Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

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johndeere506
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Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

Unread postby johndeere506 » Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:01 pm

I'm really trying to figure out a couple new hard to access spots, and getting a friend into hunting on a couple trips. The place were trying BOATING to opening gun weekend is a large cedar swamp and river bottom.

I found a late season/pressure bed that wasn't being used in mid october, it probably is now or will be soon with gun opening. The area nearby is ABSOLUTELY COVERED in big fresh rubs, some 7 and 8 inch trees easily. Ive never seen so much sign in this area i found. Im going to put my buddy in there, just outside what I think is the staging area, and see what happens. We will probably leave it alone in the morning, and hunt it first evening. Good plan?

As for the rest of the area, its a strip 200 yards of open river bottom grasses and VERY sparce small cedars, quite open. When the cedar woods starts there are 3-4 parallel trails as you work in from the edge going thicker. Once 100 yards in the woods, it opens up into that dark, no ground growth type cedar forest til you get 6-8 feet high into branches. This is about a 150 yards strip. This is tempting to hunt with a gun, but Im guessing thats too open? After that woods strip its crops. So, if that was confusing, it a strip along the river, open river bottom strip, the THICK cedars/brush strip, then strip of more open cedar no ground cover then crops. Will bucks use open river bottom or travel outside of cover since this is the "safe" side of the woods? Or do I setup to watch trails from the open woods, from river bottom, or IN the thick strip but can only see 20 yards each way?

IF there is any other hunters, they will be in the crop field or maybe the open bottom large cedar woods. No farther, no way :twisted: .


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Re: Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

Unread postby johndeere506 » Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:03 pm

We hunted this spot once in mid october. I hutned the known bed and he didnt show. The next day I learned he wasnt using it that far out yet. I saw nothing. My buddy heard something walking the parallel trail just inside the thick. Thats the limit of my cedar experience.
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Re: Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

Unread postby dan » Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:12 pm

I always choose the thick areas near bedding during gun season... I see less, but bigger bucks.
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Re: Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

Unread postby Singing Bridge » Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:13 am

We will probably leave it alone in the morning, and hunt it first evening. Good plan?


Not really.... we shoot more cedar swamp bucks during the midday hours (10-2) than any other time. If you have confirmed buck bedding setting up for an evening hunt is a great tactic, but that midday movement is something you shouldn't miss. Cedar swamps are incredible cover for deer, and they will move inside of it when they simply could not elsewhere. Transition areas between doe bedding areas in cedar swamps and November are a great way to punch your ticket. The parallel trails you mentioned could be a key area to locate... look at your area and anticipated bedding areas, and set up on these trails near the bedding areas for potential midday movement.

As for the rest of the area, its a strip 200 yards of open river bottom grasses and VERY sparce small cedars, quite open. When the cedar woods starts there are 3-4 parallel trails as you work in from the edge going thicker. Once 100 yards in the woods, it opens up into that dark, no ground growth type cedar forest til you get 6-8 feet high into branches. This is about a 150 yards strip. This is tempting to hunt with a gun, but Im guessing thats too open? After that woods strip its crops. So, if that was confusing, it a strip along the river, open river bottom strip, the THICK cedars/brush strip, then strip of more open cedar no ground cover then crops. Will bucks use open river bottom or travel outside of cover since this is the "safe" side of the woods? Or do I setup to watch trails from the open woods, from river bottom, or IN the thick strip but can only see 20 yards each way?


I would anticipate bedding along the edge of the thick cedars on the downwind side with the buck watching the more open area downwind from the bed. This could be on either side of the strip of cedars you mention. Your described area is actually quite narrow compared to what my crews hunt, but as Dan mentioned if there are interior transition lines they can be key for older bucks.

IF there is any other hunters, they will be in the crop field or maybe the open bottom large cedar woods. No farther, no way


I know many hunters that will penetrate MUCH FARTHER than anything you have written about here... fortunately there aren't many of us. I agree that I would be surprised to find guys in there, but there aren't a lot of true "swampers" out there.
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Re: Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

Unread postby johndeere506 » Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:44 am

Thanks guys! I know this is a much smaller example than normal. Im trying to learn how this smaller area is used and apply that info to the vast cedars swamps/forest later, rather than starting in the sea of green. I know this will be a years long process, and looking forward to it. The strips are a few miles long at least.
Due to where it located, and the private bordering parcels, they wont go in far. I have a long boat ride to get to the public around the private. Walking during bow I saw no signs of hunters, ever. The orange army should help me see if thats true still. I have some good ideas where the doe bedding islands/areas are, and I plan on walking some of them, not near where the bucks sign is, just to scout while hunting. Any more tips? The 10-2 is a good point in the cedars.
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Re: Cedar Swamp - Question for cedar swamp hunters

Unread postby Singing Bridge » Thu Nov 13, 2014 2:29 am

johndeere506 wrote:Thanks guys! I know this is a much smaller example than normal. Im trying to learn how this smaller area is used and apply that info to the vast cedars swamps/forest later, rather than starting in the sea of green. I know this will be a years long process, and looking forward to it. The strips are a few miles long at least.
Due to where it located, and the private bordering parcels, they wont go in far. I have a long boat ride to get to the public around the private. Walking during bow I saw no signs of hunters, ever. The orange army should help me see if thats true still. I have some good ideas where the doe bedding islands/areas are, and I plan on walking some of them, not near where the bucks sign is, just to scout while hunting. Any more tips? The 10-2 is a good point in the cedars.


The orange army will be another contributing factor to the 10-2. If there are fencelines or funnels where the private meets the public, right on the border, whichever area gets hit the hardest will likely move deer to the other area. Sounds like an interesting spot, good luck with it.


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