2020 Fall Hunting Season

I know it's early but I'm chomping at the bit. About to order a saddle hunting setup. Anyone here have any experience with it?

Headed to deer camp Labor day weekend to clear trails, set cameras, and scout the adjoining public land. Looking at either the first or second week of November for our annual hunting trip.

With football potentially not available or at least not like normal, I plan to hunt a ton more than usual. Fall can't come soon enough.

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Since I have not been using any PTO during the pandemic (luckily my job wasn't adversely affected, just wfh now which is honestly much better for me) I plan on using a good amount of it during the hunting season to checkout different WMAs and just spend more time in the woods in general. Hopefully it's a good year. I put in for a couple lottery/quota hunts and am waiting to find out about those. One is boat access only so maybe I'll be paddling my way to the island in my kayak. Could make for a good story.

I'll be at Primland resort during bow season and I'm considering doing a hunt there. If anybody has experience with hunts there, or really anything about that resort since I've never been there, I would appreciate it. Otherwise I am also going to be scouting out soon. Where I hunt usually get's overrun with dogs once modern firearms season comes in so bow and muzzleloader will be busy for me.

Did any of the dog laws get passed? I know they were talking about minimum amounts of land and a few other criteria but I didn't hear if it got passed. I don't want to start the debates again, just curious.

804

Not sure about the dogs. We don't have that style of hunting where I'm at in the mountains, thankfully.

Regarding Primland, my understanding, which may be wrong, is that you'd need a camo top hat and monocle to even enter the property. Since I don't have an uncle Moneybags, I'll probably never know. If I'm mistaken, apologies. Would love a report if you get to hunt. Good luck!

I can confirm after booking that trip that you do need a monocle and a rich uncle. I don't have either so I might not make it past the gate but I'll let you know how it goes. A $500 hunt with no trophy fee is not a bad price for a hunt, though, if it's properly managed land and there is a good opportunity for a deer.

804

Pay me the 500. Sit on my deck aNnd shoot a deer! I'll provide coffee and a hardy breakfast! We could do a blast and cast with fishing in the afternoon!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

Hell, Musky. Guarantee 10 pts or more, gut it out after the kill, add a decent brandy to the coffee and some nice whiskey after the fishing, and provide better than a leaky jonboat for the fishing and you might just get some takers. I used to get 400 (plus tips) for a float trip on the New, so 5 bills isn't out of line if the offering is good enough.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Fish, you are describing my "Premium Package"! I charge a grand for that.

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

No sweat. I have a cool European skull mounted 11 pointer on my wall, good enough for me to retire on, and I lived in a place for a good while that I could have shot them from the bedroom window. Turkeys roosted in my yard a few times in bad weather. When they all but eat out of your hand, the thrill is gone.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I have no experience with high dollah hunts, but I was in New Mexico one opening day of elk season and we happened to camp in a National Forest without knowing about the season opener. We hadn't been set up long when a guide, his client and a pack horse came riding up the trail headed for higher ground. About an hour later, we heard a commotion and the dog started barking. I stepped out of the camper in time to see the pack horse flying hellbent for leather back down the trail and heading for the barn. Little while later, here came the guide back with his client hoping to salvage the trip, I guess. They didn't come back while we were there and I bet that guide wanted to talk hard to his pack horse and his client saved his tip money. Both of the men looked highly pissed as they rode by.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Last I had heard no new laws for the dog hunting this year atleast. Being an election year as well makes it funky to see some of this stuff get brought up or even passed. I'd say bow hunting in the mountains is gonna be a fun thing to do I've always hunted east of the blue ridge so I always use a tree stand whenever I bow hunt.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Just got a Ruger Predator Go Wild 6.5 Creedmor I am itching to try out. Anybody got a 6.5 Predator willing to share ammo/reloading tips?

"A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it." - K

Gearing up for the season and am more excited than I usually am. We're looking at add some adjacent land to what we own and manage and that should give us some good cushion from our neighbors. Seeing lots of decent deer on cameras with a few nice ones that we've already labeled as shooters. Hope to get the last of the food plots done this weekend and next and then focus on trails, stands, and shooting lanes. Like you I should have more time than normal and with little football it should make for some additional incentive to get out.

On a side note, we have continued issues with poachers and tresspassers on the properties we own and manage (700 or so owned plus about 200 with sole management rights). To help get what we need done, ward off others asking permission, and to get buy in and help, we created a club that has 10-12 members that leases all this property and has sole hunting rights. We are going to do more vigorous posting in then next couple of weeks to get ahead of squirrel season, but I was wondering what some of you have done to fight this. It has almost turned me off of hunting in the past, as I work and can't watch over the property all the time. We thought about talking to the game warden and having them make a presence, as well as reaching out to our neighbors to share some good will and let them know what we're doing. There are a couple of individuals that have as few as 1 acre completely within our boundaries that always seem to kill a deer that just happens to walk through their parcel. It's frustrating to put in all the time, effort and money and have that constantly undermined, and we're starting to lose interest within our party. Wanted to see if anything has worked for you guys in the past.

