First let me say that I don't want to know about anyone's honey holes and I definitely don't want to walk on anyone's area that they've been hunting. I'm interested in deer numbers, hunting pressure as it relates to bow season, local food preference, and deer movement / activity.
I spent most of the time on the west fork of the lake walking the tree lines and creeks between the fields. Smelled, bumped and saw several deer.
How much bowhunting pressure does the west fork see during bow / gun / rut / and late seasons? I am sure it is all different.
How do the deer use the fields and the tree lines? I would assume they follow the creeks and tree lines while avoiding crossing the fields in daylight.
I did not see a lot of mast producing trees. And a lot of the flood plains were in very tall grass with very little forbs growth. Any ideas on preferred food sources?
I saw a lot of hog sign. Have the hogs been pushing out the deer?
Thanks for any and all insights.....
SE Oklahoma huh? I've only ever hunted down there once, spring turkey season, and have always wanted to go back. When I see that I'm going to have some time off to do that I may hit you up for some info???
There are good numbers of deer on most of it obviously. Some very nice bucks are taken every year. Hogs are thick on the north end up along the river and expanding their range southbound for several years now. Lots of land is leased for farming on corp and WMA land so food is where you find it plus the hardwood bottoms. There is a lot of public hunting. Get a WMA map and a Corp of Engineers map at their office by the dam, they keep them by the front door.
Lace up your boots and walk a little farther than most and you might be rewarded with something that is going to take awhile to drag out. My personal best/worse was a 181 pound 12pt that was shot at 7:30 in the morning and I loaded it in the truck at 3:30 that afternoon. That was a 2 mile drag as the crow flies. I've improved my system since then using a snow sled that fits in my tool box. It's still a chore but they slide easier, just have to make a trip back to the truck to get it or stash it on the way in.
There are people hunting all of it, you will not be alone, but you can find good spots all over it.