rubber or something like that It doesn't break down as easy.

You could be right. I think over a period of time It still will but I haven't

Mitchell Shirk: paid attention close enough to know

Aaron Hepler: that yeah, you do have to be careful with your stretchy stuff, but if you got merino wool stuff the automatic like that already comes with It's own like natural scent repellent stuff.

Like that stuff takes a long time to get stanky, but you put that the Marina wool stuff in there and it's, it works great. And I love Marina wool. I, honestly, like I was like a.

I like to spend money where it's going to get me something that I really wanted for a while. And usually clothes, wasn't that I'm like, ah, I'll just wear this. I'll wear that. I'll wear it. See it's like the real tree Wrangler special at Walmart or something. Oh, those are the pants I'm wearing, or whatever.

That's what I did for a long time, but when you when you use Merino wool I have a couple of pieces, I have a couple outfits, like First Light stuff or a couple things from Sika. It's very worth, it's [00:58:00] very worth your time and your money for it. Mostly because like it definitely gets you more time in the tree because you're, you can just brave other elements that you didn't really, weren't really willing to do before and you don't really realize it until you wear that stuff that you're like, oh, yeah, I can, Tolerate this a little better, but it also is more comfortable.

It's more quiet Like it's it is more enjoyable and it ends up being worth Like even if you only have you don't have to have a closet full of all this stuff You just need like a couple pieces and it gets you a long way because it lasts forever. It's easy to clean Merino wool is like the warmest thing I've ever worn, and It's nice too because it's also one of some of the coolest stuff you'll ever wear in hot hunting weather So

Mitchell Shirk: yeah, I can echo that cuz I would always be the same way I'd get the cheapest clothing possible and I'd have I've had totes full of clothing.

Yeah, exactly I started throwing stuff away cuz I don't need this. Yeah,

Aaron Hepler: I did too cuz it's just yeah And [00:59:00] that stuff gets so gross like you get that dirty hiking ones like you're washing Butt sweat out of that forever. You know what I mean? It's like exactly what you mean I might as well throw these ones out or they turn into turkey hunting clothes.


Mitchell Shirk: that's a good point. Yeah, it's a good thing They don't smell. Yeah Going back on the window thing. So you were talking about like that camera for the buck you shot last year you'd gone in there on a window period and you were talking about You got more cameras in some areas, so you're clustering more cameras and stuff, so Are you looking in some of those areas for more windows for the future?

And I'm kinda curious going into this coming season Are you thinking about approaching windows very similar to the way you did with that buck last year? And are you using cell cameras to help solidify that in any

Aaron Hepler: case? In this area, I'm not using cell cams mostly because I end up using cell cams in areas that are like, I would call core hunting areas or whatever.

Like I'll [01:00:00] use those to see when those areas start to heat up. And I think you almost. Using a bulk of cameras in one area helps you really learn, dial everything in. But one thing it really ends up confusing your mind on is when that window is. Because you just get pictures every day when you have 10, 20, 30 cameras out in one area.

You're getting so many pictures that you're not you don't narrow it down as well to... These three days or whatever in my mind unless you keep like beaumar tonic it and keep long excel spreadsheets, right? I struggle with that. Yeah, I do too. But I mean I have some good idea but then like You might get a homebody buck on 10 out of those 20 cameras you're using and oh, which one is he hot on?

Like you start to get confused by it If you don't if you're not really writing everything down and like this date he was over here this date He was over here this date. It was during the day but I won't use cell [01:01:00] cams in a particular in this particular area, but yeah I am expanding on I'm trying to expand on windows, but also Also to learn more about the caliber, because like I said, there is, there are some really great bucks up there.

