Firearm Deer Season Opens Saturday in Minnesota - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Firearm Deer Season Opens Saturday in Minnesota

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Deer opener is practically it's own holiday in the valley and Minnesota hunters get the chance to go first starting Saturday. 

Experts from Scheels joined The Valley Today to make sure you're prepared and ready for your hunting experience, whether it be tomorrow or in just one short week.

Seth Jordan, a hunting expert at Scheels, recommends stating with a scent blocking base layer and even having a face mask on hand for those extra cold days.

Jordan also suggests having a GPS with a tracking chip to help you find your way. As well as a strong pair of optics along with a range finder to make your hunting experience a little easier.

The Minnesota DNR also wants to remind all hunters to be safe throughout the entire deer season. From the Minnesota DNR:

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) urges deer hunters to make safety their first priority when Minnesota's firearm deer season opens Nov. 3 by taking the time now to plan for a safe and successful hunt.

There are many considerations to take into account before the opening morning, according to Capt. Mike Hammer, DNR Enforcement Division education program coordinator. "First, are you going to hunt public or private land? If you are hunting public land, plan that there will be other hunters in the area," said Hammer. "Scouting for deer signs and signs of other hunters is important to help determine a set-up location during the early morning hours before the season starts."

Hammer noted knowing the safe zone of fire is especially important.

"Properly identifying your target and who or what's beyond the target is a basic rule of hunting safety," Hammer said. "Hunters must always be aware of surroundings and never shoot at a sound, which could be from another hunter rather than a deer."

Hammer urges hunters to check elevated stands for proper tree attachment before hunting. He also recommends using a fall arrest system when leaving the ground, and using a haul line to raise and lower unloaded firearms.

"Falls from elevated stands are a leading cause of injury for deer hunters," said Hammer.

Ground blinds are becoming increasingly popular with deer hunters because they offer protection from the wind, rain and snow. Hammer said it's important to place blaze orange on the outside of such blinds to alert other hunters.

Deer drives also present several potential safety problems. "Plan your deer drive around safety," Hammer said. "Everyone involved should know the plan and stick to the plan."

Hammer offered other safety reminders:

  • Treat every firearm as if it is loaded.
  • Always control the muzzle, keeping it pointed away others and yourself.
  • Keep fingers outside the trigger guard until you are absolutely sure it's safe to fire.
  • Carefully identify your target, ensuring you have a safe backstop before shooting.
  • Never load or unload firearms around others.
  • Be sure that the barrel and action are clear of obstructions.
  • Never climb a tree or jump a ditch with a loaded firearm.
  • Never pull a firearm toward you by the muzzle.
  • Always ask permission before entering private land
  • As a guest of the landowner, act accordingly.
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages or other mood-altering drugs before or while hunting.
  • Wear plenty of blaze orange; the minimum requirement is a blaze orange cap and blaze orange above the waist

Hammer said hunting safety is everyone's responsibility.


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