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Texas Hog Hunt

badger

*Supporting Member*
#1
I'm sure some of you have read my threads on this, but I thought there might be some that haven't.

I have a deep passion for the south Texas brush country and have spent a lot of time down there chasing critters with my bow.

Here's a recap of my last hunt down there. I hope it sparks a flame in some of you to get out and hunt something you don't have in your back yard.

The text is outdated so beer with me. (yes, beer with me!)

Dale

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Well I'll start off that I have missed this Texas brush country something feirce! This may sound twisted but it was great to get my first cactus thorn in five years jabbed in my back, hand, thigh, etc. It will be weeks before I have them all yanked out. It's weird how a guy can relate thorns and sunburn to a good time. Hunting different terrain and climate really adds to the whole experience.

We started out our hunt on Sunday evening to light variable swirling winds. It made it tough to set up on the hogs. I had a large rank boar to deal with the first night. He stayed just out of my shooting range all evening. There were times he would be a few yards from offering me an oppertunity and then the wind would swirl or he would just get behind me in the bush and woof and breathe hard. This went on untill 4 am when I gave up. I had been battling gnats and skeeters the whole time and decided it was time for camp.

I met Jeff at camp and he had a very similar hunt. Food, a few cold beers and it was time for some shuteye. After four hours of quick sleep we were back up and at it. We seperated and checked all the places we had fed to find quite a bit of hog sign and lots of javelina sign. I was leaving a blind I cut in when Jeff called to tell me he had arrowed the first javie of the hunt. A short drive over on the quad and we were ready to blood trail. As jeff was explaining the shot he tells me there is a javie coming out of the cactus behind me. I get my bow off the quad and nock an arrow while he tells me to hurry up. The lone pig has somehow not seen us and is closing in fast. At fifteen yards he comes back to reality and sees the spot hes walked into. Facing us i think he will blow out, instead he turns broadside and stops. In an instant my arrow has found his shoulder and he's plowing dirt with his snout. We tracked Jeffs first and then mine. Neither pig went over sixty yards! We headed back to camp to skin and relax for the evening hunt.

Jeff with his.



Me and mine.





Doubled down in 14 minutes!



Being that we arrived on the ranch on Saturday afternoon, we allready had spots that had been fed for three days at this point. I decided on my way to my hog blind to circle around a sendaro that was being hammered by javies. I shut the quad down in time to see a group of javies up wind from me. I made a stalk as they fed away. It seemed like they went a mile before I could catch up to them. I was within thirty yards when a single boar joined the back of the group. He had a bad limp and I decided he needed taken out. I continued following them for awhile untill I had closed within eighteen yards. The boar turned and was quartering hard away from me when I released. I hit him at the back of the ribs angling towards the opposite shoulder. It was far back but a good angle. Bad thing was he went way to far and the entry and exit plugged fast. I found minnimum blood and no pig. By the way this is hunting and never a given.

Are they on me?



I arrived at my blind to find the wind had once again shifted. I decided to stalk the sendaros once the moon was out instead of the blind. During the next few hours I had close calls with a group of sows and young that were at least twenty strong. The young were all forty pounders and up. I would have loved to wacked a few of them but it never came together. After being busted, again, I decided to head back to the quad and rethink my plans for the night. As I turn to walk away two young feral boars appear out of thin air on the sandy road behind me. In a flash they see me and vanish. I decide to shed some layers and wait to see if they will come back out. I layed my bow down and and took off my wool sweater (it was about 45 that night) and carried it across the road so it would be upwind of where I thought the hogs would come back out. I look up in time to see one of them making his way down the road away from me. Now I need to get to my bow and he's only thirty or so yards away. How stupid of me to lay my bow down. Luckily I made it to my bow without being busted just as the other boar starts his way out of the bush. He stops broadside at 17 yards long enough for me to drill him through the boiler room! I heard him go down right inside the bush. After tracking him I decided to call it quits for the night. I had a heck of a time getting him loaded by myself. He ended up being in the 160 range. Jeff experienced the same wind and had no shots.



