PA Long Range Season

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by gunsmith1012, Nov 30, 2017.


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  1. Kevin Cram

    Kevin Cram Well-Known Member

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    Notice I said "driveable road" Our lovely DCNR has gated several side roads and most pipelines you can't drive on anymore either. Most bush hunters won't venture much over 1/2 mile from their vehicle. I agree it takes bush hunters to move the deer onto the side hills. We typically have 1 or 2 guys in camp that are willing to bush hunt the tops of the side we're glassing to help move some deer around. One of our favorite spots used to be a 1/2 hour pack in. This year the gate was locked on the road we use to access our location and it was just under 2 hours to pack in. I don't mind the longer pack in as I've never had someone else in our spot. The down side is most bush hunters won't venture that far back in so the deer have little reason to be on the sides.
     
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  2. yobuck

    yobuck Well-Known Member

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    You guys are actually in the cat bird seat Kevin. That because your young, in good shape, and have the knowledge and ability.
    But the world is constantly changing, and that includes our world and the way we have gone about what we do. The days of groups of guys setting up with big glasses and heavy guns on big lookouts isn't working well anymore.
    And it makes no difference how far you lug that stuff before you set up.
    You know as well as I that theres no guarantee of seeing more deer
    when you travel to the more remote areas. We like to think there is, and that's what keeps us going back. Especially when its not working at the closer to camp spots.
    I really believe that the future is to go backwards to how it was years ago. There aren't enough hunters in the woods to make it happen and that's not about to change. So young guys like you will have to
    make it happen on their own with scaled down equiptment and move around from place to place thruout the day.
    Larry Smith is now about 90, and of coarse finished as for hunting. He has sold his guns and his camp below Driftwood is for sale.
    He never progressed beyond a factory 7 mag and he never dialed his scope. He did have a multible dot reticle however, and he had a set of Spacemasters which he carried over his shoulder on a rifle sling tripod and all. Larry usually hunted alone because he figured he would find the deer at some point and that way it would be his and not his buddys. I doubt he ever shot one of the over 50 bucks he killed beyond about 5/600 yds, and he didn't mind if they were 50 yds. He wasent fussy about trophys, if it was legal he shot it.
    If Larry was 35 you can bet he would still be doing it, and the bucks would be better than ever. And so would Bob Sebring who used to walk back to the Miller run area from the cemetery, which is no doubt faster than driving there.
     
  3. gunsmith1012

    gunsmith1012 Active Member

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    Hunting is what you make it Mr. Yobuck. I agree with you for the most part on the deer in the northern tier. I admire the way things use to be and continue to do it that way. Im sure there are better ways but for a farmboy longrange groundhog hunter like me big glass and big guns will always be hunting. If i could hunt groundhogs year round i wouldnt bother with deer. You are right about being young and good health which are needed for this kind of hunting. Im probaly the same age as kevin and i enjoy getting to the spot as much as hunting it. I also hunt alone. All the time along the ridges of the pine. Im sure other guys see a lot more deer than me hunting there way but i enjoy it every year. Take care. Kevin, i hope to see you at the show this year.
     
  4. yobuck

    yobuck Well-Known Member

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    HEY, I admire it that way also, and frankly at my age, 83ish I have no choice but to continue that way. I have for almost 20 years now been driving 2 long days each way alone, just so I can enjoy what we do.
    Enjoying it is all that's left for me, but I have to also admit that I enjoyed it more when I was seeing more deer than we are seeing now. I'm sure Kevin feels the same since our camps are only about 1/2 mile apart on the same road.
    I sold my big heavy 20x120 jap glasses about 25 years ago for $2000, because there are better ones (for what we do). I have them, and so does Kevin and a whole bunch of others in that area.
    The issue however isn't the quality of the l/r hunters, or the type equiptment, or the ability of at least most of them in using it.

    I also now drive about 1800 miles each way to shoot prairie dogs, because of how bad the PA groundhog hunting has become. Actually I guess we could agree the hunting part hasent changed much, but the
    shooting them part sure has at least with the big equiptment.
    For years now the most successful groundhog hunters are the ones who walk the wood edges and take the closer shots. We could argue why, but that's not going to matter. Facts are what they are, and those that adjust shoot groundhogs, and those that don't, don't shoot very many at long ranges like they used to.
    I personaly feel that l/r deer hunting is headed in the same direction, regardless as to how any of us prefer or need it to be otherwise.
    So on that point we can agree, enjoy what you enjoy for whatever reason you enjoy it.
    How bout we shoot some rocks, range that big one and see if it moved any since last time.
    I know some guys who were up in Smith hollow a few years back that took 21 sighter shots at rocks. But then they only needed 2 to kill the deer. lol
     
