Sitka Mountain Gear
2016 'Rut'
South Dakota
Contributors to this thread:
leftee 17-Nov-16
leftee 17-Nov-16
grizzly 18-Nov-16
Brotsky 18-Nov-16
leftee 18-Nov-16
Skullwerx 19-Nov-16
From: leftee
17-Nov-16

leftee's embedded Photo
leftee's embedded Photo
First of all in places I hunted(here and Illinois)there wasn’t really a rut in the usual sense.By usual I mean that say between 10/26 and the opening of rifle you would have maybe 4-5 days where bucks were everywhere and out of their minds.I had none of those days here and only 1 in Illinois..You would also have another 4-5 days where you’d have similar behavior for periods of time,say maybe a morning or 3 hours midday or in the evening.I had 1 of those.Then ‘lock down’ would begin but you’d still see roamers n runners n….Not me,not this year. Bottom line I struggled.Incredible warm weather accompanied by a host of windy days I suspect is the main culprit in this.Not just windy,but day after day of some variant of south.Who the hell expects or prepares for that?Sadly not me-at least up to now.Cloudless moon lit nights sure didn’t help either. I was ‘on’ a few good deer.I had 4-5 shooters around my home area that I never saw nor had daytime pics of.They never ‘lost their minds’.In illinois I am blessed to have access to a buddies farm that has great deer.However more of the same.84 one day,82 another and the lowest temp day was about 70.Tough.(went prepared with totes of warm clothes,value packs of chem handwarmers etc and ended up running to Wally World to buy T shirts)Bugs?Wow.I can deal with mosquitos-and did-but their damn lil black biting gnats were unreal)On the other hand 1 day was crazy.Passed 5 bucks would have shot here without blinking.Shoot anything less than 150 though and your invite ends.That I do not want.Even with that though that day I had a chance but ‘weather’ again screwed me.Hilly wooded country.You can be 20 feet up and have bucks appear above you.That morning it was dense fog and moist.Never heard a thing but all of a sudden out of the fog,about 35 yds away,stood what might have been a Booner looking me directly in the eye.Game over. Would love to hear if this jives with what others experienced this year.Really appreciate any thoughts,comments,suggestions,whatever. Didn’t want to cloud up the Meat Pole thread but want to mention my experience surrounding the ten pt I shot.He and a couple others were ‘running’ a doe on my only good action day here in SoDak.He was the nicest so on the second merry go round by me I had a good shot and took it.He went about 70 yds and piled up kicking.A big bodied 8 then ran to him and started goring him mercilously.I mean really going after the now dead deer.Seen it on turkeys many times but I’ve bowhunted since 1953 and never have seen it before.(turns out some have I hear but not me)Anyway I was stunned and wanted to stop him but didn’t want to holler so grabbed my grunt tube n grunted.That bad ass 8 was out of his mind and came over my way throwing grass,raking trees and generally putting on a 5 minute show.Then I noticed his right main beam-the last 6-7 inches were solid dripping blood from my 10!!!!Grabbed my phone n took a pic that shows it if you zoom in.Not sure it will work here on the site but will post it n see.Crazy!! Any comments or experiences regarding that welcome also. Good hunting!

From: leftee
17-Nov-16
Well,as feared,can't get the blood to show.Sorry.

From: grizzly
18-Nov-16
Nice deer lefty, thanks for the story. It has been too hot. but I guess that's changing right now. Have to brave the rifles now and keep trying.

From: Brotsky
18-Nov-16
Leftee, I had several really good days, specifically Veteran's day was outstanding. I sat all day and had action all day. Saw 4 shooters, just did not have an opportunity. That was really the only day that I would say saw deer really displaying rutting activity. Otherwise it was very sporadic, one here or there running a doe, etc. My fear is that with the snow and the somewhat delayed nature of the rut that it will be a massacre when the guns go off this weekend. You know where I hunt, so not far from you.

From: leftee
18-Nov-16
Brotsky glad you had action. Yeh scared to death of the impact of rifle season.Little cover left,(lot of cattails burned last week as well),almost all crops out and now snow to highlight the deer=trouble.Especially from the road warriors.

From: Skullwerx
19-Nov-16
I've had about the same experience as you. Only saw a few bucks chasing does. This past week the bucks I saw were after doe fawns, singled one out and stuck with her. I'm thinking it all happened at night with the warm temps and full moon. I still saw a few good ones but not the rutting activity this past week usually brings.

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