Self-Filming Rifle Hunts is easier….or is it?
First, there is nothing easy about self-filming and hunting. Yes, while filming a rifle hunt you may be able to get away with a little more movement and noise than if you were in a tree stand. However, there are a different set of challenges when filming rifle hunts, especially if they are a spot and stalk hunt. With most rifle hunts, you are either up from a distance or using the spot and stalk technique.
Any time you have the chance to get to your spot early and set up the better. Being ready for any self-film event is most important. Typically, if you are setting a ground blind over a food plot or tucked into the side of a bluff overlooking water, you will have a tripod for the camera. Once set up, the tripod makes for easy work once you’re ready to film. Either way, the tripod is something extra you are having to pack into the field.
Ground blind filming provides the cover you may need to make the extra movement’s with the camera. However, the limitations of the opening with regards to the location of the game animal could pose a problem. It is somewhat cumbersome to have to relocate the tripod and reset up the camera. Most importantly, this takes away time from getting prepared to take the proper shot you need. Another obstacle is the tripod takes up extra room in the blind and is potentially something that can be bumped into or knocked over during the heat of the moment. Make sure to give yourself plenty of room and try to have the camera setup to your most comfortable side of the blind opening. You’ll want as much of the opening available to get ready for taking the shot.
Spot and stalk is a different animal in its own right. While this technique of hunting can be very fruitful, trying to self-film the event is even more of a challenge. The most important thing about this hunting style is to pack light. While it’s not very practical to carry your rifle and camera/ tripod in your hands at the same time, especially over a long distance, they readily available for quick access because you never know what you might walk up on. Being fast and efficient in quickly setting up the tripod and camera will greatly improve the quality of the experience you’re able to capture on film. The primary drawback to this techniques is that you will need to carry the extra weight the majority of the time. However, this leads to the opportunity for a better film as you will most likely have experiences than you would being stationary.
The key is to practice the techniques and get familiar with the set up prior to your hunt. Be prepared and ready for anything.