Best Hunting Blinds

Updated December 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

37 Models Considered
8 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
419 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best hunting blinds

Last Updated December 2019

Most people know that deer have a terrific sense of smell and can detect humans and our scent from incredible distances. What most people don’t realize, however, is that deer also have excellent eyesight. In addition to your camouflage clothing, a hunting blind can help you remain concealed from your prey.

Hunting blinds come in a range of styles, materials, and colors. There are enclosure-style and shield-style blinds. Enclosures are large structures that are more comfortable over extended periods, while shields are easier to set up while leaving you slightly more exposed to the elements and your prey. Depending on whether you plan to leave your hunting blind set up for weeks at a time or pack it up and relocate frequently, aspects like weight and durability should impact your purchasing decision.

No two blinds are identical in their design, materials, or features. But you’re not shopping blind: our buying guide will walk you through the primary factors in choosing the right hunting blind for your needs.

Scout the area ahead of time to determine the best location for your blind.

Key considerations

Enclosures vs. shields

The most important consideration when shopping for a hunting blind is whether you want an enclosure-style or shield-stye blind. Both types have advantages and disadvantages.

Enclosures

An enclosure-style hunting blind resembles a camouflage tent. It may allow you enough space to stand partially or fully upright inside.

The biggest disadvantage of enclosures is that they are obvious human-made structures. When deer spot them — and they will — they’ll instantly be wary. To combat this problem, you’ll have to set up your blind at least a week before the season begins to give the deer a chance to become accustomed to its presence in their home.

The other disadvantage is the limited viewing range. An enclosure blind keeps deer from seeing you, but it also increases your difficulty in spotting them.

On the positive side, an enclosure protects you from wind, rain, and cold temperatures in a way that a shield cannot. In addition, an enclosure allows you to move around to avoid stiffness and sore muscles from sitting in one position for too long. The extra space also provides storage for your accessories and gear.

Shields

Sometimes referred to as screens or netting, shield-style hunting blinds include a piece of camouflage fabric that can be strung between two trees for basic, minimalist cover.

A shield can’t protect you from the weather or allow you the freedom of movement that being concealed on all sides does.

The advantages to camouflage shields are that they are more portable than enclosures, easier to set up and take down, and easier to transport due to their lighter weight. You can stretch a shield between two trees or bushes where it will blend in with the terrain without alerting the deer.

Color

Although all hunting blinds are covered in a camouflage pattern, the actual colors cover a wide range, from dark forest green to light tan desert colors. Choose a blind with colors that match the terrain you’ll be hunting in.

EXPERT TIP

For best results, position your blind inside a wooded area rather than at the edge of the forest or an open field.


Staff  | BestReviews

Features

Materials

The major materials used in the construction of blinds are polyester fabrics, some cotton ones, steel hubs, and fiberglass or aluminum poles. The emphasis is on lightweight construction for portability.  Although there is no such thing as a perfect material, fiberglass poles are the best overall due to their lightweight design, durability, and flexibility.  For strength, nothing beats steel, but it is the heaviest option available.  On the fabric side of things, polyester fabrics are the clear winner over cotton. Cotton is highly absorbent and will become damp in wet weather, while polyester is water-resistant. In addition, it is far lighter than cotton, making your blind easier to carry.

Hub style blinds

A hub-style enclosure blind has a steel hub with holes in it for the support poles to be inserted into or extended from. Most hunting blinds have more than one hub to accommodate portable shelves or a gun rest.

Weight

At some point, you’ll be carrying your blind from the truck to wherever you’re setting it up, so weight is not a factor to overlook.

Shield-type of blinds are lightweight — usually under 5 or 6 pounds. Larger enclosures can weigh over 30 pounds. Your weight limit depends on how far will you be carrying the blind before you set it up. Once you bag a deer or you’re done for the season, you’ll have to carry it back to the truck again.

Setup and teardown

Blind setup and teardown has improved in tandem with improvements in ordinary tents. Enclosure-style blinds shouldn’t take more than 20 minutes to completely set up or take down. Shield-style blinds take even less time. If you plan to leave your blind up for weeks at a time, setup time may not be a major consideration — but if you hope to regularly relocate your blind, quick setup is key.

Windows

Enclosure-style blinds normally have windows on three sides, though some more expensive models feature a window on the side with the entrance. Some have mesh windows but in most, the window is simply an opening in the fabric.  Unzip it, lower the fabric, and you have a window in your blind through which to hunt and shoot.