  5. drags

    drags Well-Known Member

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    Hi gunsmith, groundhogs are my favorite also I have hunted them for 58 years. You mentioned you hunt coyotes and porkys (do you mean porcupines) can you tell us how you hunt the porkys
    Hi Yobuck, you mentioned Larry Smith with the factory 7 mag. do you have any more stories on him, I am always interested in stories about long range hunters from days gone by. I don't know him but anyone that would hike in by himself with his equipment sounds like an interesting fellow. You seem to be one of the few remaining long range hunters the know the history of long rang hunting from the past.
    Drags
     
  6. Buck Buster

    Buck Buster Well-Known Member

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    Fellas that would quite deer hunting to hunt ground hogs : How many ground hogs do you need to kill to get enough for a batch of bologna? What does it taste like? . Good luck hunting and be safe.
     
  7. yobuck

    yobuck Well-Known Member

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    If they can make scrapple taste good I'm sure they could make groundhog bolona taste good lol.
     
  8. Buck Buster

    Buck Buster Well-Known Member

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    10 - 4 yobuck , I know beaver bologna tastes good, I have eaten it. Four legged! Good luck hunting and be safe.
     
  9. yobuck

    yobuck Well-Known Member

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    Well Larry wasent what we would today refer to as a long range hunter Joe. At least not in this area of the country.
    None the less he used long range tactics to find deer at the distances
    he was comfortable with.
    He didn't change because it wasent necessary for him to change in order to be successful. He did the same thing the same way with the same equiptment every year.
    He sat on his butt on the ground and glassed every day mostly looking across short range hollows.
    There were a few others who either stayed with him or in other camps close by and they all did the same thing.
    One of those guys had the first set of spotting scopes in a bracket I ever saw in probably in the late 60s, and before I met Larry.
    He was a machinist and had made the bracket himself. He was even more of a loner and not nearly as sociable as Larry. They were all from the York area.
     
  10. Buck Buster

    Buck Buster Well-Known Member

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    I met a man at Bodine 1000 yard bench rest club one time, well I met a lot of people but one of them was a real 308 Norma magnum fan . So when I came across one for sale I bought it. It was built by Douglas Barrel Company. Now I'm not positive but I thought his name was Gene Smith, but it may have been Larry. Was there a Gene Smith that anybody knows that was into long range shooting years ago? It was probably in early to mid 70s when I met this man . He was in a camper at the shooting range, and I think he was pretty old then, but I was young and everybody seemed old to me then, now everybody seems young. Good luck hunting and be safe.
     
  11. RandyinVa

    RandyinVa Well-Known Member

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    Just noticed this post and read it end to end. I know several of you as I am an old timer as well and have been shooting long for a good while, and now extreme distances as well. I definitely should have been up there in Pa shooting with you guys for many years. My BigEyz would have fit right in but it looks like in some pictures there wasn't room for another pair. I am still working hard at long range hogging, especially now that I am retired. Finding long spots is tough but I have a lot of time now to find them, I hunt Pa, Ohio, and New York and am set up on a bench with all the amenities. I have to shoot by myself because can't find anyone to travel distances with me and many others do not have equipment really suitable for the distances I work to get. I have most calibers covered up to .408. I miss the companionship I used to have shooting with others on hogs. Best I can tell the number of long groundhog hunters from a fixed location is more rare than you big game guys. Any of you want to get back to long gh shooting contact me because I feel like the last dinosaur!
     
  12. Powderhound

    Powderhound Member

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    Gentlemen, I've thoroughly enjoyed reading this post so thank you! I've recently inherited a camp in sinnemahoning from a man who was not only my father in law, but also one of my best friends,and a hell of a reloader,
    /shooter. Due to a young family and lack of knowledge I can't take the time foe buck season, but I do sling yhe ultra mag over my shoulder and climb the power lines for bear. This year I saw probably yhe biggest typical 10 point I've ever seen up there on the first day of bear. I'm talking like dwarfes my best deer which are in the 140s and 150s PY. I also saw 2 other big bucks in yhe quehannA area. All mountain to mountain. Thanks for sharing.
     
  13. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Well-Known Member

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    BEAB73EE-3A14-48D5-99EB-0F5C65329869.jpeg
    This was about 2 hours of LR glassing and hunting, 3 miles from the homestead, two years ago. We still, have quite a few groundhogs in the area that make for fun times in the summer. The most challenging part is finding time to get out..
     
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  14. yobuck

    yobuck Well-Known Member

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    You've got yourself a spot there Joel, no doubt one of the very few still having good numbers of them for that type hunting. So does Frank Popp still hunt hogs?
    Buck buster, I doubt Larry ever even visited the 1000 yd club, but the guy I mentioned who built the bracket did for a time in the early years.
    Actually lots of those shooters hunt l/r deer also, and quite a few hunt
    or have hunted in the Sinnemahoning/Driftwood area.