Ground hunting

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Lockdown
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Lockdown » Mon Mar 19, 2018 3:48 pm

Lockdown wrote:
Marshbuster89 wrote:Amen Lockdown! You've got it! Most of my camo is 10 years old and faded. I know a lot of spots I've been successful in, the guys who came along to help drag said "how the heck did you hide in THAT?!?!" My answer is usually that I'm able to focus enough to not move at all even if my legs are screaming and that I had confidence I could pull it off (even if I myself wasn't quite sure at the time of set-up, I just tell myself "this WILL work so don't change your mind!!").

Like lockdown said, just go for it! Don't be afraid to take chances, Lord-willing, you'll have plenty More! Believe in your set ups and believe in your game plan. No set is a bad set if you take something away from it


Couldn't agree more. You don't learn squat sitting in the background.


Unless its an observation sit :lol:


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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Marshbuster89 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:54 pm

Lockdown wrote:
Lockdown wrote:
Marshbuster89 wrote:Amen Lockdown! You've got it! Most of my camo is 10 years old and faded. I know a lot of spots I've been successful in, the guys who came along to help drag said "how the heck did you hide in THAT?!?!" My answer is usually that I'm able to focus enough to not move at all even if my legs are screaming and that I had confidence I could pull it off (even if I myself wasn't quite sure at the time of set-up, I just tell myself "this WILL work so don't change your mind!!").

Like lockdown said, just go for it! Don't be afraid to take chances, Lord-willing, you'll have plenty More! Believe in your set ups and believe in your game plan. No set is a bad set if you take something away from it


Couldn't agree more. You don't learn squat sitting in the background.


Unless its an observation sit :lol:


Still might see something...or nothing...which means you were too far away! :think:
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Divergent » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:17 pm

Great post! This is(by far) one of the most underestimated ways to kill deer. There's an element of surprise to the deer when they realize you're only 10-20yds away on the ground. The deer appear confused and pause for seconds trying to figure out their next move. Your scent doesn't travel as far. You can move with the thermal changes in the morning and evening. I will drop down to a thermal hub in the evenings and cut the deer off. I can walk straight into the bedroom of a deer at certain times of the day and setup. They don't spook, but will get up to investigate if the area is dense enough. The key is to be downwind of the bed and off the trail enough to not get busted. You have to make sure you have an open shooting lane downwind in case they spot you(they will circle down). I typically find a blowdown or tree wide enough, so my silhouette doesn't scream at the deer. I will place small saplings at varying distances away from me. If I can't find anything with cover, ill make my own with a bare stick/limb and pierce dead leaves and stick them into the ground. There's nothing worse than crunchy leaves under you, so I'll scrape a wide area til it's bare dirt.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Marshbuster89 » Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:00 pm

Divergent wrote:There's nothing worse than crunchy leaves under you, so I'll scrape a wide area til it's bare dirt.


Man Im glad you said that because I apparently forgot lol. I'm so used to doing it that I really didn't even think of it. Yes absolutely don't want any leaves or small sticks on the ground in your direct area.

I do think being on the ground burns bridges more easily and quicker do to the plain fact that your scent is on the ground. Even if it's dry ground I wear hip boots....i wear them while coyote trapping in case I take a knee while m akin a set. I think it definitely helps, maybe I'm wrong tho lol
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Divergent » Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:09 am

And always clear out enough for the length of your legs because it's always nice to stretch every now and then.

That's the one thing I love about ground hunting on public. I can burn those bridges and it doesn't bother me nearly as much if I was hunting a small piece of property. If I don't see what I'm looking for during the first sit, then i simply move on or make adjustments within that area.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby tgreeno » Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:23 am

Last week I found a couple great bedding areas, that sets up for a good looking ground hunt. No tree's available. I typically only ground hunt a few times a year, depending on conditions. But it seems this year I'm finding more areas, that I'm going to have to ground hunt. The bucks sign is telling me they're using these areas. Both these areas have a slight elevation advantage, so it improves visibility to the bedding. A pretty perfect scenerio!

IMO...the bucks like areas with no mature trees, because hunters don't hunt in areas with no tree stand size trees! It makes perfect sense. The pressure isn't in these areas. So the mature buck like hanging out, where the hunters aren't!
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:01 am

Thanks for shareing! Great to see some stuff like this from the frozen north! Goes to show, you really need to be able to adapt to any situation. I am just as comfortable killing from the ground as I am a tree. Personally though, I just enjoy the tree so much better. If the odds are the same, I am opting for the tree. But thats just me.