I can help on the tresspassing issue. Do you have any experience with a compass and reading land surveys? If so it will be easy to mark it up. Personally we lease alot of land all over VA and we have alot of issues with people tresspassing on those who lease from us so we have gotten pretty aggressive on combatting it best we can besides posting up and going john wayne and shooting first before asking questions.
Simplest way to safeguard yourself from legal bullshit allowing for a poacher to weasel out of charges is to meet the requirements for posting porperty. I dont know the minimums anymore when I mark lines I simply go as much as I see and often and colorful. I use a shear knife, heavy duty purple/blue tree marking paint specifically for marking lines and it lasts 10 ish years if you shear well and do a good job. Basically we do a 2-4 inch band on the outside of the tree facing the property lines usually halfway around the tree to signify the side the lines on. On the corners we do three full bands around the tree closest to the corner stake and paint heavily but neatly to make it stand out. Then every say 100 feet a posted sign on the line to leave a name and number along with it as well for maximum effect and a posted plate/sign on every corner and within 50 feet of the corner on both sides to make it obvious.
We've had multiple cases get tossed in the past against poachers due to them finding a hole in our property line and showing we didnt meet the minimums in the past so now we go overboard to try and avoid that loop hole the law provides tresspassers. If you need help with learning how to read and find surveyor stakes and property lines I'd be happy to go more in depth with how to read it all. If you have a metal detector it really helps finding old stakes so you can remark and paint them as well and finding a stake makes it easier to get going in the right direction. Also if its older property and had an older surveyor mark lines look for surveyor chops. They should still be there if they were done properly 3 chops all horizontal or at a 45 degree angle about chest high are an easy way to know the lines.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Thanks for the tips. We have posted some of the easily accessible areas but we really need to work on posting all the lines. We do have some recent surveys and the corners are marked pretty well. I also have a KML file given to me by the surveyor that I uploaded into onX that I can follow on my phone gps. If you've not used this program it has become a lifesaver for me. But we do similar to you just need to do better - signs every so often with purple paint in between. Need to do better blazes for the paint but have been concerned about tree damage. I'm also buying some signs that note we use cellular cameras to mark the area and put up some dummy trail cams on the roads where they can see. I hope this helps to deter people.

A lot of our problem is our neighbors who show up and bring their kids and two friends to hunt 4 acres of property that we surround. We also have another neighbor that borders us that has about 50 acres but always brings people that aren't familiar with the area and they just go wherever they want. Our property shares a long border to some municipal and national forest property that is pretty inaccessible otherwise. We don't get many people coming over from the public side, but we get a lot of people coming through us to get to the public.

Long and short we're just going to have to post every border, every entrance, and every road and hold people accountable. It's exhausting but I guess it's the only way to go. Thanks for the tips!

You absolutely should involve the local game wardens. Extend an invitation to them for a hunt or two, even. Also, make sure that if you get them involved with a situation, you follow through all the way to court. Nothing makes them more apathetic than folks who use them to scare poachers but don't follow through with prosecution. I had a creek with monster rainbows in it that I fed and nurtured. I had a neverending poaching problem, but between my reputation, which was more rep than fact, and the help of the local game wardens, I fended off pretty much all of them before I had to call the law, but I was fully prepared and ready to do so. Posting is job 1, though, and doing it properly as all are advising is the key to starting to get a handle on it. I'd also go overboard on the posting around the parcels you mentioned, and getting the neighbors to understand your concerns is also a good way to meet them and get the word out about your seriousness. Good Luck!

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Good plan with false cameras and such I've been doing that for years once a camera dies it gets retired on a road somewhere to make things look monitored. Its a small measure but can work well.

My best advice is overpaint the lines and the key to a good long lasting paint job always will be a shearing knife or draw blade is much better and if your in a pinch a sharp machete will work just fine. If you're worried about the trees dont be they can take it just fine. Just shave down below the bark or to the base of the bark and then lather it thick with paint and it will be just fine, the paint will seal it up if you're using the proper paint its meant for healing and sealing the tree. It takes some practice but once you figure it out its easy to do, it takes some time but if you do it the right way it will last you a solid 10 years before you have to paint it all again and by then all you'll be doing is going back over where you painted originally and you wont have to do a serious reshave again making it much easier to go back and do again.

Personally I dont use apps for that stuff as I was raised and taught how to do it with a compass and a pull chain, I dont use the pull chain often unless its a small block but now I just use a consistent pacing method to measure my distances between pins but a good compass is really all you need. These Sunto compasses are all I use they arent cheap but theyre dead on and the peep hole sight makes it super easy to line up where to go and help make it easy to know your lines. https://www.amazon.com/Suunto-KB-14-Precision-Global-Compass/dp/B00R3EFB...

