2000-2001 Gun Hunting

December 1, 2000 - The gun season has been really tough! My primary food source is acorn trees and this year the acorns were almost nonexistent. I've totally changed my entire hunting strategy and have now started to see a few deer. I've yet to find any sign of the kind of buck I'm looking for but it's still early in the season.

January 5, 2001 - It seems the rut is starting a little early this year. I've heard reports of bucks chasing does already. Maybe the deer sightings will pick up for me. I'm still seeing very few deer this year. Less deer than in the past 10-12 years. I've only seen two bucks on our property all gun and one of those I harvested. I saw the other buck this week and he was not a true shooter just a nice racked buck. I've not found the kinda big buck sign I like to hunt. I've walked miles and miles looking for buck sign and it's just not there on our land this year. I did find a really big set of tracks a few days ago and will pursue the issue farther. It appears to be a buck just passing through that area on the prowl for female companionship. Maybe our paths will cross before the end of the month. He's a heavy deer but that's no indication of his headgear. To put deer in my freezer, I hunt deer in their kitchen and with the limited food supply I have to hunt this year it's been tough.

January 9, 2001 - I had an interesting weekend! I only saw two deer all weekend but they were both racked bucks. I harvested a 7pt. Saturday morning and a 6pt. Sunday afternoon. The 7pt. is the deer I refer to above on January 5. On our property, I've only seen three bucks all of gun season and they're all in the freezer. It's not that I shoot every buck I see, they just happen to all be racked bucks and in a location that gets a lot of hunting pressure. Last year I found some big buck sign and hunted it for half the season. I passed up a 6pt. and a nice 8pt. in hopes of seeing the big one. I never saw him. Am I sad I didn't shoot the 8pt? No, that's just part of the game. It's time to do some serious scouting to see what else is out there.

January 25, 2001 - Boy, it's been a tough couple of weeks! I've only seen a few deer since January 9. I did see nine deer one afternoon, but that has been almost the extent of it. I plan to stay after them for the remainder of the season and see what happens. I still cannot find any big buck sign. I've found a few areas with scrapes and rubs ... just nothing impressive. Maybe a big one will show himself before the end of the season ... who knows maybe today.

January 29, 2001 - Normally every season I'll see one really big buck ... I have yet to see a big one this year. I have 2 days left to hunt so there's still a chance. I haven't found any big buck sign and have little confidence that one will show it's face. You never know what the big hunting guide in the sky has in store for you. It's not over yet but the fat lady is warming up :)

February 1, 2001 - The season is over and I wish it were only beginning. The bow and gun season combined is 110 days total. I've hunted every day except Christmas day this year. 109 out of 110 possible. Most years I'll miss 8-12 days due to circumstances beyond my control. The season went out with a bang yesterday. See story and picture below. It was a great end to a great season considering the limited amount of deer I've seen. Now I just waiting for October 15, 2001.


January 10, 2001 - I've been able to hunt every day this season since October 15 except Christmas day. Sometimes it's just 30 minutes or so in the afternoon but it's good therapy for the soul. Just getting out in the fresh air stomping around does the body good. I dread the end of deer season and it's fast approaching!

If February is not to cold I plan some major squirrel hunting with my daughter. I've noticed a major decrease in the squirrel population since this fall. I'm afraid the lack of acorns and hickory nuts has caused a lot of winter die off. It seems ironic that most of the squirrels I see are young small squirrels. They seem to be staying out much later in the afternoon in search of food than in years past. I saw one old very large fox squirrel about a month ago .... very beautiful.


Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 60 yards
Deer Traveled: 0 yards
Date: December 3, 2000

I was hunting a food plot with a friend on December 3, 2000 and harvested this 3pt. buck. The afternoon was cold and windy with the wind chill in the 20's. At 4:15 I heard movement to the right of me. This guy and two other bucks came into the field. The other two bucks were a 6 and 8 pt. They feed for around 15 minutes and started to leave the field. It was now or never. I shot the deer and he collapsed right on the spot. All three bucks were almost the identical body size. This guy is into deer management and I shot the 3pt. to leave the young 6 and 8 pt. for the future.


