Skip to main content Skip to main content

When Stalking, Go Low and Slow

When Stalking, Go Low and Slow

It is a common misconception that animals are best stalked from above. Perhaps this is because hunting from a treestand is so effective. But ground sneaking and tree sitting are worlds apart.

In my experience, stalking down from above a deer, elk, or bear is the worst possible choice. Critters in the hills tend to keep a wary eye above for predators, and a bowhunter is most likely to be skylined and easily seen during a downhill sneak. Raising your bow to shoot downhill can present a stark silhouette that scares the heck out of animals.

It is almost always easier to hide if you sneak along a sidehill or approach from below an animal. A sidehill stalk allows maximum use of ridges and ravines that naturally run down a slope. Getting below game prevents you from being skylined and usually provides ample foliage for effective sneaking.

When given a choice, I never stalk big game from above. Sidehill stalks are my favorite, because the undulating, water-worn nature of most slopes gives me solid rock and dirt to hide behind. If I am able to come from below, I know I'll always have a solid background that eliminates my silhouette and enhances the value of my camouflage clothes. By comparison, sneaking above game is usually a disadvantage.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Popular Videos

Pick a Spot!

Pick a Spot!

Bowhunter Sales Manager, Jeff Millar, heads to the Texas Hill Country for a true mixed-bag hunt with Keith Miller's Texas Trophy Whitetails.

Tree Saddle Hunting: Best Platforms & Ring of Steps

Tree Saddle Hunting: Best Platforms & Ring of Steps

We all need a spot to place our feet in life … and even more so when in the saddle. The two options are a platform or ring-of-steps. For longer hunts, platforms are more comfortable and most familiar. Ring-of-steps are lighter and easier to pack for shorter-duration hunts and long hikes.

Elk Bulls Abound in Colorado

Elk Bulls Abound in Colorado

Bowhunter team member Rudy Bachraty gets his chance to take an elk with Cross Mountain Outfitters of Colorado.

See All Videos

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services


Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Bowhunter App

Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Bowhunter stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Bowhunter subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now