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The Total Deer Hunter Manual (Field & Stream): 301 Hunting Skills You Need Paperback – October 1, 2013

4.8 out of 5 stars 69 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Scott Bestul is a Field Editor for "Field & Stream" and has been with the magazine since 1993. The author of two books and a widely published freelance writer, Bestul has hunted whitetails in 16 states, with bow, shotgun, muzzleloader and rifle. The Wisconsin native now makes his home in the rugged bluff country of southeastern Minnesota with his wife Shari and teenage twins Brooke and Bailey.
Dave Hurteau is a Senior Editor for "Field & Stream" magazine, specializing in deer hunting, bow hunting, and shooting in general. He was a contributor to the recent "Total Gun Manual" and the editor of F&S's "Gun Nuts" content. He lives in upstate New York with his wife and two sons, and hunts whitetails as often as he can.
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Product Details

  • Series: Field & Stream
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Weldon Owen (October 1, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616286083
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616286088
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.7 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #80,252 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In my opinion this is a great book.

I shot my first doe and buck at age 12 and 13. 15 years passed with very little deer hunting on my part. I decided to take up deer hunting again. I bought the book a few months before the 2014 season. Within 20 minutes of reading I had learned more than I ever knew before.

The book is organized into a few main parts, then further broken down into short paragraphs about each one of the tips or "skills". This makes for a very easy read and fit my reading style. In other words, it is easy to pick up for a few minutes at a time. In fact, my 3 year old daughter likes this book as much as I do. Most night's she would say, "Let's read the Deer Book."

After reading this book I was able to better prepare for the season. I scouted, planted a food plot, made fake scrapes, learned to read the "signs", put up 2 stands, learned what worked best to cover my scent, etc.. Not that the book taught me everything but it helped me quite a bit.

This year I saw more deer than ever and learned more than ever. We have deer on our property, but they are often difficult to find during the season. As an example 2 family members that hunted the same land for many, many years were very shocked to learn that I was seeing 2-3 deer every time I went and even 9 deer one night.

I did manage to get a big 6 pt to visit my scrape site Mid October and got 4 great pictures on my trail cam. That buck disappeared until late November where I got a shot. My first Tennessee Deer and the biggest buck of my life (not huge compared to many states but good sized for my area at 135 lbs field dressed, roughly 3.5-4 yrs old) and my first season back hunting. I attribute a lot of that to this book and persistence in the field.

Overall it is a great book and one that I will likely re-read for many years to come.

Just buy the book already!

Thanks for reading,

Bryan
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am new to deer hunting, but have had to desire to do it my whole life. This book has been very educational to me and I would recommend it to anyone who is also just getting started. Found out about this book through my Outdoor Life magazine subscription, they wanted two payments of ~$20. This price was much more affordable.
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Format: Paperback
Great book pictures are beautiful, a lot of tips based on research and experiment great book weather your new to hunting or a veteran there is just do much information in it, I got the hard cover good binding, broken down easy to understand and written with some humor...
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Format: Paperback
Very good book. I credit it with helping me harvest a nice doe this year.

Likes:
- good content
- excellent graphics and illustrations
- thick glossy pages, attractive metal trim corners - great gift

Dislikes / opportunities for improvement:
- focuses almost exclusively on patterning and finding bucks.
- would like to see some additional equipment reviews e.g. "best for the money", "best value", "editors choice"
- would like to see more information on using topo maps
- would like to see pictures of wild plants deer eat/prefer

Overall, it's a very good book, and I'd highly recommend for hunters of all skilll levels.
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Format: Paperback
I thought after 20 years deer hunting and reading countless articles I didn't really need or want this book. I was wrong, it is well written and I learned some new things. Yes, it has the basics for someone starting out, but it also had those small thoughts and skills of one with years of experience. Good pictures, diagrams.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bear in mind that I'm not much of a hunter. That said, I would argue that many of the "skills" referenced are beyond anything I'm ever going to do. I won't be buying a plot of land specifically to load the soil with minerals and chop down trees so I can make some "suggested" bedding areas or what have you with watering holes and all that jazz. However... What it does cover in terms of scouting an area, what to look for, the information on current deer behavioral studies regarding migration during various parts of the season and so forth, should in theory help me find a deer to turn into dinner. Come hunting season, I guess we'll see. Sidenote - I'm not a hunter but I do know guns, and their commentary on hardware, what to look for, within what price range you can achieve certain marksmanship goals, etc... was on point. No hurt feelings regarding the purchase price.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don't even hunt and I spent all afternoon paging through this book (rather than wrapping it for my husband)! Really interesting and great pictures. He is a VERY seasoned hunter, and I highly doubt he will find this boring. It is really well made too, nothing like I expected. It is heavy, thicker cover than most paperbacks, and even has nice metal tips on the corners. Will make a great gift for any hunter. I am already buying more copies for friends/family!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Offers some clarity other books are clearly lacking. It is to the point and still doesn't beat you to death with complex information or charts. Really just simple easy to read and very useful. It breaks down topics to the root of the matter and simplifies subjects beyond commercials, advertisements and brand names. Very easy read when scouting and prepping for season.
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