Hunting the Post Rut With a Box Blind

The height of the busy rut period might be over and unfilled tags might seem like an opportunity missed for the year. Nothing could be further from the truth. Hunting the post rut can still give plenty of opportunities to harvest a deer and fill those empty tags. Hunting the post rut from a box blind can definitely offer some added advantages as the cold winter days start to come with more frequency.

There are advantages to hunting the post rut with a box blind. They will make hunting the harsher winter conditions more comfortable, allowing the focus to be on prime areas in comfort. Hunting prime areas will be the focus of the post rut and box blinds will allow for scent control and better cover.

Before jumping into the box blind, the first order of business is knowing what the deer will be doing during this phase of the deer hunting season. Then we will get into the advantages the box blind can offer for the post rut.


The Post Rut

deer post rut

By the time that the rut is over, most does have been bred and one might assume that spotting that big, mature buck during daylight hours is done for the season. Not so fast! There are still going to be does out there that haven’t been bred yet and are still looking to mate. Mature bucks will know this and still be on the prowl to find those last few receptive does.

Immediately after the rut, stick to those areas that you hunted during the rut. If there is still any sign of deer in the area, there is a good chance to still see mature bucks roaming during the day in search of those lingering does. The activity won’t be as intense as the rut, but there are still great chances to be had.

The does that are already bred and the younger, immature bucks will be back to focusing on food and bedding areas that will help them survive the winter. Mature bucks might still be on the lookout for those last estrus does, but they will need to recover from the immense pressure they put on their bodies during the rut, too. Focusing on the dwindling food locations and great bedding areas are still going to be your hot spots.

The further the season carries on into winter and away from the rut, the mature bucks will begin to hit the food as hard as they can in order to bulk back up. Reverting back to early season tactics should be the go-to in the late season after the rut. This should serve box blind hunters very well post rut.


Box Blind Placement

box blind placement

Box blinds aren’t the most portable of set ups compared to other stands, so putting some deep thought into your box blind placement is very important. Early season placements will be good hunting spots late in the season if they are placed near food sources or in heavily used travel corridors. Don’t limit an entire box blind to only being useful for a part of the season. The more options available throughout the entire hunting season, the higher the probability of filling tags.

Box blinds that are set up on the edge of agricultural fields will provide good hunting both early in the season and post rut when food becomes the biggest focus for deer preparing for the cold of winter. Placement near areas where deer will enter and exit feeding areas are great spots for box blind placement as well.

If placement near feeding areas are not available, then locating the best travel corridors to set up near is the next best option. This is especially true if it is a thicker area in terms of vegetation. As the colder months set in and leaves begin to fall away, deer will stick to areas that are thicker to give them better cover during times of movement and to hide in when bedding.

Find those box blind placements that will serve you all season long, especially the post rut and into the late season. They offer huge advantages for these times of the year.


Box Blind Advantages for Post Rut

Box blinds offer a lot of advantages for hunters that are still in the field post rut. Deer see the most pressure from hunters during the rut and have been educated more on both hunter scent and presence in the field. Using a box blind will help negate some of the knowledge that deer have gathered during the rut.


Box Blinds Conceal Movement

box blind conceal movement

Being completely concealed in a box blind will help hunters conceal movement that would otherwise spook deer if a more traditional hunting stand were being used. As the season winds on and the weather turns colder, sitting completely still gets harder and harder as hunters attempt to stay warm in the field. Using a box blind will allow hunters to move around and keep warm without spooking deer and putting their hunt in jeopardy.

Outside of movement, box blinds also provide much better cover for hunters when the leaves fall and vegetation fails to help hunters conceal themselves in the field. Inside a box blind, hunters don’t have to worry about silhouetting themselves to deer as they move into position to take a shot. This becomes an even bigger advantage if there is snow on the ground that then makes concealment even harder.


Box Blinds Increase Scent Control

box blinds increase scent control

It is hard to beat a deer’s nose. In colder weather, you will be wearing more gear which creates more opportunity for human scent to be absorbed in what you wear. This makes it more likely deer are going to smell you. Box blinds will help with scent control. When deer are pressured during the peak of the hunting season they smell hunters in the area. Oftentimes they will smell a hunter before they see them, which makes scent control all that much more important.

Being contained in a box blind will help keep a hunter’s scent from swirling around the woods in the wind. This is a huge advantage when hunting post rut and trying to harvest a mature buck. Deer that do not smell you will be more relaxed and move freely. Many times mature bucks wait and allow other deer to come through a travel corridor or into a feed source. The longer deer are comfortable, the more likely you are to see a mature buck before dark.


It Is Easier to Stay Warm in a Box Blind

Finally, as the weather turns cold, a box blind becomes valuable to a hunter in terms of warmth. By itself, a box blind can offer protection from the elements including precipitation and the wind. This alone will help keep a hunter warmer than sitting in an open treestand exposed to the elements.

A box blind will also allow hunters to use a small, portable heater if they so choose. To some, this might seem like cheating, but being comfortable and staying in the field longer only creates more chances to harvest a deer. Plenty of hunters have used heaters in order to keep them in the field longer. There is no shame in it.

Use those box blinds for all their advantages to help harvest that post rut deer.


Post Rut Hunting Strategy

post rut hunting strategy

Hunting the post rut will not be like the rut where being in the stand all day is recommended. Knowing the hunting area and how the deer in that area act is very important. Most of the deer will start reverting to pre-rut activities and travel patterns as they gear up for winter.

Hunting midday to dark is the strategy hunters should explore during the post rut when hunting food sources. If the focus is on feeding areas you should avoid heading to the stand in the early mornings because you will inevitably bump deer off the feeding source. This can disrupt the pattern the deer are on and alert them to your location on later hunts. Instead, head out midday and catch the deer coming out to feed in the afternoon and early evening.

When hunting travel corridors, both morning and afternoon hunts will work well to catch deer coming and going between feeding and bedding areas. You won’t have to worry about bumping deer as much but still should be as stealthy as possible. Having a good entry and exit path to and from the box blind is very important during this time of year, regardless of your setup. Deer are on high alert and in survival mode heading into winter.

These tactics will work for bow hunting and muzzleloader hunting. Box blinds are very effective for almost all modern weapons. Use these tactics regardless of what type of weapon is being used.


Enjoy the Advantages and Spend More Time Hunting

Don’t get discouraged by not harvesting a deer during the rut. The late season can offer you a good opportunity if your strategy and setup is right.

Hunting the post rut from a box blind can help keep you comfortable and help increase the odds of harvesting a deer in the last days of the season. More time in the woods with low impact means you are more likely to harvest a deer. Box blinds give you the opportunity to spend more time in the elements, conceal yourself, and stay comfortable.

Shop for Hunting Blinds Online – CLICK HERE
Share This Post:
About The Author
Patrick Long Patrick Long

Patrick is a lifelong hunter who mainly chases whitetail, but also enjoys duck and turkey hunting. He has hunted game in various states throughout the U.S. and always enjoys hunting in new areas with new people. Patrick usually prefers his .308 while in the stand but is also an avid bow hunter. Patrick is the author of Omega Outdoors ( where he regularly publishes his hunting experiences, insights, and expertise. When he’s not in the great outdoors hunting, he’s writing as much as possible.