Archive for October, 2017

Monday, October 30, 2017

Monday, October 30th, 2017

Although I promised myself that I would get some rest today, I couldn’t stay out of the woods. I didn’t go too far because I had a very limited amount of time when I got out of work. I’ll probably hunt tomorrow evening and hang it up on Wednesday to get ready for my trip to the Midwest. I won’t want to do that, but I don’t want to shoot a deer on the night before I’m leaving. That could create more problems than I’m willing to deal with, and I know the deer are moving, so the possibility would be very real.

By the time I got to where I wanted to sit, it was already 4 p.m. The wind was blowing about mach 9, so I figured it would be a relatively dead night. As I approached the spot, I saw four deer jump out of their beds and head into thick cover. Although I thought I saw antlers on one of them, I really couldn’t determine if that was the case.

I hadn’t been in this area in quite a while. I put a camera there last month since I never really hunt the area but have an interest in it for the coming years. I wanted to check the batteries and change them if necessary. The camera will remain there the rest of the season, so I wanted to make sure it would last with the colder temperatures that will probably arrive in the next few weeks.

When I popped the camera open, I didn’t expect much. There’s no sign in the area, but something tells me that deer would like it when the rut hits. That’s why I put the camera there.   I did a double take when I glanced at the fourth picture. A big buck had walked by it earlier in the morning. It’s funny how things work sometimes. This morning, I considered going there to sit for a few hours, then go to work. I figured the deer might be moving because the nasty weather had ended. I guess I was right. It seems like my theme for the year is a day late and a dollar short. Hopefully, things come together one of these days in the coming weeks.

A few of the deer I jumped filtered back in toward dark. They were a little cautious, which didn’t help matters.  Tomorrow will be my last day in New York until I return from the Midwest. I’m going to miss it this year. I feel like I’m onto a couple of really good deer, and I’m  pretty sure I might have been able to put a tag on one if I stayed home. I’ll take the trade-off, though. I live for chasing big bucks. It’s in my blood, and it all started in the Adirondacks when I was lucky enough to begin killing them regularly, which made me want some with even bigger racks.

A few hours late and a dollar short. I’ll keep on keeping on. Maybe I’ll catch up to one and maybe I won’t. No matter what happens, it’s an adventure.


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Monday, October 30th, 2017

Although I never hit the snooze button during hunting season, I couldn’t resist doing it this morning. I could hear the rain pounding off the roof, and I knew that the forecast was calling for more than two inches of rain. I definitely didn’t want to get out of bed, but I know that the number of days I get to hunt is limited, and with every passing day, I’m running out of time.

When the alarm rang the second time, I got up and started moving around. I recalled all of the bucks I’ve killed in some really bad weather, and I figured maybe today would be another one of those days.

I decided to stay fairly local today and give it my best shot. My dad and Brian planned on leaving for the Midwest this morning, and my mom was headed to Maine with her cousin Bonnie and her husband, Harvey. I stopped in to their house to say goodbye before I headed into the woods.

After parking my truck, I began the journey to a place I’ve had a little bit of luck in the past. The walk was peaceful as the rain pounded off the hood on my rain jacket. It was refreshing in some sort of strange way. About 4o minutes into my walk, the rain subsided and it became calm.

When I got to where I wanted to go, it was just about light. I nestled my back against a beech tree that my dad had carved the years into for the last two years. With my back firmly pressing against the 15 and 16, I felt at ease.

About 25 minutes into my sit, I caught a glimpse of a deer. It was down the ridge from me, and another deer accompanied it. As I looked at them through my scope, they started running toward me. Trying to put an antler on one of them, I watched them get closer. Before I knew it, deer were running all over in front of me. Six does and fawns went past me in a few seconds, and I waited for the buck. I could hear him aggressively grunting a little farther down the hill. I saw the legs of two deer go through an opening, and the grunting deer followed them. Almost instantly, all was quiet again, and the rain began coming down in buckets from the grain sky.

I lasted about 25 minutes, until it became so bad that I couldn’t handle sitting there any longer. I decided to use the rest of the morning to still hunt and check some things out. Since I have cameras in various locations this year, I decided I would check the couple that I had in this piece of woods.

