Tag Archives: southwest virginia deer hunting

Late Season Hunting Tips

7 Dec

winter buckEarly season has come and gone but don’t give up on bagging that buck you have been looking for. Late season hunting is by no means easy, but it can provide you the opportunity you have been searching for. An advantage of late season is that there are only a few dedicated hunters in the woods at this time.  Here are a few tips to help you find a mature buck during late season hunting.

  1. Look for secluded and low-pressure hunting areas. Look for areas that have not been disturbed since mid-season that have feeding areas nearby. Thickets that are near feeding areas are prime areas to find mature bucks.thicket buck
  2. Hunt during colder weather. With cold fronts and sustained cold weather, deer consume more energy and need to feed more often. Mornings are the best time to hunt during cold weather, so get up and be there when they move.deer feeding
  3. Pay attention to the moon. Deer become more nocturnal during the winter months because they rest during the day preserving energy when it is warmer while feeding at night when it is colder. However, during nights with heavy cloud cover or when the moon is dark, deer will be active in the early mornings. During nights will full-moon, deer will move some during the middle of the day, especially when it is cold outside.full moon
  4. Hunt outside your normal stands or areas where you and other hunters would normally setup at. Deer pattern people as much as we do them. Get away from these areas and find un-hunted travel corridors during late season hunts.

Late season is hard hunting but use these tips and your chances will increase of seeing a mature buck. Good luck on your next hunt!

Midday Hunting Pays Off

26 Nov

               We have heard the expression “You must put in the time”. This is also true of deer hunting. I would like to talk about the time of the day that many hunters do not take advantage of and are missing out on a great opportunity to see more deer. I refer to it as midday hunting, meaning from around 10 am to 1 pm in the afternoon. During this time, deer move because of human movement, feeding, browsing for does and for a midday stroll.

                Many hunters leave their stand during the morning, usually around the same time. I have been able to pattern a few hunters in my past and use their movement to my advantage. When hunters start moving, they can jump deer and make them move. I have benefitted on several occasions on deer that were jumped by other hunters leaving their morning stands. I am sure you have wondered when you heard that shot, as you were walking out of the woods, if you jumped that deer that someone else got.

                Deer will feed during midday, particularly during pressured hunting days. I like to stay close to dense areas like thickets that have mast for deer to feed on while near cover. If you are seeing does in these areas, stay around during midday while the rut is on, a buck may come through looking for willing does.

                Bucks cruise during midday hours looking for does. This is an excellent time to be in the woods, I really enjoy this time during the rut because you never know when one may come walking by. Be ready, they move through quickly.

                Deer movement is best during early morning and late evening but another time period to consider on your next hunt should be during midday. I try to stay on the stand until 1 pm during early season hunts but stay the entire day during the pre-rut and rut. As I started noticing times that I tagged deer, midday hunting has been a successful time for me and I hope it will be for you as well. Try hunting during midday for a few hunts and it may pay off for you. Good luck on your next hunt!

Does Your Camouflage Get Noticed?

18 Nov

We all buy camouflage to be concealed and un-noticed in the woods. Hunters have their favorite patterns/brands to choose from like Mossy Oak and Realtree. This is not about how to use camouflage for the best concealment in the type of area you are hunting. This post is about how we get noticed outside of the woods when we display camouflage.

                I was out Friday night watching High School football playoffs and decided to get some snacks from the concession stand. I was in line deciding what to get from the concession stand when I heard “nice hat” behind me. I was wearing an Under Armour camo hat since I like the way it feels and looks. After I turned and said “thanks”, I noticed he was wearing a camouflage jacket. He started asking if I deer hunted and if I had any luck. We spoke the entire time while in line and even afterwards. He shared a story about one of his friends who had bagged a 14 point buck earlier in the week. We encouraged each other to continue hunting for the “big” one and wished each other good luck.

                During the hunting season, most hunters want to share their experiences and truly want each other to get that “monster buck”. I feel that deer hunting is more than just about the trophy; it is the experiences we have with others that make this a great sport. I encourage anyone who enjoys hunting to wear their camouflage and not be afraid to share experiences while encouraging each other on a successful hunt. My encounter at the game was unexpected and made me feel good about being a hunter and sharing the love of the sport. Good luck on your next hunt!

Sister’s First Deer! (Awesome Buck)

2 Nov Bernadine's Buck

            When Bernadine, my sister, decided to get into the sport of deer hunting, she was waiting for rifle season to start her season. Like any other hunter, I gave her many reasons to hunt during muzzleloader season. I pointed out that you are in the woods more days which will increase your chance of seeing deer. Buck activity increases during November along with hunters who will increase deer movement. I demonstrated that inline muzzleloaders were easy to load and very accurate. She was convinced and purchased a muzzleloader.

            Muzzleloader season came around and she was off with her boyfriend (Joe) and his son (Steven) early that morning. No luck during the morning hunts which sent them out for lunch. Back into the woods after lunch, she was settled in behind a log with the sun beating down. She was tired from getting up early that morning and dozed off. When she woke, a buck was 30 yards from her walking away. She lifted her rifle and placed the scope on him as he was walking away, hoping he would turn and give her a shot. It must have been her day; he turned around and walked back to her stopping 20 yards away, facing her. The buck turned and gave her a broadside shot. She pulled the trigger and it took only 10 yards for him to fall.

            During that evening hunt, Bernadine had shot her first Buck which turned out to be an eleven pointer. Steven had tagged an eight point Buck that day. Bernadine remembers when Joe checked out her Buck he made a comment she still remembers. Joe said “Steven you are going back to school and Bernadine you are going back to work” which made her day and a memory about her first deer.

            Muzzleloader season is a great time to be in the woods and who knows what will walk in front of you. If this is your first season, you may have the opportunity to see a monster buck…be ready! Get out in the woods, be safe and good luck!

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