OUTDOOR TRUTHS: Wind Currents Make Hunting More Challenging
By Gary Miller
One of the difficulties in hunting mountainous areas is that we not only have to set our stands up according to the wind directions but also according to what is called thermals. Thermals are normal wind currents that change as air cools down or heats up. In the evening the cool air falls and when the temperatures heat up in the morning, the warmer air rises. This means if you are hunting from a tree stand on the top of a ridge in the evening, your scent is most likely going to be carried into the valleys below. If this is the direction the deer are coming from, you’re likely to get busted. The rule of thumb is to set up high in the mornings and low in the evenings. But as you know, it is not always that simple.
In my case the field I want to hunt is on a ridge and I only know what part of the field the deer are showing up at. I want to hunt on the edge of that field but the thermals are falling into the hollows below where, I assume, the deer are coming from.
But since I don’t know exactly what path the deer are taking I’m unsure as to where to put my stand if I were to hunt below. I’ve thought about trying to get about 30-feet high and stay on the ridge, but something tells me it still won’t work. There is one other option. It is to put my tree stand on that ridge and wait for that one day when the wind is blowing pretty hard, carrying the thermals with it, out of the direction of the hollows and valleys.
In my case it would be a southerly or southeasterly wind; which is totally against our normal northwesterly current. The question then would be; can I be patient, stay away from that stand, and wait until the conditions are right. That question applies to a lot of things in my life. What about yours?
Most of my life can be described by the illustration “a bull in a china shop.” I have always intended to think that somehow I am immune to the normal currents of how things work. I thought since I had “good intentions,” I could charge into any situation, ignoring the certain, and have success. Boy was I wrong! I found out after a few of those blunders, I was not superman – just normal-man. I found out there are certain natural laws I had to work within, no matter how great my intentions were.
Maybe some of you are thinking about a venture or are getting ready to jump into something that could either bring about great success or great failure. Just remember while faith always calls you to take a risk; it never asks you to do it simply according to your good intentions. It asks you only to be sure of the One who led you this far. Otherwise, the only difference in your failure will be that it happened to a great guy.
Gary Miller can be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.