Advice needed

Discussion in 'Scouting and setting up' started by Tim Tripoli, Mar 5, 2018.

  1. Tim Tripoli

    Tim Tripoli Member

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    After doing some spring scouting on one of the properties I am hunting I noticed a few things. First there appears to be a lot of deer traffic along the edge of a marsh swamp area I had only briefly scouted in the past. I had noticed sign before but dismissed it because there was no good trees to put a stand on. All the trees inside the swamp area are only 6 or 8 feet tall and less then 4 or 5 inches in diameter. All the trees around the perimeter are all old oaks that are rather large. So how would you recommend setting up a saddle in trees that you can not physically reach around even at 15 to 20 feet?

    Second how would you guys recommend hunting an area that is really thick with under growth? It seems like most of archery season if I was not setup on trails the shoot opportunities were very small. I tried trimming shoot lanes last year but Multi flora Rosa just grows back so darn quick. Don't get me wrong I was seeing deer but there were not a lot of good shot opportunities because of the under growth.

    I was really hunting/waiting for a particular buck I had been watching and seeing on the cameras. I played cat and mouse with him most of archery season. I would hunt the high spot I would see him come out at the lower spot. I would switch to the lower spot and he would show up in the middle spot. Early archery season I was hunting mostly the field edge and could see him with the bino's. I think I had good scent control, played the wind mostly right, and was well hidden. I had does walk past my tree on several occasions. I was actually amazed at how many deer I saw this year, but I never saw a legal buck inside bow range or for that fact gun range. I hunted every week from the beginning of archery till the end of rifle season in PA and had a great time. I saw some amazing things from mother nature last season and really that is what it is all about.

    I am looking for any advice on setups and tactics that apply to saddle hunting. Like how to hang from big old oaks and what to do in area with heavy under growth. I am in a bit of a self caused dry spell. I have shot more does then bucks lately and a few years ago I said no more does till I get it balanced back out. Plus I would really like to get at least one nice mature buck, most of the ones I have taken were smaller basket racks. Yeah I know the antlers don't taste good, but it is easier to brag when they have them. Maybe because I am older now, or I have mature as a hunter I just don't want to shoot the first legal buck I see any more.

    Thanks

    Tim
     
  2. redsquirrel

    redsquirrel Administrator
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    In order to set up on something like you described, it is going to be a lot more work than other spots. Is this public land in PA? If it is, you can use extensions to set up sticks or wild edge stepps so that you can pre-set them on the tree you choose. Another option for something like that is SRT to climb. If it is private and you are allowed, you could use screw in steps. If your lineman's belt needs to be longer you could make it longer or an extension. Once you get it set up you could set a lifeline up in the tree for climbing if that made it easier.

    For the undergrowth, I'd set up where you can shoot to at least several trails from your tree. Now is the time to clear some shooting lanes so that they will look more natural by the fall.
     
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  3. JBDaddy

    JBDaddy Active Member

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    I would hunt those thick areas - that's where the deer hide. Get in there now and cut some subtle shooting lanes at various angles to your tree so you can see them move across one, and shoot them at the next.

    Just Saturday I sat in a 90 minute seminar with John Eberhart, and talked to him before & afterward with similar questions, and got the same advice. This year I'll definitely be finding the thickest, nastiest areas I can hunt: that's not just because I'm in southern Michigan and it's way over-hunted, but because deer will hide out in those hard-to-reach places naturally anyway. John put it this way, "Pretend every other hunter you've ever seen out there is trying to shoot YOU. Where would you stay? Hunt that."

    Re: tree size, find pictures of him up in a tree some time - he hunts some huuuge trees. He's got a cool screw-in T system that he hangs his tether over at head height, and then hooks it around a different T lower on the tree - so he doesn't have to go around it.. Now, Boudreaux joked he was plain crazy... and I'd find that hard to argue :) As a compromise, I would take an old Hunter Safety System tree strap or other long static rope along to go around those big trunks, and then tether to that. Set it up early in the year and sit in it while still hooked up with a lineman's belt to get a feel for if it'll slip at all, etc.
     
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  4. Tim Tripoli

    Tim Tripoli Member

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    Private land, but the land owner does not want any screw in steps used. Plan on cutting some shooting lanes in the next few weeks. But as I said the Rosa grows back quickly. Not sure how to do SRT, barely got one season behind me in the saddle. I like the idea of using the life line. I have few those still.

    Keep the idea's coming. I will try to take a few pics next week when I go do some lane trimming.

    Tim
     
  5. g2outdoors

    g2outdoors Well-Known Member

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    I'm not going to tell John he's wrong - his t-screw obviously works for him. Keep in mind he's only about 140 lbs.

    HOWEVER, I would never advise anyone hang from a screw in step or t-screw. I would do what @JBDaddy suggested and bring in a longer rope/strap right now and get that tree setup.
     
