bluff country bedding

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tim
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bluff country bedding

Unread postby tim » Fri Sep 30, 2016 8:02 am

I know a lot has been discussed on this subject but not sure if this has ever been brought up. to me the key to killing these deer in the bluffs isn't necessarily the wind right now its the wind that was last night. in other words if I go out to hunt the leeward side of the hill cause the wind looks correct right now it wont make much difference if it was wrong last night because they are bedded on the other side of the valley and wont make it to me before dark thus the night time photo 2 or 3 hours after dark. the perfect storm to me is 2 or more days of consistant wind. so I know they bedded on my side of the hill and they will be coming up the bluff to feed. (this pertains to outside of the rut and food on top). you have a much better chance killing a deer hunting the wrong wind right now if it was correct when they bedded in morning because you still have a chance at that deer playing the thermal when it drops in evening if it were to shift mid day or later in the day although I still feel they will drop down the valley and go up the leeward side more often. anybody else notice this.


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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby bones09 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 9:00 am

I believe you are on the right track. Betting on where that buck may have bedded due to the wind direction in the morning would be your best bet, imo. Hunting the "leeward" side the first afternoon after the switch and you may be too far from his bed for any daylight action. The wind direction switch (if steady) would likely change how he moves from his bed, and where he would bed the next day.
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby tim » Fri Sep 30, 2016 10:27 am

my point is I believe a lot of people hunt the leeward side because the wind is right in the afternoon and never pay attention to what it was in the morning which will make all the difference. if it wasn't that same wind in the morning you are not in the game.
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Dewey
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby Dewey » Fri Sep 30, 2016 10:28 am

Good tip. You can bet I will pay attention to that. 8-)

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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby JoeRE » Fri Sep 30, 2016 10:59 am

Yea I have noticed a consistent wind over several days tends to "stack" deer on those leeward slopes. Just like when we get a very strong and cold wind, the longer that wind goes the more deer I see down low. Good observation Tim.

Something else I have noticed....was thinking about starting a thread on it - I see a lot of bucks getting up and moving mid day during a mid-day wind switch. They probably aren't going far but I just started to notice, other than rut movement, if I get a buck on camera around mid day its almost always during a mid day wind switch. That or its running, bumped from somewhere.
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby kurt » Fri Sep 30, 2016 11:15 am

I agree but it's not out of the realm for them to move midday depending on make up of the land. I noticed Joe kinda beat me to it.

I don't have a ton of repeative sightings to base it on but I have seen a few bucks reposition as best they can even if it's the very top of the ridge. In one of the particular observations I went to the area of a reposition and couldn't find a bed. Only a couple time used rub that I watched him do. Hard to even notice. My theory was it was the best he could do with the wind on the edge of thick to watch the open and his weak spot.

So I think it depends on thickness, other availble beds, and various other things if they will move or not. Thick in back open in front is desired they might just stay. Simply turning in the bed.

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tim
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby tim » Fri Sep 30, 2016 5:20 pm

i agree on the mid day movement guys. but usually the most I see is if im hunting a point lets say with a northwest wind and it switches to northeast. that deer will get up and go only as far as the other side of the point and bed back down. I havent seen them completely head to other side of valley or a major move. not to say they wouldn't but I haven't seen it. or haven't got pics to suggest they did this .
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby dan » Sat Oct 01, 2016 3:17 am

Tim is right, they move if the move is a short one, but long distance moves are often more dangerous than sitting tight or making a small move thats not ideal. I don't think there is any locked solid answer, but some stay put, and some move. The best spots I hunt in the hills have bedding stacked close together for every wind. Or at least all the commons.
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby JoeRE » Sat Oct 01, 2016 4:21 am

Yea I agree with you guys. The only cams I see bucks moving at mid day are right next to bedding - meaning they are just adjusting a little bit.

Years ago I hunted a farm like what you were describing Tim. It was just one long north facing bluff, crop fields above and below. So it was only a leeward slope with southerly winds. I noticed the longer stretch of south winds we had, the more and more deer were on that property.

On that farm I actually first noticed how big of an effect leeward slopes have in hill country. With northerly winds you would see very few deer, and never a decent buck - because all the nearby bedding was exposed to those winds. So yea, I think you are seeing it right.

I agree with Dan too, land with different slopes in it for bedding in various winds does keep deer bedding in the area better. Even most hillsides have knobs and draws that allow bedding to shift more. That one farm I hunted was just one long straight hillside though.
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby NorthStar » Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:29 am

dan wrote:Tim is right, they move if the move is a short one, but long distance moves are often more dangerous than sitting tight or making a small move thats not ideal. I don't think there is any locked solid answer, but some stay put, and some move. The best spots I hunt in the hills have bedding stacked close together for every wind. Or at least all the commons.


I apologize, but I am struggling to visualize what bedding stacked together for most winds looks like. Would someone be able to provide a topo map example?
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby Jeff25 » Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:48 am

I think a crows foot is a good example of bedding for multiple winds

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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby headgear » Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:54 am

tim wrote:my point is I believe a lot of people hunt the leeward side because the wind is right in the afternoon and never pay attention to what it was in the morning which will make all the difference. if it wasn't that same wind in the morning you are not in the game.


I'm not hunting bluffs but this is a great tip, I base my sets on what the wind is doing in the morning on just about every sit. Even better if the wind switches and I can move into a spot I couldn't with the early morning wind direction.
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby jwilkstn » Sat Oct 01, 2016 3:44 pm

Just thinking out loud here...typically pronounced wind shifts are the result of passing fronts. We've all heard about passing fronts and the changing barometer causing increased deer movement, but perhaps it's actually the more practical change, wind direction, that causes any additional movement that is commonly observed leading up to, during, or just after a weather front...

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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby HELENVILLEHUNTER » Sun Oct 02, 2016 1:47 am

I think you are right on with this one Tim. We had a dropped tine buck on our property in western Wisconsin about 7 years ago. He seemed to really like the cameras and almost looked to walk over to them for a picture every day. Some days it would be on the east side of the ridge and some days the camera on the west side would catch a picture of him. I believe he stood at the top of the ridge each morning and decided which direction to go bed based on how that wind was blowing. The only time we ever seen him was during the muzzleloader season when a storm was coming in. He came through with a slighly off wind that allowed him to feel safe traveling from the bed toward the food source. Eventually like most mature bucks he got down wind though.
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Re: bluff country bedding

Unread postby JoeRE » Sun Oct 02, 2016 7:32 am

jwilkstn wrote:Just thinking out loud here...typically pronounced wind shifts are the result of passing fronts. We've all heard about passing fronts and the changing barometer causing increased deer movement, but perhaps it's actually the more practical change, wind direction, that causes any additional movement that is commonly observed leading up to, during, or just after a weather front...

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Good point. At the very least, it is both.


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