Tuesday October 21, 2014

Today’s my brother’s birthday. It’s hard to believe that he’s a year shy of his 50th birthday. It’s amazing how quickly time passes. That’s why I spend so much time enjoying the things I love. There’s no place I’d rather be than in the woods during hunting season. Although I prefer to be there after the leaves have fallen I still enjoy it even when they’re in the process of finding their way to the forest floor.

I decided to do a large loop since the woods were wet and quiet. I had the intention of checking three of my cameras as well as looking to see if any trees had dropped nuts in between where the cameras were placed. The first camera I checked had a lot of pictures on it, but only one small spike buck, which is the same one my dad saw a few weeks ago.  I was surprised I didn’t get any other bucks on the camera. It made me realize that all of the human activity in the area now really affects the deer as compared to past years. Although it’s state land it borders private land that is a hunting lease and a power line had a major overhaul last year. What used to be so brushy you could barely walk through it now looks like a super highway. I had a lot of daylight pictures on my camera up until the time period when the people on that lease set up a tree stand in the area. As soon as the tree stand went up I haven’t had a daylight picture since that time.

I’m not sure why, but it also irritates me that the tree stand was even put up in that particular place. It’s an area I’ve hunted for the last 32 years, but the last couple of years I finally saw the first human sign I’ve ever seen there along with a few people. I know the reasons behind it, but all in all I think it’s common courtesy to avoid an area where you know someone else has strong ties. I guess that’s what makes me successful. I do like it in that area, but I have no strong bonds to anyplace. I’ll just continue looking for the right place and it appears that once again that place doesn’t hold the magic that it used to for a variety of reasons. When the rabbit isn’t hiding in the hat anymore it’s time to get a new hat or a new rabbit………you make the choice.

I’ve left the props behind many time to search for greener pastures with more opportunities and more often than not that decision has paid off. When I arrived at the second camera I was drenched in sweat due to a minor miscalculation in my route. I had a lot of pictures, but no bucks.  All of my cameras have had turkeys on them. This area isn’t known for turkeys. When I was younger there weren’t any turkeys at all so the birds have come a long way over the last three decades.

When I got to the third camera I was lucky enough to see my first deer of the season as it bounded up the hill. I couldn’t identify, but later found out it was a doe. It had been feeding in front of the camera for the last half hour. That card pull was a good one. I got three new bucks on it for a total of four bucks on that one camera and two 8-pointers, which is fabulous for the area. I’m pretty sure on of my buddies will kill one or more of these bucks during the season when I’m out of state. I wish them luck because they deserve it.

After pulling the card I headed down the mountain and back to the truck. The gap between the first camera I checked and the last one was a considerable distance and I couldn’t be happier. I’m glad to see much more activity on the last camera than anyplace else. It goes to show you that human interference and motorized vehicles do make a difference in deer activity in certain areas.

I probably won’t be getting out again until this weekend when I go north. We’re bringing my nephew with us for his first hunting experience. I’m really excited. He got his license when he was a kid, but never had a chance to go hunting because of all of his hobbies. He’s in his early 20s and I’m pretty sure he’ll enjoy it. He has a thinking mind very similar to my own. He likes to be alone with his thoughts and that is one of the main reasons I enjoy hunting so much. I hope his first experience is a memorable one.








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