Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

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Dpierce72
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Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Dpierce72 » Mon Feb 05, 2018 8:49 am

Well, since finding THB, I decided to radically change my hunting/scouting style for 2018. Walked >6 miles yesterday in just over 6 hours -walking slowly, poking my head in every spot that looked like a place "I would go if trying to hide", marking my track and every waypoint that I thought might reveal something once plotted upon my return.

Notes about this area from yesterday:

- Before yesterday, I've never stepped foot on this WMA
- I scouted t a 375 acre section of a 15,000+ acre WMA
- It is low (~200ft elevation) and is prone to flooding (waist deep water can exist and always holds some water even when dry)
- There are many sloughs/ditches that are uncrossable even in chest waders dividing sections - requiring boats
- No cattails, but thick buck brush

What I found...

- some beds and areas of bedding, but nothing that appeared to be a primary buck bed (did find hair, but nothing like I've read about & seen on this forum (and I have all the DVDs including Marsh Bedding)
- the two largest buck rubs I've ever seen in the wild personally
- lots of scrapes, rubs, trails, etc
- limited stands (4 locations) and didn't appear well cared for (forgot to check for 'looping trails)

So, of course I'm a little discouraged to spend that much time, go to the hot zones based on topography/satellite imagery, and strike out on the buck beds. My question(s) for you all...

1. Do you notice any difference in bedding in flood prone areas vs non flood prone areas or should the bucks be in the spots and I just didn't find them?
2. Given the rub sizes (in thick areas), is it possible I just missed the beds and I should go back ...or would you move on? Both of these rubs were w/in 1/3 of a mile from each other on an eastern edge 50 yards and .1 miles off a deep ditch bank that is only crossable with a boat.
3. Clearly there are areas in this section I did NOT walk. Primarily walked the perimeter trying to follow hard/soft transitions in the interior.

Thoughts/suggestions/questions...


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Dpierce72
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Dpierce72 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:55 am

Dpierce72 wrote:Well, since finding THB, I decided to radically change my hunting/scouting style for 2018. Walked >6 miles yesterday in just over 6 hours -walking slowly, poking my head in every spot that looked like a place "I would go if trying to hide", marking my track and every waypoint that I thought might reveal something once plotted upon my return.

Notes about this area from yesterday:

- Before yesterday, I've never stepped foot on this WMA
- I scouted t a 375 acre section of a 15,000+ acre WMA
- It is low (~200ft elevation) and is prone to flooding (waist deep water can exist and always holds some water even when dry)
- There are many sloughs/ditches that are uncrossable even in chest waders dividing sections - requiring boats
- No cattails, but thick buck brush

What I found...

- some beds and areas of bedding, but nothing that appeared to be a primary buck bed (did find hair, but nothing like I've read about & seen on this forum (and I have all the DVDs including Marsh Bedding)
- the two largest buck rubs I've ever seen in the wild personally
- lots of scrapes, rubs, trails, etc
- limited stands (4 locations) and didn't appear well cared for (forgot to check for 'looping trails)

So, of course I'm a little discouraged to spend that much time, go to the hot zones based on topography/satellite imagery, and strike out on the buck beds. My question(s) for you all...

1. Do you notice any difference in bedding in flood prone areas vs non flood prone areas or should the bucks be in the spots and I just didn't find them?
2. Given the rub sizes (in thick areas), is it possible I just missed the beds and I should go back ...or would you move on? Both of these rubs were w/in 1/3 of a mile from each other on an eastern edge 50 yards and .1 miles off a deep ditch bank that is only crossable with a boat.
3. Clearly there are areas in this section I did NOT walk. Primarily walked the perimeter trying to follow hard/soft transitions in the interior.

Thoughts/suggestions/questions...
"Immerse yourself in the outdoor experience. It will cleanse your soul and make your a better person." ~Fred Bear
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby headgear » Tue Feb 06, 2018 5:07 am

Wet and thick areas with big rubs is certain a great starting point, it might be worth going back and investigating those areas. They could certainly be buck bedding areas or they might be doe bedding with the bucks passing through. Just keep on scouting and hunting hard, it doesn't always click right away but the more time you put in the more intel you gain. Sometimes you find THE spot on your first scout, sometimes it takes you 5+ years to learn the ins and outs of an areas if it is big enough.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby dan » Tue Feb 06, 2018 5:32 am

A lot of the time beds don't glow, they are hard to see... Looking at the terrain generally tells me where there at. Then I look at those spots and find the slight beds, and the trails going in and out, and rubs. It takes time. A lot of the guys who are very successful now hunting this way struggled for 2 or 3 years before it really clicked. If you have a solid beast hunter near you, and you scout with him, that seems to be a huge leap cause you start seeing things the way he does.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Dpierce72 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:01 am

dan wrote:A lot of the time beds don't glow, they are hard to see... Looking at the terrain generally tells me where there at. Then I look at those spots and find the slight beds, and the trails going in and out, and rubs. It takes time. A lot of the guys who are very successful now hunting this way struggled for 2 or 3 years before it really clicked. If you have a solid beast hunter near you, and you scout with him, that seems to be a huge leap cause you start seeing things the way he does.


