BackWoods Sportsman OutDoors
new england outdoors

hunting blog 2012

This page is going to be an ongoing diary of our days in the field as we are in pursuit of the Whitetail Deer. We have many stands set up in different locations and will be hunting for two and a half months searching for that trophy animal. Cameras have been placed at stand locations for a while now and pictures are promising that this could be a very good year for the class and size of deer that we are recording. So check back often as we go to the field in our pursuit of a trophy whitetail deer.

12/15/12 AM Hunt

After taking off time during the shotgun season, headed back into the field to hopefully find some whitetail deer once again. Weather was cool in the mid 20's, light breeze and sunny clear skies. Started the morning in a stand that typically has good morning activity with views of a small corn field, necked down area of woods and overlooking a salt marsh. Typically the deer come down the edge of the swamp, through the necked down woods and head towards the bigger woods. But once again this day was not going to show that scenario and no deer sighted at this location. Did have an owl sitting in a tree directly behind me and had a fisher cat scamper through the area. After 3 hours of sitting decided to move to my other stand that is deeper in the woods to see if anything was milling around that area. Only thing that was milling around there were 3 different hunters that skirted around me. With wearing blaze orange and standing out, one would think that once another hunter is spotted, you would make an effort to stay clear of the sitting hunter. Not these guys as they all skirted not more than 50 yards around me. If I were to be walking through the woods and came upon another hunter, I would either turn around and go back or change total direction and would stay clear of the other hunter. After these walked past, I got down and took a slow walk around myself as I headed back to the truck and called it a day.

11/23/12 PM Hunt

The weather continues to be fairly nice and the rain is non existent which is nice for a change, sun shining, 40's for temps and light winds. Went to my farther deeper stand in hopes of seeing deer on the move heading to their evening feeding locations. The squirrels are always very active at this location and the red squirrels in particular are some of the noisiest animals in these woods. There would be the leaves russling sounds as well as twigs breaking and to find out all it is are the red squirrels rummaging around. Never realized either that these red squirrels are very mean to other animals and particularly for the gray squirrels. As the evening progressed on and squirrel watching continued, the deer once again were not going to be making a showing this evening. Even other hunters that are hunting these woods are not seeing any deer as well and hopefully with the upcoming gun season and more hunters in the woods, this will get these deer moving around more during the daylight hours. Always seeing fresh sign that they are always there during the evening hours but gone once daylight comes.

11/22/12 AM Hunt

Thanksgiving morning hunts have also been pretty productive in seeing very decent deer. Not really sure why, but hopefully it will continue again this year. Weather was nice, sunny skies, light breeze and cooler temps was a nice way to start the day out. Decided to go back to the stand from the previous night and see if anything was going to move through while doing the rattling and bleat calling. Got to be around 9:30 AM and still had no activity what so ever so decided to take a walk to another stand that is deeper into the woods and hope to see some late morning activity. After sitting there for another 2 plus hours and no activity, decided to call it a day and go enjoy a turkey dinner. This season is not becoming very fruitful what so ever and just another day of trying to figure out what is going on out here. Did walk back along the marsh swamp just to look at anything I could see and came across a flock of wild turkey's. Where there was tall swamp grass in a couple of areas there was a well beaten deer trail through both of them heading into the marsh and crossing the farther river. Across the river there is a good chunk of land and have a feeling that they are bedding down across over there but the river is to big to get across and when the tide comes in, you could be trapped there for quite a while. Hopefully with a couple of more days to hunt, I can figure out something and get some action going on. Been a long season already and something has got to change from what is going on right now.

11/21/12 PM Hunt

Long weekend ahead with many opportunities to fill a deer tag before the upcoming gun season of the next week. Weather wise was a very nice sunny day, upper 50's for temps and a light breeze. Wanted to spend more time at the camera location that has been the most productive with the pictures and hope to see one of these bad boys that frequent these woods. Did do some rattling as well as brought along a doe bleat call to try and entice Mr. Buck into my lair. After countless efforts to try and fool one of these beauties, my efforts went un rewarded once again and nothing was going to show itself once again. Seems to be the trend in this particular woods this year that the deer are definitely only moving at night and just have vacated the area during the daylight hours. Still trying to figure out what is going on in these woods as I have never seen this happening here before and another hunter that has been here for quite sometime, is saying the same thing. Something has changed but no one can seem to figure it out.