But when you get most of the bucks that I get that are big are only going through once or twice, I might only have. I might get I might get like a one 40 in the last week or two of October. And then I might not see that buck on that doesn't mean he's not there, but I might not see that buck on camera again until the end of the first week of November because he's coming back from, he checked it out in October and knows there's stuff good going on there and comes back through and during the rut again, doesn't mean he's not there, but I might get the same, 110 inch 8 pointer every morning at 830, so it's learning Hey, is, are those bigger ones spending more time over this direction versus here? And there, this is just the edge of something they want to be checking out. And that's why I'm getting them. Cause [01:02:00] they don't seem to be homebodies.

Mitchell Shirk: So like that Roamer, like you, you just described an example of a 140 Roamer that shows up the first week of November and then. It might, let's just say it's a two day, two or three day period where like he shows up in the morning on November 5th, and then he showed up the morning of November 6th and the evening of November 6th And then he was gone for a month and then you've got You got no pictures of him then all sudden gun season comes to a close and then all sudden boom He shows up and he made it through gun season.

So like in your mind Is that window in November, is that enough for you to think he made it through gun season, I'm going to go hunt that location or around it, just to see if that window happens again the following year.

Aaron Hepler: Yeah, a hundred percent. Actually, the one year I was going back there to pull that camera, it was the year that I went back with my wife to pull that camera.

I went on the last day of muzzleloader season. And I didn't, I don't, I'm not sure if I had the deer that I saw on camera, but when we were walking back there, there [01:03:00] was a half rack and he was probably one of the biggest bucks I've seen on the hook. That's not true, but he was probably 140 inch deer, but you could only see the one.

He only had the one side and he was chasing does on, I think it was January 12th. That sounds right. Yeah, that sounds right. End of muzzleloader season. Whatever it was the last day and we were hiking in there to get this camera out. And he just, I have a picture of him, he just stopped on the road and he's big.

Thick antler big buck. But yeah I think I might have had a picture of him on the camera, but I don't. I don't remember if I did or not, but yeah, I will go back there and say Hey, like I had that buck cruising, which is why I went back and to hunt my deer that day.

Cause I knew that I had bucks. On camera from like the 6th through the 13th, I think more towards that 11 to 13, I had a lot of bucks like at midday, between 830 and midday, I had a lot of good bucks cruising through [01:04:00] that area. So I knew it was like a good time to be in there for rut. So yeah, I would go back there and hunt.

Hunt that at that point.

Mitchell Shirk: That's what I'm using for me this year. The two deer that I have in mind that like I know made it through I know they're of caliber I would shoot and they're on small properties that I can hunt like that's all I have like I know that those deer made it through And I know that these specific times is when they came through So like when i'm looking at my calendar throughout the year I mean I have times I want to go hunting as much as I possibly can like but when i'm like talking about It with my busy schedule like we were talking about at the beginning Talk about with my wife.

I'm like look if there's any way possible that I can get like a two day window around here That's what I'm going off of unless I find something else and I know that's want to win But I feel like I got enough knowledge of the property to at least roll with that and yeah, see what happens

Aaron Hepler: roll the dice on it Yeah, and though the dates are a good thing to go by man But like i've had some good i've had some good [01:05:00] early october encounters I've had some good mid october encounters, but that last like between Basically between the 19th and the 31st of October are really my favorite time to be in the woods because the 19th, it might not be great, but it's when it's starting to, it's starting to heat up a little bit, especially if you have one of those good Octobers where you get where the weather is not, it's not even just always cold.

It's more the I guess you can call it con, we'll call it weather contractions, where you have a cold day and two hot days, a cold day and two hot days. 'cause it makes that cold day really good 'cause they feel it coming. , whether it's the barometer or whatever. But I like it better when it's that way versus oh, I just have a week of cold because that's just not that's bad either.

Like it's still good, but I like the fluctuation better. Last year we

Mitchell Shirk: had a bunch of fluctuation two years ago. We had like none. It was really poor for that. Cause I'm the same way. It seems like if you got those ups and downs, it just it gives you a couple percentage. When do you start to feel confident in morning hunts in [01:06:00]

Aaron Hepler: October?

