New public land hunter anxiety...

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ihookem
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby ihookem » Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:53 pm

Hunters who bad mouth public land ( There were bullets flying all over) ( bullets hitting the tree I was in) ETC. About 99% of that is BS. Been hunting public all my life and never had a problem, not once. Never had a car damaged, no trail cams stolen,, ETC. Here is some good advise. Scout like crazy. Get 10 stands the first year. If there are cars where you want to park, go to a different area. I get to my spot where I park and walk in. I stay till dark. I sat 44 times this year and all on public , 40 times was SE Wis. public so there are many hunters. I saw one hunter this year while on stand. He walked inside 30 ' of me when he was walking out with flashlight. I was half down the tree when he came and hugged the tree and did not move an inch till he was a long ways away. He never knew I was there and glad, its by far the best stand I ever had so far and found it in September . If you get there early, hunt till dark where noone else wants to go ( and thats where most of the deer are) you will likely se very few people .You will likely be discouraged the first year but you will get to know the land better every year. Honeslty, I dont think I ever saw a person on public the last 5 yrs except the one I mentioned. People talk about bullets flying by and hunters yelling cause they need a reason to hunt private land . Public is however usually harder to hunt.


mipubbucks24
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby mipubbucks24 » Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:56 pm

The hunting beast community needs to change our view on post like this.

Yes it’s terrible, everything will get stolen, your truck will get keyed, probably even have a window smashed in, even worse there are absolutely no deer on any public at all. If you see other hunter they will just assume shoot at you then talk to you. Also hunter mistake people for deer all the time. Don’t waste your time! :lol:

This needs to be the new standard response to anyone asking about hunting public. :lol:
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headgear
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby headgear » Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:53 am

Echoing what everyone else is saying, never had any issues, everyone I run into has been super nice. Now big cities on the other hand, well you never know. :lol:
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DhD
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby DhD » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:20 am

This has been my first season hunting public exclusively, and I had a bit of anxiety about it as well. One thing that helped me was starting with smaller, less used properties that aren't on Google maps. Seems around here people balk at paying for a mapping app. Lots of casual guys on the big well marked pieces of public. Starting with small easy to break down properties made it easier for me at the beginning of the year.
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mihunter101
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby mihunter101 » Wed Jan 15, 2020 1:05 pm

Johnny-6-fingers wrote:I hunted Michigan public land this year. 20+ hunts. I didn't run into many other hunters. Part of that was probably because I was the first to get there and the last to leave, but I was also intentionally trying to avoid areas that I knew other hunters would be. The few times I did run into another hunter, it was always a positive experience.

On my last hunt of the year I decided to go to this area that I thought for sure very few hunters would ever go. To my surprise (and disappointment), when I got to the parking lot I saw an old beat up truck. I pulled up and there was this 70+ year old dude putting on some waders that looked like they were about as old as he was. He looked surprised to see me to but I immediately introduced myself and asked where he was heading to make sure I wasn't going to mess up his hunt.

This old timer proceeded to spend over an hour talking with me about the area. He had been hunting there for 50+ years and was still going strong. He had accumulated such a wealth of knowledge about the land and the deer that lived there. It was incredible. He looked at maps with me, taught me a lot about movement patterns, showed me photos of SEVERAL monster bucks that he had taken in the area (including one this year), and answered all of the questions I could come up with. I was so thankful for his willingness to share his knowledge with me that I gave him my number and offered to help him with a drag if he ever needed it. I still don't know why this guy was willing to share all of that information with me, but he sure wasn't the stereotypical Michigan public land hunter.

My theory - be respectful. Nobody wants to intentionally sabotage your hunts, just like you don't want to ruin anyone else's hunt. Don't blame others for your shortcomings. If you are running into too many people, you probably aren't hunting the right areas. Be respectful and don't be afraid to start up a conversation with those old codgers... you never know what you might learn.


Just curious, was this at Waterloo? If so, I've run into the same gentleman a couple times over the years. Pretty cool to meet someone so open and helpful.
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Johnny-6-fingers
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby Johnny-6-fingers » Wed Jan 15, 2020 1:09 pm

mihunter101 wrote:
Johnny-6-fingers wrote:I hunted Michigan public land this year. 20+ hunts. I didn't run in to many other hunters. Part of that was probably because I was the first to get there and the last to leave, but I was also intentionally trying to avoid areas that I knew other hunters would be. The few times I did run into another hunter, it was always a positive experience.

On my last hunt of the year I decided to go to this area that I thought for sure very few hunters would ever go. To my surprise (and disappointment), when I got to the parking lot I saw an old beat up truck. I pulled up and there was this 70+ year old dude putting on some waders that looked like they were about as old as he was. He looked surprised to see me to but I immediately introduced myself and asked where he was heading to make sure I wasn't going to mess up his hunt.

