The scent of the hunter – how to avoid mistakes on the hunt.

by Krzysztof Turowski

– Are you going on a date or hunting?
Marek, my friend and teacher asked me when I came to our first hunting trip.
– Hmmmm, I do not really understand what you’re asking.
I found it quite uncertain.
– Well, whether we’re going on a hunt or picking up, because you smell up like you wanted to pick up everything in the forest.
He spoke with a growing smile on his lips.
– I would not think I would still feel the perfume I used in the morning.
– No worries, we’ll make it. Get in, I will show you some part of our hunting unit, and I will tell you what to do before the next hunt.
We got in the car and went on the road.
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That day, I just had to excuse myself that I was going to Marek straight after work, having only a moment to change clothes.

Despite the fact that I changed my clothes, my fragrance was still a combination of a few things – shower gel, shampoo, deodorant and perfume. It would be great to use me if we were going to protect the fields from wild boars on that day as a repellent, not the classic hunt for stalking. In spite of everything, Marek stood up to the task and took me on a journey in the area where he hunted, showing what, where and how. We even approached the roe buck, but as you probably guessed, the wind was not our ally and the roe buck quite quickly caught our presence.

Marek’s words made me aware of something that theoretically we all know. I am talking about the fact that we leave a lot of smell behind us during hunting and how much depends on our preparation for hunting, which really starts with choosing the right shampoo or soap.

Many hunters talk about the times, when the hunting trip was taken with a shotgun. This was often the only weapon, and the shot was given very close to an animal. An effective shot from such a distance from a shotgun required from the hunter both knowledge of the terrain, ability to move silently and camouflage his own fragrance. At that time, however, it was a bit simpler, because there were no shops full of powders, lotions, shampoos and soaps with hundreds or thousands of scents.

In addition to this, there are also the issues of odors of liquids that repel insects such as mosquitoes and ticks. Although this problem occurs only for a part of the year, nevertheless, many of us use such means, and their impact on our fragrance is also important. However, considering what diseases the tick can cause, it is worth considering what is more important – hunted boar or health. There are electronic devices on sale, which do not smell, the purpose of which is to scare away ticks, but I must admit that I do not know how to relate to them and for now I look at them through my fingers. I prefer to accept other things containing, for example, DEET despite the fact that they leave their fragrance.
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Following Mark’s advice, the next day, a natueal soap and an unscented washing powder appeared in my basket. Despite the fact that there are various types of products on sale, including specialist soaps that eliminate odors, my needs have completely satisfied the bath with natural soap just before going to hunt.

If I hunted abroad with a bow, I would consider investing in a scent reducing spray that sprays all clothing. In contrast to hunters hunting with a rifle, an archer must be really close to the game in order to give an effective shot. In the USA you go even further, towards the so-called carbon clothing. Such clothing can be prepared for yourself by soaking clothes in a previously prepared mix of water and activated charcoal powder. Of course, the clothes must be washed beforehand to get rid of the smell.

For the time being, I do not see the necessity of applying such measures. I will probably consider it when I go on an autumn hunt with a shotgun for a fox. Ok, but what about Marek and hunting?

– I see that you did a lesson – Maker laughed when a few days later I appeared with him being right after a bath with the use of natural soap, with clothes that did not have the smell of lily from the rinsing liquid. They smelled natural because after being picked in an odorless powder, they hung two days drying out in the garden. I was ready to go, after bath with the natural soap. We got in the car and went on the road.

That day, the roebuck we saw a few days earlier did not show up. There was a fox and a wild boar, and I picked up one of the most important lessons a young, future hunter could receive – respect for hunted game.

Happy Hunting!

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