I always hunt mornings in October, but I feel confident probably around the 14th. I'll start. Yeah. So maybe a little earlier than some people, but I still hunt. I still hunt the mornings sometimes. Absolutely.

Mitchell Shirk: I, certain properties, I've stopped hunting the mornings just because what I know about the properties.

It's, to me, it's not worth risking it for a better evening hunt or for something later in the year. But, there's still plenty of other places where, yeah, if I'm not going to hurt anything, I've got enough places to cross off my list, why not throw a sit

Aaron Hepler: at it? The one thing that might keep me from hunting mornings is It gets light earlier, and if I know I'm not going to be able to get in there before I'm going to jack everything up, then I don't, I won't go in that far.

And we talked about does in the beginning. If you are trying to take some pressure off by shooting does early in the season, go out in the morning and shoot those. Oh, absolutely. Who cares? Like you're not going to, you might [01:07:00] bust deer out and you might spook does or might make you make yourself a bad hunt because you've.

kicked out of bedding area or something, but you're not going to get those does to leave. If there's a family group of does, you have to try really hard to get them to go to the next County. You know what I mean? Like they're coming back. At some point, especially if you're hunting, if you're somebody that hunts like knock on door permission type stuff, like that doe group is not leaving there, they might shift a little bit and you might have to figure that out, but that's a great time to hunt mornings.

And, most of us, I know plenty of people who love evenings, who just love the evening hunt. That's fine too. But most of us love to just watch the hear the woods wake up and experience that part of the hunt There's just something different about hunting in the morning versus the evening.

That's for

Mitchell Shirk: sure However, i've killed more of my better bucks in the evening, and I don't know why really that's just

Aaron Hepler: me I I only killed one. I think I only ever killed one buck in the evening. Okay You know the rest of them are all morning deer[01:08:00] But Yeah, I don't know that's If you want to hunt mornings, just hunt mornings.

Mitchell Shirk: I love to hunt the mornings, I really do. Do you have any deer from last year that are really on your mind this year?

Aaron Hepler: Yeah. There's two in particular. I had, I sent you a picture of them. That one big eight pointer that I had. Yeah. And then that, the other deer that was pretty close to him was a big ten.

That had that like flyer off the one side. I'll show you, I'll send you pictures again. I don't know if they're alive. I didn't hear of anybody. Sometimes you're always like, Oh, I would have heard about that. But this is a big area. You don't always going to hear it might go up on somebody's farm wall and they don't really care.

You know what I mean? That's just

Mitchell Shirk: it. Not everybody's taking a picture and popping it on Facebook or something like that happens a lot where you find it. Like I've had that happen to me.

Aaron Hepler: And I think I told, I think I told you during rifle, there was like two really big drives across like this whole area and.

They shot some nice bucks on it. I didn't recognize, [01:09:00] they didn't post any pictures. I just have some friends that knew taxidermists here, knew taxidermists there, send you pictures, I didn't recognize any of them, but then that surprises you like. Oh, okay. Were they in the area that I was on?

I don't know. I didn't have any pictures of those bucks, but there's, my grandfather, I probably write this a lot too, is there's a lot more room around them than there is on them. So your camera might not catch every deer in that woods. They might be smart to cameras, how many

Mitchell Shirk: times I was just talking about this with Greg Litzinger, how many times do you set a camera up?

And you're just missing the movement just off to the right. And he was like this one area. He goes, I started putting two cameras at a spot to get more of a

Aaron Hepler: wider. Yeah. He's told me that too. Put them 10 yards apart and face them different directions. And I fully agree with that.

There's a ridge that I used. I haven't run cameras on that one for a while, but it was a pretty good, like end of October, but really a rut cruising type ridge. And, I would hang one camera on it and be like, yeah, it's like pretty good. And then you'd go in there and hunt and be like, there's deer [01:10:00] everywhere in here.

