Whitetail deer hunting has become more complex, maybe in some ways more than it needs to be … too complicated. Just too much for some.

Some of us old timers yearn for deer hunting as it was back in the old days, half a century ago now.

The available gear that we hunters are subjected to in the newest catalogs and on the hunting websites is overwhelming compared to the old days of deer hunting when we would just take our gun or bow, a knife, and a rope if we were lucky, and a few shells in our pocket or arrows in our quiver.

And it isn’t just the gear.

Nowadays we interject complicated concepts that incorporate whitetail behavior such as "hunt the scrape-phase, prior to the chase-phase." Or how about, "the best time to hunt whitetails is just prior to the post-rut phase," or even ... the best time to hunt whitetails is the New Moon in November as the buck's testosterone is peaking and the 26-hour estrus cycle of the doe is primed."

(Like that arcane knowledge is really going to help the average deer hunter fill his or her tag on any given day.)

Actually, the pursuit of whitetails can be simplified, once the fashionable "whitetail-speak"... this odd quasi-language that has bobbed up to the surface of the popular hunting press and websites through the writings of modern day deer hunting experts, has been put up on a shelf where it belongs or turned off - once we step out into the woods with a gun or a bow in our hands.

Used to be the deer woods were a haven from the complexities of life. Bad enough we have to pollute the sacred rite and tradition of deer hunting by dragging our ubiquitous cell phones and other communication devices into the stands with us.

And often too, we can't even walk out there any more.

Hunting was at one time thought of as good exercise, good for the soul, fresh air and all that.

Yep, that’s right. Seems many of us don’t or can’t walk any more through the woods. Have to ride on an ATV ... but I digress.

And for some younger hunters, that’s probably an alien concept.

Some of us can and do hunt virtually all season long, actually through the seasons defined as archery, rifle or shotgun, and finally muzzleloader or black powder.

And those of us of that ilk find our seasons spanning different dimensions of the whitetail's annual rut cycle. And it is kind of fun sometimes delving into the various complexities of whitetail-ology.

But most of all, all this parsing, defining, and analyzing the whitetail's world doesn't help Joe Hunter, the average guy or gal put venison in his or her freezer or a rack on the wall.

The majority of deer hunters hunt at a specific time each year.

Actually, most of us hunt the few days that coincide with our state's opening day, or maybe choose a specific window of time to hunt out-of-state. And that is pretty much it.

We hunt when we have the time, squeezing those precious hours in the woods between job, family, and social obligations.

Time is precious and we have to choose.

We hunt when we can.

And hopefully those times when we finally get in the woods during the season will be good times… when the bucks and does are cooperating. And here’s hoping that the moon cycle, stage of the rut, barometric pressure, or wind direction are right.

And screw it if they aren’t because one thing about whitetail hunting … you never know.

Complex whitetail behavioral stages such as "the seeking stage," "the chasing stage," or the "pre-rut” are too obtuse when the hard luck stories roll out before the cooler is opened or the venison stew heated again on the wood stove.

But really, we shouldn't be too hard on the whitetail hunting world’s expert terminology and theories ... not any worse than the deer hunting TV show phrases.

That has changed the way we speak about this sport we love, like after a deer is shot on camera, the shootist exclaims with a thick, barely intelligible Southern drawl, "BOO-YAH," "Oh, I can't BEEE-leave IT! ... how 'bout a knuckle-slam baby! ... I put the smack-down on that joker! Yee-ha! Dirt nap time."

Some of us old deer hunters long for that simple time when we can be alone in the deer woods with a gun or bow in our hands, listening to the sounds of nature, our own heart, and begin closing in on the spirit of our great hunting heritage.

Oak Duke writes a weekly column appearing on the Outdoors page.