Have you ever watched your pet dog as it’s following the scent of something? They will zig zag back and forth trying to catch wind of what they are trailing.
In fact, I have watched out the window of my house as my dog follows the scent of where I have been in the yard earlier in the day. Once she finds the trail, she will lead step by step from where I have been. It’s actually amazing to watch.
A whitetail buck is the same way. When a doe comes into heat she will leave her scent behind as she travels through the woods. A buck, when in rut, will then spend hours with his nose to the ground trying to pick up the scent of where a doe has been.
Once he picks that scent up, he is just like a dog. He will zig zag back and forth following that scent until he finally finds a doe ready to breed. This process is a big reason that I love using scents and lures during the rut to try to lure a mature buck into shooting range.
The one scent tactic I like using during late October throughout November while the rut is going on is using what is called a trail drag.
A trail drag is made up of using a piece of cloth, felt, an old rag, etc., tied to the end of a string. The cloth is used as a scent applicator, something that will hold the scent as you drag it through the leaves, rubbing a little scent here and there as you go.