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Article Written By: Tim Collins,
Sight, smell and sound are wild games top defenses in survival from predators. The more you can limit the effect of each; the better off you will be in a successful harvest. I would like to discuss the limiting of sound in hunting, specifically that of your hunting clothing.
What does the phrase “silence is golden” actually mean? Everyone knows that in order to see more game you need to be as quiet as possible. No talking, the dreaded need to cough, carefully placed footsteps and so on, but has everyone considered the sound your hunting clothes make? If you are like me, before I purchase any clothing for hunting I will give it the scratch test. I literally walk up to the clothing and run my fingernail across it. I figure that it is the same as a branch you rub up against in the woods or bark from a tree while sitting on stand. Noise will even be made when your clothes rub against itself such as your arm against your leg. If it makes noise I don’t purchase it. Some may say, “It isn’t that bad it barely is audible”. I say, “What will it sound like in freezing temperatures”? I also say, “Those are not ears, they are more like radar dishes”!
I have found that fleece has been the best material when it comes to providing silence. Even when sitting in my deer blind from dark to dark with temperatures in the single digits and wind-chills slightly below zero. I do not have a heated blind and yet still my fleece layers keep me warm and best of all they remain quiet. Since deer are literally right on top of me before I see them when bow-hunting, I need to be on point as much as possible. Even at a distance of 25 yards such as my tree-stand in the northern tamarack swamp I am able to cautiously move without alerting deer in the bait pile. This means a lot to me considering I have arthritis in my back near my hip joints and, well lets face it, I have to fidget when sitting for long periods of time.
So, the next time you make a purchase for hunting clothing consider the sound the garment makes. Give it the scratch test and determine how much sound the garment will make when in different hunting situations. The more you can minimize the games defenses the better your chances at being successful on your next hunt.
Remember to be safe out there and enjoy every minute.