There's just so much room on places like that, especially

Mitchell Shirk: in mountains. And yeah,

Aaron Hepler: but to attest to it I sent him a buddy of mine who is. hunter and shot some really nice bucks in the last couple of years. I sent him to that, to this spot that I just talked about last year and he saw 13 bucks and a bear.

I would have gotten two of those bucks on camera had I had a camera there. So it's just don't, there's just a lot of room.

Mitchell Shirk: There is a lot of room. It's easy to, it's easier to miss them than it is to get them on a camera. That goes for shooting too.

Aaron Hepler: Yeah, oh 100%. But you gotta remember that cameras are a tool.

They're not like your end all be all. You gotta know if you go there and don't get pictures on your camera, and there's a giant rub line. You can't say there's no deer in here. If that, especially if that rub line or there's you go in an area and the deer like scrape up all the leaves and there's, it looks like [01:11:00] 18, 000 turkeys were in there, it's deer cause there's tracks and poop everywhere and that's off from your camera.

There's been deer in there, especially if it wasn't there when you hung the camera. , you can't tell yourself, oh, there's no deer in here. 'cause there's no camera. The sign is right there. Yeah. You gotta pay attention to everything. Take the stuff you get from the camera, use it as a tool, but then you gotta know hey, there's a lot of outlier area here that, there's gonna be something else.

Good. For

Mitchell Shirk: sure. Hey, this is this has been good. I really liked that we talked about those windows because like I said, that's you just Gave me a little bit more confidence in my thought process because I haven't had many people to run this by but that's what I'm Going off of in some of those places that some of the places I hunt this year and yeah, other than that It's going to be You know whenever I can find time to just dive into it

Aaron Hepler: Yeah And the hardest thing about windows is keeping yourself out of it until you get there because oh There's a deer there.

I want to get there and hunt it, but you gotta wait

Mitchell Shirk: sometimes and here's the other thing too. So if you're going on Piggybacking off of what we just talked about if you've got that two to three day window when a buck has showed up In the [01:12:00] past and the one in particular man, he's done it three years every year.

Yeah, so I keep going like When's the first day? Because the first day might be like last year. It was 28th of October and then the year before that it was the 26th it's like when's the first day to go and like then again, do I just pick that window and say I'm gonna hunt Three mornings in a row every morning.

Yeah, and that's a tough one too because i'm hunting a very small Isolated area now if it's a roaming buck, all I need for him to do is cruise through one time Yeah, but you know Hunting it consists Consecutively three days am I going to do anything by? Adjusting any of the deer that are there as I'm not gonna put scent there that's not needed and he's gonna get there after dark Probably overthinking it way too much I probably just need to go and when I guess that window hunt it and see what happens

Aaron Hepler: I think that goes for everything in hunting like you can watch [01:13:00] like how I be a better hunter and you're watching YouTube videos And reading magazine articles and doing this and doing that.

Sometimes you just need to go out and do it Until you just figure it out for yourself because not everybody's stuff is gonna help you, right? You know what? Like I might say something on this podcast. Somebody's oh, I like that And they'll use that part of it. But then they might use like Something from somebody else they hear what they will because I don't use I'm not like, I hunt like Dan Infault.

I like Dan Infault. He is a very good hunter. I've taken some things from him, but I am not a good bed hunter. I can't go sit over a bed and kill a deer. Greg

Mitchell Shirk: Lissinger's another one that just blows me away. And

Aaron Hepler: he can do that stuff. And Greg and I'm buddies. Greg and I are buddies, man. I can't hunt like Greg.

