Whitetail Deer Hunting From Hay Bale Blinds
I’ve been a whitetail deer hunter for 35 years, and a whitetail deer outfitter in Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Kansas, and Nebraska for 13 years. Over the course of this time period I’ve seen a ton of outdoor products come and go. Some legit and some ridiculous. Many hunt products in the whitetail deer industry I simply don’t believe in. Others are wonderful and have afforded today’s whitetail deer hunter to enhance their odds drastically. A product that is somewhat new to the whitetail deer world is the hay bale blind. A handful of companies is manufacturing hay bale blinds.
Personally the hay bale blind concept is in essence one of the greatest ideas I’ve seen in a long time. I’ve used regular pop up blinds in the past because that’s the only thing the industry had to offer for ground hunting. Many a whitetail deer has walked to within bowrange of a pop up blind, looked it over closely, and tucked tail and ran away. I’m not saying pop up blinds don’t deliver for gun hunting or turkey hunting but when archery hunting whitetail deer the hay bale blind concept is superior to all other ground blind equipment offered today.
Advantages of Hay Bale Blinds for Whitetail Deer Hunting
First off I’m not the most mechanical person in the world but I’m sick and tired of fighting those plastic rods that never seem to pop into place. I’ve broke so many rods and gotten so mad trying to assemble a pop up blind in the field I simply make my guides erect them. I have no patience trying to figure out the maze of plastic rods and devices and ground stakes, etc. etc. that one needs to employ to erect a pop up blind.
*This blind is warm. Unless the shooting window faces directly into the wind, this is the warmest blind possible. Wet hay builds a certain amount of heat, and hunters can stay warm in even the most brutal weather.
*Human odor isn’t a problem with hay blinds. The heavier odor of hay serves to cover human odor inside the blind.
*It would be difficult to consider a hay-bale blind as a bait site although deer occasionally do eat some of it while the hunter is inside.
*Of major importance to me, and to others who use such blinds, is they offer straight-out, horizontal shots at whitetails. There is none of the problems of shooting downward while sitting or standing in a cold tree stand or elevated coop, and deer often walk within six feet of a hay-bale blind. The shots can be easy to make unless the hunter suffers from buck fever or hay fever.
*The hay absorbs almost any noise. I’ve coughed, sneezed, and done other noisy things in a hay-bale blind without having nearby deer hear it. Of course, any movement visible through the narrow shooting window can be seen.
*Any hay blind placed early in the fall in a key location will pay off when December rolls around. The deer get used to it, and by the time the winter archery season rolls around, it will entice deer to your area.
If snow falls before the deer move, so much the better. It will help cover any human scent, and it can produce the occasional big buck.
Another advantage of hunting from a hay bale blind is the fact you can get out of a rain or poor weather system and still be able to hunt deer and stay warm and dry.
Hunting is more fun and rewarding as whitetail deer hunters discover the benefits of using hay bale blinds, causing them to become increasingly popular. The variety of hay bale blinds as well as the added comfort of the hay bale blinds ensure that the use of these blinds will continue to thrive.
Disadvantages of Hay Bale Blinds
The only disadvantage to utilizing a hay bale blind for deer hunting is the difficulty of moving them however a company called, “Chasing the Outdoors” has solved this. We will discuss their product more in depth later, however after the hay bale blind is constructed, if you want to move it a tarp is provided so you can simply load it up and move it to a different location with truck or a trailer and not lose the hay you placed upon the hay bale blind. Therefore I’m not sure any disadvantages exist with hay bale blinds in regard to difficulty of moving them.
Of course not all monster whitetail bucks waltz out into clover fields. Whitetail deer patterns change throughout the season. Sometimes whitetail deer are simply in locations where a hay bale blind would not be of more benefit than a traditional tree stand. Therefore as you can see the hay bale blind has few disadvantages to today’s whitetail deer hunter.
Placement of Hay Bale Blinds to Intercept Whitetail Deer
This one is a no brainer. Of course the most prime location would be on a clover field that has been cut and has big round hay bales scattered about it. You’ll blend in like a chameleon for sure. Be sure and watch the field from a distance so you will know where whitetail deer are entering the field or feeding. Place your hay bale blind in this location and trust and believe when they come into the field they won’t have a clue your there. Swear it!
As a whitetail deer outfitter I always call the landowner before I put one of the hay bale blinds out as if you purchase your blind from “Chasing the Outdoors” they look realistic enough that I’m always afraid the farmer will pick my blind up thinking it is his hay bale. Really! Call your landowner or you may watch your hay bale blind get hauled off for cow feed.
One of the chief reasons I prefer hay bale blinds in certain areas is because I can’t count the number of times a big whitetail buck was entering a field where no tree was available for a tree stand. Sometimes I wonder if these big whitetail deer enter in certain locations because of that very reason, however I may be giving them too much credit intellectually. If you find yourself in this dilemma then this is the perfect spot to put your hay bale blind.
Even though you should try and put the hay bale blind out early its never to late to put one out because of its natural appearance, frequency of times deer have seen hay bales during their lives, and the fact the hay that goes on them cover almost all human scent. So very many advantages to the hay bale blind when trying to kill trophy whitetail deer. Just do it already. Every hunter needs a hay bale blind or two in their arsenal. All whitetail deer outfitters should have them.
