Contributors to this thread:
HfW MO-Semi Live
Doing an evening hunt followed by a morning hunt. Had .5” of ice and 3” of snow yesterday. It is pristine!
Sitting in a Maverick ground blind off a winter food plot of oats, rye grain, winter peas, ladino, and winter bulbs. They are tearing it up.
28 degrees, 3 mph variable wind. Crunchy out. I used a diaphragm Turkey call on the walk in as I know deer are bedded close by. I probably didn’t fool anything, but at least I tried,
Being in a ground blind I used my heavy Cabela’s Instinct winter coat and pants. Seriously, compared to Sitka they are LOUD!’
It is 4:15 and I can hunt to 5:30.
Can hear deer walking in the timber, but the slope prevents me from seeing them.
How warm is the instinct stuff?
Justin, very warm. I was always happy with it in that regard, but noisy, especially when cold out.
Ok, the deer had to have heard and/or seen me. Besides it being crunchy, the snow and ice laid over my 6-7’ tall native grasses that I use as screen cover when traversing to different hunt locations.
I say this as I did not observe a deer while in the blind. I was at one end of the S shaped plot that is slightly more than 2 acres in size and weaves its way through native grass dumping into timber at one end, where I was at, and a 10 acre Ag field at the other end which was beans this year. I left my blind and checked out the plot, there were at least 9 deer very visible against the snow. I could not see the full plot so I assume there were more. I will be in the timber tomorrow morning.
Thanks for the well wishes guys.
Here is the NG upon my arrival. It really collapsed!
Git ‘em Frank. Good luck!!
An hour before first light. Getting ready. Will not have phone service in the location I am headed to but will update after.
22 degrees out, very slight south wind. Will be up in a tree. Did not bring the Fanatic, so will be layered using Celsius outerwear. The Instinct might give me away as it is quiet out.
Took Buddy for a half mile walk so he is ready to be alone in the cabin for a few hours. Very foggy out!
Cold enough that I will be using my 50 lb. Bowtech Revolt. Took a turkey in the Spring with it, but have not taken a deer with it. It is a breeze to pull back when cold, which allows me less movement. No leaves on the trees, everything is bare where I am headed. Will have to be as still as possible.
5 does coming. Very, very slowly. Getting scary. Wind picked up and sheets of ice are falling from the trees.
I am surprised to see anything. Tow rope, safety line, step pads were all frozen. I literally had to chisel my way up the tree. Might not have been too smart.
If they keep heading my way I will have a 25 yard shot.
This sounds interesting......
Lead doe picked me off at 20 yards. She got nervous. Second doe kept coming and stopped at 25 when the lead doe bounded behind a tree.
Perfectly broadside, I drew, placed my 25 yard pin on the second doe, exhaled and released.
Sounded good. They all took off the way they came, except the doe I shot angled off from the others.
She stopped at about 100 yards. Stood still for about 30 seconds...
And then toppled over. Wow, really great hunt, thank the good Lord!
Good job, Frank. Congrats! Must have been the NoseJammer ;-)
I love the color of crimson against the snow!
No NJ, had to be the Sitka
Nice job, Frank!! Congrats!!
Congrats Frank! Must feel good to put all that work into wildlife management on your own land and have it consistently pay off.
As you can see the timber was open. I am sure I busted deer off of the plot on my way to the timber. I was in a stand about 100 yards from a south facing bedding area, and 150 yards from the plot mentioned yesterday. The wind was coming from their bedding area towards me. They came out of the bedding area and were on a direct trail to the plot. I was lucky again!
Nice work Frank! Thank you for sharing your hunt. You have more tags to fill?
Thanks Dan. One more any deer tag, which is what I used on this doe. I think I am done for the year.
It would be interesting to see how well your NG bounces back up after all the ice melts off of it.
It doesn’t really. I will burn it in March.
great work Frank. I need to get out there and fill my last tag too. That doe looks mighty tasty!
Totally shocked you got it done without your Sitka Gear. Enjoy.
Congrats Frank, it's was a fun morning out for me too.
Charlie, I was wearing Sitka this morning. That’s why it happened!
Well done sir!! That was pretty cool....congrats.
Congrats and thanks for taking us along on your hunt!
What a weekend. The Buckeyes demolish Clemson and the Browns are in the playoffs! I am a happy camper, but not a member of BHA, Lol.
Thanks for going along with me.
Too bad ya don't have any more tags!!
I have one more any sex tag.
Oh....from your post a few clicks above, I misread what you said about your last tag. Cool.....will you post up another semi-live hunt?