But I can hunt like I hunt. And I can take things from Greg and learn, like I've learned a lot from Greg and he, first of all, Greg is, if you have not met Greg, you need to find Greg when you go to a show or something, because dude is an awesome human being. [01:14:00] But that being said I don't hunt just like Greg, but I've taken bits and pieces of things that Greg has, done like the way he reads deer sign, like he has that thing where If a deer is taking through certain brush like you can see that the time marks They that go through the dip, you know just the way that guy reads sign is different than anybody else same with Johnny Stewart same with like It's a good idea to get somebody that hunts different than you like I scout a lot with Clint and I We see eye to eye on just about every aspect of when we talk, but we don't always scout the exact same.

You can see how you can pick other things up from other people, and you just make your own thing. And the only way to get better at it is to keep doing it, like physically doing it, not reading about how somebody else did it. You have to go and do it.

Mitchell Shirk: I'm glad you said that because where I've, what I've learned from me, I feel I get, I lose attention to detail, like we were talking about trail cameras, either using them as a tool.

I feel like trail cameras, I've [01:15:00] almost relied too much on trail cameras over the years and missed my attention to detail in scouting. Seeing little things as far as tracks and sign and stuff. And, maybe to be fair, some of the places I've hunted, if you hunt private land and you get a history of that, I don't necessarily need to.

And if you shift on how you hunt or where you hunt, Now I'm transitioning some of the things I do just out of pure interest in the time I have, and now I'm learning there's other things I need to probably do different, and one of it is just that attention to detail and scouting.


Aaron Hepler: It is. I, we're, everybody's concerned about like trail camera banning right now. Cause it's happening in a lot of states like Delaware, you can't run any trail cameras anymore. Kansas, state land, right? You can on private Kansas. Is it the same? You can run them on private. I should know this cause I had so many conversations with the Exodus guys about it, but either way there's bans on trail cameras in both states and cams anymore, right?

Cell cam is a big topic [01:16:00] because personally, I don't know anybody who's uses cell cam unethically. I don't know somebody who puts a cell cam on a bed. It's oh, there's a deer now and tries to go and kill the deer. You're using that and in a retrospect, still, it's better than like a picture that you got four weeks ago, but it's probably a day or two old most of the time.

So people are, questioning the ethics of cell cams. I don't really know anybody who uses them unethically where they can take a clear advantage over a deer.

Mitchell Shirk: Ethics is a moving target too. Cause everybody's got a different opinion of what that ethics standard is. Like for me, the one I killed two years ago or three years ago, whatever that is now.

I had a picture of him in the morning and I knew because it was an 80 degree day, he was going to be bedded within 200 yards of there and I killed him that

Aaron Hepler: night. But that's still skill and knowledge. Like you could have done that without a cell cam. 80 degree day. There's a really good chance a buck is bedded in this area because of the weather.

I agree. And gone and hunted it. And first of all, if you're using a cell cam [01:17:00] in that way, you still have to get in there. Most of these places, like if you're hunting public using cell cams, you're probably not Walking 20 yards from your truck to go kill a deer. Mhm. You're probably hiking a couple of miles that deer still has to be there.

Especially in a big wood setting, that deer could be two miles away already by the time you get there. So I just don't, like you said, ethics, everybody has their own opinion on what is and what isn't ethical. Truly, I think for me, when it comes down to it, if you're truly using Intel to almost like you're stalking a deer with a cell cam, that's not really my thing.

It's. Legal so you like, do it, whatever. Everybody talks about the, some, I guess some lady in some other state went out, got a, she was packing up for a hunt somewhere, got a picture of a big buck in her field, Outback, grabbed her gun and climbed up over the hill and shot the deer. Legal.

[01:18:00] Yeah. What I feel good about doing that myself. No, not really that wouldn't do it for me But technically it yeah right now it's ethical because it's legal

Mitchell Shirk: right and I hate when we get I hate when the conversation within the hunting community gets Outside of that like it's within a legal boundary and we're still nitpicking it if you don't like it just let it go Yeah, my kind of thing

Aaron Hepler: Like like the Saturday, Monday PA opener.

Oh, who cares?

