By Mark Kenyon

Over the last couple weeks I’ve been working on a magazine article that’s required that I interview a handful of incredibly successful DIY deer hunters. These are average folks, killing great bucks, in sometimes extraordinary situations, year after year after year. And after having spoke to these guys for hours on end and parsing through all of their stories and strategies, one thing that they all have in common stands out from the noise; they get a little crazy sometimes.

By that I mean that these guys go above and beyond the usual. They go outside of the norm. They operate far from the average. And I’ve got to thinking that this is no coincidence.

Sure, there are some average guys/gals who put in an average amount of work and use the usual hunting strategies to every once in awhile kill a nice buck. But to kill a mature buck, in a DIY situation, year after year is no fluke and it is not average.

This kind of abnormal success requires an abnormal input, in the form of a certain amount of dedication, energy and chutzpah that the average deer hunter simply is not willing to invest. In short, it will require that you do things that outsiders and the average will think might be a little crazy.

Maybe that’s knocking on 30 doors for hunting permission. Or spending 4 weekends in a row prepping tree stands. Or scouting 15 different properties for a full day each. Or maybe it’s driving 2,000 miles, one way, to get to prime hunting grounds. Or selling your motorcycle to pay for your tags and gas money. Or hunting 20 days straight. Or hunting from dawn til dusk for seven days. Or camping out on public land for two weeks so you can afford to hunt out of state. Or hiking four miles back into a stand before daylight. Or carrying a canoe into a swamp to access that hard to reach honey-hole.

Most people would hear about that stuff, shake their heads and say, “that’s crazy.”

But guess what. If you want to be one of “those guys”, one of those who gets it done every single year, you’re simply going to have to do some crazy shit.

Don’t be afraid to go that extra mile. Don’t shy away from trying something new or outside of the box. Don’t be average. And don’t ever give up on your dream.

Consistently killing a big old buck is not for everyone, but it can be for anyone. You’ve just got to be willing to get a little crazy.