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Change in strategy...

formerbowhunter1023

Now Posts as Jesse..
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2
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SE Ohio
#1
Well fellas, I’m kind of at a crossroad with my season and it is still early! With my best personal hunting being 30 minutes from our farm, I was heavily relying on access to a small farm next to my core farm to aid in the whole “outfitting” thing. I found out this week that most likely this farm will be leased for $1,800 a year until 2015 by a dude from Virginia. Knowing this, I now have to place more focus on hunting our farm despite all the new issues. (ATV race tracks, timbering, trespassing, etc.) After some serious deliberation, I decided to take a unique approach to hunting out there this year…

I was told shortly after we acquired the farm that it takes roughly five years to learn how to hunt a property. We’ll have owned this place for five years in two weeks and I would say that I don’t have a clue how to hunt this farm. I think I do, yet nothing has seemed to work. I do believe that most activity occurs at night strictly because we do not hold a ton of deer. I also believe a great rut would make great hunting for us. Over the years, I’ve developed a lengthy list of stand locations that we pre-hung, then went unhunted for one reason or another before being pulled. In addition to those stands, I have a list of “part of me says that would make a good stand” sites that I have never hung. Several of these stands are based on travel, with food and bedding being limited. The biggest challenge has been determining where these deer prefer to cross a 70 yard wide, 800 yard long bottom. It is still a mystery…

On Sunday, I’ll be removing one set from my core farm and moving it to the farm. I have two new sets that I like, so they will stay in place. I’ll be hanging three new sets this weekend and I’ll be hanging all of them in one of those “part of me says that would make a good stand” locations. I’m going to spend the entire season placing myself (mobile) and my guests (pre-hung sets) in unproven locations simply because I am yet to have more than one or two proven locations. I’m going to hunt terrain all season long and see what I learn about this farm.

Part of me is less than thrilled about this, but the other part of me is excited to see what I’ll learn from this experience. I’m planning to hunt some seriously offbeat locations simply because the sign has been there in the past, but common sense drives me to hang elsewhere. Time to mix it up...
 

DJK Frank 16

Senior Member
Supporting Member
9,225
352
110
Hardin County
#4
I think this is going to be a great rut year for us, with the crops coming off earlier and it looks as if we may have some colder weather, so that wil be a positive for you.

I had hunted the same farm for 8 years out of the same three stands and never really had a ton of great opportunity at deer, once I started mixing things up, I was amazed at the amount of deer I saw "sneaking" out the back of the section or coming from a fencerow across the road, so I think you will be pleasantly suprised with your results, I know I was.

I have found that the bigger deer normally don't travel the "well-beaten" most obvious paths, so with your mobile setup and hanging sets in different areas, it's hard to tell what you will have walk by that you didn't even know was there!

Best of luck Jesse, looking forward to your results!
 

formerbowhunter1023

Now Posts as Jesse..
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2
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SE Ohio
#7
Rope me one to a tree, preferably that 150's. lol

Is that deer still around?? You have some decent data on him from last year. Are you gonna try where Joel saw him???
Not sure if he is around or not. As far as I know, he survived. But they select cut the property he was hanging out on. The place I had Joel is still a quality set despite the logging. I've heard rumor of another Booner. (Seems to be the case every year.) I was told it was an upper 160 10-point, so it could be the buck from last year. All I know, is that farm is capable of producing 180+ deer, so you never know what can happen. Might as well hunt it...
 

jagermeister

Dignitary Member
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16,060
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Ohio
#8
I don't know for sure whether or not your strategy will work, but I don't think changing your approach will hurt anything that's for sure. The idea of "figuring out" a property in 5 years is all relative IMO. Certain properties will take longer than others... depending on landscape, treestand selection, number of hours in the woods, trailcam usage, and just plain luck. I've been seriously hunting the same farm in Carroll County for three years now, and I still don't have it 100% figured out. I'd say I'm close to 75 or 80%, though. My advantage is I have a few spots that allow me to observe deer movement from a long ways away, from low impact locations. I also keep an extensive journal, in which I map out the movement of each and every deer I see while on stand. I'd say if you stay true to your planned strategy this year, you'll improve your knowledge of this property significantly. Treat the entire season as a reconnaissance mission and you can't go wrong.
 

rgecko23

*Supporting Member*
7,466
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Massillon, Ohio
#9
thas sucks your losing hunting area to a lease..I never like to hear that. But you do have the farms to hunt so you have the property. I would say getting into an area that you never hunted before off of the beaten path isnt a bad idea, it may jsut work out for you. Especially if the deer that property produces start to show themselves.
 

hickslawns

Dignitary Member
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34,425
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NW Ohio
#13
Sorry to hear about this Jesse. Got to be frustrating. Just when you think you have gotten things dialed in, here comes a monkey wrench into the plans. Bummer.
 

Kaiser878

Senior Member
2,633
1
75
ohio
#14
Having never been down to your deer farms the only piece of advice I can give you is this. THe only consistent thing with deer is inconsistency. THey always seem to be 1 step ahead. WHen nothing else works the best time to hunt is the rut. You will find deer on their feet in places they otherwise wouldnt be seen in. THe best thing you can do is set a stand relatively close to a bedding area and hunt it during the rut!

ALso I have noticed my success on large bucks decrease when I start hunting more than 1 or 2 pieces of property. In order to figure out a farm or a piece of land in a timely fasion is to hunt that farm from the fringes and figure out where the deer are moving and make your move at the most opportune time. THe only problem is figuring out when that opportune time is.
 

formerbowhunter1023

Now Posts as Jesse..
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2
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SE Ohio
#15
I hung two pretty sweet set-ups last night, so I'll be interested to see how they turn out. One stand is more of an observation stand as you can cover most of the bottom from the perch. The other is more of a food source/hidden movement stand. I'll be interested to see how many deer move past this stand as it could show me that I was close all these years, just not close enough.