Definitely agree heavily with fish get to know your conservation police and dont be afraid to use them. If you can learn about them sometimes some are better than others and if you get to know that one might live locally you might ask for help keeping an eye on things they will be more than glad to help its their job. As he said be prepared to go all the way if you catch someone red handed on the property nothing makes a game warden more irritated than coming to assist you for you to just let the person walk for nothing but before you call them you need to have all your bases covered ie lines marked and you need to have the tresspasser either on camera and a solid face shot or vehicle shot or you need to have them in person on your land otherwise there isnt much they can do. You can also get the local police to come as well if you feel more comfortable with them and theyll get the game warden there once they arrive, I've done that in the past when the game warden was busy and would be a bit and they dont mind.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I never purchased a trail cam, but I had a vivid sign on the fence facing the bridge most poachers wanted to fish from. I had a big NO TRESPASSING sign, and a second sign warning that my property was protected by cameras. I was lying, but it somehow didn't bother me one iota. I definitely noticed a lessening of potential poachers at that point. My property extended on both sides of the road and the bridge over the creek, but instead of a right of way, the gravel road passed along an easement for "transportation purposes", and I paid taxes on the road bed, so those folks that claimed they were on VDOT, not me didn't have much of a leg to stand on. One old man refused to stop fishing, set his folding chair up and opened a beer before trying to catch my pets. He said he was on the road and could do as he pleased, and had fished that spot for many years. I wasn't getting anywhere with him, he claimed it was his right to fish for my hand fed pets. As a last resort before calling the law, I used his logic against him. I asked him, then, if it would be ok if I were to take my cane pole to his house and use it to reach over the fence and snag his chickens while I was standing on the road. "You'd be a chicken thief" he exclaimed. I just stared at him for a while, said I felt the same way, and the game warden was going to feel like that as well. As I headed back to the house to make the call, the old fellow packed up and left. To my knowledge, he never returned.
The property at the head of the creek was bought by a couple of local folks, one of whom was Hokie and Phillies ace Mike Williams. They managed it for big bucks, but had to constantly fight with one particular neighbor over the "my daddy and his daddy always hunted that land and I killed my first turkey sitting on an old chestnut stump on your land, etc." They had stands stolen, cameras stolen and destroyed, the whole nine yards. It took perseverance and several complaints to the game folks to finally put an end to the bulk of their problems.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

People suck. I've heard so many times "me and my dad hunted up here for years you can't tell me I can't come here" or "my family used to own this piece of land and it's a part of our family". My response is you've been breaking the law for years or if you wanted to keep it why did you sell it or why didn't you buy it when it came up for sell. These are usually the same people that have 10 no trespassing signs in front of their driveway. It drives me crazy and it's almost pushed me away from hunting several times.

I'll keep fighting the good fight and standing up for what is mine and for what I work for. My neighbors get the benefit of me keeping the roads up, making the right of way to their property look good, keeping out the drunks and vagrants, and improving the quality of habitat and game around them. If they can't see that for what it is then no explanation is possible. If they don't think they're breaking the law they can explain that to the judge. Thanks for all the advice.

18.2-134.1. Method of posting lands.
A. The owner or lessee of property described in 搂 18.2-134 may post property by (i) placing signs prohibiting hunting, fishing or trapping where they may reasonably be seen; or (ii) placing identifying paint marks on trees or posts at each road entrance and adjacent to public roadways and public waterways adjoining the property. Each paint mark shall be a vertical line of at least two inches in width and at least eight inches in length and the center of the mark shall be no less than three feet nor more than six feet from the ground or normal water surface. Such paint marks shall be readily visible to any person approaching the property.

B. The type and color of the paint to be used for posting shall be prescribed by the Department of Wildlife Resources.

https://dwr.virginia.gov/hunting/regulations/privateproperty/

Thanks for the information. Based on this, it looks like we need to post the sides of the road along any roadway that others have a right of way through. I think this would help, as they can pass the entrance set of signs but then claim they thought the property stopped at some unknown juncture.

We use purple paint as mentioned previously, and when we start posting in a conspicuous area we put posted signs above the paint to correlate what they are. Purple is easier to get than silver and it's easy to remember "purple means private."

I can't stand trespassers and poachers. They just give the sport a bad name and there's no need for it. I don't see how others enjoy the outdoors when they're looking over their shoulder all the time worried about being caught. The frustrating thing is, even when caught red handed there's not much recourse for the property owner. Ugh.

Aint it frustrating that someone trespassing on your land almost has more rights than you on your own land?

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Trail cams, Trail cams, Trail cams. We have caught multiple poachers on camera over the last few years this way. We put their pictures up on facebook and 2/4 times they were identified within a day or two. I also have friends who have been able to do the same. We have successfully had a trespasser charged once and a second time decided against having them charged because it was a teenager. They key to it is making sure you have lots of posted signs so there's no way they can cross the boundary without seeing one so they have no leg to stand on in court.

