yesterday was my bday....woo hoo--sooooo what right?...well we get the family together for a nice bb-q last night, get to the eatin and "refreshments" [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]time go's by with the usual bs'n then my lovely wife hands me another "refreshment" this time with a blank envelope??WTH... inside is a wyoming region C whitetail buck tag! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
seems a few of my friends and my father and i are going whitetail hunting tomorrow [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
.....PROBLEM: i dont have the first clue how to hunt these buggars [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] Any Pointers from my fellow LRH bretheren [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]
Hunt 'em just like you do mule deer but in different kinds of cover.
The one's I hunted in PA years ago had nothing but woods to linger in.
Here in SE Idaho I have them in my back yard but they stick to the thick stuff and down by the river. I've never seen one here more than 100yds out in the sage from the thickest russian olives.
Hint: When you see the big white flash, know you're busted [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] You'll know what I mean when you see it. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
I may be the slowest guy on the mountain . . . . but . . . . I'm on the mountain!
Use your bino's and look for any and everything that seems out of place. Usually you can pick out the different colors or an odd shape that just doesn't belong. Try and keep the sun at your back and look back into the cover. They like to move along several yards just inside a brush line. Also look out around isolated clumps of thick stuff. Sometimes the better ones will bed down out in an open area with only a smidgen of cover to conceal them. That way they can see things coming from any direction and from a distance.
Since you're not too far away from where I've been hunting whitetail almost every day... The rut is getting started. Bucks are getting a little brazen as they chase does around. I saw several today in an area where I hadn't been seeing any lately. So things look good for you. Find the does that are walking with their tails waving in the air, they're doing that to get their scent in the air. If you find a doe that is doing that there going to be a buck right behind her, or not too far behind. Basically if you find the does you've found the bucks. Depending on where you're hunting you could try an estrous call in a can type thing, those work well if only to stop a buck that you see moving not too far off- I like the big can, which is way louder. One thing I have noticed lately: the deer are on the move after shooting light ends. The best time to catch them in the open is early in the morning. With the moon decreasing in size they shouldn't be moving all that much at night, but should move in the AM and then move all day when the rut really gets going, which though some people claim has happened, I haven't experienced. Not knowing what kind of terrain you're hunting makes it hard to give advice. Look for sign in the snow that also happens to be a spot you want to hunt. Be there at first light then go glass in the afternoon and look real hard for them bedded down on hillsides or benches, or just about anywhere that you think they might be. If you find one in it's bed and you can shoot far maybe you can just shoot it where it lays. Those bucks think they're invisible when they're bedded down and sometimes they won't move from the beds because of it. It takes a lot of time behind the binos/scope to locate them though. Good luck dude, don't road hunt or you'll just end up seeing deer that you can't ever get a shot at plus if you get a wallhanger do you really want you're story to start off "I got out and rested my gun on the hood of the Chevy..."?
well after a couple of days recuperating both physically and mentally im able to post this update.
thanks to the few of you that directed me in the taking of what might be my only whitetail for some time.
after arriving in buffalo around 1:00p we check into the hotel we were going to call home for a couple of days when the keeper informs us of a message. it seems as though the fellow that was going to show us the ropes of this HUGELY PRIVATE area wasnt going to make it. his mother has suffered from a stroke that very night....not a good OMEN...strike ONE ...should have turned around right there [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] after much scheming we decided to go down to the local sporting goods store to ask a few questions about potential access. after getting a couple of names and some directions to a small tract of state owned land we were finally off to hunt. we were lucky enough to meet a couple of personable fellows along the way that were nice enough to grant us access, but for the next day. by now its close to 4:00p so its off to the state area. nice little piece of land. water, good cover and quite a few mule deer ( too bad the season closed some time ago for the mulies). after a short walk we decide to glass a likely looking draw full of russian olive trees. seeing a few whitetail does we spied a very nice moderatly heavy 9pt. he was quite tall and very symetrical, having 4points per side, plus eyeguards. the only down side was that he had one broken point. after a brief discussion my friend decided to take him. three shots later he was down, the first two being clean misses the third taking him through the shoulders. range was a meere 167yds. yes razzing ensued [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]. by the time we get to him, take the required pics, get him cleaned and dragged back to the truck it was well after dark.
