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Thread: What You Learned..What You Will Change

  1. #1
    Senior member blackbeard's Avatar
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    What You Learned..What You Will Change

    What did you learn during this past season and what will you change for next season? Even though I've been hunting for several years I learn each year and try to change something each year as well. What about you?

    Here's what I learned and will change:

    #1- I can no longer be such a passive bow hunter. That worked when I had no kids and could hunt every day because I would eventually get a shot at a mature buck. Next year I'm going to be more aggressive and try to get a mature buck as early as I can.

    #2- Some stand sites will remain but several will change that didn't produce. My goal ever year is to find one new great stand site. I don't always accomplish that goal, but I did this year.

    #3- Cut shooting lanes out to 35 yards on all four sides of my stands, this is one mistake I made this year, I tried to rely on getting bucks too close before I could shoot them.

    #4- Don't overlook the obvious. I had a 140+" buck living on my 33 acres this year. He made a a small portion of my overgrown field his bedroom and I didn't notice it until gun season when I saw him there and then did some looking around.
    "...the deepest, most permanent features of all great moments outside are the names, faces, descriptions, and emotions. The antlers on the wall...well, they're just bones affixed to boards. But what they represent, however, is flesh and blood - fathers and sons, friends spending time with friends and the the seasons of life when the people we love were still with us. These old antlers on the wall...well, take a seat, my friend, and I'll tell you all about them." -Rev. Zeke Pipher


  2. #2
    Senior Member mrbb's Avatar
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    well for me, its some what simple
    I have to stepup my trespassing watching

    last yr I tried to hunt and had guys just beind me i ddn't really know were there, trying to not over walk the lands and keep certian areas free of me

    only to find out guys were in ether ruining my hunts
    going to have to just give up hunting on fridays and saturdays and patrol them days! sucks but / not gaining anything lhunting and having them ruin the hunts anyways! wasted time in the tree this way!!!

    secondly I need to get ion a buck sooner

    they were so Nocturnal this yr it was terrible, part I am guessing to teh trespassing proble s and weather
    too much rain


    and last I need more food plots, or I shoudl say neeed to get the plots I have in better shap by maybe doing just more fall plots,. as I ran out of feed way early this winter! and lost a lot of deer due to the lower amount of food
    so they would be my 3 areas to try to do better in

  3. #3
    Senior Member Griz's Avatar
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    This is what I want to do different from the past.

    1. I,m doing alot more early scouting (right now). This way I don,t stink up the place with alot of scouting in Sept/Oct. Just a quick
    peek.

    2. With above in mind, I,m not going to depend on previous yrs success on weather to keep a stand in the same location or move
    it. Deer tend to move in the same locations but a 40/50 yard move can make all the difference in the world.

    3. As Blackbeard said, I,m going to get more aggressive, and move a little closer the bedroom/thicket.

    4. I am self-employed, so with better planning I will not let work totally dictate my season. This will be the toughest one to do.
    what goes around, comes around. (I sure do hope so)!!

  4. #4
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    New to bowhunting this year. Was fortunate to get access to some private land near Salem. Saw a lot of deer. Had my first ever shot ( from a ground blind ) on a nice shooter (8pt). I put a good shot on him, or so I thought. He ran from the field back into the woods where came from. Stopped just inside the trees - I was up on a hill and had great sight of him. I thought he was going to go down... but after about 30 seconds of standing there, he trotted off out of site. I waited before I went in after him. I did go out to the field and looked for my arrow - never found it, and did not see any blood in the field. Thought maybe I missed - but I saw and heard the impact ( about a 30yd shot). With only about 30 mins of light left, I decided to go look at where he went in. Sure enough found blood where he stood. Went back and got my gear, flashlights, bright eyes, etc... thought I would find him not far. Dark now - didn't know the land all that well despite some scouting. Followed the blood trail for what seemed for a mile. Through creeks and picked it up on the other side... never got any heavier, or no pools where he may have laid down. Finally, I ran out of bright eyes and had been tracking this guy for hours. The problem is that I no longer knew if I was on the property I had permission to be on, or on the neighbors. Not to mention, I was concerned for my own safety being so deep in the unfamiliar woods. I hated to do it, but I "called it". The worst part was that this was on a Sunday, and I had to work the next day ( hospital/surgery - no calling off). So I shot and hit my first buck, and never recovered him. I was then, and still am sick. I called the land owner late that night, and he looked for him as well. I don't know if he clotted up and survived or not. The blood trail was just drops, but enough for me to follow. Some hunters have told me he could have easily "made it". I would have gone back the next day, but it got up to 65 degrees that day, and I ended up being in surgery til dark. I knew that even if I recovered him, the meat would no longer be good. I did go back the on the second day, but rain had washed away the trails. I still grid searched and never found anything.

