Here's a trick that might help. If the whole area is relatively treeless, try "planting" a couple of appropriately sized cedar posts near a trail. Good chance the bucks will start rubbing them and using them as markers.
And yes, I've used a tripod on a bare knob before. You have to be super still and quiet, but it will work. It was also the coldest place in Texas, at least as far as I could tell.
Silver spurs and gold tequila
keep me hanging on.
Pretty girls and old cantinas
give me shelter from the storm.