While stalk hunting with a friend in Bibb County I harvested a small buck. The buck was in some thick cover and stepped out into a clearing 100 yards away. The shot was well placed and the deer dropped in his tracks.

Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 100 yards
Deer Traveled: 0 yards
Date: December 2000


I harvested deer on the morning of December 29, 2000. I was stalk hunting right after daylight and saw this guy rubbing a tree 125 yards away. He looked up and I identified him as a buck. The shot was well placed and he lunged at the hit before falling. He weighted 160 lbs., has a 17.5 inch outside spread and 10 inch tines. Probably 2.5 years old.

Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 125 yards
Deer Traveled: 10 yards
Date: December 29, 2000


I saw this deer last Wednesday afternoon. He was 300+ yards away and walking. Much to far for an off-hand shot and not much of a way to get any closer. I hunted him Thursday and Friday afternoons without seeing a single deer. Saturday morning I was hunting the thicket he disappeared into that Wednesday afternoon and he came through at 7:50am. My visibility is bow range except for one lane about 5 foot wide that runs about 80 yards. When he crossed the lane I fired. This is only the second buck I have seen all season on our property.

Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 70 yards
Deer Traveled: 0 yards
Date: January 6, 2001


I found some small rubs along woodline of a hay field and hung a stand nearby. I need a southernly wind type, preferably southwest, to hunt it. With all the artic fronts moving through, the stand had not been hunted in over a month and I decided to try a northwest wind. Northwest will work but not have quite as many options as a southwest. At about 4:45pm this 6pt. came through and I shot him at 20 yards. He had a 15.5" spread.

Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 20 yards
Deer Traveled: 40 yards
Date: January 7, 2001


I decided to hunt a stand that was 50 yards inside the woodline, as I walked into the stand I jumped a deer and it appeared to be a small buck or large doe .... I couldn't see it very well but I thought it was a buck. I was almost to my stand so I quickly climbed up and started to call using doe bleats and tending buck grunts. That's one of the advantage of a hanging stand - I was up and ready to hunt within a couple of minutes! I knew the deer did not smell me as he was upwind and if he didn't see me and spooked because he heard something I might have a chance of calling him back. I remember saying, "It will take a miracle for him to come back" and just like last year when I said that ... he did. Only this time it wasn't a 150 class B&C ... that would have been to sweet! It worked ... I guess ... he came back and I shot him at 80 yards in the woods. That was one of the longest truly woods shots I've ever had. He's not a monster but that summer sausage will be good! The bullet entered at the top of the shoulder just below the spine and it was all over quickly ... he never moved.

Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 80 yards
Deer Traveled: 0 yards
Date: January 25, 2001


 

I was sitting in a stand hunting a section of woods ... an old pasture was 200 yards away. I was trying to catch deer moving along a ridge that works it's way around a creek bottom. At about 5:00, I saw a deer walking down the edge of the pasture. He came all the way to the end closest to me which put him about 225 yards away. He was a small 4 or 6pt. I watched him in the scope for awhile. I had spent the morning shooting a couple of rifles and several pistols. I knew my rifle was 1.5" high at 100 yards and dead zero at around 225 yards. I had a good prop off my knee in the stand, but I had decided to shoot only mature bucks for the remained of the season. He was to small. He walked into some cutover and I put my gun down. I ran the magnification back down to 4.5x and set the adjustible objective back to 100 yards. Just as I finished I looked to the right and there stood a nice buck in some really thick saplings about 40 yards away. It was very windy and I had been so preoccupied with the little buck that this guy had walked right up on me. I stood up real slow and worked my way around to get a shot. He's a nice 8pt. - 17" wide.

Weapon: Remington 700
Scope: Leupold VXIII 4.5x14 50mm
Caliber: 270Win
Bullet: Nosler Partition 130gr.
Range: 40 yards
Deer Traveled: 60 yards
Date: January 31, 2001


Link to other Hunting Pictures




This could be an interesting way to hunt: