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Hunting a Bad Wind

Overcome the challenges posed by an unfavorable wind
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By Wade Bourne

I’m not sure there is such a thing as a “bad wind” in waterfowl hunting. In my book, any wind is better than no wind. But for those who hunt from permanent blinds, every season brings days when the wind blows from a bad direction. Most permanent blinds and pits cannot be turned to adjust for shifting winds, so fixed-blind hunters are commonly confined to facing one direction. They have to make the most of their opportunities regardless of which way the wind is blowing.

Hunters may also encounter a bad wind when they are forced to hunt a particular location because of water conditions, cover availability, or the presence of other hunters. Sometimes the only way to hunt a spot is with the wind at your front or off to one side, not at your back.

We frequently have to deal with a bad wind at our club in western Kentucky. Our pit is buried on the eastern bank of a slough that runs north to south and is adjacent to the Mississippi River. In other words, the pit faces west—our only option for hunting this spot.

The problem is, the prevailing wind here ranges from northwest to southwest—in our face. With a westerly wind, the ducks come in behind us, which makes for some tricky shooting. Since we have a bad wind most days when we’re hunting this spot, we have had to learn to adjust to it.

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