What are the five best deer states?

Discuss deer hunting tactics, Deer behavior. Post your Hunting Stories, Pictures, and Questions/Answers.
User avatar
Hawthorne
500 Club
Posts: 5421
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2014 2:13 pm
Location: michigan
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby Hawthorne » Sat Apr 18, 2015 1:53 pm

Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Ohio and Indiana have the one buck rule and Ohio's gun season starts after the rut. What about Virginia has a sleeper. I looked at a Virginia deer hunting mag and they shoot some whoppers down there. There's a guy on the qdma forum that posts alot of trail cam pics of bucks in Virginia. Some serious stud bucks. Plus the harvest has been increasing yearly.

[ Post made via Android ] Image


BassBoysLLP
500 Club
Posts: 9760
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 11:28 am
Location: Central WI
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby BassBoysLLP » Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:14 pm

Spysar wrote:
Bucky wrote:1. Iowa
2. Western WI or South Central WI
3. Northern MO
4. Western IL
5. Northern North Dakota/Southern Manitoba

6. Idaho


Bucky, I've been thinking Idaho for a long time now. I'd love to do it sometime.


Anyone ever do Idaho?

[ Post made via Android ] Image
Philski
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:07 pm
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby Philski » Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:45 pm

Thanks for bringing this thread back Dewey. Enjoying it.
I have a tough time narrowing to just 5. Iowa still looks like the trophy king to me. There are so many variables. How about west central Illinois at #2. Some big buck states have specific areas that produce the majority of top end bucks. I'll take west central Wisconsin #3. Number 4 goes to Kentucky for the number of Booners they produce annually. The next three is tough. There is no reason northeast MO shouldn't produce more. But I'll keep them out of top5 because of the length of gun season, use of rifles and poaching. Traditionally Kansas has produced whoppers but it's tough to get access in the south central private unless you want to pay $6000 to an outfitter. Gotta go with the state I enjoyed hunting last year which produces its far share of booners. I'll be there again this year. This state produced the highest scoring nontypical recorded in 2014/2015 season at 2541/8". It's the Mark Hammer buck from ohio. I'll give ohio the nod at #5. Dan made some good points early in this thread. This best list could be divided into public access, buying/owning land or private access/leasing. Lots of variable to look at.

[ Post made via iPhone ] Image
Tennhunter3
500 Club
Posts: 5354
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2014 12:54 pm
Location: Medon Tn
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby Tennhunter3 » Sat Apr 18, 2015 4:01 pm

Really surprised kentucky is not on the list. Been several monsters come out of western kentucky every year.My guess would be Iowa Illinois Kansas Kentucky Wisconsin. Top 5 followed by Idaho Ohio Missouri South Dakota and Tennessee.

[ Post made via iPhone ] Image
Never give up Freedom for imagined safety.
User avatar
Dhurtubise
500 Club
Posts: 1271
Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 12:47 am
Facebook: dhurtubise
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby Dhurtubise » Sat Apr 18, 2015 4:01 pm

1. Saskatchewan
2. Manitoba
3. Ontario
4. Alberta
5. Canada




Just kidding, but we have some big bucks up here too.

[ Post made via iPhone ] Image
rutjunkie
Posts: 379
Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2014 10:04 pm
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby rutjunkie » Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:19 pm

1. Iowa
2.kansas
3.North Dakota
4.Missouri
5.Wisconsin
And I have hunted these states. Would like to try south dakota, or ohio.

[ Post made via Android ] Image
There is only so many Novembers in ones life, make the most of them.
SBolton21
Posts: 29
Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2015 5:34 pm
Facebook: Virginia
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby SBolton21 » Mon Apr 20, 2015 6:11 pm

Hawthorne wrote:Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Ohio and Indiana have the one buck rule and Ohio's gun season starts after the rut. What about Virginia has a sleeper. I looked at a Virginia deer hunting mag and they shoot some whoppers down there. There's a guy on the qdma forum that posts alot of trail cam pics of bucks in Virginia. Some serious stud bucks. Plus the harvest has been increasing yearly.

