The Woods Is Alive – 2019

The Winter thaw has started and the runoff is rushing down through the valleys awaking the woods out of its long slumber sleep. The tree buds have begun to swell, the Maple Trees are ready to give up their sap for syrup, Songbirds are coming back, Turkeys dancing, the Deer Herds are breaking up, and the Morel Mushrooms are wanting to pop, oh what a great life it is!

Water Rushing

With the heavy Winter Snow and the rain we just got the rivers are flowing over their banks and the runoff is in full swing. I have 5 different areas of water coming down from the upper fields, which is moving fast and in some areas very deep. The greatest concern is the erosion, but with the ground still frozen let’s hope it’s at a minimum.

Early Spring In The Outdoors

Early Spring kicks off the year with a bang for the outdoors activist, as there are several things to keep us active. We start with hunting for those Deer Antlers that were dropped this past season. Next we move into tapping our Maple Trees for Sap while hunting the mornings & evenings for that Tom Turkey. Shortly following are the Morel Mushrooms and oh so good. Then as the mushrooms come to an end it’s time to pull that fly rod down and start working the Bluegill Beds and if you’re looking for large fish then you can try pounding the Walleyes. Are you ready, Let’s get started….

When Do Whitetail Deer Shed Their Antlers – 2019

The most common period for Whitetail Deer shedding their antlers is February through March. However, factors such as; Geographical Region and Stress will affect this timing.

The Geographical Region bears the greatest influence on the Whitetail Deer, with the Northern Regions starting in January, Midwest in February, and the Southern Deer up to late March.

The Midwest Whitetail Deer

You will see a few bucks in January that have either dropped one side of their rack (antlers) or both, which would be your dominant bucks or those that have experienced a very stressful year.

If you are an Antler Hunter then you will want to focus on hunting for Deer sheds from the second week of February through March. Once the snow is off it will be more difficult to find the sheds and and by the time Turkey Hunting comes in or the Morel Mushroom season is in full swing the antlers may be well chewed by rodents. One way to do a mount of your Antlers.

Holding On To Those Antlers!

By February the Deer are already herded up so it’s a great time to see if the bucks have starting shedding their antlers. Here I have a small herd heading out to eat in the field (picked beans). The only buck in the group is a younger deer and has not given up his rack yet! I can see in the video he has one broken tine and one drop tine, so he will be a nice buck in two more years.

Archery’s Last Weekend – 2018

It’s Christmas break, Winter is here, the temperatures have gotten much colder, and the snow deeper, but don’t be so quick to put those bows away. Even though there are only a few days left in the 2018 Midwest Archery Season this time of the year can produce some of the best Archery Hunting.

Why Late Season Archery Has Its Advantages


The top three advantages of the late Archery Season are; Snow, Second Rut, and the Limited amount of Hunters in the woods.

Snow

Why is snow an advantage especially when the temperatures are much colder?  One advantage is that the snow allows you to spot the deer much easier and from a further distance, giving you plenty of time to be ready. Snow also provides an easier means for tracking and locating the travel corridors that are being used in the late season. Another advantage during this late season is that the deer start to herd, using fewer trails to and from feeding areas.

Second Rut

In Mid December the second rut comes in and bucks have again become very aggressive, looking for those few doe that did not get breed during the first rut. You will find the rattle and grunt call will work during this rut as well as in the first rut.

Limited Hunters

By the end of November most Archery Hunters have lost the energy to combat the cold and snow and may not even know there is a second rut, which is prime deer hunting. Instead they have hung the bow up for the year, giving way to the few who are still looking for that one big buck. In the video below I rattled in a 10pt and a day later an 8pt or 10pt, however the snow was blowing making it difficult to tell, so you make the call…

Video Of Hunting Last 3 Days!

2018 Gun Season – Whitetail Deer

It’s the regular gun season here in Minnesota and It’s not a typical season for this time of the year. The weather started out cool with green grass, but quickly turned cold with snow and rain mix. The number of shots I heard this year was down considerably, but we did manage to capture a few bucks on video for you.

Early Action “Before The Snow”

The Rut is now in full swing and the rattle is still getting attention as we have pulled in a few nice bucks. However, we are still looking for something at that 160 class or bigger.


Deer Silhouettes In The Snow

The snow has definitely made it easier to see the deer, but it’s cold and we struggle to sit for long periods of time in our stands. Even taking videos is difficult.

Late Gun Action

In this last few days of the remaining gun season we have seen fewer deer, most likely due to the hunting pressure, which has made them very cautious. However we did capture a few deer coming in and bedding down within 40 yards of us, which has it’s pros and cons. It’s great having deer bed by you as it brings fresh deer scent giving other deer a sense of security as they come in. The bad thing with this is that you do not want to move and risk the chance of chasing them off.

*As for me I’m looking forward to the Black-Powder Season, when the majority of hunters are out of the woods and things are starting to settled down a bit. Hopefully the weather will calm down and get back to normal temps by then.

Pre-Rut Started – Big Bucks On The Move

It’s late October and most of the Big Whitetail Bucks have been caught on the game trail cameras either early in the morning or late at night. However, with the temperatures dropping and the crops being harvested we are starting to see the larger bucks (pushed out of the corn) in the woods again during the daylight hours. We also have the Pre-Rut starting, which has the more mature bucks running and chasing.

Has The Pre-Rut Started?

The Pre-Rut is in its early stages, which begins around the last week of October through the first week or two of November. In this Video below it was not a mature doe that this buck was interested in, but a first year fawn.

Does Doe Scent Really Work?

During the Pre-rut and Rut you want to be dragging a scent rag to your stand, which I call a drag-line. Watch this young buck walk past my stand approximately 35 yards out, and as soon as he hits my scent trail he follows it right to my stand, up to the scent rag, and takes a sniff. So yes these scents work and you should be using them!

How To Use A Scent Drag-Line

Two ways to use a Scent Drag Line. Start by using a material that will soak up and hold the scent. Tie a string to this material, making it long enough to either tie to your boot or to drag it on the ground from you hand. Use the drag-line for the entire walk to your stand. Once you’re near your deer stand hang the scent rag in a tree approximately four feet off the ground, this will allow the wind to carry the scent and help mask your scent.

Hunting The Pre-Rut!

If there is a time to be in the woods hunting the Whitetail Buck it’s during the Pre-rut! From my experience this time of the year is better then the Rut itself. During the pre-rut there is no best hour of the day as the bucks will be looking and chasing doe all day long. So plan your day and enjoy the scenery as you are waiting for that right buck to walk by. Don’t forget to bring along your rattles and grunt as these work well in the Pre-rut.