This ones a little blurry, but the only one I have of me and him.



The next evening I had bad wind again and cut my hunt short to get some sleep. We were starting to average three or four hours a night. Jeff on the other hand waited out this young boar! In the mix of all this I ran into a few snakes. I'll get pics of them up as well.

 

badger

*Supporting Member*
#2
On our hog hunts we spend alot of time feeding sendaros. Most of them we will never hunt, but you allways have an ace up your sleave just in case. Opening the corner of a bag of corn and throttling along in third gear is a great time to do some scouting and maybe loose an arrow at something along the way.

Sometimes it has scales and requires a whomping on the head with a stick or rock.

We did run into a few five footers while feding this year.

My first encounter this year was within 7 or 8 feet from one that gave me a very loud warning. Thank God for those rattles! I could have very easily stepped on him as I was to worried about pigs than my own safety. I guess you could call this my own public safety warning to watch what the heck you are doing. Don't blunder around snake country!

Alive



Not so alive








Another thing I like to do is get a few rabbits for the pot. I shot a handfull and had to toss half of them as they had warbles. Jeff shot a few to check me and his had warbles too. We tossed the rabbits to avoid some bad health problems.

 

badger

*Supporting Member*
#3
The next few nights we battled more swirling winds and hog that wouldn't tolerate our filthy human scent, so I'll just fast forward to Friday the last day of the hunt.

I spent some of the day pulling pods and gathering gear. I also went and set up a small ground hide for the evenings hunt. I had a strong south east wind that would blow straight into my face. As long as the hogs didn't come in down wind I would be all right. Wich I had a good shot of them following this creek system to my spot. The creek ran out of water right in front of my blind and thats where I had a hole I had been bating with hog wild and corn all week. I was using the hog wild as a cover scent more than an attractant. It was getting hammered by a group of sows and young judging by there tracks. I was hoping to get a few of their heads down the hole and give me an oppertunity to draw and shoot, maybe even getting multiple shots. One thing that was odd was Thursday night I had a lone boar visit the bait for the first time.



Tracks in the creek leading to the bait hole.



Bait hole, hard to tell by the pic but it is about two feet deep. This pic was taken after my hunt was over that night.



The wind stayed in the right direction for us all day. finally we were catching a break from the hog gods! Back at camp I tried to take a nap but it was next to impossible as I'll I could think about was that it would be our last night in Texas. I headed out about 1.5 hrs before dark and parked the quad down wind of a good javie spot. I was texting my son when I looked up to see a lone javie feeding away from me. I replaced my phone with my bow and the stalk was on! Didn't take long for me to get into range, all I needed now was for him to turn for the shot. As if on cue he turned broadside as I was drawing. I settled my sight on his shoulder and released, but this time my arrow flew right under him and bounced harmlessly down the rocky sendaro. He bolted and my chance at javie number two was gone, or was it. I looked down the road to see another group coming out of the bush. I hauled butt down there and as I was running out of time and needed to get to my hog blind. I ended up within 8 or 9 yards of the group but there were too many eyes and this time my javie hunt was over for this trip.

I made it to my hog blind just in time to find it without using a light. I sat down and nocked an arrow and and waited for the squeals. Hadn't been there long when three coon showed up and started eating the free corn I had dumped for the pigs. I waved my arm one time and the movement was enough to drive them away. My next visitor was a buck that had dropped his head gear. He came right down the creek as had the coon, just as I was hoping the hogs would. The buck stopped about 3 yards from the opening of the blind and stared at me. Wind was my best freind and he couldn't make me out. he fed for a few minutes before I spooked him away also. A short time later I can hear something moving down the creek. there was brush breaking and I figured it was a cow. Next thing I know, there's a large black hog standing right where the deer had stopped. He looked into the blind for a few minutes and then turned for the corn hole. He fed for awhile but never offering a shot. Then he turned towards me and starts walking right at me. I just knew he had seen me. He stared hard at me for what seemed like forever. Once again he decided there was no danger and went back to feeding. Within seconds he had his head partially down the hole. Before I knew what happened my arrow was buried tight behind the shoulder of a very large and very fast running hog! He was moving out but didn't make it far and I heard him crash. I had just killed my biggest hog ever! I knocked another arrow and was waiting for more hogs but I couldn't stand it, I had to see him and decided my 2010 was complete.

