Sunday, April 18, 2010

It's Been A Long Time...

Wow, it has been forever since I blogged. Life has been pretty crazy since this fall/winter. I have been attending police academy and have had a lot of other things going on. Luckily I was able to enjoy a relatively productive deer season and have already had a successful turkey season. Opening day was a week ago yesterday, and I managed to bring down an 18 lbs. jake. It was a pretty cool experience, as it was my first kill out of a blind and I used my brand new Mossberg 835 Ultimag turkey gun. Yesterday was my second day of turkey hunting and I called in a small jake off the roost. The landowner and I were hunting together, and I called the bird in and he walked right between us. We were sitting 15 yards apart! The bird came in gobbling the whole way and put on a show for us. It was his lucky day, as neither one of us was looking to kill a young bird. I graduate academy in a week and a half and hope to get back into my normal schedule. The past few months I have spent all my time typing notes, so hopefully I'll get back to typing on my blog! Check out the pictures of my bird in my slide show on the right side of my web page!!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Hopefully Back to Blogging...Plus Another Deer!

The past two weeks have been extremely crazy. I had to work day shift for a whole week and I was still in the process of moving into my new place. I finally got internet tonight, so hopefully my blogging will increase. I have hunted twice since my last post, which briefly detailed the first hunt at the farm I am living on. I have managed to kill one more deer, a button buck, where I am living.

I have finally started to see some rut activity, including 9 bucks chasing one doe. The night I shot the button buck, I had two bucks sparring within 75 yards of me, and a 4 point chasing a doe. Unfortunately the weather hasn't been great due to heavy rain and high winds. Tomorrow morning is the first day of rifle season here in Virginia, so I hope to harvest a big buck . When I hunted Wednesday morning two shooter bucks were spotted by other hunters, so hopefully somebody knocks a big one down tomorrow! There hasn't been a big deer killed on the farm I hunt since I shot my 140 inch 11 point out there 4 years ago. Its about time one of us gets another big one.

Hopefully I'll have a good story and some pictures to add with it tomorrow. Best of luck to all of you out there hunting!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Muzzleloader Buck

I spent all day today moving stuff from my parents' house to the farm where I am now living. Since I have permission to hunt the farm too, I decided I would take my climber and hike through the woods and scout. I walked a good bit and it looks like this is a great place to deer hunt. There is sign everywhere and the woods are mainly oaks. It is also nice and open, so there are lots of shooting lanes.

I finally picked a tree that was about 75 yards from a bedding area that was just across the property line. I climbed up about 15 feet and got situated. It could not have been more than 30 minutes before a herd of 5 deer came into view, feeding on acorns. I watched them for about 45 minutes before another hunter came by and scared them away.

I talked to the guy, who is about my age, and found out that I had picked one of the best spots on the property. We talked for awhile and he moved to a different area to hunt. At about 4:15 I heard deer footsteps and looked to the West. A large bodied five point was heading my way. Now, normally I wouldn't shoot a five point, but this farm isn't managed and I may not got to muzzleloader hunt again this year. He finally got within 50 yards and I managed to bring him down.

After a short tracking job I found him, field dressed him, and drug him out of the woods before dark. Even though he is a small deer I am proud of the fact that I shot him out of my climber on the first night I hunted a new property. Plus I got him with my new muzzleloader! It is good to know that there are a lot of deer on the farm I am living on. There is also a nice 10 point that is running around, so maybe I'll get a crack at him one of these days.

I'll try to post some pictures of the deer soon and hopefully I'll have a chance to hunt before rifle season starts in a week. Good luck to all of you out there hunting!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Long Time No Blog

Wow... It has been 20 days since I last blogged about anything. It is an understatement to say that I have been busy. I have been working a lot so I haven't had a lot of time to blog or go hunting. That is all going to change this weekend when muzzleloader season opens here in Virginia. My Dad and I are planning on heading out to our buddy' s farm on Saturday and our hopes are high. No one has hunted the property at all this year, so hopefully there are some nice bucks hiding!

I also bought a muzzleloader so that I don't have to use my bow while everyone else is using a gun. It is a Remington Genesis .50 caliber. Black synthetic stock and stainless barrel. The gun belonged to my girlfriend's Dad, but he never hunted with it, so he sold it to me. I killed a deer with it two years ago the one time I hunted with it, so hopefully my luck continues! I put a Tasco scope on the gun today and I hope I have no issues sighting it in in the next few days.

I also managed to score another hunting property and a place to live all at once. I am going to be moving to an apartment on a 150 acre farm that has a big pond and a nice patch of woods and some fields. The current tenant says he has no problems killing deer and turkey every year and that the ducks and geese are almost tame. I can't wait to move in out there and start hunting! I think it is a pretty good deal, 600 bucks a month for a house and primo hunting property!