Ordered a new Summit Viper this year. It showed up at my door, package torn to shreds and also it was a Sumit Razor. After a long call with Amazon they gave me a 50% refund and had me keep it so that was nice. Also got a beater .308 this year after gouging my early 50s .257wby stock up last year.

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Got a viper a few years ago and I love that thing. Nice snag for a %50 refund theyre really well built and will last if you take care of them. Just dont skimp on the harness for a climber them things will get ya.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Yeah I have a nice muddy harness after hanging myself from a tree and comparing which was most comfortable to be stuck in, returned some of the others. The places I climb are pretty damn remote so really need to be able to hang awhile.

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I am a little worried, I bought 13 acres in Montgomery County earlier this year and have found a couple of blinds already. I know the people I bought the land from didn't give permission to anybody to hunt on it so I assuming it is just the neighbors who knew the land was vacant. Thanks for the guidelines on the hunting. I am going to need to put up a LOT of signs.

Call the game warden and then tear them down.

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

If they're on your property you have a few paths to take. If you know who put them there and it may have been a mistake or you want to maybe be more polite call and get them to come get them and avoid any issues but if you dont care then theres path number 2. Free treestands and blinds for you! I always go route 2 these days people know what theyre doing and if theyre arrogant enough to leave them behind where they were tresspassing then its all freebies and personally its how I've amassed a sizeable treestand and blind collection over the years. Confrontation with older people who will claim they been hunting this land for generations and shit like that can be a pain so sometimes its best to work out a deal where youll give them back but if you ever see them again then its free game.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I shoot a 50 cal muzzle loader with open sights. I measure the powder patch the ball or ram the maxii ball. I consider this a primitive weapon. Muzzle loaders today use preloaded powder sabots and scopes. I do not consider these primitive. What you say?

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

I tend to agree. Luckily Virginia doesn't call it a "primitive" season so I use whatever is legal and that which I shoot ethically. I really enjoy my modern inline muzzleloader. Much prefer that over general firearms season.

I totally agree muzzleloading technology has well surpassed the old art but as someone who is very serious on ethical hunting if theres a way I can make myself more efficient and help me be a better sport and help me make the kill quick and clean I will always take it.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I use pellets but I'm thinking about switching to loose powder. I think they are about the same, really, since most people pre-measure the powder anyways. Ultimately it's rare that you're going to get a second shot at a deer in either case so that's what I would consider primitive. The scope I would agree with you about.

804

More primitive then you're top of the line crossbows.

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yes that's really how it started out years ago, I myself used to hunt with a .58 cal civil war rifle musket when I was a teenager. Trying to shoot open sites nowadays though that deer would have to be standing at bayonet range. I use a scoped inline nowadays with barnes sabots, buckhorn 209 etc. The fact remains though with a muzzleloader that you get one chance 99% of the time so you gotta make it count.

Holy ammo shortage batman. Had a hell of a time finding any .308 picked up a few boxes of Hornady Superformance. Fall weather is occasionally peaking through in SC we even had a day that didn't hit 90. My camera got stolen already but that's unfortunately to be expected on public land. Ready to get out in the woods.

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Sorry about the camera. I set 3 this weekend, one on public. They are cheap cameras so I won't be too upset if it gets stolen (sort of expect it and planned for it with the camera I chose), but that is still annoying.

No joke about the ammo shortage. I can't even find CCI 209M shotgun primers for my muzzleloader. I shoot Blackhorn 209, and the regular muzzleloading 209 primers aren't recommended. Luckily, my Dad saved the day with his stockpile. This is the second time in the last decade I've been screwed or almost screwed by an ammo shortage. Now that I have a few extra nickels to rub together, when supplies are back to normal I plan to buy enough to last me through the next shortage. I won't stockpile, but I plan to have enough to get through the next time people feel the need to stockpile.

Yeah mine was a cheap one, don't care that its gone just the principal that irks me. We're all in the woods with the same objective why would you take my things.

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Oh I agree 100%. Nothing much I hate more than a thief. If I had the skill, I'd add an apparatus to my cameras like that guy on YouTube who caught porch package thieves with the glitter bomb and fart machine deal. Lol.

Just need one that sprays doe urine directly to their face.

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Just take off the spray nozzle on a can of buck bomb. Tape or glue on some sort of a pin to hold he plastic nozzle on the can and when they grab the camera get it rigged so it will go off like crazy. If they get spooked or leave it itll draw in a few bucks as well.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

The escape:

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

A lot of good ideas on here. I've also found that the screw in hangers do a much better job of hiding your cameras as a strap around the tree is what most people see at first. Another way to deter theft is to use a python cable as they're hard to get off even with bolt cutters. Unfortunately a padlock just means they'll take it home and use bolt cutters or a grinder to get it off. I have some friends that use bear boxes and screw them to the tree then lock the box, but that's a lot of setup. Personally I get them as high as I can (I like using a single ladder stick), use a screw in anchor, and try to have a camo camera.

