David Long, author of the 2006 best seller “Public Land Mulies—The Bottom Line” is back and back in a big way. Along with long-time mule deer hunter, Mike Duplan, the duo released “The Edge—The Complete Approach to Hunting Mountain Mule Deer” in the fall of 2017. I bought a copy as soon as I knew they were available.
David is known as one of the most successful high country public land mule deer hunters alive today. Mike Duplan, if you’re not familiar, is a Colorado hunter with decades of experience successfully hunting outsized mule deer. He’s also known for photographing some exceptional bucks over the decades, some of these even making the front page of well known magazines. These two friends and hunters make a rare combination for authors of a mule deer book, but we all benefit from their combined effort.
When I first opened the package and held the hefty hard cover book, I was greeted with stunning front and back covers that screamed “READ THIS BOOK!”. Flipping through the pages, there were hundreds of high quality photos interspersed among the well written prose. I could tell Mike and David cut no corners from a monetary standpoint in producing The Edge.
David, one of the original founders of Rokslide, brings his skill for graphic design to the forefront of this book, along with his practical writing style. Many of the photos have a graphic overlay to better explain concepts like wind direction and topography layout, and his prose is easy to follow and understand.
Mike has always been a good writer with a knack for some dry humor and sarcasm thrown in for good measure. Many of his best photos of giant mule deer appear in the book, along with photos I’ve never seen. Simply put, Mike’s professional images set this book above the crowd in the mule deer genre. Mike has written many articles over the years but before The Edge, they were scattered about in magazines and on the web. For the first time, every technique he uses to tag big mule deer is in one place.
David has always been connector of hunters and this book shows more evidence of that. Intertwined among the two author’s chapters and sections are dozens of other tips written by well-known and successful mule deer hunters. Hunter’s like Marc “Muleyslayer” Smith, the one-and-only Randy Ulmer, and multi-weapon muley hunter and Rokslide staff member Jared Bloomgren. These authors and many more give readers their personal recommendations for hunting public land mule deer.
David included an entire section on archery hunting for big mule deer. To my knowledge, it is the first really in-depth exploration of hunting high country mule deer with modern archery tackle. This section alone is worth the price of the entire book.
David resurrected some of his content from his previous book, but it’s not redundant and flows well with the concepts laid out in The Edge. He’s also well known as the mule-deer-gear guy and the book contains David’s latest reviews and recommendations on gear you need for hunting the high country. Mike, primarily a rifle hunter, also chimes in on what’s working for his style of hunting late and low for big mule deer bucks.
This book is a great one to teach and explain methods and techniques related to mule deer hunting along with entertaining and engaging stories that further illustrate the authors’ points. Light on flair but heavy on knowledge is what you can expect from Long’s & Duplan’s combined styles.
In short, I can’t imagine a buck hunter who wouldn’t benefit from reading this book. I bought mine at The Mule Deer Hunter.