You can really learn a lot from ground hunting that 100% applies to hunting from a tree.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby bowhunter15 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:05 am

Lockdown wrote:
bowhunter15 wrote:Love this thread. There are plenty of places I really think it could work well in my area. How to best film is always the challenge for me. Thanks for sharing your tips and successes!


I struggled with that too. I had to forego some of my sets because of it. Some I strapped my camera arm to a tree beside me but even then its tough. They do make tripod attachments for camera arms but I didn't have one. Still wouldn't be easy due to all the extra movement that is required.


Yea, I mean I can always just use a tripod if I know I'll be on the ground. But for those sits where you scout and set up on fresh sign, you might not know whether it'll be a ground or tree sit. I guess bringing both the camera arm and tripod is the best bet, it just sucks carrying the extra gear.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby PredatorTC » Tue Mar 20, 2018 5:32 am

Marshbuster89 wrote:
If you're going to hunt from the ground, you need to become the cover. Mossy oak obsession doesn't not blend into canary grass and brush....ive seen hunters from far off trying to pull this one off and they look like a black bear from a distance. On the other side of the spectrum, don't disturb the area too much. I personally don't stick branches in the ground but I know some of you do and that's fine, but I think if you plan on coming back to that spot again that season, that disturbance is enough to make the deer in that area reroute. That's the doorway leading out of their bedroom. Say your bedroom is connected to your bathroom and you have your towel hanging up in the same spot every day and then one day it's laying on your toilet. You're going to notice it immediately...and be freaked out a little. Dan has talked a lot about this. I truly believe the mature animals in that area will notice it...maybe not that night, but maybe the next morning or night. Don't get me wrong tho, I'll break a few branches to clear up a shooting lane or 2, but I try to minimize it as much as possible. I don't use a blind (like just a screen in front of me) or anything just because I like to be as light and quiet as possible and to me that defeats the purpose of being mobile, but to each there own

.



I love this right here! Back in 2016 when I was chasing my 138 ten point, I had him coming through a field so I kept hunting there because I knew it would give me multiple stabs at him. I learned how to access undetected. With the way the field was, If I had a south wind, I needed to hunt from the ground. If I had a north or west wind, I could get in a tree. The first night that I had to hunt from the ground I brought a bunch of cedar branches with me and jammed them in the mud sticking up and down. I was right beside some piled up junk that I figured I could also blend in with. I could draw from behind the cedar branches unseen and then slowly rise up and shoot him. It would be a piece of cake... or so I thought. The buck did come out during the last ten minutes. He would stand in the long and skinny field and dog every doe that came through checking her. As he did this, he got within 20 yards multiple times. BUT every single FREEKING time he was within range he would just stare and stare and stare. Not one single time did he look away while he was within range and he did this multiple times. I felt like he knew I was there the way he was staring, but didn't spook. I watched him through the cedar branches bow in hand release clipped. He just stared at the cedar branches and absolutely knew they didn't belong. I never did get drawn on him. Two nights later I got up into a tree and sealed the deal.

The lesson I learned:

Never bring artificial cover again. I would have been better off hiding behind the junk that was already there and then leaning forward for the shot when he looked away because he wouldn't have been watching me so close.


As Marshbuster mentioned in a different post, I had him come along with me a few weeks back on a quick scouting mission. I have a solid plan together for a good one next year and I wanted a second good eye on what I was thinking to see if there were any ways I could increase my odds. This spot may require a ground hunt and it was humbling to scout with him. He picked up on sign that I didn't notice and defiantly helped with a game plan.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby wolverinebuckman » Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:13 am

I also enjoy how quickly I can wrap up and be on my way to the car after a hunt. I save a a half hour of set up and break down every hunt over the climber I used.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Divergent » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:07 pm

wolverinebuckman wrote:I also enjoy how quickly I can wrap up and be on my way to the car after a hunt. I save a a half hour of set up and break down every hunt over the climber I used.


X2 :lol:
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Divergent » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:12 pm

bowhunter15 wrote:
Lockdown wrote:
bowhunter15 wrote:Love this thread. There are plenty of places I really think it could work well in my area. How to best film is always the challenge for me. Thanks for sharing your tips and successes!


I struggled with that too. I had to forego some of my sets because of it. Some I strapped my camera arm to a tree beside me but even then its tough. They do make tripod attachments for camera arms but I didn't have one. Still wouldn't be easy due to all the extra movement that is required.