One thing we do on our property is put out decoy cameras in strategic locations. Every year it seems one or two cameras bite the dust or get destroyed by a bear. I keep an old used up card in them and bad batteries so the perp thinks they're good. If I find it stolen, I put another one there then hide a functional camera to catch the thief if they're dumb enough for seconds. Dummy cameras also work well on private land to deter trespassers. Then there's always the cellular route, which can show your cameras location if stolen and should send a picture of the thief in action.

I hate thieves. And poachers. And trespassers. Just low class of people in my opinion.

Then there's always the cellular route, which can show your cameras location if stolen and should send a picture of the thief in action.

Now that you mention it anyone got any opinions on the P&Y clarifying that game killed with the help of cellular trail cameras is now considered a violation of fair chase for their records? I don't really care cause I will likely never come close to a P&Y buck but seems like a pretty logical clarification, kinda like taking technology out to a reasonable degree. Using them to catch trespassers is definitely a good thing.

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That's the biggest reason I can't bring myself to buy cameras to put out. I know it would vastly improve my chances of taking game but don't want to deal with how angry I'd be at the theft of it. Oh well the enjoyment for me is just being out there and if I see/shoot anything it's just an extra perk anyways.

I've found 2 ways to set them on public land.

1) buy the cheap $50 ones. They work enough and I don't really lose any sleep when they get stolen because I go into it with the mentality that I will likely not get the camera back at the end of the season.

2) set them out of arms reach angled down. I will use my climber to set a camera occasionally. These have yet to be stolen but are a real pain in the ass to check.

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This is my approach as well. Another advantage of being excessively tall, I can set a camera with one climbing stick and it's out of reach of anyone without steps/sticks, and that's assuming they even see it. That still won't stop the bears though.

Umm, so you're saying you're as tall as Bucky?

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Depending on which version of reality you wish to use, I'm about 2" taller than Bucky. And here comes the sarcastic comments from the peanut gallery.

Guy I know had a camera stolen three years in a row from about the same location. He finally decided to set the camera aimed at the trail, but then climbed another tree with his climbing gear and set a camera aimed at that camera. It was high enough and away from the other camera, he caught the guy, one of his neighbors, and solved his problem. He didn't prosecute for "family" reasons, but his neighbors, at least, stayed away from his land thereafter.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Damn, that conversation with evidence had to be awkward....

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

double post

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Distant cousins and in-laws'll get after ya.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Not sure this is relevant many places other than SC but the US Forest Service just fixed the regulations to ban shooting across or on public roads for national forest land. Which seems like a no brainer butttttt...

In SC Francis Marion National Forest allows dog drives for a set time period every year and the dog guys are losing their mind over this seemingly no brainer reg.

I have no issue running dogs for deer responsibly, I grew up doing it, I occasionally go back to VA and do it to this day. The problem is when its on public land and you get a bunch of hooligans running dogs that have no idea what they're doing, frequently leave lost dogs out there, put everyone in dangerous situations, etc. Ive run into abandon walkers weeks after 'dog season' its unreal that they allow this stuff to go on at all on public land here

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Anyone in here bird hunt? Looking to get a new upland vest as my old one has fallen apart in ways I'm not sure I can fix. Just reupped in the bird dog world and will be getting a griffon pup in a few months so dont mind making a slight investment knowing I'll be using it alot for the next 10-15 years.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I usually held Orvis and Filson in the stuck up stuff but looking at some of the other better vests they're actually one of the more reasonably priced for a strap upland vest. There are some nice modular ones but they end up being $300 once you get the shell bags added. All I really want is straps a game bag and two shell bags one for empties and one for shells and I'll be happy. Browning has one for $150 with two water bottle holders as well which aint bad. Only extra I like is having the dog collar remote pouch to go on the left strap so it isnt swinging from my neck I've accidentally hit the shock button a few times from it swinging and I dont like confusing the dog on accident at all. Brownings cheaper one aint bad but my dad got one and it lasted one week hunting before it came apart so kinda leary of that stuff. Only issue is Filson only the super large not the regular size so I'll keep waiting to see if they come back in stock. Wing works has one but its mind blowing $300 after shipping but theyre not available anymore.
https://www.browning.com/products/outdoor-clothing/upland-game/bird-n-li...
https://www.filson.com/hunting/apparel/mesh-game-bag.html#sku=20021279-f...
https://www.browning.com/products/outdoor-clothing/upland-game/bird-n-li...

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Cabela's made the best upland vest ever produced for a couple years then Bass Pro discontinued it like they did for all of their best sellers. If you can get your hand on one buy it. Its the Cabela's Instinct Upland Vest. I'm about 5 years through the one I got for product testing and there isn't a single pulled thread or splaying seam seems like its going to last forever.