Sorry John, my fault. We get two any deer tags, I meant I used one on this doe. As an LO I have access to unlimited anterless tags. The only buck I have taken this year was on the first day of rifle season, I used my bow. Between the firearms permit and two archery any deer permits we are allowed 2 total bucks.
I don’t know if I will hunt anymore. I hope to start some much needed chainsaw work, and to start pulling stands. GL if you are still out there.
Congrats Frank! Had to be the sitka for sure!! Solid year on your farm, makes the work well worth it.
Thanks Dave. Hope all is well. The heater is still working great, thanks.
Frank....our bow season ended Friday. I already pulled my last public land stand. Had numerous chances on private and public (gun/bow) that didn't happen for different reasons. I'm grateful for the two I got in the freezer. It's on to the small game and fishing now....I went squirrel'n this morning and got one fat fox squirrel.
If you decide to hunt anymore...you could always donate the meat to some neighbors or needy folks.
Thanks. We always donate at least one deer. Another one will be totally processed to summer sausage, much to be used as gifts.
Congrats on your two deer! We are blessed when we can take more than one. Good luck with the small game hunting and fishing. I never developed an interest in winter fishing, and it is a great time for habitat management.
WAY COOL Frank, CONGRATS!!!
Thanks Gary, not near as cool as your last day 2018 monster with trad! Never possible for me in my best day.
Excellent, Frank! Way to get it done without Fanatic! Enjoyed following along and thanks for sharing.
Congrats. With all your management work do you set harvest goals for deer? How does it affect habitat with too many deer?
Congratulations on a fine season.
I only have 120 acres, so shooting too many cannot happen since pressure of any elevated amount will have the deer relocate, and it is bow hunting only for me, which means the deer usually win. But I do talk with the CO and biologists for our area. Crop damage is a much bigger problem than habitat damage. You don't see browse lines in heavy ag areas like you do in suburbia with no management. And MO really opened up the anterless seasons to get and keep the numbers down from previous peaks, which I agree with.
Thanks Justin and Lou. This obviously will never be an epic thread that makes the favorite list; however, it is possible to have an exciting adventure on a small parcel. Wild at Heart forever!
Nice writeup You are a trooper for sure. Chipping Ice to get into your stand is Awesome !
No doubt. If it’s covered in ice, I’m not climbing.
Walking miles and chasing elk and other things can be tough. But, the mindset and commitment it takes to go out in the cold to set for hours on end to kill a whitetail with a bow, that’s been hunted for three months, takes more brass then any of that in my opinion.
Thanks Robert, but it probably wasn’t really smart to do. I used to teach HE and BHE classes and we would always advise against doing dumb things like that. I guess I was too stubborn to give up on my plan once I made it. Fortunately it turned out OK.
Justin, this was a lot easier to do than a tough mountain elk hunt like the one recently documented here. I am not capable of doing that! And a good late season food source is almost a sure thing to at least see deer. Combined with keeping pressure light on my farm and no firearms hunting, the deer feel fairly secure. And I just enjoy being out. For the last few years I have at least one Bald Eagle that regularly visits during the winter, and in fact I saw him last weekend. I will go out just to witness that. I appreciate your kind words but in no way was this tough to do, again more dumb than anything really. Thanks.
Frank, you spend a lot of time working on your land. If your desire was to do an elk hunt line that, you’d prepare and get it done.
To me, it takes a different mindset to go set in cold temperatures for hours on end waiting for a deer. It’s not my cup of tea. Kiddos to those who can.
Congrats Frank on a nice buck!
Going to give it another go. Last weekend to hunt. Will only get about an hour in this evening. Cabin was 28 degrees when I arrived. That’s chilly to change in!
If you have Sitka on it’s a done deal.
No Sitka. Only 50 minutes left. 3 mph NW wind. Quiet!
Either he is walking out or dragging out???
Nothing other than 1 squirrel. It was eerily quiet! One more attempt tomorrow morning.
Ok, about 40 minutes to shooting light, getting ready to head out. 22 degrees, very slight NW wind. Going into a bottom area, most likely no phone reception.
At home saw lots of deer out early the two days before I came up which made me optimistic about my chances. No real temp, wind or pressure changes so was surprised I saw zilch yesterday.
Have not hunted this area since October.
Saw 1 coyote that was staying very close to a calf probably born within the last 24 hours. Could barely walk, mom kept licking her and nudging her to get up as she kept laying down. Hope she makes it.
The food plot described above was eaten to the ground, nothing left. Poop every where. Common observation every year after a period of below freezing temps.
You can see the bulbs pulled out of the ground and consumed.