Mitchell Shirk: Dude, that's probably an hour long of back and forth. And at the end of the day, it's I'm sure you'll get it. To me, it makes no

Aaron Hepler: difference. Yeah, it's just a day. It's like my birthday. It's just a day. It's just another day of the year. We probably shouldn't talk too much about that.

Cause you'll probably get plenty of hate mail on that. Oh,

Mitchell Shirk: I'm all for that. In fact, it was funny because the episode I did a couple weeks ago, we talked about that. And I had my grandfather's on and they were... They were like in favor of the Monday opener and no Sunday hunting. I think there's a lot of generational thing too, but like at the end of the day, I'm just like...

What does it [01:19:00] matter? We got...

Aaron Hepler: If they're Sunday hunting, I'm not going to lie. I'm probably not going hunting on a Sunday that often. I might here and there. But I'm probably not going to that often. And I haven't either. Because I got other stuff to do on it. I got my family and I got, I want to go to church.

I got stuff I want to do on a Sunday. But if you want to go on a Sunday, or somebody else wants to go on a Sunday, I don't care. I am for Sunday hunting because I think that, especially Especially now, if somebody can pour into the life of a kid because they took them hunting on a Sunday, cause they had time to do that.

Yeah, they should be doing that. Cause there's a lot of messed up stuff going on right now. And if hunting is something that helps somebody be a better person, then they should help make that person a better

Mitchell Shirk: person. So I had this argument with somebody who is a very good deer hunter.

And they're very against Sunday hunting, and I believe a lot of it is from their Christian beliefs. And, I've said this before, I'm a Christian and... I still stand by that Sunday hunting is a good thing for [01:20:00] exactly what you just said. But, one thing I think is, by stating that you shouldn't go hunting on Sunday because that's the day of rest or the day of law, you are not going to bring anybody closer to Christ in saying that.

And putting a force on man that me telling Aaron you shouldn't go hunting on Sunday because that's the day you should be in church, that's not going to bring

Aaron Hepler: him any closer to Jesus. I'm pretty sure if you re I'm a Christian too. And I think that if you spend some time reading the Bible, you'd find out that, Jesus and his disciples were pegged trying to get trying, they were breaking the Sabbath.

The Pharisees try, the leaders in the law, people who hated Jesus tried to tell him, Oh, your disciples are breaking the Sabbath. Cause they're, what

you, what you're saying is yeah, like our whole purpose to be here in, in In life is to bring people to Jesus and I think that and it goes, you can make a difference in somebody's life if you can take them on a Sunday and you [01:21:00] know what, you're probably going to be able to take somebody that's 13 years old and can't get out of school.

You're probably going to be able to take them on a Sunday a lot easier than you can get them to go hunting on a Wednesday.

Mitchell Shirk: I had Dwayne Dunmire on the podcast from PFSC and he was talking about The Hunter Ed course is being changed to a Wednesday in the summertime because kids don't have anything on a Wednesday But the weekends are packed full and stuff like that.

So thinking about Sunday like absolutely you know I think about some of the friends that I have that have kids that are in three sport athletes and Taking them everywhere under the sun, like Sunday afternoons, what is wrong with them going out and experiencing that? And like you said, bringing light and seeing, like I take it from my, let's flip the coin and let's put it on my perspective.

I am as adamant about shooting a mature buck as any, anybody. Yeah. So if I allow myself To be consumed by another full day. I take that away from my family I take that away for there's a there is a rest [01:22:00] aspect for me. I need to be cognizant of But not everybody's walk of life is the same right like their passion and drive for hunting might be different and that doesn't mean It might not be rest for me like I've said this before it is rest for me to hunt but at the same time it's Not because I'm driven.

I want to shoot a buck So yeah, there's an aspect

Aaron Hepler: to me where your body's definitely going through stress whether or not it's like a good it's obviously healthy stress, but it's definitely going through

Mitchell Shirk: something exactly But there's a lot of people out there that don't have that same Feeling by going deer hunting on the Sunday afternoon right going small game hunting on the Sunday afternoon.

