WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

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bowmike
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WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby bowmike » Tue Aug 09, 2016 7:06 am

Well guys they completely clear cut most of my hunting areas. I knew it was going down during this past spring gobbler season but did not know to what extent. They are still cutting some of my areas. When I say cut I mean pretty much anything that is about 10" in diameter or more is getting the ax.

This will be the first hunting season since the cut and was wonder how you all would go about hunting this. I hit the ground last night with the lab for a little bit just to check it out and the woods are nearly stripped dry. A few trees left standing there, and mostly ones or twos all by themselves. Climbing them will be tough as well to get cover.

I could not even make out a deer trail through any of it. I did notice that even the areas that used to be maybe 5 year old clear cut or so had most of the smaller trees destroyed as they drug out the larger ones and such.

NO CLUE where to even begin? I am imagining that most of the decent oak have been taken out. The first thought that popped into my mind was to find a few stands of smaller oak trees that didn't get wacked. I am sure that having the clear cut happen, and still going on in and adjacent hunting area will most likely have the bucks off of their traditional beds? They left a pile of tops down and such, so I am thinking there is going to be an abundance of food around. Hoping that trying to find a few remaining oak trees might be a decent place to start?

I have other areas to hunt and some state game lands that I have some decent spots and bedding locations already picked, but I know there should still be some nice bucks left just don't know where to begin to find them. :shock:


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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby headgear » Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:01 am

The first year things are pretty wide open and not much for new growth food, if possible you can try and find some funnels on the edges or corners of the clearcut that could see some rut traffic. After that you might have wait a couple years for things to thicken up a bit, once it grows up all of your old spots will be good again. The lack of trees might also keep other hunters away so you might find yourself with the place mostly to yourself. I also catch deer feeding and bedding out in fresh clearcuts once in a while, they can see you coming a long ways off so it still isn't a terrible spot to bed, it just makes it hard for you to spot and ambush them.
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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby warhog23 » Tue Aug 09, 2016 10:58 am

Had the same thing happen to me on one of my primo spots and have just been going to an advanage point and watching whats going on and ive so far found that the bucks are bedding in little blocks of timber that they havent cut but ur situation sounds a heck of a lot better than mine bc mine they took absolutely everything except the hard places where it wasnt worth it to them to get down into the mud to get a couple of scrub trees from which ive seen a couple bucks come from but im guessing they could move just bc i believe that its cool in the bottoms but just like headgear said it'll be just only u hunting there and thats a win already... scout it from afar and move in when its absolutely prime time to kill something... My plan is to keep monitoring from a distance and then move in, possibly even spot and stalk a buck, maybe wait for the lockdown of the rut and if its been lightly pressured then the deer will be bedding hard in it and u can wait till the lockdown of the rut in a morning or whenever and watch a buck follow a doe to bedding and try to stalk in on them or the place they're going to possibly exit out of the bed... If watching from a distance isnt a possibility then id set cameras now and just do what feels right hard to say anything other that what ive experienced so far without seeing the place

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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby Dewey » Tue Aug 09, 2016 11:22 am

Nothing is worst than pulling up to your favorite hunting spot and seeing a vast wasteland created by loggers. This has happened to me in the northwoods every single time I had an area figured out so learned to never put my eggs all in one basket so to speak by growing too attached to one area. I know how much it hurts to see good areas get completely clearcut but all you can do is adapt to it and use it to your advantage. All the deer that lived there are still around so the first step is to get out there and figure out where they relocated to. First few years in a clearcut can be tough but beyond that the hunting may be even better than before once things start greening up again and creating thicker bedding cover. Problem with clearcuts is most treestand size trees are usually cut so it really limits where you can set up except for on the ground.

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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby Ghost Hunter » Tue Aug 09, 2016 12:21 pm

I go through it every few years. I take a GPS an mark all points of interest around the clear cut. Entry exit points into other timber. Food sources, briers, honeysuckle any places of interest. Old rubs near the border of clear cuts. There we be scrapes on the edges where there are over hanging limbs. Lot of times they will use the same trails as before. Look for secluded areas out of sight out mind type areas. You just have to really back up an take a hard look. It will benefit you in a few years. In the reality it is nothing more than a continuous cycle.
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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby Ruger » Tue Aug 09, 2016 1:20 pm

Designate some shooting lanes that you want to keep clean, and start killing deer next year. For this year hunt the fringes.
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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby Bigburner » Tue Aug 09, 2016 1:24 pm

The bummer is in my experience is that its 5-10 years before you start to get that good security and perimeter cover before deer feel good about running around on a normal pattern again. But after that's been established again I've found those cutovers to get really good for bedding and food. The places where they left tops and piles of slash take a while to break down and it keeps vegetation from growing there and the piles rot and leave little openings surrounded by thick vegetation and I find those small openings a decent draw for deer to gravitate toward . I've also found that when the cut is a few years old and the vegetation is about waste to head tall you can walk to those tops and piles and find beds all around them. I have a bunch of areas like this in hardwoods and pine but the problem is you have to hunt the perimeter of the area and you have to stay far enough off the edge that the deer don't pick you off. Not an easy spot to hunt. But it will get better eventually. your dealing in decades and centuries when trying to re-establish a forest and it has to go through a bunch of stages but figuring out how to hunt those stages keeps things fresh. It still blows seeing your area get nuked. It was a necessary evil for somebody I guess. I've been responsible for a bunch of it myself. I've seen it rebound though and get better than it was before for wildlife, but unfortunately not easier for me to hunt. You just have to adjust. Timber harvest rarely take into consideration the needs of the hunter or the deer. When they start doing that, they start to cost money and unfortunately money makes the world go round. Seriously though, good luck with it. In the mean time I'd keep an eye on it b/c you never know, but I'd also be looking for other places to hunt for a few years.
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bowmike
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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby bowmike » Sat Aug 27, 2016 4:42 am

I am more excited about fall turkey season and taking my 4 year old boy out hunting with me for squirrels, and grouse. It s the foundation stage and I remember my dad sacrificing archery time to get me out there, and look at me now. In a few years Ill get him a crossbow and we can chase mountain bucks together with his mentored youth permit. Thinking the next couple years I may only get a few hunts in.

It is what it is but my heart just isn't in deer hunting as much with him in my life. LOL We do everything together so I'd feel bad with my crazy work hours and such leaving him home on a Saturday.
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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby tmarbut » Sat Aug 27, 2016 10:10 am

Can you find some areas that will not be disturbed anymore to plant something like Egyptian wheat in clumps? Might give variety and height to an otherwise destroyed area.
Just trying to think outside the box for a possible last minute solution.

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Re: WHAT TO DO WHEN THEY CLEAR CUT YOUR WHOLE AREA?

Unread postby dirt nap giver » Sat Aug 27, 2016 1:32 pm

My experience with cuts is this.
Deer are living in the area for a reason. One section may be tarnished by the cut, but the area will still hold deer. I would topo the area and see what terrain is adjacent to the cut. If you can find multiple terrain features adjacent to the cut, combined with the edge of the cut as a new terrain feature as well, this combo has helped me tremendously in the past.
Stay positive, hunt the terrain.

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