Results 1 to 19 of 19
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    On the road/whitefish,mt
    Posts
    11

    Default New member, first time mulie hunter. Looking for advice

    Hi everybody. New member here, occasional lurker. I just sold my house in pittsburgh, pa and am traveling around in my trailer for the winter before we settle down in whitefish, mt in the spring.

    I am currently in Arizona hunting mule deer (unit 22). This my first time hunting for mule deer, or hunting out west (or even out of my old state of Pennsylvania for that matter). I was hoping some of you folks could give me some advice to help ease my learning curve here in the desert.

    How do you cover ground out here/how worried should I be about noise? I feel like every step I take is just earth shatteringly loud. I am trying to get away from the roads a bit to glass the long low ridges in the area I am hunting. But feel like I am blowing every deer out of the unit with my footsteps crunching in the desert gravel. Will deer out here tolerate a bit of noise? I never hunted in a stand in Pennsylvania, but would still hunt the timber, and feel like I could cover ground quickly and quietly while moving through unproductive areas, but I feel like I need to still hunt my way to every ridge or knob here, is this what most people do?


    Iím seeing a few doe every day, and a ton of fresh sign and feel like Iím starting to figure out the terrain the deer want to be in, but I have not seen a buck after 3 days. Iím thinking just my walking might be giving any wary bucks plenty of notice to my presence. The area seems pretty busy with a few hunters and tons of recreational ohv traffic.

  2. #2

    Default

    Get out to a good glassing spot before daylight and sit, sit, sit and glass, glass, glass! When you see what you're looking for you will hopefully get a shot within your comfort zone and that could be quite a distance out in that country because, as you've found out, doing a lot of walking isn't going to get you much other than boot wear. Do the same thing late in the day when bedded deer get up to feed.

  3. #3

    Default

    Ive hunted 22 a lot. Just get to a high spot before sunrise. Find a spot that you can glass north or west facing slopes and has water in the general vicinity. You dont have to physically see water, you can look for cows. No water, no cattle. Glass very carefully, then glass again. If the bucks aren't chasing, then they'll bed very early in the shady areas. Pick apart every bush and tree for signs. You're not looking for deer, you're looking for a piece of deer. A horn, and twitching ear, any little sign. Your butt should be more tired than your feet at the end of the day. The rut is on, so if you see does, stay put, and keep looking. There's deer all over 22
    Last edited by Bigjay73; 01-08-2018 at 10:34 PM.

  4. #4

    Default

    As far as noise, you should be glassing from a pretty good distance. 500-1500 yards. Normal walking won't bother them unless you're busting manzanita and scrub brush. What glass are you using? Ross outdoors rents swaro 15x56 binos. Best glass I ever found for glassing in Az. You will see deer 2 miles away with those. Good luck.
    Last edited by Bigjay73; 01-08-2018 at 11:13 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    eastern Washington
    Posts
    3,490

    Default

    Welcome to the forum! Never been in AZ, except the little corner I-15 crosses, so all I can do is request that you take some pics and come back here and share your hunt. Good luck.
    Being defeated is a temporary condition, giving up is what makes it permanent.

  6. #6

    Default

    Welcome aboard.
    You can't get lost if you don't care where you are going.

  7. #7

    Default

    welcome. I will be in Pittsburgh Saturday to watch the Pens!

  8. Default

    Sounds like fun. Glass lots from on high, and bring us some pictures.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    SW Michigan
    Posts
    1,308

    Default

    Welcome and good luck.

  10. #10

    Default

    Definitely echoing what others are saying. Especially if you're not that familiar with the area, the best idea is to get to a high place before day light and park it behind your binoculars. You'll be surprised, sometimes, by what you might see moving around at the fringes of the day.
    Act justly, love mercy, walk humbly.

    Micah 6:8

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    On the road/whitefish,mt
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Thanks for the insight guys.

    Had a frustrating start to the morning. My onX couldn’t find my location accurately and I overshot my glassing ridge by about 4 ridges. So I spent the first hour of daylight fumbling around the steep washes and ridges and second guessing my location. I ended up finding a better spot to glass and parked it there. Looked down and saw an empty pack of smokes and a bunch of butts, (So I cleaned up after the guy).

    Sat and glassed over a nice wide flat drainage with lots of thick cover. Ended up spotting a small forky moving in and watched him bed down. I ended up stalking him to 120 yards and he got up and moved and disappeared and got stuck in some manzinita brush. I backed out after a while and scouted more direct route to the road and left some waypoints on my onX and shot a bearing on my compass so I can hopefully get in quicker tomorrow and get settled before the sun comes up.

    I’m a bit undergunned in the optics dept, just using my Nikon prostaff 8x42s. I’ll look into renting some, it would be great to be able to pick apart that thick cover from a distance.

  12. Default

    Awesome! Keep us posted and get some better glass.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    South East Colorado
    Posts
    8,562

    Default

    Welcome!
    I'm an addict...archery, rifles, shotguns, handguns, muzzleloaders, hunting, fishing, fly fishing..and I don't want rehab

    CWEH...Colorado's Worst Elk Hunter 2007-2017 (but I'm still damned sexy) 10 years of consistency!!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Coloado Springs
    Posts
    2,156

    Default

    Welcome and best of luck on the hunt and the move.
    "Never apologize for being a Patriot!"

  15. #15

    Default

    weclome

  16. Default

    Best of luck! Can't wait to see what happens.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    On the road/whitefish,mt
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Well, finally saw some big bucks today. I’ve been so focused on trying to get away from the roads I’ve been waking right through a bunch of fresh sign to glass a tucked away tank no one has seemed to noticed. I’ve only seen cattle and coyote there so I decide to get above the area where I’ve been seeing all the sign and right at first light I saw 3 bedded doe, who got up and started feeding and were followed by a big tall 1x5 buck. They tucked into a little valley, then two forkies came in and stared sparring, then a nice 4x4 came in and they all went into the valley. I had eyes on the top and bottom entrance and nothing came out for two hours so I figured they were bedded. Got up to circle above and try and peak into the area and they were spooked from below and came up towards me and moved across to where I was first seated. They calmed down and then got spooked from below again. I stayed about 800 yards above them and followed as they moved across the low ridges to a new spot. I sat down and waited above the area i last saw them. Took a little nap and woke up to 3 guys clomping around below both me and the deer, upwind of the deer, waving and talking to each other, walking into the cover areas, then they sat down to glass. So I watched them for a bit and got up and left figuring they must have been the ones moving the deer.

    Gonna go back out this afternoon. Not sure if I should watch the same area, or move into some more sheltered areas.

  18. Default

    Awesome.

  19. Default

    Great story, you win any way it turns out....

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