Yea, I mean I can always just use a tripod if I know I'll be on the ground. But for those sits where you scout and set up on fresh sign, you might not know whether it'll be a ground or tree sit. I guess bringing both the camera arm and tripod is the best bet, it just sucks carrying the extra gear.


I bought a fourth arrow camera arm w/lanc and a canon xa30 this past season, but I almost felt like I was hauling in a stand again. It's impossible to film in some of these fast paced situations on the ground, so I'm looking to sell all of it and just use my tactacam, GoPro, and my a6000.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby bowhunter15 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:58 pm

Divergent wrote:
bowhunter15 wrote:
Lockdown wrote:
bowhunter15 wrote:Love this thread. There are plenty of places I really think it could work well in my area. How to best film is always the challenge for me. Thanks for sharing your tips and successes!


I struggled with that too. I had to forego some of my sets because of it. Some I strapped my camera arm to a tree beside me but even then its tough. They do make tripod attachments for camera arms but I didn't have one. Still wouldn't be easy due to all the extra movement that is required.


Yea, I mean I can always just use a tripod if I know I'll be on the ground. But for those sits where you scout and set up on fresh sign, you might not know whether it'll be a ground or tree sit. I guess bringing both the camera arm and tripod is the best bet, it just sucks carrying the extra gear.


I bought a fourth arrow camera arm w/lanc and a canon xa30 this past season, but I almost felt like I was hauling in a stand again. It's impossible to film in some of these fast paced situations on the ground, so I'm looking to sell all of it and just use my tactacam, GoPro, and my a6000.


Every year I try and find an excuse to leave the camera arm at home. I just have never been satisfied with the drop in quality. Over 1/3 of my gear weight (including bow) is camera related and probably over half of my total set up and take down time each sit. I shoot with a compound style grip and wrist sling with my recurve so even with a Tactacam on front the quality really tanks when I shoot. They're coming out with an 8x zoom version in August I heard. Regarding ground hunting I agree that the time it takes to shoot probably is faster than the time it takes to get everything turned on and recording in some cases.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby DaveT1963 » Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:14 am

I agree with most of what has been said in this thread. However, in regard to a buck noticing changes in his core are - lets keep it real. Changes occur in a bucks core area DAILY..... Trees get blown down, new vegetation grows, leaves fall, etc...... Bucks accept these changes rather quickly if they are natural looking. The thing is to BLEND into a natural environment. And keeping with the first time in theory, by the time a buck notices a few strategically placed outline breakers hs usually is already compromised. I have never had a buck pick up a few well placed cedar/pine branches the day I was hunting. Never. I usually have brush piles identified from preseason scouting and I will sit right up next to or into them. If I sit in front I will usually sticks 2 or 3 small pvc pipes (mentioned earlier) and then snip a few branches just to break up my outline from the front. Makes all the difference in the world, especially since I must draw while the animal is within 20 yards - or multiple animals. I have actually sat next to a 3 inch willow, and a clump of tall weeds in the middle of nothing and had deer within 30 yards feeding for 15-20 minutes and never pick me up. The two kill suits I use (brown and green camo) blend into just about any environment. And the hammock or waldrops allows me to sit motionless with ease.

I also, don't use a blind as to me they reflect light unnaturally and deer will notice them (that's why most let them sit for weeks or brush them in).

As far as being light weight, My hammock seat weighs less then 2 pounds (if I remember right) 3 pvc pipes, hand pruners and kill suit is all I need to hunt just about any treeless area (as long as there are a few saplings). My Waldrops pack saddle ups the weight by about 1 pound. With both, I can hunt anywhere with a total weight less then 5 pounds.

At some point this summer I will try to come up with a video showing me setting up in several different cover types and then get some video from the deer's perspective on how effective the kill suit/PVC brush system is.
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Re: Ground hunting

Unread postby Lockdown » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:16 am

I think the branch placement is all relative to the amount of brush you place, and how much it stands out. DaveT you make a good point about the woods changing. Blowdowns and such. When you mentioned that I was envisioning predatorTC’s buck staring at the cedar branches he placed. He knew something was different and maybe that’s why Joe never got a shot. However, HE DIDNT SPOOK EITHER. :think:

Whenever I stick branches in the ground it’s usually the same vegetation I’m hiding in. If Joe was backed up into a cedar tree, THEN placed the cedar branches in front of him, maybe it would have worked?? :think: maybe the branches wouldn’t have looked quite so out of place?

Lots to think about... good discussion I’m enjoying this thread!

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