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Ended up with the bird n lite 2.0 from browning, pheasants forever had a 25% off and free shipping sale to bring it to 112$ so I bit. It's got weight straps to take the weight off the hips as much with a full bag which as the youngest that's my job being the dog worker they tend to bring me most the birds so I tend to get loaded up quick. Plus you actually load the game pouch from the front and sides which is nice and has two water bottle carriers. Even got an extra radio collar controller pouch ready for when the puppy is here, excited to hit the field in PA later in November to get some ring necks

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Anyone know of a decently priced big archery target? i currently have walmart special block and it works fine, but I've missed it a couple of times and the arrows put holes in my wooden fence. I know a few bales of hay would work, but looking for something a little more permanent.

If you're shooting a modern bow the arrow will likely pass through the hay bales and wreck your fletchings. Any decent bag target should work, but it won't do anything for the misses. I live in coal country and most everyone builds a little covered target stand and backs it with mining belt. This will stop most arrows even if you have to cut them out at times. Suspend it from the top so it hangs loose and it will help avoid penetration. Without mining belt, you could sandwich several layers of polystyrene insulation, however that gets expensive fast.

thanks thats a great idea. i can grab a rubber horse mat from Tractor Supply for like $40 and hang it.

Either that or burlap sacks, or a burlap sheet is what I've used in the past but with the higher speed compounds they tended to still go through but it slowed them enough where they wouldnt go far at all.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Has anyone had good luck or experience aging deer from trail cam pics? We're trying to come up with a "hit list" for our lease and I'm struggling a bit. Our goal is to get deer to 4.5 years before harvesting so we can get the most antler potential. I can easily tell 1.5 and 2.5 year olds but after that it gets tough. I'd like to avoid harvesting some decent bucks that could grow into trophies in a few years. I've looked at a lot of charts and pics but most focus on peak rut timeframes. Any suggestions?

Went out for public land rifle opener in coastal SC last weekend. Yeah this terrain is a bit different. Went from VA hardwoods to Nebraska open land to what is best described as a swamp from hell. Gooseberry bush up over your head, impossible to see where you're going, having to climb 50+ feet just to see into came trails, at least 5" of water everywhere. Going to be a rough year and a lot of work...I'm confident wounding a deer would mean a lost deer in this shit.

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Took a pronghorn on Saturday. Wildfires in Colorado seemed to be affecting the game. We didn't see as many animals as normal. The pronghorn was smaller than my last, but still pretty decent. Took forever to get a shot; he was constantly surrounded by other ones. When we was by himself, all he presented were very destructive shots.

Where'd you get a pronghorn at? We just got back from Wyoming last week and our group all got pretty good pronghorns. Numbers appeared down from a few years ago but hunting was good. We were in the TBNG southeast of Wright in Area 27.

Near Livermore.

Shit pile in western nebraska, success rates seem to be up there even among archery hunters. Went up there two weeks ago for duck opener (had success in that front https://www.instagram.com/p/CF7mDX3jRs9/?igshid=1qn354mj1lytw ) just about every hillside had a decent group.

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I love hunting pronghorns. A lot of people downplay it thinking it's easy just because of the sheer number you see. They can be hard to stalk with a rifle I can't imagine bow hunting unless you're set up in a blind over water.

We missed out on a mulie tag this year and of course saw a monster the first afternoon. Jumped him out of a ditch at 75 yards. Looked like he was pushing 30". I'll try to post some pics.

I had a few buddies do a guided pronghorn hunt in Wyoming two weekends ago and they all three got one but at ranges of 255, 180 and 380 yards. What range do you typically take a shot at? I didn't go on the trip because I did not want to spend the kind of cabbage they did on it but am very interested in doing a DIY hunt out there in the near future.

Pronghorn can be taken at a lot of ranges. Just this year I've had a bud get one with a bow at 64yds and someone get one at 780 with a rifle. They're very skittish and love wide open prairie so depending on the terrain you may be able to get them inside 200 or you may have to reach out and poke one.

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Like stated above, it can vary a ton. If you work at it you should be able to get a shot within 250yds, which with practice is a chip shot with most modern calibers. Learn to use the terrain to your advantage and when you get the opportunity be ready to shoot. Early in the season they are much less skiddish - once the lead starts flying they'll take off running from a half mile away, particularly on public land. I've shot them anywhere from 75 to 600 plus, although the longer shots were more intentional and I could've gotten closer.

As for DIY hunting, pronghorns are made for that. Unless you are just strapped for time are are doing a combo hunt I don't know that I'd fork over the $$ to pay an outfitter. There's just too many goats on public land if you do your homework. You'll see a ton of animals and learning to stalk and judge them is half the fun. They're also diurnal, so you can deer hunt in the mornings and evenings and focus on antelope midday.

Both of my shots have been under 255. I practice out to 750 and have ballistics information to 1000. I don't think anyone in my family has taken a shot over 500 on one.
The key is knowing your range, knowing the rifle, and your limitations. Definitely use a range finder. It's difficult to estimate range in the west if you are accustomed to mountains in the east. The terrain is just different. I shot my first one at 254. I would have guessed it a lot shorter than that. Granted, at that range, and with the 6.5x55 I was using, I probably wouldn't have missed. But, I would have been low. Any farther out and I would have been way off.

