LAST UPDATED: May 1st, 2015
Successful big game hunters know that if you want to routinely harvest trophy animals, you have to beat their keen senses, especially sharp eyes. Camouflaging yourself in your surroundings can make or break your hunt, and what better way to do that than to sit in a blind that looks like a tree?
Hollywood Special Effects Creator Tim Thomason was sick of the blinds he used to hunt deer in Texas, far from his home in northern California. Every time he saw a deer, it would look straight at him because of the blind he was in. So he opted to do something about it and what he did was build a well-thought-out design that looks exactly like a real tree stump.
He calls his company Nature Blinds and is based out of Kerrville, Texas. Among addressing recognition concerns, he crafted his blind with enough space for two hunters to stand upright, scent-blockers and ample insulation/venting to keep a blind cool in summer and warm in winter.
Vice President of Business Development for Nature Blinds Clint Fiore discussed why Thomason was compelled to design this blind. “He hated the blinds that he always got put in [hunting deer in Texas]. He stayed frustrated because every time he would see a deer they would look right at him because of the blind he was in.”
Thomason built the first prototype in his basement out of ABS plastic and high-density foam, the same foam used to make realistic-looking rocks at major theme parks like DisneyWorld. Fiore said Nature Blinds blinds are UV resistant, water-tight and made from a close-cell material projected to last at least 15 years. Each blind is hand-detailed and painted to resemble the detail seen naturally in tree bark.
There are multiple windows placed along the stand covering a 360 degree angle. Each is recessed into the bark and is made of tinted Plexiglass and covered with see-through camouflage that makes it easy to see out, but impossible to see in.
Sale price is $3,450, but even at the steep price, Fiore said sales have been phenomenal since the product’s launch in January. There is currently a six-week back order while an Alabama dealer reported almost one-a-day sales for the past month.
“We have been selling them for a month now and we have already sold 25 of them,” dealer Shane Duncan said in an interview with AL.com. “It’s just a giant leap in technology. A hunter can put his wife in there and be comfortable or he can take a couple of kids along and the noise doesn’t matter.”