The forgotten details of scent elimination

Submitted By Heath Wood Feb .22.2016

For several years now I have paid close attention to scent elimination, especially while bow hunting. Like a lot of serious deer hunters, I start by cleaning all of my hunting garments with a scent eliminating laundry detergent, I then store all of them in a scent safe storage bag that has 2-3 Fresh Earth Scent Wafers inside to help give a natural cover up scent when I'm ready to hunt. When I say pay "close attention" to scent elimination, I mean using a complete scent elimination system. This includes 1. Washing clothes in Scent-A-Way laundry detergent and drying clothes with Scent-A-Way dryer sheets. 2. Store clothes and gear in Scent Safe storage bag. 3. Shower in Scent-A-Way soaps and shampoos. 4. Prevent odors by using Scent-A-Way deodorant and other Scent-A-Way. 5. Neutralize everything with Scent-A-Way Max spray.

Again, start with cleaning/storing your clothes. Next, try to mask all human odor by taking a shower using Scent-A-Way soap and shampoo. Dry off with a towel that has been washed along with all other hunting garments. When the time comes to hunt, dress in the field and spray EVERYTHING down with Scent-A-Way Max spray. This includes all clothing, your bow, boots, hat, binoculars, and anything else that might have a foreign odor on it. If it is the early season when temperatures are still a little warm, don't forget to spray down again after you get in your tree stand. This helps eliminate any odor you may have caused by sweating while walking in.

After recapping several unsuccessful hunts and taking a hard look at what I do before and after those hunts, I finally came to the realization of a major misstep in my hunting routine. The problem wasn't happening pre-hunt or during the hunt; my problem was occurring post hunt. I'm sure, as hunters, you can relate to what I was doing. How many times when you arrive back at home do you stay in your camouflage for a couple hours before changing back into regular street clothes? Or maybe stop to get something to eat on your way home? Perhaps you stop at a gas station to fuel up all while wearing your camouflage. All of these simple mishaps I have listed are getting odors back into the clothes that you took so much time to eliminate before the hunt. Not to mention all the odors that are in your truck seat alone.

After this realization, I have drastically changed what I do post hunt. I call it field re-dressing. The same way you stand out in the cold hurrying to get dressed before the hunt, repeat after the hunt. This will help with your next hunt. When I really got to thinking about this I can recall putting my hunting clothes back in my Scent Safe Storage bag after I had been wearing them throughout the house, my truck, grocery store, etc. I was locking all those odors up only to contaminate everything else that was in the bag. If you're a hunter that likes to travel or if you have the traditional hunting camps, after the hunt can shatter all of your scent elimination efforts. It is a blast to sit around a campfire telling stories about that day's hunting adventure, as well as the best part of the hunting camp, which is the food. Cooking/smoke odors are the worst to stay on your clothes.

The last couple of years I have really seen a big difference in the overall amount of deer that I have seen from my deer stands. I rarely get busted by a deer's nose anymore. I truly believe that, along with paying close attention to wind direction and using an effective scent elimination system, paying close to attention to the sometimes forgotten details such as field re-dressing has made all the difference in the world.