Scent Control Conundrum

Scent control has been on my mind as of late. I’ve read many articles and asked for others opinions on the importance of it but I can’t bring myself to spend hundreds of dollars on new scent control clothing and scent eliminating sprays that claim to make me invisible in the woods. Why? Because I’ve never been able to specifically test the products to verify that they work. Sure, a manufacturer can put together fancy advertisements and literature filled with claims of miraculous scent controlling wonders, but in order for me to believe it I would need to see it work first hand.

Consider the scent filled scenario I found myself in this past weekend. It actually began earlier in the week – say Wednesday or Thursday. Somewhere along the way I came into contact with my least favorite plant of all time – POISON IVY. As a result, I woke up on Saturday morning with itchy arms and legs. Unfortunately, I am not stranger to this terrible plant. We have a long and storied history together filled with calamine lotion, baking soda baths and Prednisone medication. I doubt there has ever been a more one sided relationship on the history of this earth (kind of like my history with girls in junior high). Why won’t it leave me alone?!?!

I’d gone through approximately half a bottle of calamine spray by the time I loaded up to go hunting. Although good for relieving itching, I have my doubts about its effectiveness as a scent control technique. It was about this time that I opened my truck door only to discover that I had accidentally left a to-go box of left over fries in the cab from dinner night before. The pungent smell of old fries consumed my senses and I knew my hunting items that sat in the cab with them all night were covered in a heavy layer of the scent. Great.

Not one to be deterred, I ate some fries and started driving. It is times like this that will really make you think twice about your scent control strategy (or lack thereof). Fortunately for me, it started pouring as soon as I got to my stand so instead of smelling like a sick combination of calamine lotion and old fries I smelled like a soaking wet sick combination of calamine lotion and fries. Surprisingly, I didn’t see any deer that night.

It’s clear that the foundation for a good scent control strategy begins with staying out of the poison ivy and throwing away old French fries. If you can do that you are well on your way to becoming the scent-free assassin the advertisers want you to believe you can be. If you can’t do that, focus on hunting downwind from a deer trail or next to the town dump. Either one will work.

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