Sitka Mountain Gear
Early season whitetail strategy
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Tooth 06-Oct-18
JTV 06-Oct-18
Charlie Rehor 06-Oct-18
drycreek 06-Oct-18
Tooth 06-Oct-18
crankn101 06-Oct-18
lv2bohunt 06-Oct-18
HorbachJ 20-Oct-18
Bonafide 21-Oct-18
Bou'bound 21-Oct-18
Scrappy 21-Oct-18
woodguy65 21-Oct-18
Bowriter 21-Oct-18
RogBow 21-Oct-18
From: Tooth
Whats your early season strategy? I've found a fair amount of scrapes on the edge of woods, with good activity being picked up by the cameras. Also have nice food plots, bean field edges, and deep woods to hunt. This morning was my first set of the year, was set up in a transition area between bedding and the food plot. Had a young buck move thru in the middle of the creek, thats all I saw today.

This evening I'm thinking I'll hut the food plot, and tomorrow morning where the active scrapes are on the edge of woods/alfalfa, and theres a tree dropping acorns.

What do you prefer at this stage? The food plots seem like theyre holding a ton of deer in the evenings so thats why I'm headed there tonight. Really just looking for a big doe, but a big buck would be great too!

From: JTV
I prefer late afternoons, leading to food sources or over a food plot if you have one ....... scrapes made are usually at night and may not be the major scrapes this time of year ... heck, 70-85% of scrape activity is done in the dark (Deer and Deer hunting/studies) .... not to knock hunting scrapes, I do enjoy sitting over a f=big fresh one... rub lines/travel corridors are also good .... the existing leaf cover this time of year can make it difficult .... and by mid Oct. there is the supposed "lull" ... I'm usually trying to get my Doe killed and out of the way the first 3 weeks of Oct. (dosnt always happen so I can concentrate on bucks as the rut picks up .. if a nice buck shows up along the way, so be it ...

So you’re looking for a big doe or a big buck? Me too:)

Good luck.

Acorns in the AM, fooodplots in the PM.

From: drycreek
Here's a surefire strategy. Find the only white oak in the woods that's dropping acorns. Sit on the ground and when the deer shows, shoot it ! At least that's how it worked last Saturday morning for my buddy. It wasn't ethical though, because I found the tree that they were feeding under......:-)

From: Tooth

Tooth's embedded Photo
Sitting on the food plot this evening, no action yet
Tooth's embedded Photo
Sitting on the food plot this evening, no action yet

From: crankn101
Where are the bucks going to be during the daytime?

Hunt as close to there as possible...

From: lv2bohunt
I have heard that most scrape activity is at night. The folks doing these studies are not doing them where I hunt. I hunt scrapes almost exclusively during October. I look for large scrapes which are normally community scrapes used by multiple bucks as well as does. Deer, including mature bucks, hit them all times of the day. I suggest hunting scrapes early season.

From: HorbachJ
My trail camera is showing a spike buck and three does coming through the scrape and rub area and feeding right after dark. Multiple times. Think this is a good spot to hang a stand?

From: Bonafide
Eve/Afternoon sits early on till the temps drop or when Rut begins, then it's any time you can get out, do it!

From: Bou'bound
hunt the sign, of if you don't look for sign and just use cameras hunt the areas where the deer are on the cameras

From: Scrappy
I've been using my early and mid October hunts the last few years to try new spots. Spots I've walked through before or just found on Google maps. Nothing like having the sun come up while your sitting in a tree in a spot you've never seen before.

From: woodguy65
You live in Illinois for crying out loud, don't over think it! LOL Hunt pinch points and travel corridors doe's are either moving to/from food or to/from bedding no matter, and where there are does....

Know the bedding, know the food and have more stands set up than you think you will need based on wind and morning/late afternoon sun.

From: Bowriter
1-Morning-woodland food trail. 2- Midday woodland food source in good cover. 3- Approach rail to agricultural food source. Very basic strategies and of course, depending on where you hunt, it can vary.

There are only four factors that impact everything a whitetail does. Food, cover, terrain and structure. Water is a consideration only in arid regions or very dry years. Learn to plug them in.

From: RogBow
My early season strategy is to get my bow tuned spot on, gear ready, and wait for November.

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