11/17/12 PM Hunt

Headed back to the woods after a quick lunch and the weather temps were in the mid 40's, clear sunny skies and virtually little to no wind. Went back to the same stand that I spent the morning in hoping that the deer will be roaming around and tried once again with the rattling and doe bleating. The area that this stand location is in, there are so many red squirrels there and it is amazing how much noise these little creatures can produce. It was always sounding as if a deer was coming and then the tell tale chirping sound put a stop to that thinking. My other locations have some red squirrels but this place is rediculous with them. As the evening progressed on and countless times of rattling to entice a buck, nothing appeared and once again made for a long evening sit.

Checking cameras on Sunday morning revealed once again that the deer are definitely in all locations but their movements are staying nocturnal. The Does are moving consistently after 6:30 PM and all Buck activity starts at 10:30 PM. Getting repeat pictures of a few bucks and definitely are some shooter deer. Not sure when this nocturnal pattern is going to break, if it even breaks, but with gun season only a week away, will be hoping that this long weekend coming up, they decide to come out into the daylight hours.

11/17/12 AM Hunt

Back to the woods in search of Whitetail Deer once again, cooler temps in the mid 20's, no wind at all and clear skies once the sun rose. With last Sunday's venture of seeing so many deer, set up a new stand location that looked promising as it is deeper into the woods and inbetween a couple of ridges. Plan is that the deer will travel between these ridges and hopefully I can rattle one in as well. Took a bit to find the stand because it is fairly thick and you could almost walk past it if you didn't see it. Guess that is good as maybe the deer won't see it as well. Was situated in the stand as the skies brightened in hopes that they would be walking around. Started doing some rattling and also added some fawn bleats in there to try and entice a buck to show itself. As I was looking behind I noticed some movement through the brush and as the animal got closer, it was a coyote. It didn't know I was there and got to within 40 yards of me but never offered a shot at it. It was just far enough away that I couldn't tell if it had mange or not as the coat looked a little odd. Sat in this location for 5 hours and between the rattling and calling, was not able to bring anything into this location. Not getting a good feeling this year as I have been out every weekend and the deer that are in the area, are staying to their nocturnal travels and are just not moving during the day.

11/10/12 PM Hunt

After taking a couple of hours off for lunch, headed back into the woods and decided to sit in the more active camera stand once again. Air temps were around 50, light breeze and sunny clear skies. Never knowing what the deer are going to be doing, especially this year, was in the stand earlier than usual. We are approaching the rut season so working between rattling and doing some grunting and fawn bleating, wanted to see if I could get some attention from the local bucks. But once again after a long sit, there was nothing going to show itself and a fellow hunter that I talked with upon leaving the woods, he was having the same issues. Plenty of sign but the deer are nocturnal and making for this hunting season very tough to say the least.

Update Sunday:
Sunday mornings, being in MA we are not allowed to hunt, I generally run my cameras to see what the week shows for deer activity. Upon nearing my first location, there was a fresh scrape near this stand and was not there the night previous as I walked past there and it was not there. So upon seeing that I decided to take a walk through the woods to see what was going on if anything. By the time I got to where I wanted to walk, I had counted 12 fresh scrapes, seen 12 deer while checking all cameras and decided to put another stand up in a totally different location. Sunday was the most productive day that I have seen for the whole season so far. So it is looking like the rut is kicking into gear and this coming weekend, hopefully, will produce seeing some deer. I have a new stand location and plan on spending the whole day sitting there and time will tell if this pans off.

