Let’s start with the basics. This will be obvious to many of you, so feel free to skip ahead. But to anyone who is new to hunting or doesn’t currently hunt the wind, you need to know the facts. Fact number one is that you stink, at least to deer. You smell like danger, and if they smell you, they will run. Fact number two is that a deer’s first line of defense is its sense of smell, which is otherworldly. Under the right conditions, deer can smell you from 300 yards away. We know this because F&S whitetails editor Scott Bestul once tested it with a drug-sniffing dog (and because deer have more olfactory receptors than any pooch). Which brings us to fact number three and the heart of the matter: No matter how good a deer’s nose is, it can’t smell you unless the wind carries your stinky scent particles to its nose. In other words, whitetail deer can’t bust you unless they are downwind—and as long as you know which way the wind is blowing, you can use that to your advantage.