I was pleasantly surprised when I reached one that was about 1.2 miles from where I was sitting when I saw the deer. When I slid the SD card into my viewer, I saw a nice buck standing in the scrape. It was a dandy 8-pointer, and he visited the scrape yesterday morning. I also checked another camera and was surprised to see another nice buck. By the time I was done, I had collected some really nice images to keep my imagination running wild. I’m hoping the trend for bucks growing in size continues in the years to come.

I didn’t put a camera in any of my traditional places in this piece of woods. Instead, I put them in places that I’ve always been interested in sitting. The results so far tell me that I should spend time in these places in the early season next year or maybe in the late muzzleloader season.

On my hike through the woods, I decided to place a camera in a place that should act as a funnel. I’ve never seen much sign in the place, but something tells me that big bucks might use it to cruise during the rut. I decided I had nothing to lose, so I put the camera there. I’ll probably go get it after the season. It’s well beyond where I could hunt between now and the end of the year. As I was standing there and admiring my work, I heard something coming. Looking up, I could see a big doe barreling toward the funnel, and I could hear a buck grunting somewhere behind her. Since my gun was lying in the leaves in front of me, I reached for it, but she saw me and bolted. I never got a look at the buck. I should have kept my gun in my hands. He probably would have been right in my lap in another 10 seconds. It seems that the season is going to be like that. I guess I’ll accept it since I’ve had such good luck over the years.

I’m not sure what I’m going to do the rest of the week, if anything. I have to shore up a few things before I head out on Thursday. I wish I could spend every day in the woods. That would be a dream come true.

The rain never stopped today. It was still pouring when I headed out of the woods when it got dark. It was a very long day for me. I’m sure my body will feel it tomorrow. I never stopped walking.

Here are a few pictures that I gathered. It felt good to explore these new areas today, especially since they’re close to home.





Saturday, October 28, 2017

Sunday, October 29th, 2017

Although my nephew got married today, I headed north to look things over. I took my buddy Joe with me so he could experience a trip into the Adirondacks. He’s from Tunisia, and he really enjoys hunting. I’m trying to teach him a little about deer hunting because he loves hunting. He has already invited me to go hunting for wild boars in Tunisia if I ever want to experience it.

We had a great morning. We didn’t stay in the woods too terribly long because he had to be to work at 4 p.m., and I had to get home to make it to the wedding on time. I saw a doe and a fawn shortly after daylight. I expected a buck to filter through the area after they passed through, but it never happened.

When we headed into the woods this morning, it was 29 degrees, but it was 65 degrees when we headed home. They’re predicting three inches of rain for tomorrow, and a cold front is finally supposed to bring some cooler temperatures with it. The cooler temperatures are supposed to remain for the entire day instead of just letting us experience it in the morning hours. I’ll welcome it when it arrives.

Joe saw his first deer in the woods while deer hunting. He was pretty excited, which was great to see. I’m glad he enjoyed his day in the woods. Here’s a picture of the place I should have been sitting. I’m writing this on Sunday night, and I hunted in the Lake George Wild Forest on Sunday. This buck showed up at one of my stands yesterday while I was up north scouting some new stuff with Joe.



Thursday, October 26, 2017

Thursday, October 26th, 2017

Finally, a day that felt like hunting season welcomed me when I got out of work. Although I had originally planned on taking a day off to get organized for my trip to the Midwest, I couldn’t ignore the conditions.

Right as I headed down the road after work, the rain let up. Since it had rained all day, I figured the deer would be on the move. I stayed close to home and went to an area that my dad has been hunting.

As I poked throughout he oak trees with the gun in the ready position, I could feel deer around me but didn’t see any. The leaves had all been freshly turned over, and I came across four scrapes that had just been made  or reopened. New rubs littered the forest, and I got the feeling that this could be the night.

When I finally nestled in under a tree, the woods had a dark hue. No animals were making any noise, but then again, I wouldn’t have heard them if they were scurrying through the leaves. The rain had dampened the forest, allowing the critters to move without making noise. I was certain that a buck would show up at one of the scrapes to announce the ladies that he is on the prowl.

As darkness rolled in and ate up the light in the woods, I stood up and began my journey home. I saw a few deer in the distance and headed into a valley to avoid being seen. It’s not often that I hunt in that area, so I wanted to do everything I could to keep the deer from getting startled. I want them to feel safe and come back when they encounter danger in the surrounding areas. I hope that many of these deer live to see next year, but it’s not in my power to save them from other hunters. I’ll do my inventory check at the end of the season and cross my fingers that a few of them made their way through the gauntlet.