Aaron Hepler: So then don't go

Mitchell Shirk: So like the people that like, it's just completely relaxed and whatever happens and want to go hunting on a Sunday afternoon. That's okay. Yeah. It's an individual choice that you need to learn for yourself. That's why I'm for it. But

Aaron Hepler: yeah I'm fully with you there, man.

Like I think it would be an important thing that could happen for a lot of people. And again I probably won't, I'm not saying I'd never go, but I probably won't go that often on a Sunday. Yeah, like

Mitchell Shirk: right now, I [01:23:00] think the only Sunday I've been hunting is the one in bear season because like you go to camp.

I've gone on that one. You go to camp, you hunt Saturday, and it's you're here, you, with the group. I guess we'll go Sunday, and we do. Yeah.

Aaron Hepler: Yeah. Yeah, I agree. I agree with you, man. I think there's, but, on, on the trail camera ban I, I've said a couple of times, I know this is like taking a turn here, but, and we can talk about this briefly because I know we're getting long, but I think the trail camera band, like if I didn't have trail cameras, I still have pretty good confidence in being able to find a mature buck and kill a mature buck or, or the caliber of buck that I'm hoping to kill.

And I, I don't think that I need a camera to do it. I think the thing that I like about cameras is A, it's another good reason to get out in the woods. It's a motivator to scout a little bit. B, I really like looking at pictures of deer and seeing what's in the area, like who doesn't? It's something to get you a little pumped up and be like, Oh, there's a good one.

And it gives you that [01:24:00] little bit more of motivation and might help you wake up five minutes earlier. Yeah. I think that if we don't have cameras, I think that it might actually make people quit hunting. You're right. I think that people really rely on cameras and like them they like the aspect of cameras so much, that they just would not do without them.

But I actually didn't even own a trail camera until maybe five years ago. Okay. And then I think I've written for Exodus now for almost, for like just about two years. A little under two years. Like a year and a half. Now that I'm with them. I know so much more about trail cameras like just having fun with them You know, it's just a whole nother aspect that just keeps you excited about hunting But if you truly like hunting you can do without it But I think so many people that are new to the sport like don't know anything different then running a trail camera, especially if you're solely deer hunting, like if you're doing a small game thing or, whatever, you might learn a little bit other things about how not to use a [01:25:00] trail camera, because I think anything that you hunt or fish for teaches you a lot about.

Deer hunting, like you can fish for bass and learn something about deer hunting. Oh, really? I think so. Like they use terrain, like a bass uses terrain the same way a deer does. Like you get on a point in a lake a bass will sit on that point pending how the current is going. If you got a we'll say here this lake runs east to west.

If you got a west wind, that bass is probably going to be on the east side of the point waiting for bait to come over the top of it to catch the less current, they hide just like a deer. Now, obviously they're predators, so they're hiding because they want to catch their prey, but like they'll, and if the sun is out too high, they're going to be lower in that point because they want to get in somewhere darker where they can hide better, unless it's a certain time of year where they're spawning and you have to have them up high cause they need sunlight to expand their nest or whatever.

So it, they, you learn something about, Wildlife by anything that you do in wildlife and learn how [01:26:00] to if you're casting for a bass on that thing, you might be able to, fan cast a crankbait past them, but if you're flipping to something that you think there's oh, there's a a pile of cinder blocks on that point or something that bass is sitting on and you want to pitch to it, you got to be right there and it's just like somebody hunting with a bow on a point or a Ridge.

You have to be. Yeah. Depending on how good of a shot you are, but probably 30 yards and under to that spot, same thing as pitching a little flip and jig to that. That pile of rocks that are there. So I think it's and if you hunt squirrels, you got to learn, maybe you're like, you practice stalking squirrels through the woods and being quiet or like just the patience of waiting them for him to come out and out of a certain hole in a tree or something.

