Best Ground Blind Ever?

Deer Hunting Blinds

Deer Hunting Blinds

Deer Hunting BlindsEditors

After three decades of hunting from elevated stands, I'm learning to come down from the trees. I've been using ground blinds for deer -- with varying degrees of success -- in the last few seasons, mainly when taking my kids with me to the deer woods.

While I love the portability and easy setup of most most pop-up blinds, they have their drawbacks. In my experience, the blind has to be out there for a while so deer can get used to its presence. Otherwise, they can get pretty jumpy. Or the setup has to be near perfect: Plenty of brushing in and other prep to camouflage the game-spooking silhouette of most blinds.

So I perked right up when a bowhunting buddy from Alaska tipped me off to the Nature Blind. Designed by a Hollywood set designer, the Nature Blind mimics a gnarly old tree trunk that, I'm convinced, would hoodwink any whitetail. The thing looks darn comfy (it has a carpeted floor, insulated walls, plenty of shooting windows, and can hold 2-3 people comfortably), appears weatherproof, and seems to have all the hunter-friendly features you'd expect in a quality blind.

Of course, no product is perfect. The Nature Blind weighs 300 pounds, which means that moving the thing requires at least a couple helpers and -- at minimum -- an ATV with a trailer. Oh yes, and then there's the $3,500 price tag. The only way I'm going to own one of these is if Hurteau gives me a massive raise, or if I find that wealthy, ailing uncle we're all searching for. Sigh … Guess I'll just keep zip-tying branches to my pop-up model.