What Hay Bale Blind Should you Purchase?
Only one company would I recommend you purchase a hay bale blind from. I mean this seriously. “Chasing the Outdoors” is the best hay bale blind in the nation.
The company is owned by Tom Shephard who is a family man and a regular “ole joe” just like you and I. He’s as honest as the day is long. When we purchased our bulk order of hay bale blinds he actually drove them up from Florida and helped us erect a couple of them for our whitetail hunters. Now how’s that for customer service? The hay bale blinds were quite simple but did require some assembly. The base unit is a wire mess, which acts as the hay bale blinds frame. The mesh holds the hay on the blind. It took two bales to cover the blind from head to toe. (I mean regular square hay bales like you would see at a farm store for sale.) This small amount of hay covered the entire big round hay bale blind which comfortably fits two hunters. When assembled it’s as big as those large round hay bales you see sitting in farmer’s fields. The blind then has a light tan net to hold the hay onto the blind so you don’t get the hay blown away during storms, etc. Mr. Shephard can tell you more, but as a whitetail deer outfitter I can tell you his hay bale blinds at www.chasingtheoutdoors.com are the best in the hunt industry by far. The blinds have multiple round windows you cannot see the hunter through and a door that is also covered by hay. These hay bale blinds are nothing short of awesome.
Products Offered by Chasing the Outdoors for Hay Bale Blinds include:
THE ROUND BALE BLIND has made chasing critters more enjoyable for me. Covered in hay, swithgrass, corn stubble or other vegetation, this blind fits in like no other ground blind and is perfect for bowhunting or gun hunting. The kids, family and friends I have taken hunting cannot believe how close you can get to wild animals in a ground blind that is so well concealed.
THE ROUND BALE BLIND is made of a galvanized steel frame that is covered in a unique poly and a plastic mesh, parts that will last decades. The floor space inside is 4' x 6' and it's roomy due to the round shape. The hinged door is placed on the end of the hay bale. Hunting in a waterproof and windproof ground blind makes cold, wet and windy days no problem.
Tom Shephard, Owner of Chasing the Outdoors Hay Bale Blind company simply states,
“Cold days in Georgia were exhilarating for a young hunter. My grandfather had a camp in South Georgia that is legendary in my mind. My memory of that place includes his good friends, great deer hunting and cold sits on the stand. I wish T.A. had a hay bail blind back then, but those powerline sits and hunts overlooking oak bottoms will never be forgotten.
My dad loved running his pack of beagles in the thick swamps of Florida. If you have never experienced a good pack of dogs trailing, tracking, jumping and burning a deer up, you oughta try it. Dog hunting isn't as popular as it once was, but I'll never forget those many years of hunting with my dad.
I wanted to chase some big whitetail deer so I traveled to Kansas. A Midwestern farmer and his family let me hunt their farm several times and I experienced great deer hunting. I also got to experience the wind in Kansas. Cold at daybreak isn't a big deal, but wind and cold will run you back into the house.
Hunting in Kansas propelled me to design a blind as a windbreak. I work in sales and construction management for the oldest greenhouse manufacturer in Florida. I design hobby greenhouses for homeowners so while freezing in Kansas my brain went into gear on a solution to my wind burned face and frozen limbs.
Our greenhouses stand up to decades of water and fertilizer- so I knew I could get my hands on the parts I needed for my blind. It was a matter of time before I dialed in on a ground blind and a tower blind that would keep me from freezing and help me enjoy whitetail deer hunting.
Trust me, the hay bale blind and the grand stand will get you up close to game, allow you to stay concealed on the stand and they will allow you to stay out in the elements unlike any other stands on the market.”
Cost of the Hay Bale Blinds from Chasing the Outdoors
$529 if you purchase 1-3, delivered price
$499 if you purchase 4-9. delivered price
$459 if you purchase 10+, delivered price
>Assembly instructions included.
>All blinds have 4' x 6' floor space- contact for custom sizes.
>Head height is 5'6" inside with a roomy feel due to round shape.
>The door is placed on the end of the hay bale blind.
>All attachment pieces are included, hinges included for door.
>Hay, straw, corn stubble or any vegetation are not included.
NOTE: The round bale blind is so realistic you must take precautions so other hunters know you are inside- use safety orange markers. The round bale blind is not intended to have any open flames inside. NO SMOKING! If you use a heater include proper duct for venting.
If you wanna get at that special deer that is simply appearing onto the hay field or any other wide open space then utilize the hay bale blind. Trust me and keep an eye on our photo gallery here at IMB Outfitters located at www.imbmonsterbucks.com because every deer we kill from a hay bale blind is gonna have a photo of the hay bale setup in the background. If you need proof I’ll give it to you. Just last night we had a hunter that sat in the hay bale blind that had a 180 inch deer and a 160 inch deer within 62 yards of the hay bale blind. Mid morning today we moved the blind closer to where they were coming out. (It only took two men to move it and carry it.) Tonight we’ll be 40 yards closer to where these monster whitetail bucks are entering the field and I’ll betcha before its over with one is down for the count.