In that same regard, familiarize yourself with the size of the animal. A few inches of drop doesn't hurt if your intended point of impact allows for it. But, they aren't huge. You only have so much room to work with.

Few pics from Wyoming.

Here's our camp setup. We added a 10' cook shack to our 16x23 wall tent last trip. The extra space is nice. Couldn't use the wood stove this trip due to fire warnings which sucked, but we made due.

Pic of me and my goat. Not the biggest but had a clean shot with my old man spotting. Couldn't pass it up.

Here's a horrible pic of a nice mulie we jumped the first evening. Of course no one had a tag. Nice to see a mature deer nonetheless.

I'll try to post some more pics when I get a chance. Great trip.

Hmmm, I think we will share some photos next time we are around one another.

Nice! I'd like to get one, one day.

I noticed all the calls, I think, on your lanyard. What are the calls for?

Also, what pack is that? I'm looking for something relatively lightweight, yet large enough to carry outer layers during my 3+ mile hikes to my spots during deer season in Virginia. Having a hard time deciding what I want.

Those are predator calls. If the hunting is tough or I get to a good spot I like to set up and try to call coyotes. It's a lot different predator hunting out there than it is back home, so I'll take the chance whenever I can get. It's worth the trip for me just to hunt coyotes.

My pack is an older Cabelas that I'm pretty sure they don't make anymore. It has a hydration pouch that I don't use anymore because I got tired of cleaning it out each season. Any decent pack should do for you depending on what and how much you're packing. I recommend getting one with an adjustable and padded waist strap if you're packing a long way. Really seems to help the lower back after some miles. I'd steer more towards a dedicated pack and not a cheap Walmart backpack.

Awesome buck antelope. We've been going to ND every year for the last 15 years and this year was the first we haven't gone unfortunately. Would love to see where people like to go for mulies and such been itching to go out west one year for mule deer or elk.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Nice. I took a trip to Wyoming and bagged my first goat this year. I'll try to add a pic later

5-C1-A2025-3292-449-C-B8-E7-5339-F4-C7-BC7-F
Finally got a picture uploaded

Did something I'd been wanting to try for a couple years now and it was a blast. Marsh Hen (clapper/king rail) hunting. Comparable to shooting pheasants but you're poling a boat around instead of walking. They're not the smartest birds and their not great at flying but they make you work for it. Shot 6 pretty quick once the wind picks up its hard to get the boat to them. Great work for my dog though who I haven't been able to get out duck hunting in quite some time

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Handsome dog you got there, buddy. Never shot at a rail, how are they on the table?

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I'll update you when I eat them, meat is nearly duck like in color with a similar smell and similar mixed reviews online as far as table fare. I like to be my own judge though, I usually find people that don't like most meats are just cooking it incorrectly.

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Yeah, I concur with that about cooking the meat right. I like duck and the flavor of goose, but how they're cooked is key to that enjoyment. I gave up on goose hunting because I really didn't grow fond of the meat, even after several different "guaranteed" recipes. And my daddy taught me sternly that if you kill it, you eat it. One reason I do like fishing more than hunting as I age is that I can usually let the fish go if it's not what I want to eat.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Honestly didn't know people still hunted em my dad grew up doing it poling a john boat on the eastern shore but it's been years since any of us did it. Always sounded like a blast just gotta be careful with the dogs so they don't find an oyster bar or anything to cut their feet up. They used to love eating them but like any saltwater fowl needs brining

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Scouting trip today. Public land. I've seen 5 bears and a 10 point so far. Looking forward to muzzleloader season.

So I have a question for the muzzleloader folks here. Got one that I let a friend borrow as I didnt hunt at all last year and figured it might as well get used but he just returned it since I hadnt needed it since but turns out he never emptied it out. . . . Gonna clear the blockage out tonight so I can hopefully clean it so it might work but has anyone had experience with this and is it still safe to shoot if its had corrosive powder in it for months at a time? The guns a nice optima and is super accurate so I'd hate to replace it but dont want a gun thats going to blow up in my face due to a weakened barrel.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Was it loaded and not shot, then left loaded? Or was it loaded, shot, reloaded, and left loaded without cleaning?

The answer to this question will make a huge difference in the answer to your initial question. Also, it's not going to blow up. Worst case is it will be more accurate as a club than a rifle.

It was loaded and never shot so the powder has been sitting against the breech plug for roughly 12 months now. Thats refreshing that it wont blow up I think at least I'll be getting a new breech plug since cleaning it completely might be impossible with the powder seated on it so long.

I've had one dud fire on me once on a nice buck that didnt spook and almost considered ramboing the ignorant swamp donkey with the gun as my club but it was a long way down.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I think you'd be surprised at how little corrosion you'll see on the parts in contact with the powder. In my experience, it has been residue from burnt powder combined with moisture in the air that causes the worst issues. In fact, my dad used to store his muzzleloader with the powder and bullet in it all year, assuming he never fired it. No issues.

