The following is a guest post written by Blake Anderson of Huntertreestands.com.
Tips to Stay Safe Hunting This Season
Hunting can be an exciting and fun activity for people of all ages, but it should also be taken very seriously. That’s why I’ve laid out a few of the tips that I find are most important for staying safe during this hunting season.
The first set of advice will be centered on firearm safety. To start things off, remember to always keep the muzzle of your gun pointed in a safe direction. This may be common sense, but accidental discharges do happen, even by experienced hunters. If your gun is always pointed in a safe direction, then you can completely eliminate the possibility of an accident occurring. You should pay particular attention to where your muzzle is pointed when you’re loading or unloading, but if you’re not actually using the gun then it should always remain unloaded. The only times when your weapon should contain live ammunition is when you’re actually using it in the woods or at a shooting range. So keep the ammunition out of the chamber and out of the magazine when it’s not meant to be used.
Most hunters nowadays use tree stands to increase their odds of shooting a deer or any other animal that’s remarkably intelligent. Hunting tree stands allow you to get 20 or 30 feet off the ground and provide you with the ability to get as close as possible to the deer without giving your position away. As you can imagine, getting that high up in a tree can be a dangerous task. You shouldn’t worry though, because it’s a very rare occurrence that a hunter is seriously injured from using a tree stand; however there are still a few simple rules to keep in mind at all times. Always use safety harnesses and restraints that will assist you in the case of a fall. Wear these as soon as you begin your climb up the tree and make sure that you have them on before you begin to descend again. Tree stands can give you the advantages necessary to ensure a successful hunt, but you should never forget the basic safety rules when it comes to using them.
The last bit of advice is to pack all of the essential items necessary for survival. When you’re traveling great distances to reach your hunting location, you must always be prepared in case something goes wrong. Have a basic waterproof fire starting kit and a survival knife handy at all times is a great idea. Building a fire will provide you with an excellent method of staying warm during unexpected cold nights and drying off when you get wet so that you don’t end up with hypothermia. Keep plenty of water with you as well or a method for purification if you plan to use stream water. There are many other items you should have on you, but the key necessities will always be shelter, protection, water and fire.
Note from the Grouch;
Hunting season has opened in some locations and many more will be opening in the next few months. Every year there are accidents, the leading cause of death and injury in the hunting woods is falling from tree stands. Please use a safety harness and climb safely. Avoid unnecessary risks and go home safe every day.
Good Luck this season!