Another bow season wrapped up

Discuss deer hunting tactics, Deer behavior. Post your Hunting Stories, Pictures, and Questions/Answers.
Buckfailure
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Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Buckfailure » Sun Nov 17, 2019 5:02 am

:shifty: Hey guys. First post here in the Beast forum. Finally swallowing some pride and looking for help. We just wrapped up another unsuccessful bow season here in central New York. I wanted to reach out and ask, what would you guys do if you were hunting areas, were the deer just can’t be patterned?

We hunt areas with 1000’s of acres of public. Mostly consisting of pines. There are some hardwood areas,swaps, ridges, clear cuts, etc.. Deer movement around here is sporadic at best. We do get pics during scouting, but they may use a particular trails once a week or two. It seems even the does can’t be locked down into repetitive travel.

The areas are large, and vast. Food, water, bedding, cover is just everywhere. So my question is, how would you approach hunting areas like this? We’ve definitely put in our efforts. So we’ve concluded it can’t be done, or we’re just too stupid to figure it out. Any help would be appreciated! My head can’t take much more pounding on the wall.


mauser06
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby mauser06 » Sun Nov 17, 2019 5:31 am

10% of the land holds 90% of the deer. I read that once in a while and it's usually somewhat kinda sorta true.


I used to believe bedding and movement was random till I really started scouting. You definitely get snow up there. My favorite thing to do is go out on a snowy day and follow buck tracks. If I'm scouting, I like to go backwards. I wanna see where he's coming from and what he's doing on his own terms...not when I am chasing him.

Big woods and low deer density is a challenge...but deer need certain things to survive. Secure bedding, food/water and breeding.

Bedding is what a lot of us here focus on. Why? The majority of the daylight hours, mature bucks are bedded. Outside certain rut phases.

Those beds are absolutely predictable in big woods and low deer densities. Issue lies with lots of bedding options and not a lot of deer.


I'd recommend studying here and ordering all the videos from the beast store. Even if you don't hunt farms, marshes or swamps, lots of good info crosses over.
Buckfailure
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Buckfailure » Sun Nov 17, 2019 7:19 am

mauser06 wrote:10% of the land holds 90% of the deer. I read that once in a while and it's usually somewhat kinda sorta true.


I used to believe bedding and movement was random till I really started scouting. You definitely get snow up there. My favorite thing to do is go out on a snowy day and follow buck tracks. If I'm scouting, I like to go backwards. I wanna see where he's coming from and what he's doing on his own terms...not when I am chasing him.

Big woods and low deer density is a challenge...but deer need certain things to survive. Secure bedding, food/water and breeding.

Bedding is what a lot of us here focus on. Why? The majority of the daylight hours, mature bucks are bedded. Outside certain rut phases.

Those beds are absolutely predictable in big woods and low deer densities. Issue lies with lots of bedding options and not a lot of deer.


I'd recommend studying here and ordering all the videos from the beast store. Even if you don't hunt farms, marshes or swamps, lots of good info crosses over.



Thanks for the reply. You’re spot on with the low density. I have tried the track back method. They tend to mostly lead back to private, where the habit is better. The public land areas are strange here. There is tons of land, but they’re broken up into 1000 acre squares surrounded by roads. Bow pressure is minimal, forget about gun season, it’s a mess, and that’s typically when we have snow. Odd part is, I can find more rubs on the edge of a seasonal road, than in the actual woods. Thanks again for the reply, I will check out dans videos.
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backstraps
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby backstraps » Sun Nov 17, 2019 8:08 am

Welcome to the BEAST!! Hang around here, study and read all you can. Put it to practice in your area...IT WILL HELP!!
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Bio1
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Bio1 » Sun Nov 17, 2019 9:32 am

How open is the understory? Might have more browse along the seasonal roads (more sunlight) hence the rubs.
Bowhunting Brian
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Bowhunting Brian » Sun Nov 17, 2019 11:35 am

Post some Arial and topographic maps. Someone here will help you.
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brancher147
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby brancher147 » Sun Nov 17, 2019 12:22 pm

I hunt a lot of big wooded areas and it takes a lot of scouting. I scout probably 3 or 4 times more than I hunt. Big bucks can be hard to pin down but does are easier. My best advice is find the bedding areas find the does and wait for the bucks and the rut. Find where bucks cruise parallel trails to doe travel or where bucks cruise between bedding areas. But you gotta scout a lot and scout right.
Some do. Some don't. I just might...
Buckfailure
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Buckfailure » Sun Nov 17, 2019 4:40 pm

Bio1 wrote:How open is the understory? Might have more browse along the seasonal roads (more sunlight) hence the rubs.



