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Discussion Starter #1
[confused]

I went on my first hunt ever, today, without any real guidance or advice, I just up and went, at around 2. I went to collier's mills, and basically just at random picked a small trail, walked down it to an opening in the woods that seemed to have some good shot possibilites, and a nice tree to climb. I didnt see any deer sign, or acorns, so I was kind of discouraged by that but I was very eager to try out my new treestand. I got up into the tree after a few minutes of fumbling around with my harness and such (I guess ill get better at climbing trees with time), and I just sat there for a few hours. All I saw were a few cicaidas and yellowjackets buzzing around my head. Not even so much as a squirrel crossed my path. By 5 i was feeling a bit discouraged and I came down from the tree; it was mostly because of my lack of confidence in my location. I guess I should just continue picking random trails out and looking for sign and such, and just keep trying differnent locations until i actually see some animals. I'm really just wondering if anyone has any suggestions as to where to try or what to look for. Collier's mills is a large place and I feel kind of lost just wandering around at random.

Thanks for reading my long post :)
 

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Don;t feel discouraged, I'm in the same boat as you, I hunted for the first time by bow all last season and only saw one deer.
 

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My best advice is to look up aerial and topo maps of the land.

Look for ridges, thick areas that pinch down and run between food sources, water, sections of hardwoods, cornfields, etc.

This helps narrow down where you go look for sign, it also familiarizes you with the lay of the land.

Then go scout the spots that look promising on the map.

Early season focus on food and water.
When late october rolls around, a bucks main focus switches to the rut and you can start hunting scrapes and rub lines more readily. (Though sitting over a rub line anytime of year is normally productive).

When the peak of the rut hits (chasing and breeding) sit on trails that lead between doe bedding areas. Or sit the edges of bedding areas. Bucks cruise these areas sniffing for does all day long. There is no telling when a bruiser might show up looking for a gf. (This period usually starts around the 5th of November and runs until around the 15th of Nov.) (It can vary year to year, but usually its right in that time frame. You WILL KNOW when its on too!

Hope that helps, GOOD LUCK![up]
 

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Use this year to learn the property you hunt. Keep a log book. Try differnet ares that look good.Try to pin point where you see most deer movement.Good luck and enjoy the time in the woods.Are there any apple trees on the property. If so set up near a run that is heading to apples. Have fun. good luck.
 

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Go buy yourself 50lbs of deer feed and dump it. leave it for a day or 2 and then go and climb a tree above it, bet you see more than you did on your first day out. One thing is IMPORTANT, dont get discouraged. Anytime in the woods is better than working regardless of what you see. If you get time to hunt, and you do see a deer It was a good day, if you get a shot off and harvest the animal, consider it a bonus. GOOD LUCK !!!!
 

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SCOUT,SCOUT,SCOUT

ALSO PAY ATTENTION TO THE WIND WHILE WALKING TO YOUR STAND AND IN YOUR STAND. DEPENDING ON THE WIND YOU MAY HAVE TO CHANGE THE DIRECTION YOU WALK INTO YOUR STAND AND ALSO CHANGE STAND LOCATION. TRY TO HAVE MULTIPLE LOCATIONS PICKED OUT BASED ON THE WIND DIRECTION.
GOOD LUCK WELCOME TO THE CLUB
JOE
 

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Carlo, in addition to what everyone above stated, you say that you came down at 5 o'clock. That's a big no, no. You need to stay in your stand until it's basically to dark for you to shoot. I say this because the last 45 to 30 minutes of light, are generally the best time to be in a stand. This is when the deer become active. Just my 2 cents. Good luck to you!
 

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hey carlo just got back from the mills i was right behind the lake as you come in the main gate from 6;20 till 7;30 and saw 20 deer most wher does but did see small 6pt and a spike you just need to sit tight and watch with gl [no swearing please] and find the deer then the next time move closer till you score gl [no swearing please] gl [no swearing please] gl [no swearing please] and scout your a'' off the more time you spend the better luck you'll have i go out every sunday in season from 7 am till 3 or 4 pm and scout out new spots also if you check under zone 17 or 18 in the deer sec. you'll find some other post on the mills
good luck
 

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One of the things that I do if im hunting a new piece of ground during the season is to find creeks and small streams on an arial photo or map....Than walk the stream till I find a good spot where the deer cross...Its an effective low impact scouting method if you dont know the land...One of the things you dont want to do is over scout a section of land and alter deer movement while the season is already underway....I do most of major scouting after the season has closed in Feb...
 

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Discussion Starter #11
nj hunter, what do you mean by glass?

thanks for all your suggestions guys!

I think that Im just going to be persistent and patient, and keep on scouting for new spots(maybe behind that lake, 20 deer sounds like youve got some to spare;))At the very least, spend some time without the bow and without the stand, just walking around looking for sign and spots for future reference.
 

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nj hunter, what do you mean by glass?

thanks for all your suggestions guys!

I think that Im just going to be persistent and patient, and keep on scouting for new spots(maybe behind that lake, 20 deer sounds like youve got some to spare)At the very least, spend some time without the bow and without the stand, just walking around looking for sign and spots for future reference.
Glassing means to search an area with binoculars.

If the spot you're scouting is open to hunting right now, bring the bow along while you scout. You NEVER know what could happen. You may be walking along, when suddenly a shot opportunity presents itself.

Good luck![up]
 

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Go to the back side of the lake. All the deer funnel through along the edge. Don't waste your time baiting now unless you have a timer on your feed. Otherwise you will see EVERY squirrel,chipmunk, bluejay, crow & raccoon for miles around. 99% of the deer feed at night on corn piles. Just my opinion
 

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I look for deer trails and proceed as slow as possible. I've spooked a lot of deer stumbling through the woods. After a few trips into the woods you'll develop a good sense on how and where to proceed. Luck isn't a bad thing either.

No rush - take your time.
 

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Carlofunk, I shot an 8 point a few yeras back walking thru the woods to help my friend fix a stand. I wasn't going to bring my bow , but decided to bring it anyway. Allways bring your bow, when its LEGAL.
 
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