11/10/12 AM Hunt

Another weekend has come and time to hit the woods once again in hopes of finding that trophy Whitetail deer. The week coming up to this day has been much cooler than the whole fall season has been and hopefully once and for all this will get the deer moving during the daylight hours. Morning came with little breeze and a crisp mid 30's. Picked a stand that generally has good morning traffic as it is a funnel area that they travel on their way to their bedding areas. As usual there are always fresh tracks around while walking to the stand. Once again met with an onslaught of squirrels that make every little noise that sounds like a deer walking towards my tree. A few times there really sounded like finally a deer would make an appearance for all of the time that has been spent in the tree. But after sitting for 5 hours and not one showing itself, made for another day without sighting a deer once again. Was really disappointing as I really thought that it was finally time that they were going to start traveling during daylight hours but was mistaken. Other hunters that I talked with on the way out were having the same thing of not seeing any deer, one of these days it will change and the season will finally get started.

11/3/12 PM Hunt

Today turned out as a great day weather wise as the temps were mild, wind was moderately strong and the sun was shining. Decided to sit at the most active camera in hopes once again that maybe tonight would be the night that something finally happened. The woods were fairly quiet once again and little movement of any creatures as well. With the coming rut, I have been doing some rattling to see if I could peak any interest in anything that may be around this location but to no avail. I have no idea as to what is going on and can't seem to figure anything out this year. There are 3 other hunters in the area that I am hunting and they all are saying the same thing. I know the deer are there as there are always fresh tracks and the cameras are taking pictures as well. Still thinking that the warm fall weather has these animals a little messed up and hopefully this week coming with the very much cooler weather changes things up a little bit. Guess it can't get much worse than it is right now anyway.

11/2/12 PM Hunt

Is this season ever going to get going as we are continuing exactly where we left off from the last hunt. Weather was consistent with a light breeze, cloudy conditions, a bit cooler temps and the last 45 minutes before dark was rain. Was hoping that since the storm had been gone for a few days now, the animals would be getting back to normal feeding. There was a fair amount of squirrel activity and I generally use that as a guide to other animals moving around. A couple of times there was the sound that there was breaking twigs thinking that a deer was coming, but to no avail nothing came through. Made for a long sit especially when the rain came and just made it miserable sitting there. Hopefully with the cooler weather coming things will start turning around.

10/27/12 PM Hunt

The day continued on similar to what the morning hunt has entailed. Storm still approaching and animals other than deer very active searching and storing food. Weather was still clear skies, little wind but still fairly warm temps for this time of year. Decided to sit in the stand with the most buck activity in hopes that tonight they would start moving around before the sun sets and darkness takes over the landscape. Unfortunately, it was the same as all of the other sits that I have done so far this season. Starting to question my locations but then when I make my rounds of checking the cameras, they are always showing that these animals are here, but traveling totally at night. Hopefully with this cooler weather coming in this coming weekend, we can only hope that this will kick that magical time of year, the RUT, into gear.

10/27/12 AM Hunt

Hurricane still approaching and animals should be gearing up and feeding heavily before it hits. Conditions were perfect for an early morning sit and sat in a previous active morning stand from the previous season. Sun rose to clear skies, little to no wind and cooler but moderate temperatures. Really felt that this morning was going to be the morning that there would be some very active deer in the area. Every animal in the woods was busily seeking food but the deer just were not going to show themselves once again today. Squirrels were busily working and had a couple come face to face with me trying to figure out what I was sitting in their trees. Really felt that I would see something this morning but once again, that was not the case so the saga continues of the warm fall weather still not getting the deer into their patterns for the fall and other hunters are telling me the same thing as well in different locations.

10/26/12 PM Hunt

With the approaching hurricane Sandy, thought that would get the animals into the feeding mode as they can sense when conditions are going to change and they will adapt accordingly. Day was setting up nicely weather wise with little wind, sunny skies and moderate temperatures. Picked a stand that is deeper in the woods that I haven't been to yet this season in hopes of intercepting deer moving through the area. This location is ending the same as the other areas with stands and a big contributor to that is the weather. Been talking with a number of other hunters and they are telling the same stories that animals are not moving much if any during the daylight hours. Every week when I go to check the trail cameras, there are always bucks and does on there and they are showing that movement doesn't start until after 7 PM. Hopefully the cooler weather will come and stay for the rest of the year as that is what is needed to get things moving in the right direction.

