Last Season, when the bugling action had shut down, we followed a heavily used ("straight line") trail over a timbered knob, down into an area where the vegetation was chewed up like crazy. We ended up setting up on the lower end of the trail on our last evening (desperation)...and my buddy was able to arrow this bull.
So, in this case, yeah, it was worth it.
It really pays to know the area; are they on the right contour to be headed for that wallow that starts to catch the sun at about 9:30? Because once that spot starts to warm up, they’ll drift up over the ridge into that upper bedding area and you’ll be screwed because by then they’ll have bedded on the bench overlooking that trail, so the only way to get to them will be to loop around to the east, get on top of the ridge and ease down onto them from behind after the thermals switch.
I think most of us look at tracks as evidence of where they WERE instead of looking at them as a way of telling us where they’re Going To Be.
Probably we’d be a lot better at this if we learned to play a good game of chess.