I began filming my own hunts this past season. I successfully took a deer, a coyote and a turkey on film, and also have some great footage of several botched shots. While I don’t claim to be Remi Warren, I do have a few tips I learned the hard way that can help you get started filming your own hunts.
My brother and I each bought cameras prior to the hunting season. While Harrison’s camera had greater zoom capabilities, 70x compared to 32x, my camera had considerably better picture quality . While some blogs will emphasize zoom for hunting situations, I have found it to be largely overrated. While hunting in Iowa it is unlikely that you will be taking a shot at over 300 yards, and more often you will be shooting at animals within 100. For these situations you are always better off going with higher resolution than greater zoom.
One thing that surprised me about filming my own hunts was how distracting it can be. Before I used a camera I spent the minutes before the shot calming my nerves and judging the distance of the animal. Now, I spend time making sure my camera is recording and it is pointed in the right direction. I missed more than one shot last year because I was rushed. I didn’t take time to calm myself down and focus on distance. It takes time to get used to your camera. Make sure that everything is well organized and you have a plan in place before the deer shows up.
I consider myself fairly good at staying still. I hunt mostly from the ground for deer and rarely use a blind. Being still isn’t an option when filming your own hunt. To minimize movement I sit with my hand as close to the camera as possible. This strategy works well for deer, but can be tricky for turkey. With turkeys I always ensure my camera is fully charged the night before. I then turn the camera on as soon as I hear a nearby gobble. I can always go back and delete footage if I need to.
You never know what the best shot will be. Walking into the sunset can end up looking like a shitty bigfoot tape. Your best bet is to record everything. Eventually you will figure out what works and what doesn’t. During my turkey hunt I filmed deer, coyotes and a mother possum with babies on her back during separate hunts. The footage is great for social media and to show friends.
Get a Partner
Self filmed hunts are a hassle. It is difficult to make sure that both the animal and your crosshairs are on the animal at the same time. I dragged a rock climbing buddy out that had never hunted before to film one of my hunts this past year. And, whenever possible I have my brother come along to film. Another option is to have an inexperienced hunter come along as a cameraman and allow him to shoot a doe if there are no bucks around. Thank you for reading. I hope that this helps you make better videos. Stu.
Bio: Stuart Hoegh is the owner and guide for Three Brothers Outdoors fly fishing service in Sunriver, Oregon. He will hunt antelope in Wyoming, elk in Colorado, mule deer in Nebraska and every animal in Iowa during the upcoming season.