I'd recommend tapping the bullet and powder out, cleaning it really well with a strong solvent, I use Hoppes No. 9 rather than a muzzleloading specific cleaner, and then run dry patches through it until they come out white and dry. Then check the barrel just in front of the breech for any pitting. And truthfully, it won't matter too much if you have a little corrosion there because where the powder sits when loaded is closer to the breech than where the bullet seats. As long as the barrel is free of pitting from the bullet at seat depth all the way to the muzzle, accuracy shouldn't be impacted significantly.

Good luck.

Good answer. I don't think it will be an issue.

#Let's Go - Hokies

Got a new Ten Point crossbow, $700 off at Bass Pro. Working to christen it. Only have seen one doe so far but have some huge bucks on trail cams. One has 14" G2. Hunting in bow only areas.

#Let's Go - Hokies

Well managed to get the coronavirus due to travel for work so I'll be spending my next 10 days in a treestand quarantining for work. Hopefully the deer start gettng frisky with the cold snap coming.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Hope it doesn't get bad for you.

#Let's Go - Hokies

Appreciate it man! Only reason I learned I had it was I lost my sense of smell and taste completely. It almost caused a mental breakdown when my wife made cookies and I had no clue until I saw them on the counter. My boss thought it was a rouse to get off to hunt till I showed him my test results so now he's pissed I'm gonna be off hunting all week and he can't stop me. It's a win for all I hunt and my wife will get some peace and quiet while I'm in my climber.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Good luck. I'm heading off today for a couple days in the woods.

#Let's Go - Hokies

Put down a little basket rack 6pt early this morning at the Amelia WMA. I've seen deer several times out there this year and this was the first I could take a crack at. Hope others are having luck as well.

I was fortunate to harvest a really good mountain 10 point on public land last Friday. I scored it at around 140 or so gross. Weighed 150 ish field dressed. We think it is a 4.5-5.5 year old. My best buck to date. It's going on the wall for sure.

I can't wait to get back out there. Good luck to all and be safe.

Feel free to put up pictures of the deer people are getting I always love seeing peoples successful hunts!

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I'll see if I can remember how to post pictures here lol.

Sorry to hear about your bad luck. Other hunters close by and acting like that really sucks.

Great looking deer. Congrats!!

WOW.

Amateur superstar and idiot extraordinaire.

That is a dandy, especially on public land.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

That's a really nice buck! Congratulations

I'm in the midst of the most frustrating season to date. Seems all the bucks have vanished or simply arent coming out in the daylight. Had multiple groups of does and hot does all over me but only one spike on the property I hunt it seems. Turns out a hunt club moved in next door and cleared the area next to us and now they seem to be all over the place and what used to be remote is now getting hunted constantly. Had hot does all over me saturday only for a couple guys to walk up on me smoking and talking on the radios to shut it all down and at this point I may be beginning to look elsewhere to hunt as I'm not the biggest fan of dog hunting since I prefer to still hunt.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Just a heads up. Don't go to giles county to hunt. My dad has barely seen anything 馃槀

My lips are moving but there's no sound
Someday somebody's gonna get run down

Ive seen more and bigger deer in my yard than where I hunt religiously might be time for a crossbow setup in the bathroom window.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Got me a nice 9pt yesterday. First time I've gotten a buck on Thanksgiving Day since...geeze, 2007? Been a while. Saw plenty of movement yesterday, but man they wouldn't come out into the little plot for nothing. Idk if I smell bad or what. But when he came out he was on a mission. I was just shy of yelling "HEY!" All I could do to even get him to slow down a little.

Got to the processor yesterday around midday and a guy I know was already there, I wish I could post it to here...absolute monster. Told my brother in law (had a 6 on the back of my truck) "man it aint too late to turn around." Again, I got a perfectly fine, mountable 9, and I felt about embarrassed when I saw that stud lol

Amateur superstar and idiot extraordinaire.

My son and I had a pretty good season, I killed 3, 1 each with bow, muzzleloader and rifle 2 of which were 8 pointers, my son killed 2 including a beautiful 9 pointer with 18 1/2 inside spread and tipping the scales at 185 pounds, which is really big for up in the highlands. Only bad thing was I irritated a pinched nerve in my neck, hadn't bothered me for a couple years but decided to flair up on my second day of vacation. Pain has subsided but my upper arm and shoulder will go numb, has a couple times just typing this. Saw a chiropractor for several months the first time but we'll see how it goes this time. I will say the pain in my neck (literally) didn't keep from going out which in turn has minimized the pain of watching the Hokies struggle so mightily.....so there's that

Congrats to you both above.

I've "decided" (was voluntold) to rebuild a fence today. I have no room in my freezer so the draw of a doe day is minimal. Still hurts to miss last day of rifle. But the four gobblers I saw yesterday better look out next week.

Good luck everyone the rest of the season.