Thanks - Hopefully some things will click 3/17 when I'm in WI with you. And I'll spend additional time in the area mentioned prior to the 17th. Also, I'll bring the maps/waypoints and hopefully we can review, time permitting, after the workshop.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Babshaft » Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:16 am

Dpierce72 wrote:
dan wrote:A lot of the time beds don't glow, they are hard to see... Looking at the terrain generally tells me where there at. Then I look at those spots and find the slight beds, and the trails going in and out, and rubs. It takes time. A lot of the guys who are very successful now hunting this way struggled for 2 or 3 years before it really clicked. If you have a solid beast hunter near you, and you scout with him, that seems to be a huge leap cause you start seeing things the way he does.


Thanks - Hopefully some things will click 3/17 when I'm in WI with you. And I'll spend additional time in the area mentioned prior to the 17th. Also, I'll bring the maps/waypoints and hopefully we can review, time permitting, after the workshop.



That's exactly what I'm hoping for as well. I have an area that I hunt that floods every year as well. I've scouted it and can't pinpoint bedding. Hopefully when the snow leaves it'll be easier.

It'll be nice to meet you in March buddy, and hopefully we can figure some stuff out while we're in WI.
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Dpierce72
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Dpierce72 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:54 am

Babshaft wrote:
Dpierce72 wrote:
dan wrote:A lot of the time beds don't glow, they are hard to see... Looking at the terrain generally tells me where there at. Then I look at those spots and find the slight beds, and the trails going in and out, and rubs. It takes time. A lot of the guys who are very successful now hunting this way struggled for 2 or 3 years before it really clicked. If you have a solid beast hunter near you, and you scout with him, that seems to be a huge leap cause you start seeing things the way he does.


Thanks - Hopefully some things will click 3/17 when I'm in WI with you. And I'll spend additional time in the area mentioned prior to the 17th. Also, I'll bring the maps/waypoints and hopefully we can review, time permitting, after the workshop.



That's exactly what I'm hoping for as well. I have an area that I hunt that floods every year as well. I've scouted it and can't pinpoint bedding. Hopefully when the snow leaves it'll be easier.

It'll be nice to meet you in March buddy, and hopefully we can figure some stuff out while we're in WI.


Sounds great - look forward to meeting you too!
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby strutnrut716 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:31 am

Good luck you guys ! Just keep plugging along, scouting as MUCH as you can and reading/viewing as much as you can on this site .. I'm just coming up on 2 years since finding THB. Dan is exactly spot on ! (about taking 2-3 years before it clicks) I personally feel its about to really get good for me this year !

Don't give up !!
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Octang » Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:39 am

How is the cover there? I sometimes hunt a bottomland forest area that is prone to flooding similar to how to you described, unfortunately much of the forest is wide open from the flooding - big trees and little to no brush/growth on the ground. You can see hundreds of yards in any direction inside many parts of the forest, leaving little room for deer to take cover.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Dpierce72 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:43 am

Octang wrote:How is the cover there? I sometimes hunt a bottomland forest area that is prone to flooding similar to how to you described, unfortunately much of the forest is wide open from the flooding - big trees and little to no brush/growth on the ground. You can see hundreds of yards in any direction inside many parts of the forest, leaving little room for deer to take cover.


This is quite the opposite. Very little virgin timber. Lots of buck brush and extremely thick. A 35 yard shot would be very rare in this area. Lots of 'high steppin' to bust through brush and clear briars :lol:
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby ghoasthunter » Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:36 pm

I have a spot like that I took a canoe when it was flooded and found all the small dry spots and sure enough I found all the primary beds in process.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby PK_ » Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:42 pm

I have not done well in food zones or areas where water levels change drastically.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Jonny » Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:11 pm

Octang wrote:How is the cover there? I sometimes hunt a bottomland forest area that is prone to flooding similar to how to you described, unfortunately much of the forest is wide open from the flooding - big trees and little to no brush/growth on the ground. You can see hundreds of yards in any direction inside many parts of the forest, leaving little room for deer to take cover.


That's the same stuff I gun hunt. The points still have the cover since every spring there is 8-10' of moving water down there and that prevents anything from growing on the points, but any sign of bedding from the previous year gets washed away. So essentially you will never get an obvious worn down bed like you will in a marsh setting. If you go to dan's workshop, don't focus on how obvious the bed is to see from a distance since its worn down. Focus on why it's there because you will see similar scenarios in different terrains except the bed isn't obvious.

That being said, like PK I struggle in flood zones unless its gun season. Even the rut has been a total crap shoot for us, although when we see one, there is a good chance its a slob. Flood zones have very tricky winds because they are typically very low and access is also very important. I have had better luck for more predictable bedding on the river I fish in farm country because the wind is more stable, and the deer bed textbook. The river bottom by me has 60-70' cliffs on all sides so the wind blows in all 3 axis, and every direction at any given time. Kinda like being in a city with tall buildings on a windy day. One block is east wind, next is west, and the next is straight down driving you into the sidewalk.

But you can still find beds in flood zones. Just need to really think about it, go slow and look hard. They are there
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Bedbug » Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:22 pm

I guess I would set my expectations in reflect of the circumstances here
-375 acres with 4 stand locations pretty light human pressure.
-375 acres prone to flooding means over all light pressure from any predator threats

If it were me I would expand my expectations of what primary bedding will look like in this area.
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Re: Flood zone buck beds ...STRIKE ONE

Unread postby Coursey31886 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 2:09 pm

Try looking just outside of the flood zone. Dont rely on flood zones you might find on a map those are exaggerated. If you know how high the water gets look just outside of that and you should find more beds. I hunt similar areas and have found more beds right on the edge of those flood prone areas.


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