  6. swampsnyper

    swampsnyper Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like my season last year. I have a private lease on timber land and I can’t cut trees. I have a thick swamp area that’s mostly briars and small trees. Had a few of the main trails pin pointed coming out all around it. Had pics all year of the buck I wanted since he was in velvet. I got pics of him on every trail and all over the lease but that thicket was where he lived. Too thick to go in and hunt it. I hunted the edges on the exit routes and he would always exit at a different at spot. I ended up killing him in Jan with a gun in another area on the other side of my lease.
    Since cutting shooting lanes won’t help much in those types of quick growing areas, why not try cutting barricades to funnel him. Block off most routes with piles of brush. Make the deer concentrate on key areas that bring them past a huntable tree. I’d do it now to give them time to settle back in there because you gonna bust up their safe spot doing so.
     
  7. bigjoe

    bigjoe Well-Known Member

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    Just an idea.

    Go with longer rope or straps. Extensions are ok, but every time you have an extension you are inviting Murphy’s law. You may want get a rope ladder or an aider to climb with. Use a life line.

    Throw a light line up over a limb and pull up your life line secure it at base. Then throw Light line tied to a rope and pull up aider or rope steps. Again secure at base.

    Make your self an extra long linesman belt. Climb up set your plat form. Then you can tie off at top of tree for your aider & life or leave it tied at base.
     
  8. kelly.jayp

    kelly.jayp Well-Known Member

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    One thing that jumped out at me reading your post is how much you hunted it - every week is a LOT of hunting pressure- good scent control isn’t going to offset that. I’d recommend finding the best spots and not be too concerned with how high up you are. If it’s 8 feet but good cover and shot angles take it. Dan Infalt and @bowhunter15 both have videos where they use a stepladder. Make sure you hunt it when time is right only and that you have good entry / exit routes. I used to pound a lease Until I started learning how it was affecting my encounters. I’m no monster killer but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night


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  9. Tim Tripoli

    Tim Tripoli Member

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    Hunting every week but not in the same spot. I have 400 acres to hunt. Mind you 250 ish is dairy fields.

    Exit and entry is some what of an issue for some of my stands due to the Multi Flora Rosa and the briers. As for the wind as I said most times I got it right. When I didn't I waited for a good time to move and reset. I'll admit I have a lot to learn.

    Tim
     
  10. JakeB

    JakeB Member

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    Tripod, or hunt from the ground. Don’t get tunnel vision thinking you NEED to use your saddle every hunt, it’s just a tool. Don’t think you need 5 mowed shooting lanes either, all you need is enough to slip an arrow through.

    Right now I would be in the middle of that swamp looking for his bed, likely it’s not very far off the transition. Check all the points shooting out into it or something “different” big trees, dry humps stuff like that.

    Good luck
     
  11. Cajunshooter

    Cajunshooter Active Member

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    Tim you have just described almost my exact same scenario for this season. I’m not complaining about this season though because the past two years I saw practically nothing. This season I only had two sits where at didn’t see anything and I was pretty sure I wouldn’t because of the weather. So I had an absolute improvement in sightings purely because of the saddle.

    Here’s what I’m going to do differently for next season.
    1) I’m going to better identify buck beds. (I’m really struggling figuring these out)
    2) I going to build my own pinch points by stringing out the plastic deer fencing from my outer fenceline inward toward the center of my property, where I know the deer travel from beds to food, to try to create travel corridors that are predictable. Then I’ll set up at the end of each of these pinch points.

    This is going to take a lot more work and time but I’m hoping it’s going to put right on the deer next season rather the 50 or 60 yards away behind brush where I can’t get a clear shot.


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  12. IkemanTX

    IkemanTX Well-Known Member

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    EZKut bolts... they aren’t technically screw in steps, and aren’t permanent.


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  13. ImThere

    ImThere Well-Known Member

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    Tripods are nice for areas like this
     
  14. Tim Tripoli

    Tim Tripoli Member

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    Thanks for all the advice.
     
  15. Nutterbuster

    Nutterbuster Active Member

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    Concerning brush, you'd be surprised what you can shoot through with a heavy arrow and a small fixed blade head with high FOC. At short ranges, obviously. Cattails and palmettos, for example, are pretty easy to blow through.
     
  16. KYHunter

    KYHunter New Member

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    Have you considered hunting from the ground? I’ve noticed that in a few spots that I hunt the brush is thickest at about shoulder height and that makes it difficult to shoot through from above but is clear shooting if sitting down. I don’t know if that’s how your setup looks like but as someone mentioned above, don’t feel like you HAVE to hunt from above.

    I’ve made a couple ghillie suits from baseball netting, burlap, jute and fabric and have had success evading deer eyes at ground level. Just a thought!
     
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  17. Allegheny Tom

    Allegheny Tom Active Member

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    You can deal with the multi flora rose with herbicide. Treat the cut immediately with either 50/50 roundup/water or treat the cut with Tordon, Crossbow, or other brush herbicide. There's a lot of them on the market.
    The advantage of roundup is that it's not soil active and won't effect surrounding shrubs or trees. The roundup will work, but it isn't as effective on brush as something like Tordon. But some brush killers are soil active (Tordon is soil active) and can harm plants, shrubs, trees, etc that are growing very close.
    If it were me, I'd get out there now and cut and treat a few shooting lanes with roundup/water...don't over do it. Only cut what is really critical. Too many guys go hog wild with cutting lanes
    You may have to detail trim a little in late summer, but do the heavy stuff now.
     

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