Ground blinds were literally made for bowhunters. While a shotgun or rifle can be discreetly maneuvered into an aiming position, a bow requires a great deal of movement to ready the arrow for the shot. A ground blind provides welcome cover for the movement needed to get to full draw, calmly aim, and execute the shot when highly alert game is super close. With that said, it’s not as simple as popping up a blind and jumping inside to wait for a hapless deer to wander by in bow range. Successful bowhunting out of a blind requires a sound strategy.
First of all, setting up in a ground blind leaves you very close to the ground. As a result, you’ll want to avoid setting up your blind in low areas or in brush and other ground cover that robs you of your eyesight. It’s amazing how much visibility you lose by moving from a standing to a sitting position, so it’s imperative to either bring a chair to sit in to visualize your proposed site, or to plan on squatting a lot as you evaluate potential locations. Ideal ground blind sites are in locations where the blind can be somewhat elevated in relation to your shooting lanes while still remaining camouflaged in the surrounding vegetation.
Second, it’s important to avoid setting up the blind where it may be perceived as a roadblock to the animals that are used to the area. The blind will literally create a ‘blind spot’ for animals, so it’s best to place it against a backdrop that is already busy so it won’t readily ‘jump out’ at animals as they pass by. It’s really imperative to avoid setting up the blind in the middle of travel corridors or trails where deer or other intended targets have to get too close to it.
Once you’ve set the blind up, but before you stake it down, you will want to get in the blind with your weapon of choice and make sure the windows are oriented correctly for your shooting lanes. You will also want to make sure that you’re sitting as far back in the blind as your weapon will allow. For bowhunters, you’ll want your elbow to nearly touch the back wall of the blind at full draw, while gun hunters will likely need to be further forward to ensure that the muzzle of the gun can safely exit the windows.
After you’ve confirmed that your blind is set up properly for your weapon and shooting lanes, you can stake the blind down and make sure that surrounding vegetation won’t rub on the fabric during windy conditions. Most blinds are made of Polyester material that will make a loud noise when it is scratched, so it’s important to avoid that ahead of time. You will also want to trim out any shooting lane obstructions that will send your arrow off course at the moment of truth.
Finally, ground blinds are excellent choices for minimizing and containing human odor. It’s a great idea to use Nose Jammer in conjunction with an ozone creating device like the Scent Lok Oz machines when you’re sitting in the blind. Keep in mind that ozone machines are meant to be used outside of the blind where the heavy ozone molecules can descend over the blind and trap human scent molecules before they escape in the wind.