I need to finish packing for the Midwest. Although I’m just about done, I’m not sure if I should go north to hunt on Saturday morning before my nephew’s wedding or if I should just stay home and hunt near my old stomping grounds. I guess I’ll figure it out tomorrow night.

I can say that the bucks are on their feet and moving. Now is the time to be in the woods, and now is the time I love being in the woods. I’ll find it hard to miss any days in the coming weeks, but I  will have to miss some so I can get ready for my vacation. I guess that’s the only negative to going on vacation…………I have to miss some of the best days right here at home. I’m hoping to see one of these in the coming weeks.


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

I figured today would be a great day to hunt since the storm passed through last night. Unfortunately, the temperature is still hanging in the high 60s. Summer just won’t let go. When I walked out of the building at work today to head to the mountains, I expected it to be much cooler.

Since I had planned on going hunting, I didn’t change my plans. I had determined that I was going to return to a place that I only went to one time last year. When I was there, I found a gigantic scrape, so I wanted to return this year to see if the scrape is active. It took me a long time to cover the ground to get to the scrape, but when I got there, I was extremely happy to see that a buck had opened it sometime in the last 24 hours.

I’m not sure why, but I expect the primary owner of the scrape to be a really good buck. It’s in an area that funnels deer between two mountains and around a couple bodies of water. It’s an ideal location, but it’s hard to get to without kicking deer out of the area.

When I return from the Midwest, I’ll head back into this piece of land to see if anything showed up on the camera. I’m hoping that I find something that I don’t expect. Although I want to believe that a big, mature buck visits the scrape, I don’t really expect to see one. That’s why I love cameras……….and hunting. You never know what to expect, and when you see something coming, it might just be that once-in-a-lifetime buck.

There was a lot of deer sign on the surrounding ridges. I could see a number of places where the deer had been feeding.

It looks like tomorrow is going to be a great day. Josh is going to take the day off and go hunting. I wish I could take the day off, because I’m sure the bucks will be moving. We haven’t seen much in the way of cool weather, and tomorrow is supposed to bring some rain and lower temperatures.

I’m not sure if I’ll get out the rest of the week. I have a lot of things to get ready for Brian and Dad when they leave for the Midwest this weekend. They’re taking my gear with them, and I’m headed out at the end of next week.

Sunday, October 23, 2017

Sunday, October 22nd, 2017

This morning was another great morning to sit, but it didn’t last too long. The temperature climbed quickly and finally leveled out at 76 degrees when I got back to the truck. I know you’re probably all sick of hearing it, but I’m about sick of summer.

I got an early start today. Over the last few years, I’ve been getting going a lot later than I need to. I’m not going to do that this year. I was sitting for about 40 minutes before daylight, and it felt awesome to see the woods come alive in front of me. Squirrels were scurrying in the leaves, and chipmunks made their way in and out of holes in stumps. It was cool to watch. A few blue jays perched in the tree above me and never squawked.

About 25 minutes after it got light, I heard a snick snap on the hill behind me. When I turned around, I could see a bear making it’s way down the hill. I watched it as it made it’s way into the thick stuff below me. It was pretty cool to watch it in its own environment when it had no idea I was there. I expected it to have cubs behind it, but I never saw them if they were there.  It was an average size bear for the Adirondacks. It looked lean and muscular without much fat on it.

Looking at the forecast, it doesn’t look like I’l be hunting much this week. It’s supposed to be in the mid-70s the next two days, and the two days after that, it’s supposed to rain. Brian and Dad will be leaving for the Midwest this weekend, so I need to get all of my stuff ready so they can take it with them.

Here’s a photo of where I saw the bear today.


Saturday, October 21, 2017

Sunday, October 22nd, 2017

I couldn’t handle the heat any longer, so I didn’t hunt the rest of the week. Today was my first day back in the woods after the break. Although it was 37 degrees when I headed into the woods, it got so hot today that I was sweating while sitting still, and I was only wearing a t-shirt. I never remember it being so hot for the entire month of October. We haven’t had more than two days in a row when the temperatures didn’t climb into the low 70s. Today reached about 75 degrees.