[ Post made via Android ] Image


Virginia does pretty well in throughout most parts of the state. Age structure is the biggest thing holding it back from being a "legit sleeper". We get three buck tags, 2 week muzzleloader coinciding with the rut, followed by 6 more weeks of rifle. Dog hunting is still very popular too and that puts a lot of stress on deer. If they can beat the odds and make it to 4 or 5 an average buck would be in the 130-150 range. Plenty of bucks over 150 running around, but nothing like the midwest.
User avatar
msailor
Posts: 261
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2014 2:20 am
Location: NW Missouri
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby msailor » Tue Apr 28, 2015 4:37 am

I did not see any definitive "SoDak's" on this list. That's exactly what makes it great! No body knows about it. I have hunted MO, IA, IL, KS, and SD. I would put SD #2 right behind IA.
parkersdad
Posts: 364
Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 7:55 am
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby parkersdad » Wed Apr 29, 2015 1:19 am

The one I am in at the time, it still beats the crap out of working. I look at it different than some of you guys. I like states that are not over populated with hunters. Most of those don't have the largest deer but I enjoy trying to kill the largest deer in that area. Again any state that I am in a deer stand is my favorite. :dance:
User avatar
DaveT1963
500 Club
Posts: 5000
Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2014 1:27 am
Location: South
Status: Offline

Re: What are the five best deer states?

Unread postby DaveT1963 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 2:04 am

There are many states that are great for producing huge bucks. It really is a matter of what you have access to and how often you can spend time there/how close it is, and sometimes how much money you are willing to spend. Texas has some monster bucks - but 95% of people will never have access to them without a very large banking account. Connecticut has some monsters as does Washington State and Idaho. Kentucky, Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, etc... all produced some monsters. Mississippi, Louisiana, Virginia, Tennn, etc..... Montana can have incredible public land whitetails as can Kansas and Kentucky........ Step over the border up North and Canada has some giants. If you have a large cash roll then more managed hunts are opened up to you - if you live close to national Forests and a lot of public land then that is open for you. However, many will find that they only have access to some land close by that may never produce a B & C buck....SO WHAT!!!!! Set your goals for where you are hunting. Not everyone can take multiple scouting trips to states 1000 miles away. However, most of us can find a local place and invest some time and then plan out and take a deer you want on purpose, consistently. And I will tell you this, taking a mature animal ( 3 year old 130 class) on public land in some areas is far tougher then taking a 160+ inch buck in Iowa, Ohio, Kansas, etc. I have been blessed to hunt a lot of really prime private ground and few of those hunts have ever compared to the challenge of taking a 3 1/2 year old buck on public ground in heavily hunted areas. Enjoy the ride and become better each year - but set your goals according to where you have access or you may never find complete satisfaction (someone is always going to kill something bigger or better somewhere....) There are ranches down in Texas where killing a 200 inch farm deer is nothing - almost a pick the one you want kind of thing - but you better have 20,000 in your pocket when you pull the string. Now if you have the money and access - knock yourself out as there is nothing wrong with that either. I have a friend that hunts Illinois every year and he kills a 150+ deer every year. Most would have a jaw drop if they saw his wall. Some were killed on farms, some on public land - but here's the catch.... the guy lives there and farms the land. The few big bucks he got on public land was because he saw them as he spent the entire year working lands. They were feeding on private land and then bedding back on public. I would have never killed those deer as I can't be there like he is. He also gets access to private lands because the farmers have known him since he was born. When I hunt Illinois, I don't have near the access he has, nor do I have even close the amount of time he has to scout. I am happy with a 140 inch buck when I go to Illinois - and that doesn't happen every year either.

I used to get frustrated that I wasn't killing these monsters like he does every year. And hunting soon became very frustrating. So for me, I stuck with longbows and hunting local deer and then I do my best to identify 2 or 3 local deer on private ground that are at the top of what's available. Since I started doing this, hunting has become far more challenging and fun for me. I am just learning the beast method and I think this will help even more to add to the "puzzle" solving effect I now desire. When I slip an arrow through a 3 year old buck on public land I have access to .... on purpose, well that feels better to me than the 160 I stumbled into and killed in Ohio a few years back.

To me, the guys I really admire on this site, are the ones that consistently take the better deer available for where they hunt on public land. To me that speaks a ton to their hunting ability. When Don Kisky knocks down a 175 inch whitetail on TV, on a farm only he has access to that has several of those kind of deer running around, well that doesn't impress me much. Now the guy on here that takes a 130 inch buck off a heavily hunted piece of public land consistently every year - that's a guy I want to talk to.


  • Advertisement

Return to “Deer Hunting”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: SemrushBot and 14 guests