    So what did I learn? I will never hunt again, unless I can afford to take the next day off if needed, to track and recover. I usually don't hunt solo, but I did that day. I will do it again if needed, but will always try to get a buddy to go with me. I hear stories about not recovering a deer, and everyone says "it happens", but this was my first bow - deer and first buck!!! Newbies... learn from my mistake... don't hunt in the evening, unless you can come back in the morning before the temps rise!!

  5. #5
    Senior Member offtheground's Avatar
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    1. Need more than climber stand to get in couple hot spots, found to late in season. Need at least 4 hangon stands
    2. I believe crop rotation kicked my butt on one propert could not get on deer pattern
    3. Take a doe early for meat in freezer, lol
    4. Also learned couple new ways to get into stand locations
    5. Smoken your tag has a better side effect than plain tag soup!
    6, Was slow to pattern other property, once I did the deer had me patterned also, not a good thing
    Patience and perseverance have a magical affect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish."
    John Quincy Adams

  6. #6
    I deff just think I will not pass on does early next year, If I see one I am smoking it. I shot one this year but passed a bunch, next year if it aint the rut, I am going to be flinging arrows!

  7. #7
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    I am going to try and not over think things this year....I caught myself wondering why a certain deer did not eat at my food plot but ate at my neighbors and we both use the same food......we both hunt together and the biggest bucks were on his side of the creek more than mine.....and his boys are always riding their 4 wheelers on his land and no one is ever on my land....I am going to quit trying to figure out every little movement these deer make and why they do certain things....

    I am just going to go back to the basics, smoke my clothes by the fire at least once a week.....take less items in with me on short hunts....there were days this past year where I packed my whole pack in and only stayed for 4 hours.....If I am not doing an all day hunt then I am only taking what I can carry on my person.....nothing else....I am going back to the basics with scouting....I am going to plan my days to scout, take a sandwhich and a bottle of water and go sit in my stands....no more walking around looking for signs and looking for beds on tree scout days.....I will designate certain days fro walking around and scouting...I got caught up in wanting to look around after I sat in my stand for a few hours.....all that does is push the deer further away that were bedding close to me......also, I am going back to not worrying about anything other than wind...wind is my only friend or foe....no more worrying about moon or trying to figure out nocturnal deer.....I am going to use the wind, smoke my clothes and just sit in my spots.....back to the basics

  8. #8
    Senior Member Big_Holla's Avatar
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    My list always seems to stay the same. I have stands I keep using that are not in the greatest locations but I just cannot figure out how to improve on where they are or how to make them better. I have grown comfortable thinking that the surrounding properties were the sanctuaries that some of the better bucks made home, however this year proved that is not necessarily the case and what I have been doing is actually working ON our property. Also with that comfort I never worried much about pressure from other hunters but this year it seemed some of my better spots are in jeopardy because of the recent activity.

    Couple more things I learned: night scouting is waaay under utilized.........and never be afraid of making all kinds of racket getting into your stand and immediately start rattling and grunting all evening long......heck it must work for some.....some day I will spend some time elaborating but until then this is all ya get........LMAO!!
    Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.
    - Thomas Edison


  9. #9
    Junior Member badfaulkner's Avatar
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    Swirling winds too close to a buck's bedroom = never seeing that buck. I hunted way too close to where he slept simply because I liked the setup but the wind never stayed true to the forecast in that swamp.

  10. #10
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    I learned not to underestimate a deer's eyes. I had been told previously that deer had fairly poor vision and that their nose was what you had to look out for. This led me to set up a couple hunts in places where the cover was not so good, and I thought that if I kept still, that I would have no problem. This led to deer skylining me almost instantly and I lost out on a couple nice opportunities. I plan to avoid this mistake as much as possible in the future.

    I also learned and am continuing to learn that the moment when you least expect to see a deer, is precisely when they seem to show up...so don't let your guard down.

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