10/22/12 PM Hunt

Another beautiful day here in New England and what a way to end the day but to sit in a tree stand waiting for a whitetail deer to come along. Today's conditions were sunny skies, temps around low 60's, steady barometer and winds up to 20 mph. One thing that I have noticed over our hunting is that when the winds are blowing fairly good, the deer just don't seem to want to move. That was the case once again and even sitting in a stand that I haven't been in yet, seems to be the trend of lately. The warming weather is not contributing at all to the cause as that is another factor that is coming forward is that if the temps are on the warm side, the animals just aren't moving. It was feeling like it was going to be a good hunting day setting up as the birds and squirrels were very active but the bigger game was not. Cameras are still showing plenty of deer activity but that usually doesn't start until after 7 PM. Hopefully as the weather cools and stays more consistent, that will get the deer moving more during the daylight hours. One thing that I can't wait to try is that I have not been in a stand in the morning hours and cant wait for that to happen. A little rain is forecasted this week again and hopefully cooler weather as well.

10/20/12 PM Hunt

We have been having quite the fall this year with the way the weather has been playing games with us, cold, rain, hot, wind and seems every day is something of a great variety. Was not able to get out for a AM hunt as the rains were coming down very hard and heavy. But then as the day progressed, humidity and hot temps set in for a very warm hunt in the afternoon. Things we have noticed over time pertaining to weather is that when it is vary warm out the deer just don't seem to move much at all. Today was another chapter in that book as we took the stand at our most active camera in hopes that something would come through. The woods are getting very scarce of leaves now and most of the underbrush is basically leaf free and the trees are dropping them very quickly with the winds. Today's hunt was sunny clear skies, noticable winds and very warm temperatures reaching almost 70 degrees. As mentioned before, with the warm temperatures there was little activity of any animals at all, with one lone squirrel as the sun was setting. While sitting on stand I did take the binoculars and scanned the area and did notice that the bucks are very active here and have recently been making numerous rubs on the trees all around this whole area. Since the action was non-existent, decided to try a little rattling just to see if I could peek the curiosity of any local bucks in the area but none had showed themselves.

10/17/12 PM Hunt

A beautiful night was setting up nicely with clear sunny skies, light to no winds, rising barometer and comfortable 60 degree temps. My first location once again was occupied by another hunter so I opted to walk into my stand where the most active camera is located. I wanted to wait another couple of weeks before starting to use this stand as I feel that this location could harbor some nice bucks come the rutting season. Was a fairly quiet night until the hundreds of starlings perch over my head and created such a ruckus that nothing could be heard. After a while they finally flew off and then to my left I could hear a deer breathing and coming my way. To my left there is a line of pine trees and this deer didn't make its way through there and either lay done in the thicket or went a different direction. As the sun was setting, straight out in front of me it looked as if a doe was waking up from a day's nap. I could just make out her head and see her ears twitching as she laid there but as it gotten dark she never stood up. I snuck out of there and didn't hear her getting up so hopefully I didn't spook her and she will be comfortable with the area going forward.

10/16/12 PM Hunt

The season has opened on Monday October 15 with a typical rain that we have been having lately. Unfortunately, our time is limited as to days that we are able to get into the field so we were not able to get out on opening day. October 16: Was able to get out for an evening sit in one of our stands. The stand location that we wanted to concentrate on had been occupied by another hunter and to not disturb him, we chose a different location. We had clear sunny skies, rising barometer and very gusty winds. With the high winds the woods were loud and any movement from any animals was not able to hear at all. Sat until the sun set and the woods got to dark to see, but didn't have any deer movement on this evenings sit.

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