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Ground blinds are makeshift or temporary structures located on the ground that conceal the hunter. They're made of everything from plywood to branches.

Hunter in ground blind
Ground blinds, often made of branches, conceal the hunter.

You should situate ground blinds:

  • Downwind, based on the normal wind pattern during a given time of day, such as morning
  • Away from the sun
  • Where the foreground and background are safest

Hunting from a Ground Blind

Press the play button (▶) above to start the video. Trouble with this video?

Video Transcript

Rob sees turkey feathers on the ground.

Rob

Nice. This is definitely a place to hunt for gobblers. Now, do you have any idea why I’m here the day before the season starts setting up this blind? Well, it’s so that I can really check things out and set up in the daylight, which allows me to take advantage of the turkeys while setting up for safety. But come on, because you can really help us out.

Rob picks up his gear and looks for a good spot.

Rob

Turkey time, turkey time, turkey time. OK, so first we need to consider where the turkeys and the other hunters are going to come from. Hmm.

The cameraman gestures to the trail.

Rob

Yeah, I think you’re right. It’s most likely that the other hunters are going to come from the trail. And we want them to be able to see our blind, our decoys, and we want to keep them out of our safe zone of fire. So where do we set up? Let’s consider our options.

On screen: OPTION 1

Place the blind with the decoy being directly in between the blind and the trail.

On screen: OPTION 2

Place the blind so that it is at a 90-degree angle from the trail, with the decoy in the middle.

On screen: OPTION 3

Place the blind by the trail and facing out toward the decoy.

Rob sits at Option 1.

Rob

All right, here’s the deal—in option number one, if you place the blind there, you’re creating a dangerous situation for yourself in the blind and other hunters. For instance, if other hunters come down that trail and shoot at turkeys in front of the decoys, they’re shooting in your direction. Likewise, if you’re in the blind shooting at turkeys by the decoys, you’re shooting toward the direction of hunters coming down the trail. Not good.

Rob stands at Option 2.

Rob

All right. In this option, if you were to put the blind there, then that trail access is dangerously within the line of fire of that decoy. Not a good option.

Rob sits near the decoy at Option 3.

Rob

All right. If we set up the blind there, we would be concealed just at the edge of the woods, and our line of fire will be directed away from the trail. And if a hunter came down that trail, they’d see the blind before they saw the decoy. I think this is the spot.

Rob

All right. Let’s set up this blind. So tomorrow, when we come back to hunt, we’ll put this hen about 30 yards from the blind. Can’t wait—see you then.

The sun rises the next day and Rob arrives at the blind with another hunter.

Rob

All right. So the decoy is set.

[GOBBLE]

Rob

And the gobblers are ready. So Pablo here will be doing the shooting, and I’ll call the turkeys.

At the blind, Rob asks the other hunter, “You wanna go ahead and get in?”

Rob

Now, we won’t load until we’re in the blind and all set. Let’s do this.

The two hunters get into the blind, paint their faces for camouflage, put on protective eye gear, and set up.

Rob

All right. So the turkeys could come from anywhere. So we have to choose our safe zones of fire and close the shooting windows which aren’t safe. Now, which ones would you close? Here are your options.

On screen, our view is from inside the blind. Each window lights up as it is named.

Facing trail—Facing decoy—Facing horizon.

A cursor selects FACING TRAIL.

Rob

We decided that’s an unsafe option because another hunter might come from that direction. Close that window and try another.

A cursor selects FACING DECOY.

Rob

That’s the smart choice and the one we planned on. It’s away from the trail, and we can see what’s in the background. Keep these open.

A cursor selects FACING HORIZON.

Rob

We don’t shoot toward a horizon because we can’t see what’s on the other side. Not good. Close that one and try another. OK, we’re all set with a plan for who’s doing what. You ready to load?

Pablo

Listo.

On screen: Ready.

Rob puts the turkey call in his mouth.

[TURKEY CALL]

[GOBBLES]

Rob

All right. So this is really exciting. But whether we get a bird or not, thanks for helping us put safety first so that everyone can enjoy the hunt.

Pablo

Aquí viene.

On screen: Here it comes.

Pablo takes a shot, and the two hunters smile and congratulate one another.