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Author Topic: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal  (Read 1809 times)

Offline MI_Bowhunter

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #15 on: November 28, 2016, 07:22:25 PM »
I headed back up the my cabin on Friday after Thanksgiving.  We got an early start, leaving my house about 0700 and arriving at the cabin around 1400.  After getting everything opened up we were in the woods a around 1530.  We, my buddy and myself, were the only people in camp and there was still a little show on the ground from the previous weekends snow storm.

On the way out we pulled the cards from the trial cams.  Hundreds of pics of does at night and one series of pics of a lone buck taken during the day.  This was taken the day before we arrived.



This gave us some motivation as he might still be cruising the area.

We hunted Friday night, Saturday morning and afternoon, breaking only long enough to eat. and I hunted Sunday morning.  We never saw a hair of a deer the entire time we were there.   They have gone strictly nocturnal except for the random buck that we caught on cam, not another single pic captured a deer during the daylight hours.  I did see a grouse which I tried to video with my phone. 

https://youtu.be/zGuyjO51Wfw, check it in a while, I uploaded the raw video and initiated a few edits online, the video should be trimmed and rotated correctly when completed.

I hunted alone on Sunday as my buddy wasn't feeling well and stayed back at the cabin.   On the way out, between the truck and the blind I heard some very unsettling sounds, howls, etc in the woods.  Either wolf or coyote, and close by .  I'm not sure which but most definitely canine.   Kind of creepy when you know you are the only man around for miles and are only carrying a single shot muzzleloader.  Coyotes never really bothered me that much but I have seen wolf sign up there and that makes me a little more uneasy.  Most likely they would never mess with a human but I have heard rumors of encounters across the up that never made the news, and that makes me a little freaked out by them.

I continued to hear some sounds after getting to the blind but it died out quick and I never heard another sound.  I sat for several hours, decided it was time to head out and made my way back to the truck.  I grabbed my heater and trail cam on the way out as I expect this will be my last hunt at the cabin this year.    I also swung by my buddies blind and picked up his gear and camera.

Aside from creepy noises the trip was pretty uneventful.   I winterized the cabin and most likely will not be back up this year, although the weather is supposed to be mild for a few more weeks.  If I do not make it back up I will continue to hunt at my spot locally.

Some more shots from my blind:











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Offline yari

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #16 on: November 28, 2016, 09:16:13 PM »
it's always good to get away. the last trip of the year is always kinda sad
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Offline Viking1204

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2016, 02:22:26 PM »
Good hunting stories and congrats on the Buck, always interesting how you guys up North are finishing your season up while those of us down South are just getting started!
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Offline MichiganLouie

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2016, 02:50:50 PM »
Good hunting stories and congrats on the Buck, always interesting how you guys up North are finishing your season up while those of us down South are just getting started!

Viking, that is just the regular firearm season.  We still have the muzzleloader season, from Dec 2 to Dec 18, in my area (I live farther south than MiB), then the late doe season, from Dec 19 to Jan 1.  One year, I did get a doe on January 1. 
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Offline Viking1204

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2016, 03:45:37 PM »
Cool, where I hunt in SW Alabama the season opens for Bow around mid October and then Rifle season opens around the weekend of November 20th and both season run through Feb. 10th. The Southern Rut has been one tough cookie to crack but I think I'm getting close. I think it is affected by the weather and timing of the January full moon. The rut normally peaks with the Jan. full moon or at least I think. This year I'm going to hunt Jan. 6th through 16th with the Full moon falling on Jan. 12th. We'll see what happens!
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Offline MI_Bowhunter

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #20 on: December 05, 2016, 08:35:32 PM »
I only made it out Sunday morning this weekend.  I hunted the same stand at my buddies I had used to shoot the buck with the crossbow but this time I was using the Muzzleloader.  It was a pretty quiet morning.  There not a lot moving right now.  Nov 15-30 was our regular firearm season so everything is pretty shell shocked and or nocturnal.

Around 9:30 I heard a commotion behind me and could see 5 does bounding through thew muck field.  They milled around behind me for a short while then disappeared.   I am not sure where they went, they must have moved out directly behind me as I never saw them move out to my left or to my right.

That was all I saw.  I sat for another hour and a half hoping they might wander past me but they never looped back.

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Offline yari

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #21 on: December 05, 2016, 08:53:21 PM »
you did better than I did. I saw nothing. keep after it
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Offline MI_Bowhunter

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2016, 06:39:54 PM »
Made it out las night.  Temps were on the mid 20's when I headed out.   It felt kind of like a heat wave compared to the single digits we have been having.   It was snowing lightly with a slight wind.    With close to the foot of snow on the ground it was very quiet in the woods.

