Confused and Frustrated...

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Confused and Frustrated...

Postby RichfromNH » Sat Nov 24, 2012 8:08 am

Hello all. Despite years of hunting NH I have yet to put a deer on the ground in the state. I've been successful hunting the family farm in Pennsylvania but I'm ready to have an NH deer on the ground. I'm fortunate enough to have a friend who's family has 110 acres with next to no hunting pressure so I've been given free reign to do whatever I want. Two years ago I missed a shot at a giant buck because all shooting technique went out the window when I came down with buck fever but I've been looking to reconnect. Now that I know he's out there(and hope he still is) I've been looking for him. I found a scrape with a huge footprint in it and believe it to be him last year...this year I set up a mock scrape and a game camera and boy did it bring in the bucks!!! Had a spike, a 5 point, and a picture of a single antler right in front of the can only see the G2, G3, G4, and the main beam. This is likely an 8 or 10 point... I'm letting myself believe it's the big guy I missed. No pics of the body or anything...of course all these bucks are coming by at dark. There are few others who hunt this area and I've only seen other hunters maybe three or four times in the several years I've been there. The scent dripper says it'd turn the nocturnal bucks daytime bucks...but the last two trips there to hunt showed me not a single deer, let alone a buck...

Any advice for how I can get the bucks to come visit in the day? I'm a believer in buck bombs and now in mock scrapes but I have yet to see results. Due to work schedule and a new hosue, my time in the woods is about a third of what it was last year so I need to make the time in the woods count. Thanks so much to anyhow who has time to give me some pointers and ideas.

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Re: Confused and Frustrated...

Postby kellory » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:17 pm

I can tell fro your post, you are exited and determined, and that's good, but there are no magic beans that will make deer show up when you want them. The best you can do is make it attractive and feel safe for them. like in a sanctuary,
I can also tell you need to relax some. Enjoy your time in the woods, drink in the out doors, watch nature as it unfolds before you,...then take the opportunities as they arise. You can't force it. being keyed up is going to work AGAINST you as you sit and wait, will make you fidget,(a dead give-a-way) and as you have seen, destroys your shot. Take the shot as you would at a target, ignore the rack, other than to make your selection, and calmly take the shot. And follow through with it, watch the hit, judge how it hit, the damage done. That shot is not finished until the deer is completely out of sight, and you have reviewed it in your mind. This includes all clues related to recovery of that deer. Keep your focus on how it acted, direction, gait, shot placement, land marks, and what is in that direction. You will find it helps a great deal on not having "buck fever" I seldom ever have a reaction before or during the shot, no matter how long I have to make the shot, It keeps you focused on what matters, and shaking is for after, when you realize what you have done.
The only real difference between a good tracker and a bad tracker is observation. All the same data is present for both. The rest is understanding what you are seeing.

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Re: Confused and Frustrated...

Postby deerstalker85 » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:27 pm

I agree with need to take some time to step back from the situation and let things happen naturally. Do as much reading as you can on topics that you feel are not clear to you, and use this information to help you in the field. When it comes to scrapes and rubs...80% of this activity or more occurs at night time. I don't care what scents or other tactics you use, nothing is going to make a deer changes its natural instinct. The biggest thing you can do to increase your odds is set your stands in the right places, and then be on the stand as much as you possibly can (with the right scenario for wind etc). You mentioned the area has very little hunting pressure, this also means deer are less conditioned to human scent and prescience which make your stand locations and time spent in the field critical as these deer you hunt are especially curious and keen to your being there. All in all, more luck is involved than anything, and just being in the right place at the right time. GOOD LUCK! an awesome and easy way to keep track of what's happening on your hunting property!

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Re: Confused and Frustrated...

Postby SwampLife » Sat Nov 24, 2012 3:40 pm

Find a creek crossing, fence crossing, saddle, bench, treeline, ditch, something, anything that concentrates deer movement. Hunt it according to the wind and leave the gimmicks at home. I have found that placing/checking a trail cam at your spot is a bad idea. Just my opinion.

It would help tremendously if you had aerial/topo map to post of your area.

You are obviously focusing on an area that the bucks are using at night. What you need to know is if the bucks are using any piece of the land you are hunting during the day. You need to know where that is, why they are there, when are they getting there, where are they coming from, where they go when they leave that area and how you can hunt them there with out them knowing.

Have fun. :mrgreen:
No Shortcuts. No Excuses. No Regrets.

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Re: Confused and Frustrated...

Postby New England Hunter » Sun Nov 25, 2012 8:48 pm

Spend the time in the woods and good things will happen. As previously stated dont forget to enjoy your time in the woods.

With that said - even though there are not other hunters in the area the deer may still feel pressured with you being in the woods over the last few weeks and have changed their patterns and become more nocturnal. Look at an aerial picture of the area you are hunting and find a creek crossng, fence crossing, an old wood lot, or where thick pines meet the hardwoods - deer like to bed in these areas and will feed during the day in these "bedding areas". Another piece of advice is to focus on hunting does during the rut - the bucks are unpredictable during the rut and in most cases will be looking for hot does. If you find a lot of doe activity stay put and the bucks will find you.

I hunt mostly public land with quite a bit of pressure and have had luck in these areas. I am a stand hunter and while other hunters are walking throughout the day through the hardwoods I stay put in the thick stuff (most of the time I dont have a shot over 60 yards). These are the areas to find deer when they feel threatened. I like the hardwoods in early season bow hunting, but after that ill be in the thick stuff noone else wants to deal with.

Good luck and dont forget to enjoy yourself!

One more thing to add - as stated previously, leave the gimmicks at home - they dont work. Use some scent killer and go odorless. I compare it to fresh pressed OJ - we (or most) would prefer the fresh pressed OJ over the from concentrate stuff. Deer are the same - they would prefer the scent of a hot doe or native food FROM thier area over the stuff formulated in a chemestry lab or bottled from captive deer accross the country. Find the does and you are golden. Just my opinion but I have taken a lot of good bucks on public land without pouring a bottle deer piss all over the place.

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