I may try and squeeze in one more archery hunt this week, but my top priority is getting my gun sighted in and getting ready for my move. I hope I don't go 20 days without blogging again but I can't promise anything. Best of luck to all of you out there hunting!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Deer Number Two Down!!!

Well, I finally managed to get a real deer hunt in this evening. Since I started working 12 hour long night shifts, I haven't had a lot of time or energy to hunt. I did hunt a few mornings after work, but I never stayed in the stand for more than an hour or two for fear of falling asleep and falling out! I had yesterday and today off and I had planned on hunting both, but exhaustion and high wind kept me from hunting yesterday.

I decided that I wanted to hunt this evening, so I headed out to a small Christmas tree farm that I have permission to hunt. The property is only about 15 acres, but it is covered in trees and also has a few acres of nothing but woods and vines. The deer love to hide there during the day and feed out at night. The landowner wants all the deer killed so that they don't eat his seedlings, and I am happy to oblige!

I got into the stand at about 2:30. It is on a sycamore tree and overlooks a small swampy area that holds water. Since it was a warm day, I figured this was probably the best place to get a crack at a deer. I finally heard footsteps at 6, and the doe I ended up shooting walked up to the watering hole.

She walked up on me so fast that I barely had time to stand before she was in the water and within range. She got jumpy for a few seconds and actually stared at me, but I managed to stay still long enough to keep her from busting. The doe grabbed one more sip of water and started to turn away. I drew my bow back and released almost in one motion.

I made a good shot, albeit high, and the deer ran off with arrow sticking out of both sides of her. I knew I had hit her well so I climbed out of the stand after a few minutes and started to track. She only ran about 60 yards, so I found her after only a few minutes of tracking. I continue to be amazed at the Rage 3-Blade broadheads I am using. Due to the high shot I only got the far side lung, but the holes the Rage made allowed the doe to bleed out very fast. After field dressing the deer I drug her out and made the short drive home to hang her up! This was my first hunt of the year in my home county, so I was glad that I managed to knock one down.

I have to work the next three nights, but I am going to try to sneak a hunt in Saturday morning when my shift ends. Luckily I only work two days next week, so I'll get lots of hunting in! I think I am going to buck hunt the rest of archery season, so hopefully my next deer post has some horns in it. Best of luck to everyone as your deer seasons get underway!

Monday, September 28, 2009

It's Been Awhile

I feel like I haven't blogged in forever. Truthfully I haven't had much that was outdoor related to blog about. This is because I finally started my new job as a corrections officer. I am finally working a set shift and getting into the swing of things, so I hope to start blogging more.

I know I am going hunting tomorrow morning. A massive cold front has moved through, so I am hoping there will be a bunch of deer moving. I would like to shoot one more antlerless deer before the real season starts this Saturday. Luckily I have that day off, so I'll be able to do some horn hunting! Deer season sure has snuck up on me this year even though I hunted a few times during the early season. I guess having a job does that to ya!

Hopefully I'll knock down a few deer in the next week and have something cool to blog about. Best of luck to everyone who is preparing for their respective hunting seasons!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

4-Wheeling In The Mountains

Today was an absolutely amazing day. My girlfriend's Dad and Uncle took me along on a trip to a local campground that also has approximately 35 miles of 4-wheeler, Jeep, and rock crawler trails. The trails range from 2 to 22 miles in length and have beginner to expert level trails. We road from 9:30 this morning until 2:30 this afternoon.

My girlfriends Uncle was riding a Suzuki 500, her Dad a Yamaha 400, and I was riding a 2WD Yamaha 250. For the most part the bike I was on hung with the 4WD bikes, but I did manage to get stalled going up one steep stretch of trail. Needless to say we all got stuck in the mud holes that were placed every few miles along the trails. This is me getting stuck in one and getting pulled out!

There are some easy fire road trails, lots of technical rocky trails, some steep up and downhill stretches, moguls, logs, muddy stretches. All in all it is what I would consider to be a perfect place for riding. There is also some incredible scenery since a few of the trails bring you to the top of mountain ridges with views into Virginia and West Virginia.

There was also abundant wildlife. We saw one very big buck, a bunch of turtles and salamanders, as well as this big guy! This was a 4 1/2 foot long Timber Rattler, which is a very large Timber Rattler. They usually are only 2-3 feet long, but this big guy was stretched completely across the four wheeler trail we were riding on. I stopped to take some pictures because this is the first rattlesnake I have ever seen. I was impressed with how beautiful this snake was and at how well it blended in with all of its surroundings. This snake had 8 buttons on its rattle. From what I have read, one button equals one year, so this could possibly be a pretty old snake.

All in all it was a great day with two awesome guys. We are already talking about getting a few other fellas together so that we can head out again in the next few weeks. We are definitely going to go again when it cools down some more and the leaves start to change. I can't wait!!!