This morning, I sat in a place where I had never sat before. I wanted to see if it fit my style and deserved more of my attention in the future. I liked the place a lot, and I got lucky enough to see six deer, all does and fawns. I started seeing deer shortly after it got light,and I continued seeing them until about 11 o’clock.

Shortly after I saw the first couple of deer, I heard a noise that I’ve never heard while hunting.  It was similar to a blat/bleat, but it wasn’t quite the same. It was incredibly loud, and when I heard it, I thought it was a person, then I thought it might be a bear cub. When I saw the deer, I realized it was a fawn that had lost its mother.

About two hours after the fawn disappeared, I could hear it again, and it was over the hill from me. Eventually, I think the fawn found its mother because I saw it go past me with a larger deer and never heard the noises again.

Although the morning was great for sitting, the rest of the day was a waste. It’s just way too hot to enjoy the process. I’m fairly certain that the big bucks aren’t traveling too far, either. I’d love to see it cool down, but the extended forecast doesn’t show much relief in sight. I’d think it would end sometime soon. We haven’t even had a frost yet, which is beyond amazing to me.

Here’s a cool picture I took today.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

On my way to work this morning, I was disappointed that I couldn’t be in the woods. We finally got a great day to go hunting. The barometric pressure was rising, and the temperature was hovering around 30 degrees. I’m sure there was frost in many areas across the Adirondacks. I can only hope that it kicked the deer in the ass and got them moving. Even if it did get them moving, they will probably shut right down by the weekend. After all, summer isn’t over yet; it’s supposed to be in the low to mid-70s on Saturday.

This afternoon, I got out of work as soon as my time card reached eight hours. I decided to go to a new area to continue the search for deer. I finally found a place where they’ve been feeding, but it didn’t have an abundance of sign. I’ll probably sit in the area sometime next week if the weather is suitable for the location. I’m having a hard time staying motivated since I can’t see through all of the leaves that are still on the trees.

I did have an awesome encounter with a porcupine tonight. I felt bad for the critter when it scurried up a tree to escape from me. I was just trying to take a few pictures of it, but I could tell that the creature was scared. It made me think that I should have walked past it without interfering with its daily activities. I’ll have to post a picture of the porcupine at a later time, because I left my camera in my backpack at my parents’ house.  I was hoping I would be able to download the pictures tonight, but I guess it will have to wait.

With every passing day, I can feel the drive burning in my blood. I love being in the woods every day and seeing different areas. I live for this.  I’m hoping I can add to my collection this year.


Monday, October 17, 2017

Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

Since the temperature dropped today, I knew I had to get into the woods. I decided to cover some ground to find a place for tomorrow. Tomorrow is supposed to finally bring fall into our laps.

It finally actually felt like hunting season today, which was a welcoming relief. I haven’t found a place where the deer have been visiting regularly yet, and today’s journey didn’t give me any answers.

I’m beginning to wonder what’s going on. Although I’d like to blame it on the weather, I know the deer still need to eat, and I can’t find where they’ve been eating. Hopefully, I can figure something out by the end of the week.

I’m not seeing any deer, and I’m wondering if the entire season is going to be about the same as it has been up to this point. Only time will tell.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Sunday, October 15th, 2017

Brian, Josh and I decided to go north today. We had no plans of hunting, instead we wanted to take care of some things and do some prep work for the season in the big woods . The heat won’t let up. When we went into the woods around 6:00 a.m., it was 63 degrees. When we got back to the truck around 4:30 p.m., it was 75 degrees.  This weather has been out of control for being the middle of November. Summer hasn’t ended, and looking at the extended forecast, I don’t see an end in sight, other than the next two days when it’s supposed to be considerably cooler. But it’s supposed to warm right back up by the end of the week. We’ll be headed toward November, and we are still averaging daytime temps of 70 plus degrees. I need some fall weather to roll in. My patience are beginning to thin out…………quickly.

Brian and I got a lot of things done today, and I think we’re ready for the limited amount of time we’ll be rifle hunting this year. Since we never have a lot of time, we always need to take care of our prep work before the season starts. I feel good about our chances this year, especially with all of the research and analyzing we have done.

The heat is supposed to break tomorrow for a few days. Maybe that will get them up and moving. We shall see……