The areas where most rubs are found along the road are usually in between creek bottoms. Thick and dense with only the road separating them. Lots of apple trees in the area near by, and the only oak trees within miles. It’s a great area, and I’ve gotten pics of mature bucks there, just only at night. Even the night time pics are only once a week or longer apart. The trails are there, but it’s not uncommon for one set of tracks to be the only ones seen for days.
Buckfailure
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Buckfailure » Sun Nov 17, 2019 4:55 pm

backstraps wrote:Welcome to the BEAST!! Hang around here, study and read all you can. Put it to practice in your area...IT WILL HELP!!



Thanks! I plan to. After years of trying to figure it out, I’m throwing in the towel trying to do it on my own. I’ve put in years of scouting, and countless stand hours, trying to accomplish it on my own. It’s a tough area(for me anyways), but there’s something about succeeding here that would really give that sense of accomplishment so to speak. No matter what I do, and think I’m finally on to something, it doesn’t seem to work. Plenty of better areas in the state for sure. Thing is, I know the big boys are here, I’ve seen them. Seems to come down to just random luck encounters. Does don’t even seem to have a pattern here. They’re just as unpredictable. I’m confident I’m doing many things wrong, turning here to try and figure out what they are.
Buckfailure
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Buckfailure » Sun Nov 17, 2019 5:02 pm

brancher147 wrote:I hunt a lot of big wooded areas and it takes a lot of scouting. I scout probably 3 or 4 times more than I hunt. Big bucks can be hard to pin down but does are easier. My best advice is find the bedding areas find the does and wait for the bucks and the rut. Find where bucks cruise parallel trails to doe travel or where bucks cruise between bedding areas. But you gotta scout a lot and scout right.



Doe travel is just as unpredictable. Random beds in a bedding area can be found, but it’s like they aren’t there for days or weeks at a time. Even in the off season, cameras spread out pick up movement on the same days about a weeks apart. I’ve paid attention to wind direction on those days. Not one wind or weather pattern seems to have an affect. It’s just random.
Buckfailure
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby Buckfailure » Sun Nov 17, 2019 5:09 pm

Bowhunting Brian wrote:Post some Arial and topographic maps. Someone here will help you.


Here’s an area I tried a little while ago. Saw some does, next to no buck sign.
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brancher147
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Re: Another bow season wrapped up

Unread postby brancher147 » Sun Nov 17, 2019 10:20 pm

Buckfailure wrote:
brancher147 wrote:I hunt a lot of big wooded areas and it takes a lot of scouting. I scout probably 3 or 4 times more than I hunt. Big bucks can be hard to pin down but does are easier. My best advice is find the bedding areas find the does and wait for the bucks and the rut. Find where bucks cruise parallel trails to doe travel or where bucks cruise between bedding areas. But you gotta scout a lot and scout right.



Doe travel is just as unpredictable. Random beds in a bedding area can be found, but it’s like they aren’t there for days or weeks at a time. Even in the off season, cameras spread out pick up movement on the same days about a weeks apart. I’ve paid attention to wind direction on those days. Not one wind or weather pattern seems to have an affect. It’s just random.


I used to say the same thing until I learned how deer use bedding areas in the terrain I hunt and started hunting it more carefully. That combined with lots of scouting now puts me in deer almost every hunt. Random things do happen but you should be able to find areas that are somewhat predictable. My encounters have gone way up since I scout more and use cameras less and setup on fresh sign not where I had deer on camera a week ago. Maybe your area is very different and harder but this has worked for me.
Some do. Some don't. I just might...


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