Archive for October, 2016

2016 Season is Here

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

Well, it seems like the last year went by in a blur. I must apologize for letting my website go by the wayside. I would like to commit more time to it, but I have too many irons in the fire right now.

Unfortunately, this year I didn’t keep a journal while I was hunting elk in Colorado. The main reason is because the hunting was so poor for the majority of the trip. In the first week and a half I only saw a cow and two calves. I walked over 120 miles in 10 days. The pressure had moved all of the elk to greener pastures, and we all went in search of those pastures. I ended up on the top of two different 12,000-foot peaks in my search. On the second to last day of the hunt, we finally located a few places where the elk had found refuge, but it was about a three hour walk from camp………….one way. There was no way I wasn’t going back to give it a whirl.

The journey was worth getting sore feet.  The final day I had four bulls bugling at me and standing within 25 yards of my position. As I waited to get a better shot than the one that I could have taken, Brian released an arrow, then another, and the elk scattered all over across the high-country meadow.

I think it might have been the best morning I’ve ever experienced while elk hunting, and I’ve experienced some incredible things in the last 30 years. Our hunt went from one of the worst hunts ever to one of the best ones in a matter of a day. I can’t wait for next year.

 

The End of the 2015 Season

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

Although, I lost my notes from the last few weekends, I can give a quick recap. I saw a few tails here and there, but overall my sightings were well below average. It was a little disappointing after witnessing what I witnessed the last few years. It might be time to change areas. Most trail camera pictures have steadily declined, and it appears that there’s a little more pressure than when I first started covering a lot of the ground in the surrounding areas of where I’ve been hunting.

Dad saw a lot of deer this year in the mountains. He did a lot of moving around, too. On the last Friday of the season he killed a nice 8-pointer. It was running after a doe and he never got a good look at it, so he fired a shot and connected.  Although he was a little disappointed because the deer wasn’t as big as he thought it was when he shot, he was happy to put a mountain buck on the ground.

After he fired a couple of signal shots, I headed toward him. When I got to him, he was sitting on a log. He had thrown his back out while trying to drag the deer, Looking at the task ahead of us, I knew it would take us the better part of the day to get the deer out. With a fresh coating of snow on the ground, I chose to drag the deer because I figured I could make good time.

When I reached the road just as darkness was settling in, it felt incredible to finally be able to give back to my father, who has has given me everything. This might be the best deer hunting day I’ve ever experienced. It was beyond amazing in more ways than I can ever begin to address.

The rest of the weekend was fairly slow. I’m hoping this winter doesn’t smash this region again. I’m not sure the deer herd can sustain another winter of heavy snow and extremely low img_0171  img_0156

 

temperatures. I look forward to what next year may bring to us.

Here are a few pictures of dad’s deer.

 

 

Thanksgiving 11/26/2015

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

I couldn’t resist going up north, even though it was Thanksgiving. I knew I would have to be home by early afternoon to have dinner, but I was still able to talk Brian and dad into going. That’s when you know you have the perfect hunting partners…………when you can convince them to go that far out of the way and hike way back into the woods just to hunt for a couple of hours in hopes of crossing paths with a mountain buck, which probably won’t even be a 100-inch deer if it’s a good one. I still love the mountains and this day proves that.

Around 8:30 a.m., I heard a few shots come from my dad’s direction. Although he was a few miles away, the sound easily carried right to me. Since he was out of radio distance, I had to wait to get the information until I got back to the truck.

My morning passed too quickly. There wasn’t much sign in the area I hunted, but I still had fun. I didn’t see anything. My father was screwing around with the camera on his gun when he accidentally fired it twice. Luckily, he didn’t hit the 6-pointer he was trying to film with the camera. His hands were too cold to realize he had too much pressure on the trigger and it fired. He had no intention of shooting the buck, so he was lucky he didn’t hit it.

Brian didn’t see anything this morning either. It was really cold out. It felt good to be in the mountains. I look forward to the last two weekends of our rifle season here in northern New York.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

Today was a good morning to sit. It wasn’t too windy, and it held steady in the mid-30s. I sat near the place where dad got hung up in the tree a few years ago. A doe was bedded directly under the stand when I got there. After getting within 10 yards of her, I turned my light off and climbed up the tree. As I climbed into the tree, she walked away in the darkness. A fawn went past me at first light, and that was the extent of any activity for the rest of the morning.

Dad sat in my stand in the big timber this morning. He saw a beast of a buck, but the buck’s rack was completely broken apart. The buck hobbled past him and headed into the thick stuff. A button buck and another fawn bedded under his stand for a while. This evening we set a stand near the old grunt stand. Four does came into the bean field, but no bucks. The sun set on our season in Kansas as the does made their way out of the field. It was a disappointing trip. The last few years out here have been really slow. We haven’t seen very many deer, and we definitely haven’t seen the number of quality bucks that we used to see in the past.

Overall, my vacation was fantastic because I was in the woods, but the hunting was really tough. We busted our asses and didn’t come home with very much to show for it. Although I killed two really nice deer, those deer weren’t reflective of the struggles we encountered along the way. The hunting pressure was out of control in Iowa. I’ve never seen so much hunting pressure on any piece of public land I’ve been on. It was almost as bad as when I hunted in Ohio on opening day of gun season. I’m not sure if I will return to Iowa to hunt there again. The amount of pressure was overwhelming, which made it hard to get away from people. The weather was not conducive to a lot of deer movement. The entire first week gave us some fantastic weather for sitting on the beach, but 80 degree temperatures don’t help when you need to cover a lot of ground to scout it. It kept deer movement suppressed, too. Maybe we’ll luck out and have some great weather next year. The last few years has been a battle with extreme weather on both ends.

 

 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

Dad hunted in one of his favorite areas today. He had a shooter 8 go by him shortly after daylight but couldn’t get a shot. I hope he gets a shot tomorrow morning. I hunted with my camera today. I saw a small 6-pointer and a few does. I also got some really good video of a bobcat, which was cool. I’ve never done that in my hunting career, so that’s a bonus.

For the evening hut, Dad hunted out of a stand that I set up. He saw two small bucks cruise by him. They didn’t have a clue that he was there. He thinks he’s going to sit there in the morning. I have a good feeling about it. I hope with all of my might that everything comes together for hi and he gets an opportunity at good one. He deserves it more than anyone.

I sat on the very far end of the property tonight to observe. I didn’t see see anything. I think it could be a good plea to sit in the morning. We’ll see what tomorrow brings. It’s supposed to be a good morning.