Weather resistance

Though most enclosure blinds will protect you from a bit of wind or drizzle, not all are designed with weather resistance in mind. If you hope to hunt, rain or shine, look for a model with a waterproof exterior. The best weatherproof models have taped seams to prevent leaks.

EXPERT TIP

Write your name and address on your blind in permanent marker to deter other hunters from attempting to steal it.


Staff  | BestReviews

Essential accessories

A hunting blind is just the start of setting up your spot. Here are a few other accessories to improve your comfort while you’re waiting for prey.

Blind chair: ALPS OutdoorZ Stealth Hunter Blind Chair
Most people can only crouch or kneel for so long. To keep your legs limber, we recommend this comfortable model from ALPS.

Animal alarm: Olymbros Outdoor Animals Alarm System Kit
Give yourself a heads-up when animals approach with an animal alarm kit. This model features tiny camouflaged sensors, which send a signal to the wearable watch, alerting you when prey is coming your way.

Hand warmer: Human Creations EnergyFlux Enduro Portable Electric Hand Warmer
In cold conditions, a hand warmer can make a big difference in how long you can hunt. This model from Human Creations releases lasting heat for up to 7 hours at 109ºF.

Odor spray: Wildlife Research Scent Killer Gold Autumn Formula SprayDeer and other prey have sensitive noses, especially when it comes to human scents. To eliminate odors from you and your hunting blind, use this scent killer spray before you hunt. Spray your clothes and the blind several days before hunting to improve your odds of getting that perfect shot before the deer detect you.

Hunting blind prices

Inexpensive: For $10 to $70 are basic shield-style blinds. Some of them may or may not include poles or stakes, so read the manufacturer’s description carefully to determine whether you will need extra hardware.

Midrange: Blinds for $70 to $150 are typically enclosure blinds, some of which have windows on all four sides.

Expensive: Over $150 is where high-priced blinds are found. These are larger, heavier, and more robust than less expensive blinds. If you need a blind that can keep you dry and comfortable for hours at a time, you should consider blinds in this range.

EXPERT TIP

When you set up your blind before hunting season, randomly scatter some deer corn in the area around it. This will help deer overcome their wariness about the new object in their home.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • At the start of a new season, set the blind up in your yard for about a week to let it air out. Spray it with some odor eliminator as well.
  • Put the blind in place at least a week before hunting season begins. This gives the deer a chance to become accustomed to it and drop their guard in its vicinity.
  • Never let the deer see you entering or exiting the blind. The moment they see you, they’ll associate the blind with people and avoid it. That means you should get to the blind before sunrise while the deer are still feeding.
  • Blinds provide you with some freedom of movement, but deer aren’t blind or deaf. Excessive movement will catch their attention.

Other products we considered

If you didn’t find the right blind for you in our top picks, we have a few other recommendations. We like the Ameristep Care Taker Blind, which works well for two hunters. It has plenty of windows and protects you from the wind and rain without messing up your view through the scope or range finder. The spider hub framework inside makes setting it up quick and easy, and the outside material has a matte finish that prevents reflections.

We also like the Rhino Blinds 3-Person Hunting Blind, which offers plenty of space and has windows on all four sides for maximum viewing. It is designed to withstand rain, wind, and hail, and the hub system on the framework makes for easy setup and teardown. The tough, durable material has been treated to be UV resistant, so it won’t fade as quickly as some models.

Always keep a running log of where you had the best results from your blind. Include as many environmental measures as possible so you can adapt to changing conditions and move your blind accordingly.

FAQ

Q. What does “brushing it out” mean?
A.
This is hunting jargon that refers to the process of camouflaging your blind by surrounding it with limbs, bushes, and grass to help it blend into the terrain.

Q. Can I use my blind as soon as I get it?
A.
No. New fabric has a distinct odor to it (think “new car smell”) that will alert deer to its presence. Set it up for a week or more in your yard to let it air out before using it the first time.

Q. Can a deer blind be set up ahead of time on public land?
A.
It depends on the regulations in your area. Some states allow it, while others don’t. Do your research ahead of time and ask rather than take a chance on having your blind impounded.

The team that worked on this review
  • Ciera
    Ciera
    Digital Content Producer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Michael
    Michael
    Writer

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