the next morning it was decided that we would hunt the state land first off since it was so close to the landowner that had granted us permission for later the same day. at 6:35 we arrive. it was getting light quickly and we didnt really get a good look of the land the evening before so we elected to gain some elevation to survey what was below. it was a clear crisp 17*F. the deer were active at the first sign of the sun with there being no moon. after some time i located another buck much like the one previously taken. this time with a full set of ten points. i get my dad setup for the shot.i get him comfortable behind his stix...no wind...buck is clueless to our presence but laying down. meanwhile a fight breaks out just down the mountain. its a pair of evenly matched 4x4 mulies..pushin shovin' rollin eachother over kind of fight...ABSOLUTLY AMAZING SIGHT. this only went on for approx five minutes so it was short and sweet for us, short and hellacious for the one buck..WOW was he handed his behind! getting our attention focused back on the ten point, we find him gone...for just a minute. he's headed down hill, interested in the same fight we had just witnessed. with the buck moving and getting closer with every step my dad holds his shot. a doe pops up and runs up and away from the ten point taking him with her! what to do...RATTLE and GRUNT LOUDLY... [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]stopped him in his tracks [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]at 387 yds my dad pops him through both lungs with the only shot needed. much cheering ensued from the two of us. the ol' man can still shoot prety decent [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] got some excellent pics. caped and dressed, he's in the truck in a few hours time. later that morning we met Mr.Allen at his ranch house. he directed us to some promising land and requested that we walk the bottoms first thing as he had noticed some bucks there a while ago....didnt see much in the bottoms a few little eights, alot of turkeys,and cottontails like i have never seen. so we stop to take a lunch break but i cant sit still... theres a few carbodys stacked on top of one another, so i climb them to get a vantage point..a rickety one but much better than the cottonwood trees i had to choose from. imidiatly i notice some deer feeding in the alfafa field behind us. range em' 1092yds. from the cars it would be a very tricky shot (not my shot...the coin didnt flip to my side...yet)it would be my friends shot, as my luck would have it i would be the last to take my whitetail. so we follow the river bottom as close as we can to the field, peek over the bank and there they are! right were they are supposed to be. just too far for comfort for my friend -309yds- [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] (yes he will be going with me for a few practice sessions this off season) so we have to crawl over this cut alfafa field. the only cover is the fence row between us and the deer but everything works out perfectly. he pics a fence post as do i and we simultaneously peek over the brush. me to range the buck, him to hopefully make the shot. the buck is still bedded but i range him any way...147yds...i whisper..."sure you can make that??" [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img] he takes a deep breath, holds on the bedded bucks shoulder and fills the third tag of four "firsts" (none of us have ever taken a whitetail) pics were taken, buck was dressed like the previous two and off to find my buck. we had pretty much spooked everything on the property so we headed back to the motel for a nap. while there we get a call from another landowner that he has some "tails" on his land, a few of them are decent bucks. the only kicker is we cant drive my truck the majority of the way down his ranch. after a brief conversatioin with him it is agreed that my dad and i can borrow his wheeler to cover some ground and get a feel of his land. we come across a little two track that affords the opportunity to survey much of his land. its steep but managable. i park the bike and we hoof it (about a mile) to the overlook. now to be honest not alot was on this property but what was was very nice. we found a super looking ten point bedded all by his lonesome out in the tall sage....pleasantly clueless [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] i get set up waiting for him to stand for a suitable shot and a good solid range confirmation from my dad, all the while daydreaming about how it has been a storybook hunt and how easy this has turned out (beware of over confidence it will lull your sences to sleep...strike TWO ) im laying in the prone on a truck sized boulder, my dad just beside it and to the left, when i hear tumbeling rocks below me..?.. i glance down...nothin'... then i feel the Fn' rock...MOVE!!!!!! i have no time to react at all...and ride the rock for a bit, tumble ***** over end for god only knows for how long it felt like everthing was in slowmotion...i could see everything in perfect clarity..the sage the...rocks the dirt flyin', to come to a rest in the ravine below....quick self check while lying there on my stomach...nothin' broken just a few scratches and abrasions along what skin wasnt covered...hell my hat was still on!??...when i notice my Swaro's are gone from my neck...(right now..typing this i feel im going to go for another ride...this time the queazy pukeing type)....the strap had broken in the fall and my new babys were somewhere on the mountain between my screaming father and me. searching around i find my camera..broken..it was in my shirt pocket...find my rangefinder...a little scratched up but just fine, it was lying beside me on the rock.. then i see them...my swaros...upon first inspection i thought they were unharmed but both eyepiece housings are ovaled the focus knob is missing. the lenses are alright with only one being a little dinged...i find my gun a short distance away...not a scratch!??...it was cradeled in the sage just as you would set up for a shot..on the bipod... by this time my dad has made it down to me...sobbing...he thought i as a goner...so did i frankly. hes a 24yr veteran EMS personel so i was in good hands. he had me sit down took my heart rate, shined his pocket light in my eyes and hugged me that he didnt have to watch his son be crushed in a freak accident. dont ask me how i dodged a 10 ton bullet but i thank my lucky stars im alive. i found a rock at as near 100 as i could and checked my rifle for its zero..again amazed it wasnt hurt at ALL..i still cant believe it... i did manage to kill a buck that evening..not quite the one i had intended, but i filled my tag. my father had made it back to the wheeler while i had elected to happily walk down the ravine, refelecting on what just happened when yet another ten poked his head up out of the sage...53yds away...yes i drilled him as quick as i you can say "holy SH*T another deer" and thanked the maker above for the rest of my lucky little exsistence....and the blessing to have dodged that little curveball. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]
....anybody know a good camera repair shop?? how about a very sympathetic SWARO dealer.... [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
thats if the wife will ever let me out of the house again [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
Glad you are alright!!Congrats to all of you for taking your first WT bucks. The injury to your Swaro's is tragic, but not near as tragic as if you had been injured. Thank your lucky stars and the man above! Again, Congratulations, and continued good luck.....