I dont think it is any secret among successful big buck hunters that stand access is extremely important. You could have a stand located in what you think is the best spot in the woods but if you cannot access it without being detected by deer then the location is pretty much worthless for hunting mature bucks. Last winter I was consulting on a property for an Ohio hunter and came across a situation that I am sure is the worlds most stealthy stand access; at least I cannot imagine another hunter going to more extreme measures to ensure undetected access to a stand, or in this case an elevated hunting blind.
While I was speechless when I saw this set-up I want to make it clear that this landowner gained a ton of my respect. He realizes the importance of stand access and went way beyond what most deer hunters would ever do to create an access route that is as close to fool-proof as is possible. I thought I put a lot of effort into the access of my stand sites but I must admit this gentleman (who will remain nameless), took it to a level I hadnt even considered. The only way to possibly explain this set-up is through photos and let me say that even these photos can not do justice to this particular set-up.
As you can see in this first photo a trench has been dug in the ground. This trench is about 4-feet deep and starts at the road where this hunters enters his property. The hunter walks down in this trench which is already within a low wash for about 200-300 yards to this 36″ diameter black pipe. At this point the hunter crawls in this pipe for about 100 yards into the side of the hill. The pipe then turns straight up and comes out in the floor of an elevated blind. Inside this black pipe is a ladder that allows the hunter to climb within the pipe and into his blind.
Where this pipe runs horizontal underground it actually is below the landowners food plot! This hunter literally crawls through a tunnel under his plot to access his blind!
Now this in itself is mind-blowing to me but it gets even better! See that smaller white pipe in the photos? This pipe runs from the blind all the way back to the road where the hunter accesses the property. There at the road the hunter has built a very small building about the size of a phone-booth. This pipe runs to that small building where an electric exhaust fan pulls air from the blind. This fan is ran by a battery which is powered by a solar charger mounted to the roof of the small building. When the hunter starts his hunt he begins by turning the fan on in the building. When he gets to the blind he cracks a window so that air is pulled into the blind through the cracked window, down through the pipe all the way to the road where the hunters scent is then dispersed at the small building with the exhaust fan. Unfortunately I did not think to get photos of this small building at the time.
I have been on a lot of hunting properties all over the country during the last 40 years but this takes the cake as far as anything I ever saw in terms of the extreme measures a hunter has taken to access his stand undetected. I personally expend a LOT of effort to ensure good access to my stands and I have met almost nobody that I feel takes their whitetail hunting more serious than I do. With that said, my hat is off to this Ohio hunter; he clearly takes things to the absolute EXTREME!