This old timer proceeded to spend over an hour talking with me about the area. He had been hunting there for 50+ years and was still going strong. He had accumulated such a wealth of knowledge about the land and the deer that lived there. It was incredible. He looked at maps with me, taught me a lot about movement patterns, showed me photos of SEVERAL monster bucks that he had taken in the area (including one this year), and answered all of the questions I could come up with. I was so thankful for his willingness to share his knowledge with me that I gave him my number and offered to help him with a drag if he ever needed it. I still don't know why this guy was willing to share all of that information with me, but he sure wasn't the stereotypical Michigan public land hunter.

My theory - be respectful. Nobody wants to intentionally sabotage your hunts, just like you don't want to ruin anyone else's hunt. Don't blame others for your shortcomings. If you are running into too many people, you probably aren't hunting the right areas. Be respectful and don't be afraid to start up a conversation with those old codgers... you never know what you might learn.


Just curious, was this at Waterloo? If so, I've run into the same gentleman a couple times over the years. Pretty cool to meet someone so open and helpful.




This was up in Manistee.
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mihunter101
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby mihunter101 » Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:34 pm

Better yet to know there's more than one such gentlemen.
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby TripleD » Thu Jan 16, 2020 12:55 pm

I have hunted public in all over Northern Michigan and UP and never have run into any issues like you have stated above. Echoing what most guys are stating, you won't have an issue. I have thought of similar situations to you but to this day I have never experienced any of them. The only thing I have experienced is a owl swooping down and taking my hat off my head! :lol: You'll be fine, get the first few hunts under your belt and you'll have it mastered. Good luck in the bush.
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Dpierce72
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby Dpierce72 » Tue Jan 21, 2020 9:29 am

Our minds are powerful things, just the same way they can keep you in when it's cold, rainy, too hot, etc. It can keep you out of good public land.

I would never say I don't understand your concerns, because I do, but don't let your mind keep you from doing what others are already doing. My experience is the field isn't nearly as bad as ones mind can make it out to be. Go get 'em!
"Immerse yourself in the outdoor experience. It will cleanse your soul and make your a better person." ~Fred Bear
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby longranger99 » Sun Jan 26, 2020 11:47 pm

I was a little hesitant about giving up a small lease and becoming a public land hunter but after my first full season I made the right choice for me. It kind of makes you be more adventuresome and get out of your comfort zone, you can see and experience new things. Besides, as I look back at my own personal experience when hunting private land it wasn’t always positive. I’ve had neighbors driving the fence line the last 1/2 hr of shooting light spooking the best deer around, coon hunters and mushroom hunters on my trail cameras. So my advice would be just try it. Besides you as tax payers are a co-owner, you might as well go out and use it. Anyway, good luck and be safe!
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby Mopar1169 » Mon Jan 27, 2020 12:09 pm

I have always hunted private until this last season. I only hunted private 3 times this year. This was my first year giving it a go on public. I went to Nebraska camping and public hunting. Then I hunted a few different places around home in central Michigan. I tagged out on public around home. I only saw one other hunter in Nebraska hunting for a week. Once he realized he couldn't drive back to where he was going he turned around and left. I only saw 2 people in Michigan on public and they were not hunting where I was going. I hunt alot during the week though working shift work.

I was also hesitant from all the horror stories I have heard. But I ended up seeing more bucks then I have ever saw in a season. Excluding hunting on my place in Minnesota. But the river flooding has made my place unhuntable the last couple years. So I had to figure something else out. Between watching the beast and the THP guys I decided to get a saddle, sticks and platform. Absolutely love hunting like this.

You will never know what your missing until you give it a try. I plan on going back to Sandhills this year. If I have time I might do some hunting in Wisconsin too. My hunting buddy from college that I hunt with lives in Wisconsin now.
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby G-Patt » Sat Feb 01, 2020 6:05 am

Don't worry much about people because they are generally cool; pack your 9mm to fend off rabid coyotes and stray, aggressive dogs; and don't park your truck in high-traffic areas if you can avoid it. Good luck and enjoy public land hunting!
On my deathbed, I will receive total consciousness. So I have that going for me, which is nice!
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Re: New public land hunter anxiety...

Unread postby swhughes81 » Sat Feb 08, 2020 3:12 am

I’m headed into year 5 I believe hunting public. It’s a lot more work but I love it. I’ve seen a lot more deer and have not had any run ins with people except in the parking lot and trails and they have all been positive. I haven’t talked to my brother in law in over 3 years over family private land. That’s when I had had enough of it and went to public. It was over a squirrel feeder I’ve never seen to this day that he knew I sabotaged. I’ve been a lot happier on public. You can still get good deer and turkeys off of it. I get off work at noon. My kids get off the bus at 3:30. I had about 2 hours to hunt by the time I got out to public. It was a Tuesday Last spring, last week of turkey season. I get to parking lot and not one other car was there. I get my stuff out shut my door and a turkey gobbles 100 yards from me. I signed into the box really quickly and can see 3 other hunters had been there that morning. Anyway long story short, the turkey wouldn’t come in so I snuck around until I was within 30 yards of him just back in the woods and shot him. 100 yard walk back to my truck. I was There a little over an hour and tagged out! Doesn’t always work that way.


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