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High Buck 2011

Discussion in 'Northwest Hunting' started by WackNStackBlacktail89, Aug 20, 2011.

  1. WackNStackBlacktail89

    WackNStackBlacktail89 Arlington New Member

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    Im going to be going on my first high buck hunt this year. its looking like ill be going up into indian creek (still have to verify its part of the wilderness area) or i was going to go up into glacier peak (still undecided between a few locations) i've spent some time in these spots so far this year. i decided to start my high hunt career because im tired of road hunters and quads i would really enjoy serenity hard work and a great reward and story at the end. I was wondering if anyone has any tips for me starting out ive always been a pack hunter (pack frame sleeping bag) bare minimums hunter, i've just always stuck to being in DNR land off the roads a few miles. I want to kick it up another notch...So any tips for a chance at better success,ease,or little tricks would be much appreciated im a young man yet so i have a lot of land to learn yet
     
  2. clownbuster

    clownbuster Vancouver, WA Active Member

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    You probably already know all this but this is my M.O.

    Blacktails
    How:
    I walk in/mountain bike in with pack and climbing tree stand 1.5 - 2 miles (non-motorized areas), set up camp obviously downwind and about 1 - 2 miles from where I actually hunt. I'm typically out for 3-10 days depending on schedule.

    Where:
    Stick to 5-10yr old, south-facing clear cuts to hold the best browse.
    Evening Hunt: I like to set up just inside (50-75yrds) the heavy timber, up a tree 20-25ft, usually on a ridgeline, overlooking a "saddle" or some obvious well-used travel route (key). All the big Blacktail bucks I've killed, IF they come out before dark, will stage up inside the 'deep and thick' moving slowly toward the clear cut until the sun drops. I always hunt the wind, not relying on my scent-elimination clothing/products, so that always decides my setup.
    Morning hunt: Pre-rut, I like to hunt pretty close to the bedding areas in the AM, again, in a tree stand, again, finding their travel routes for an ambush (thick cover, natural draws) while they are usually moving uphill into their bedding areas (Big buck bedding areas are typically on the north-facing slopes, dense areas.)

    Every other year I switch and hunt Whitetails in NE WA.
     
  3. clownbuster

    clownbuster Vancouver, WA Active Member

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    Here's my Backpack gear list:


    ESSENTIALS
    -License
    -Map
    -Compass
    -Garmin Rhino 530hcx GPS (full charged) + extra batteries & battery adapter
    -Scent-free sunscreen and lip balm
    -Silver Layer
    -Fleece Layer w/fleece beanie
    -Sitka Core Shirts
    -Sitka Ascent Pants
    -Sitka 90% Jacket/Pants
    -Sitka Downpour Jacket/Pants (waterproof layer)
    -Gloves, ball cap, lightweight beanie/Poly heavy beanie
    -Socks / Underwear
    -Boots
    -Headlamp, extra flashlight, extra batteries
    -First-aid/Survival kit w/Quikclot, suture/syringe, SamSplint, Morphine, Valium, Naproxen
    -SOL Thermal Bivy
    -Windproof Lighter
    -FireSteel
    -Fire starter (Petroleum Jelly coated cotton balls)
    -Waterproof container
    -Multi-tool
    -Knives – Alpha Folder, SwingBlade & CRKT Folding Fillet + sharpener
    -Repair items as needed (needle, thread, small roll duct tape, etc…)

    FOOD
    -JetBoil + new 100gm can of fuel
    -Mountain House Food 1 per day + one extra meal
    -Cliff bar 1 per day
    -Spoon
    -Small bag of hard candy

    HYDRATION
    -3L Hydration bladder full of water
    -3 packets Cytomax recovery powder
    -Water filter + tablets
    -1 gallon colapsible water storage or extra 3L Hydration bladder

    GEAR
    -Backpack
    -Tent + footprint
    -Sleeping bag
    -Sleeping pad
    -Biodegradable TP
    -Scent-free Anti-Perspirant
    -Scent-free bug spray
    -Scent-free towels
    -Whistle
    -Measuring cup/Mug
    -ZipLock bag (1-gallon)
    -Parachute cord
    -Toothbrush/Paste
    -Custom-made GoreTex PacLite Game bags
    -Wyoming Saw
    -Binos
    -Rangefinder
    -Calls (Mouth, Can, Rattlebag)
    -Glock G29 10mm subcompact w/15round full-size mag on a thigh rig + one extra mag
    -Bow
    -Tree Stand
     
  4. WackNStackBlacktail89

    WackNStackBlacktail89 Arlington New Member

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    Very good information! I have generally used the same idea when it comes to hunting the regular season. Now that you have mentioned it, of the 10 or so bucks i've spotted this year 8 of them have been on a north facing side these include a 4x4,5x4,and 3x3...Still gotta load pictures on to prove it though. I have never set up inside the timber line before ive always found cover near slash piles off abandoned roads.(regular hunt) I used a tree stand last year while bear hunting i have both a two man collapsable and a self climbing stand. I've noticed a higher buck to doe ratio this year atleast up here in snohomish county I usually dont see as many bucks or atleast not very many sizeable bucks....Usually gotta get into gods country to see them that size. Now when you say heavy timber your infering to set up in tall timber glancing out into the clearing? That seems to be a very good idea for the regular and high hunts. I havent had much time hunting mulies or whitetails.. But ive been hunting since 17 this will be my 5th season and ive killed 3 bucks so ive been doing pretty good, didnt get one last year due to the fact i left the nest and got my own home, but now finances are set and im hitting it hard (have been since early may) and its paying off already thanks to game cameras extensive hikes and just getting out there. As to your gear list i have nearly all of the essentials you mentioned expect instead of a bow im shooting a tikka t3 lite stainless .270 wsm with leupold vx1 4x12x40 and I just purchased a set of leupold bx2 cascade glasses 10x42, as for Gps i havent gotten myself one but i have a loaner to use this year, as well as a glock 23 .40 caliber. I was wondering Jetboil vs military MRE? prices to quantity/quality? also i am fairly decent with a mouth call but ive never tried to call a blacktail, have you had much use with them? Seems like you've got it down to a science really.. hope you dont mind me picking your brain..everything i know ive learned from bugging others im the only hunter/redneck in my family so im kinda out to have others take me under their wing and every year i learn so much more its great and the racks on my wall and meat in my belly are worth the pestering...
     