Here's a view from inside my hide and a view from outside.



If you look to the right you can see my seat. Those palmettos make great back ground for a blind!



Here's what every bow hunter likes to see after a shot. These pics are a bit graphic but it shows how fast and effecient a bow kill should be. This hog was expired within seconds of the shot.



Gotta love them big ole bad snuffer heads.



This guy was spraying blood everywheres and mowing down everything in his path.



Black Boar Down!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



The fun was just starting as I got a message from Jeff that he had three hogs down himself!

More on that shortly, I need to take a break from typing.
 

badger

*Supporting Member*
#4
After getting Jeff's messages I fired up the quad and met him at camp. He never received the ones I sent him, my phone service and the mobile radios weren't working. He was as surprised as I was that a big boar had hit that set up and came in with his gaurd down. We figure he must have been the hog that left the track on Thursday night. I'm betting he ran off the other group of pigs once he found this free meal. Didn't matter, all I cared about was getting him, and Jeffs hogs back to camp. Since I had allready found mine and was closest to camp, we decided to get him first. Finding him again was no problem, but getting him on the rack was turning into a bigger task than we expected. We backed my quad up to him and everytime we had him almost rolled on, the quad would roll forward. My old machine has no brakes, and I still have an electrical problem so my battery died on Thursday morning. I have a cover I have to take off and put back on to pull start and it's a real pain in the butt. So once we had mine started we didn't want to shut it down and couldn't put it in gear to keep from rolling. On about the seventh attempt we used Jeff's quad as a break in front of mine and finally got him loaded. Hard to see but this guy has real good cutters. I need to remember to take better pics of things like that.



Back to camp with him and time for Jeff's pigs!

I wish I had better memory of how each of Jeff's shots went, but I don't. It's alot easier to remember your own experiences than anothers. I'm not going to type a bunch on this and post false info. Maybe someday he can come over and fill in the blanks.

Instead I'll just post the pics and they can speak for themselves.
One thing I'll add is he dead eye with that recurve and I'm glad I'm not a pig!

First of three sows, this was a twin to another 80 pounder. We didn't get pics of the other one in the bush.



This gal went 150#



Then there was three!!!!!





LDP'S





Skinning.



Them big boars have wings!



This pretty much sums up our hunt other than a few random things I'll post later on.

Thank you all for following along on my much needed vacation.

Dale
 

Riverdude

The Happy Hunting Grounds Beyond
Supporting Member
10,256
763
115
Ashtabula, Ohio
#5
Hey Dale, thanks for starting this thread! Maybe someday I can get down to TX and do a hunt like that!

Always great to see your hog hunt photo's and read your stories. Thanks for sharing.
 

badger

*Supporting Member*
#10
Very nice. Something I'd like to do for sure!!

Was this a guided deal?? Tresspass fee or what??
No guides, but if you are a newbie they will show you the ropes and get you started in the right direction. I think they will provide a guide if you want one, but trust me you don't need one. It's a day lease deal on around 90,000 acres. You are given a pasture to your self that will vary from 2000 to 9000 acres, give or take. There's no high fence and all free range animals. Prices vary depending on what you are looking for, but average around $100 a day. We camp in tents so it is cheaper on us. There is lodging available if you wish to go that route.

There's plenty of hogs and the javelina population is at the tops in Texas. Keep the wind in your face and you can expect multiple bow shots in a day.
 

badger

*Supporting Member*
#12
You are welcome to hunt with the weapon of your choice during day light hours. I'm not sure about rifles at night, and ya definetly want to hunt at night for the hogs. Don't get me wrong, you can shoot some during the day but dark hours is where it's at.

We have just kept our group bow only through the years. By the way, if you did take a rifle, there's plenty of yotes to pop down there.