What you look for depends on the elevation and type of country you're hunting. High country deer forage is different than drier climates at low elevation.......and mid-elevation is different from those.
B&C / P&Y Official Measurer
Just remember both books have some slightly dated equipment recommendations. Especially Mike's book. If you follow that equipment advice, you might find yourself dressed like your on a 1940's era ascent of Denali.
Finding a high vantage point in SE Montana can be difficult depending on where you are hunting. Definitely check out creek and river bottoms. I would recommend trying to cover a lot of ground because you never know when you will find a group of deer in a small draw or drainage. A lot of people stay on or close to the roads in public areas so the deer get pushed to private property or farther off the road. If you are going to be hunting on block management areas contact MT FWP. They can give you more information about the area you are wanting to hunt.
When we went to SE Montana in 2006, a couple things that helped us a lot was:
1. Hunt the rut, mid November or later. The closer to Thanksgiving the better. Find the does and you'll find the bucks. It was really pretty easy.
2. We hunted Block Management. I am assuming that program is still in place. You can get on a private ranch at little to no cost and have the place virtually to yourself. I recall we got the list of ranches in the Block Management program from the fish and game department.
We hunted a ranch and our party had 10,000 acres all to ourselves. The ranch manger said that they had "very few deer, but most of their hunters tag out". We were into nice bucks every day. I'd have to say it was one of the most fun and productive deer hunts I have ever been on. It was a very fun hunt.