Hunt safe tips
Hunters should remember these key steps to ensure safety for themselves and those around them.
General safety rules
Every hunter should know these shooting safety rules.
- Know standard hunting regulations, as well as those for the area you are hunting.
- Wear blaze orange, even when not legally required. Blaze orange is highly recommended for visibility.
- Control the muzzle, ensuring that a firearm is never pointed in an unsafe direction.
- Keep your finger out of the trigger guard and away from the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
- Treat every firearm as if it is loaded.
- Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
- Never shoot at sounds, movement, through thick brush or at sky-lined game. Never shoot toward a roadway, at a sky-lined animal, or at water or ice.
- Know where everyone in your party is located. Establish shooting lanes, and do not swing your firearm outside of your safe zone of fire. Be in constant communication with your group.
- Keep firearms unloaded when not in use, including while riding in a vehicle or ATV.
- Be aware of your surroundings, including landowners, hikers or other outdoor recreationists enjoying the same outdoor space as you.
Tree stand safety rules
Many choose to hunt deer from an elevated position for a multitude of reasons, but hunting at these heights requires a few safety precautions.
- Don’t hang stands alone. Bring a friend or family member to help.
- Ensure that the straps connecting the stand and ladder to the tree are in good shape. They should not be frayed nor torn.
- Always wear a safety harness when hanging stands and hunting. Read the instructions, and make sure the harness is sized correctly to you. Use a lifeline to ensure you’re connected from the time you first step off the ground until you return.
- Use a haul line to pull your bow or firearm into the tree after you climb up and get situated. Never climb with your bow or firearm in your hands.
- Always use the “three-points-of-contact” rule when climbing the tree.
Purchase hunting, big game and turkey permits, as well as supertags and combo lotteries.