I got out a little late, again, with only an hours and a half of daylight.   it was a pretty quiet night.  About an hour in I saw a group of 7 to 8 does working their way accross the field next to me.    Hard to count as they were all together and my view was partially obstructed.   I did not see any antlers.     Once across the field I'm not sure which way they went, but they never came close enough to me for a shot.

I intended to make it back out today but decided to help Donna finish up the bulk of our Christmas shopping and visit my parents.    Today was the last day of our muzzleloading season.   From now through Jan 1 I can use a gun if I want to partake in the late antlerless season or I can use my bow/crossbow if I want a shot at a buck (4 or more points on one side) or a doe.  I'll probably switch back and forth depending on which blind I hunt, the weather and my mood that particular day.   LOL





the deer crossed out in the middle of this swampy muck field.
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Offline yari

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2016, 07:19:47 PM »
keep after them. at least you still have daytime movement. good luck
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Offline MI_Bowhunter

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #24 on: January 02, 2017, 09:08:03 AM »
I have had the entire week between Christmas and New Years off but due to family in from out of town I did not get out as much as I would have liked.   I made it out for a few hours on the 30th and saw several deer but non were close enough to get a shot at.

I made it back out on the the 1st, the last day of our deer season here in MI.   I was hunting with my new CVA Optima trying to fill my doe tag.   Our late antlerless season ran until Jan 1 and allows gun or bow.  I had bought the Optima during a New Years sale last year and this is the first season I have hunted with it and the first deer I have shot with it.

Rather than walk the edge of the field to get to my blind as I normally do,  I elected to walk the woods, the property I traverse to get to my blind does not allow hunting in Sunday (property owners rule) so I knew no one else would be out there.   He does not care if I use his property to get to my blind as long as I do not "hunt" on his land.  I am grateful to be able to access my blind from the backside without having to cross the entire field so I happily comply.

It was a beautiful day, sun shining and close to 40 degrees.





I had not been in the blind for 30 minutes when I notices some specs on the other side of the field.



Took this shot through my Vortex binoc's.   They were out about 360 yards.  I watched them for quite a while and even give them a couple bleats from the can call I carry with me.  They either did not hear it or just were too occupied with eating to care.  It had no effect on them.

About a half hour later I thought I heard some crunching behind me.   I looked out the corner of my window but could not see anything so I thought it may have been a squirrel.    About 10 minutes later I see two does come from my left and work their way out in front of me.  I watched them for a while and even snapped a picture.



Neither were a huge deer but the deer on the right stood several inches taller than the one on the left.  I watched them for a long time.  I kept hoping more deer would come out.   I checked my watch, realized that I only had about an hour left in the season so decided to take the larger of the two.  In the excitement I failed to get the muzzle fully outside the window....those muzzleloaders are quite loud.

She ran a big arc across the field and went down on the other side.  I texted my buddie who said he would meet me at my truck and then I packed up and worked my way back out.  She fell about 100 yards from the access drive the farmer uses to access the field so we were able to drive right out to her and pick her up. She was not a big deer, even a little smaller than I thought, but she will be good eating.

I hung her in the garage last night and already have her skinned and quartered this morning.

It has been a great season.  I might not have made it out as much as I would have liked but I have seen a lot of deer including some of the biggest bucks I have ever seen in the woods.  I was lucky enough to be able to tag two deer in one season, a personal first for me if you do not include the one I hit with my truck, and I made some great memories.   My 2016 seasons are done, bring on 2017!!
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Offline Madgomer

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #25 on: January 02, 2017, 09:30:35 AM »
Congratulations, way to stick with it, that's a great way to wrap up the season!
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Offline yari

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #26 on: January 02, 2017, 09:36:12 AM »
that's what I call waiting until the last minute. congrats
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Offline Foss1lHunter

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #27 on: January 02, 2017, 10:37:22 AM »

Woooo-hoooooo!  Great season Mike!  I'm not sure if I'll match last years season of 4 deer in OK and 3 in AR, but I still have 14 days left here in Ky.  I have not seen a buck during daylight hours, but I'm crossing all fingers and toes.             %^$^
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Offline MichiganLouie

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Re: MI_Bowhunters 2016 Hunting Journal
« Reply #28 on: January 02, 2017, 04:20:23 PM »
Congrats on the late doe, Mike.  Try baiting next year on the late doe season.  It worked for me this year, although it is relatively easy for me to put the corn out and get into my hunting area.  Still, I had to wait quite a while before an opportunity to shoot presented itself.
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