Love Nature

I chose to skip on Hunting this week and take my kids and girlfriend to the hunting property. I was a short trip up there to grab 2 weeks of trail cam photos and my ground blind. We rolled into my fathers Saturday afternoon and quickly headed up to the property to have some daylight. It has been snowing all last week here in Kent County and hoping the same for the east side of the state. The task for the weekend was to grab the blind and show the kids the property, then go to a Christmas party on Sunday down by flint.

When we arrived I put the kids in some winter gear and we grabbed some fire wood for a little fire. I grabbed 2 bags of corn and a sled to get out in the woods. Andrea my girlfriend came with me and it was a blast just showing her around. I’ve been going there since I was 10 and it means a ton to me to share it with my family. As Andrea and I walked checking out different footprints in the snow and I pointed out different features.  I noticed a few different trees had fallen across the lane, more work for me in the spring. I drop the bags of corn at a spot that I planned on moving the trail cam to. I noticed my ground blind had a collapsed roof from about 4-6 inches of snow. We quickly broke down the blind and cleaned up the area. Loaded it on the sled to swing around and grab the trail cam data card. As I reached it I noticed some fresh marks and pee at the buck scrap. that gave me some hope that the rut was still happening and a buck or 2 made thru the hunting season. I was wondering did we scare off the deer or was it earlier? turned out it was around 1pm that 2 bucks were at the scrap. We were there about 4pm, just enough light to get in and out. Andrea n I headed back with the sled full of gear and I couldn’t wait to see what was on the data card. Kids met us half way back and they had a fire going, papa started of course. We sat at the truck eating some snacks and I was getting the computer ready for a show. I had about 116 pics on it.1300:121617:22F:0000:CAMERA1:7E[145:0061]G[008:0x0006]

this one hit the spot after a little bigger buck did. A funky little spike. I don’t think I saw this one during hunting.

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A little bigger and maybe older than the other one. I don’t know for sure but one of the guys shot at a 4pt and missed during rifle season. So this one has 4pts on it but onside is a spike, other has a fork and little spike off its forehead. I have photos of him peeing at the spot just before this shot. damn I love nature and being able to capture it!2213:121117:20F:0000:CAMERA1:6E[084:0868]G[056:0x0076]

A nice doe wondering around in the snow.

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before the snow and a cute doe and fawn playing at night.

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I will never know why it is running thru the night.

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I am assuming the buck is stopping it’s feet at something if you notice the both pics. a good little spike that will be bigger the years to come.

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Calling her little piggy. She wonders up to the camera for a sniff.

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Maybe I left to much human scent on the camera?

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This pic is from me leaving on the last weekend I hunted, im just off the side walking away. This scrap has been used for more than 30 years on the same tree. The scrap rotates around from different years but always under this tree. My uncle has had a tree blind to the right on the photo for more than 30 years. My father and I have fixed the tree blind and now its used by another hunter because I quit going up for the last 7 years. I am back with more knowledge and patience. I plan on hunting in a different area so others can use this spot. Actually the tree stand is directly behind the tree to the left of its trunk. the little mounds are the property line that the new owner of that property put in about 10 years ago.

I am going to leave the camera here at this spot for 6 months and retrieve it in the spring. plan on getting. Few more and place them around the area I am going to work for the next couple of years unless it proves me to try a different spot. I have some major plans and hope I get the time to put them in place. Really looking forward to next year hunting season.

Muzzleloader season

After I got home from my time off for rifle season I thought I was done? My blind was packed and was thinking of next year. I was bummed and thought I had 3 empty tags from 2017 season. After a couple of days passed I’m reading Michigan hunters guide and quickly figured out I had some time still. I own a muzzleloader that I don’t use often. I have a private anterless deer tag. I still have chances. I still might get a deer. My time is not up! I put the dates that worked with my schedule and BOOM! 2 more chances for meat. 2 weeks had past and rifle season came to a end and muzzleloader season began. December 2nd came fast and I was on my way. Instead of stopping for the night before at my fathers I just drove to camp. Setup camp in the dark, didn’t want to go out and put my blind up. I was unclear where I wanted to hunt? We have plenty of tree stands up but 3 of them are in spots that I believe are not traveled by deer. I wake up the next morning and decide to stay out and decide where the ground blind was going to be set. I had a great breakfast of eggs and walleye. Get my gear set and head out to find the perfect spot for the next couple of days. A spot that I believe will work, if deer are still recovering from rifle season. I set it up and make sure I use plenty of twigs and branches to hide the blind good as possible. I setup a trail cam about 50 yards away overlooking a trail I was hunting. I pour some acorn thick sludge crap for a attractant that just might take the deers mind off my blind. I get back to camp for a big lunch and load up for the night hunt, prepared to sit all day till dark. I know the acorn attractant won’t be effective till later days but hoping it helps. I sit and sit till the night with no sight of deer. Lots of squirrels and others such and birds. After another wonderful walleye dinner and reading a book on steelhead I hunkered down for the night, my friend called. He said his boy and him were heading up for some chats around the fire.

He got in camp around 10 and we quickly got a fire roaring and just talked. His son asked if we always talk? I said yes because we haven’t saw each other in a year or so. And I also said even growing up we chatted for hours. The moon was spectacular and kept us staring for hours.

I called some coyotes to let his son hear them and forgot about him possibly getting scared. We ended up staying up until 430am and just had a blast of a time. I told them I would skip the morning hunt to make a killer breakfast with eggs and walleye. We would take a hike off into the woods to teach him about the back forty. We loaded up some gear and went out after shooting the ruger 10-22. We pulled the trail cam card to see if any critters were around. I am really hoping to capture the coyotes on film.

The trail cam gave me my first view of any does in the area. This year I have only seen bucks or spikes. After the afternoon hike we parted ways and it was time to get back to the prize. Hit the woods about 230pm and just sat with nothing happening. It was getting depressing and it was starting to hurt. The trail cam shots gave me hope but nothing. I had the morning to look forward too. I had some hope. I had to believe I was going to get my chance. I ate dinner and just wanted to get to bed for the morning. Morning came and I slowly rose from my tent and sleeping bag. I gathered my stuff just going thru the motions of hunting but thinking of getting home to my family. I’ve put so much pressure on myself this year. I haven’t hunted in years and expecting to have meat in the freezer. I get the blind and it’s a little lighter out than I would’ve liked but hey I am looking at the drive home. No deer happened to come around. I gathered my sd card from trail cam and moved it to a buck scrap that has been there for more than 30 years. I say that because I have been hunting this land for 30 years and my uncle showed me the scrap when I was little. It’s close to my ground blind right now. In 2 weeks I will be back up for hunting this area for anterless late season. I’ve already am deciding on where to hunt next year and acquire about 3 more trail cams to keep a eye out for signs of making the right choice.

Next hunt is in 2 weeks.