  5. clownbuster

    clownbuster Vancouver, WA Active Member

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    Now when you say heavy timber your infering to set up in tall timber glancing out into the clearing?
    This is referring to a tree stand hunt, but still appiles. Your evening setup should find you with wind in your face, approx. 0 - 30 yards into deep timber, 15-45 yards (Bow) to 75-125 yards (rifle) from a well traveled game corridor and well traveled criss crossing game corridors leading and leaving the clearcut. In mountainous, hilly terrain, due to the wind thermals, I will setup uphill from the game trail in the AM, and below the game trail in the PM. As the sun comes up in the AM, the warm air will push or 'chase' the air uphill. As the sun drops, the air pushes downhill. The morning setup is the same as above, but you will have to carefully circle around in the dark (1.5hrs - 50mins before sunrise), slowly and sneaky, mindfull of your wind direction, staying away from the clear cut, and get into the timber approx. 75 - 150 yards from clear cut, remember to stay below the travel corridor you think deer will be returning to bedding area (remember thermals)

    I was wondering Jetboil vs military MRE? prices to quantity/quality?
    I dont have much experience with MREs, but the Mountain House meals are terrific.

    Also i am fairly decent with a mouth call but ive never tried to call a blacktail, have you had much use with them?
    Ive had good sucess with doe bleats and light rattling in pre-rut to rut. Latter part of rut to post-rut I use immature buck grunts followed by rattling. It seems to me, yearling does come into estrus later than mature does, prompting bucks to continue to breed later and extend the rut a little. Ive killed more than one buck (Blacktail, Whitetail and Muley) with his nose steadily up a yearling doe's butt in the last day of archery late buck (middle of Dec.)

    Hope this helps, I'll continue to try and answer any questions you may have, hopefully we get some other vets to help a brother out on here. I'm not a pro, but have been lucky enough to have spent an enormous amount of time Deer hunting all over the state with great success in my short 39 yrs. Currently trying to perfect the art of Elk as I have not had a lot of opportunity, I lived in NE corner of WA St up untill last year. I've killed Elk there, but Elk herds are few in that part of the state. Just remember these things: hike and camp futher than the other guy is willing to as the game will be more bountiful and the bucks larger and smarter, find a Deer's food sources, not so much water sources as they get water from MANY sources you wont find or think of (dew/water on leaves, hoof/footprints/holes full of water, etc..), its better to be lucky than good; but the harder you work, the luckier you get, and luck favors the prepared.
     
  6. WackNStackBlacktail89

    WackNStackBlacktail89 Arlington New Member

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    Words couldn't have been truer. It does seem the harder you work the more you are rewarded i busted *** all year in '09 and in the late hunt i got that 4x4 well 3x3 with eyeguards, it really is rewarding when that happens much how i feel about all my bear hunting. I've yet to kill one (passed up a few small ones) because if i kill a bear i would like some size to it 250 pounds minimum guestimating through the scope. I spent 4 days two years ago up in that area in curlew/danville area hunting up goosmus creek seen more 2 pt mulies than anyone could lie about it was quite disheartening. ;) well I cant say i've ever set up in the timber line but ill definitely be trying that when the 15th comes around i got some more scouting to do yet for the regular October hunt.. So far camera has produced a large spike 10-11 inch tall spikes. and a 3x3 with eyeguards both working the same general area.. getting a new camera soon that records time date and temp to better pattern their activities. I think getting their patterns down now will help even though the rut may effect these patterns??? I dont think it will though that early in october but with the weather being odd this year i find myself questioning if the rut will begin earlier than usual ?? any theories/ suggestions to this ??
     
  7. clownbuster

    clownbuster Vancouver, WA Active Member

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    The rut is tough to nail down. To pinpoint, you have to be able to spend a TON of time in the woods. If your not able to witness the rut, you will need to be there to see the very first fawns in the spring. Take the first fawn seen, subtract 198 days(whitetail gestation period), and that will give you week of conception +/- a day. We lived on 300 acres of prime whitetail property for many years. Between all the game cams and long distance spotting of spring fawns, we were able to get the rut down to the week, and it didnt change.
    Some say changes in the weather (colder) will help determine the rut or "jumpstart" it. We found the rut wouldnt change, but the deer activity would increase during cold snaps. Extended feeding (up earlier in PM, out later in AM), moving to better cover, moving further for food (snow covered) and higher barometric pressure seemed to be the most deciding factor on deer activity level.
    Patterning deer is easier as they don't move more than 1.5 square miles from where they are born, unless they are pushed out. Elk tend to migrate at the first sign of intrusion. They rarely tolerate close human activity. They pretty much have the woods to themselves for 9 months straight, then 100-300 smelly humans walking around, sweating, smoking, chewing, talking, drinking, starting fires and converging on their turf in one day. Tough to pattern them only because of all the other smells in the woods.