You know what I mean? It's the same idea. You get anything that you can get from any type of hunting experience. You can apply to deer, but trail cameras are pretty specific to deer. So if you're learning so much about just trail cameras. Again, they're a tool, but you have to have all the other parts of the, [01:27:00] you have to have all the other tools in your toolbox and make this tool work really well.

So I think that's one thing that's like a little nerve wracking about banning on cell or on trail cameras in general for people is like, how am I going to hunt without them? You can do it. Trust me, you can do it. Just go walk around the woods for a while and learn some things, and honestly, you probably.

We'll appreciate and enjoy it a lot more than just using trail cameras. Because I, again, I appreciate cameras very much because I like, I love getting pictures of deer. I love the, waking up to 60 pictures because my buddies all sent me pictures of this big. Like I love that stuff.

It's great. It's part of, it's part of what makes hunting in this day and age fun. But I think that it's important to not forget the other stuff too.

Mitchell Shirk: It is like woodsmanship skills, I think are harder and harder to come by just because we're so bombarded with technology and it makes. Make it, I'll speak for myself, makes me lazy.

Aaron Hepler: Makes me lazy. And [01:28:00] I think part of the woodsmanship thing isn't just like learning to read deer sign. If you're hunting big woods, you need to know, now I'm not, a lot of my friends say that I'm good at, vegetation and plants. I know a little bit. My dad was a, went to forestry school for a while.

So he knows a lot about that stuff. So when I was a kid, he'd be like, Oh, this is that tree. This is that tree. And I know a little bit. And I know what deer like to eat because I've watched them eat it or something like that. And then I go and learn what that is. But if you don't know any of that stuff, you need to get a book or download.

There's that ID me or something. I have some plan. I plan ID. There's a lot of them. There's a lot. And yeah, they might cost you something. But use it for a year. You might learn. A lot more than you realize you might walk into this place and be like, look at all this, you like worthwhile hunting stuff here, and learn something about, natural habitat here and what is good and what isn't good.

And then you also are able to educate people outside the hunting space, people are people get upset when they [01:29:00] see control burns or when they see clear cuts, they're like, Oh, deforestation. No, they're making a lot of food. It's not the same as like cutting the woods down and making a skyscraper, like that's bringing a lot of good stuff in here and they're managing a forest, everything

Mitchell Shirk: below five

Aaron Hepler: feet.

But if you can Learn something about that and then teach like I've had so many people that I work with that don't hunt and we're Like on the fence now, they're like, oh just because I know you like I've learned so much about hunting and why it's good for the environment or good for conservation or whatever and even learned a little bit for me about the woods and how the like Forestry and game commission takes care of it.

Like I care about it now Like I'm probably not gonna be involved in it. But If somebody tells me that they're interested or that they hate it oh, I'm totally against that, they'll be like this guy told me this about it, maybe you should look into what he has to say. And then they do, and then it's alright.

You get a lot more people that are, like, not on the fence anymore. They're, like, okay with it, that's

Mitchell Shirk: a good thing. It's good to [01:30:00] challenge your opinions, because that does one of two 100%.

Man, this has been fun. Thanks for thanks for letting me bend your ear for a while. I appreciate it. People, you pretty much just if people want to follow along with you, you pretty much just follow Instagram.

Aaron Hepler: Yeah, I have Facebook too, but most people that follow me on either or, it's Aaron underscore Hepler on Instagram.

And then you can, anything that I write here and there. Most of the stuff that I write is either on Truth From The Stand or ExodusOutdoorGear. com.

Mitchell Shirk: Absolutely, you had a bunch of good stuff this summer, and I'm sure you'll have more come up in the fall, so check that out. Yep. Thanks for thanks for meeting, and I gotta make sure we make

Aaron Hepler: this happen a little more often.

Yeah, we're so close, we need to make it happen more often. Hey, take care. You too, buddy.