Why would I keep a hunting journal?
This might be one of those simple habits that if you start now, will pay some serious dividends down the road.
A consistent theme I see with some of the best hunters and fisherman I know is that they keep a record of their time in the field. Those notes become an invaluable resource as they learn more about a property they’re hunting. More importantly, the practice of keeping a hunting journal can help to start surface the patterns and trends of deer movement in the areas you hunt.
Keeping a hunting journal is a fantastic habit to develop. It doesn’t have to be anything special, and you’re not writing a novel, simple entries will do the trick. The important thing is that you start to develop the habit. The best and easiest thing to do is either log the events while hunting or as soon as you get back to the truck or at home. I’ve found overtime if you don’t do it that same day, you start to forget pieces and the likelihood of actually logging the entry drastically diminishes.
You can start by just recording the date and time in the woods, the temperature and any significant weather patterns that were occurring. On top of that, it’s important to log when and where you’re seeing deer move. Those details can become a huge help down the road when you are trying to pattern the movement on your property.
How to keep a hunting journal
If you fancy the pen and paper approach, get yourself a dedicated notebook to log your hunts. That way you can always go to that notebook to track your time in the woods. If you go this route, I recommend buying a smaller notebook so that you can easily bring it with you on your hunts.
Another great option and slightly more convenient is to use your mobile phone. The nice thing here is that you are most likely already carrying your phone with you into the stand, and when things get a bit slow, which tends to happen, you can pull out your phone and take some quick notes.
If you’re going to go the digital route, the Quiver Hunting App makes for a great mobile hunting journal. All the critical weather data (temperature, moon phase, barometric pressure) that you care about is already provided within the app along with sunrise and sunset times. On top of that, the app keeps track of your time in the woods, which then becomes a very simple tool to use to monitor your days spent in the field.
In addition, this mobile hunting journal makes it super easy to log events while during the hunt. Whether that’s recording deer you’ve seen, taking photos or adding specific notes along the way. Once you’ve completed a hunt, the app provides a nice timeline view of all the activities you logged. All the data that was recorded during your hunt is captured along with the weather data at the time.
By developing the habit of tracking your hunts, you begin to build an amazing history of all your hunts across the various places that you hunt, and you then start to see the patterns emerge within these hunting areas. Quiver makes it very easy to go back and review previous hunts, when deer were moving and what the weather conditions were at the time.
Whether you’re going the pen and paper route or the digital route, getting into the habit of keeping a hunting journal is a fantastic way to document your time in the woods. Not only do the entries become a valuable resource to you, but it also becomes a great piece for you to go back to and take a trip down memory lane.
Good luck and remember to #HuntSmarter.