Tips for the beginning glasser - by Greg Krogh
So many articles have been written in the past about glassing, and I agree
with most of what I have read over the years. For a couple of years Chris Denham
and Floyd Green have been asking me to write an article about glassing, but
I felt like everything I had to offer had already been written about extensively.
During this past fall, while spending countless hours glassing next to my clients,
I tried to figure out why many of them rarely glassed any deer, even though
they had very good optical equipment. With the privilege of hind sight and a
little experimentation during this past season of guiding, I have come to the
conclusion that two different aspects of glassing account for this discrepancy.
These two things are glassing slowly, and more importantly, glassing with confidence.
The first time I realized this was on a Mule Deer hunt in Nevada with someone
who I heard was an incredible glasser. Because he had never really spent much
time glassing for mule deer in the type of terrain we were hunting, he was glassing
very fast, covering country as quick as possible without methodically picking
the country apart. This led to very few deer sightings on his part and a lot
of skepticism on my part. By the third day of our trip though he figured out
where the deer were hanging out, and started to focus on those places, methodically
picking them apart. Once he became confident that there were deer in these places
he started to slow down and make some incredible spots, and it wasn't long before
my skepticism turned to amazement. This showed me that even an experienced great
glasser can have difficulty, if he doesn't slow down and glass more methodically.
While this seems like an obvious thing to do, I can tell you from past experiences
it isn't. Whenever I was scouting new areas that I was unfamiliar with, the
number of deer I spotted was drastically lower than normal. Part of this could
be attributed to the fact that I didn't know the area as well, but that was
only part of the reason. More often than not it was because I was glassing two
quickly and without confidence.
Think of how many times you have been glassing an area with your hunting partner
and he spots a bedded deer. As soon as you get behind his tripod and look through
his binos you immediately locate the deer he has spotted. Often times the deer
is on a ridge that you have glassed repeatedly, over and over again without
producing the same deer. The fact that you see the buck now proves that your
eyes and equipment are capable, but your technique is lacking. As soon as your
partner told you he had a deer, your brain started to pick apart every aspect
of his field of view, with complete confidence until you located the deer. Imagine
if there was a way to trick your brain into thinking there was always a deer
in your field of view.
This past season I tried this technique with several clients and was amazed
with the results. Every time I spotted an animal I would have them look through
my binos until they located the animal. Once they had the confidence that they
could find game I had them slow down and look through their own bino and tripod
setup. I had them look through their viewfinder and tell themselves that there
was a deer in their field of view. They did this until they were absolutely
convinced that there weren't any deer and then moved their binos to a new spot
and started the process over. The results were amazing. Every single one of
them started spotting more game than ever before. The more they tried the technique
and located deer, the more confident they became and things started to snowball
On the next trip I tried to test this theory even more. I would pick a basin
that I had not looked at yet and would tell my client that I had seen a deer
in it. Because he thought that there were deer in the basin he would almost
always find them. The important thing to realize is that this same client had
glassed next to me prior to this test for three days in the same country and
had not spotted a single deer. The only variable that had changed was that he
now had confidence that there were deer there, and therefore glassed more thoroughly.
Even though I still glass quickly in certain areas depending on the terrain,
whenever I start having difficulty spotting game I go back to this technique
and it always really helps. Try it next time you are out glassing, what have
you got to lose??
Mogollon Rim Outfitters
P.0. Box 163
Chino Valley, AZ 86323