It’s October, and that means hunting season! Whether you’re a veteran hunter or trying it for the first time, hunting is an experience you can’t duplicate. Every year people all over the country pack up and head into the wilderness in search of that trophy buck.

Getting ready for the hunt can be a long process. More avid hunters will scout year round for the right buck. They will get to know the places they are most likely to find it and the best spots to hide where they won’t be seen, heard, or smelled. When hunting season finally arrives they are ready, and with all that work and a little luck, they might just get what they’re looking for.

Much more common though is the casual hunter. These often go to the same area every year, sometimes with luck and sometimes without. For them it’s as much an excuse to get into the outdoors as it is a hunting trip. It’s always nice to get a deer, but it’s just as important to have a good time.

Whatever kind of hunter you are, there are some things that you need to prepare for. The most important consideration on a hunting trip is safety. Guns, when used improperly, are extremely dangerous. Like anything else, you have to be familiar with your gun and have any necessary training before you use it. Accidents happen, but all too often they are preventable.

You’ll also want to be familiar with laws and regulations for the area in which you plan to hunt. Not every state has the same rules, so do a little research before you head out so you don’t end up on the wrong side of the law. You also need to be aware of any local regulations in place. Only hunt when you’re desired game is in season, and only use approved firearms, and you should avoid most problems.

There are a lot of ways to get out to your location. Some hike, some ride horses, and some take in their ATVs. There are pros and cons to each. Hiking is the quietest, but once you’ve taken down your animal, it can be very difficult to carry it out. Horses can solve that problem, but they have a scent that can ward off the game, and you have the extra responsibility of caring for them during the trip.

Taking an ATV in to the hunt is the most practical solution. They are faster, more dependable, and easier to look after than any of the alternatives. The main drawbacks are the noise and the fact that you can’t drive a quad just anywhere. If you are bringing in your four wheeler, there are some guidelines to optimize the trip. Park the quad and walk in to the hunting site. It’s a lot easier to hike back and bring the ATV to the kill than vice versa. Leave it parked as much as possible. This minimizes noise that could scare away your game.

Make sure your ATV is in good shape before the hunt. Adjust your ATV shocks to be prepared for the extra weight of hauling a deer out of the woods. If your ATV shocksaren’t properly adjusted you can cause damage to your machine, especially over the rough terrain you’ll be hunting in. So load up your ATV, and happy hunting!