It is the first part of August. Hopefully you have your mineral licks oout since June and have a inventory of what bucks are in your hunting areas.
This is the time to start establishing the zones and breeding zones. I start my mock scrapes in early August to refresh or to start a new breeding zone. By the end of August, I will have my stand or ground blind in place so I do not disturb the deer too much and they continue with their summer patterns, especially if you have a certain buck you would like to shoot early in the season.
If not, it is not too late to start planning. Start now with the mock scrape. Get those bucks to start checking now so when they rut begins they know where the does will be for the breeding. These bucks will come in more often from the pre-rut to the rut to check those mock scrapes. They will slowly change their patterns if you stay with my scent program.