Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Discuss the science of figuring out our prey through good detective work.
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BackWoodsHunter
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby BackWoodsHunter » Tue May 03, 2011 1:33 pm

dan wrote:Basically, I looked at the topo's Hodag supplied and looked for structure that should be good for buck bedding. Some spots, like the 1st one we went to, I was right on... Some spots the bedding was a little off, but still findable.
The bucks on this property seemed to bed in the typical elevation spots of the hills as described in my Hill country bucks DVD, however, they needed a lot of cover or a thick escape like most flat land or farmland bucks... This was probably due to the hills being more rolling and lower elevations than that of the ones in the hill country DVD...
The hardest part about scouting out here was to get all the way back in a mile or so to find out the cover was not thick enough or that it had just been logged.
I can see where scouting from a plane for one day to see where there is thick cover on east or south facing slopes ( assuming West / North winds ) and then later walking those areas would be a GREAT tactic...
If a guy were to scout that vast of a territory without maps and without knowledge of terrain based bedding, he probably would not find much big buck sign, and likely would not be to successful.



I feel like this short paragraph helped to shorten my learning curve a little better yet thanks dan! I wish I had the abilities you have! Neat scouting day guys and I sure hope this pans out for Hodag this fall. Any idea the age class of the bucks that left the sign or if they are still alive? I know you said you were surprised by the amount of deer sign but would it match up to the quality of a buck you are after? It seems that the northwoods deer do get big in some instances but the lack of doe tags and amount of meat hunters really put a damper on the ability of a buck to get to any real size in the big woods. I won't even mention the predators :roll: :lol:


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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby magicman54494 » Tue May 03, 2011 2:26 pm

I had a great time. As usual, Hodag was a great host. My voice got a little hoarse from yelling for help while Dan and Hodag tried to figure out where we were.
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Thanks for letting me tag along.
Hodag, I found your topo map in my backpack. If you need it soon let me know and I'll send it to you.
kyrie eleison



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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby dan » Tue May 03, 2011 9:00 pm

I know you said you were surprised by the amount of deer sign but would it match up to the quality of a buck you are after?

I saw lots of sign of 2 1/2 year old bucks, and some decent sign of 3 1/2 y/o bucks, and some sign of older... Buck quality does not seem to be great by any means, but still better than expected based on the complaints I have heard.

I won't even mention the predators
I only cut one track that "could" of been a wolf... But it also could of been a dog. If it was a wolf it was a smal one,
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby Singing Bridge » Tue May 03, 2011 11:56 pm

magicman54494 wrote:... My voice got a little hoarse from yelling for help while Dan and Hodag tried to figure out where we were.


:lol: That's great stuff, magic! It sure sounds like productive time spent in the woods- Hodag has a plan!
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby magicman54494 » Wed May 04, 2011 4:47 am

One thing I really learned a lot from was listening to how much noise we made as we were walking. At times we were split apart and I could stop and listen to how much noise I could hear from different distances. I'm usually out alone so it was fun to get a feel for how far human sound travels thru the woods.

Another thing that stood out was that as hodag asked questions about each set up is that each setup is different. Dan's dvd's give general guidelines but each spot has to be investigated like a crime scene. Where does he bed? Why does he bed here? How far can he see? What wind? How does he most likely enter and exit? Where are his food sources? Is this a morning spot or evening spot? Some beds were slam dunks and very easy to read. (I love these kind) Some were harder to figure out and the buck had more options which makes picking a tree a bit more difficult. Eithor way you just make your best guess and go with it. If your right or wrong you learn something.

If your new to finding beds don't get discouraged if your not having great success right away. The more beds you find the better you will get at finding more. Soon you will just look at maps or the lay of the land and know where to look. Then you can find beds with less effort and time.

It is well worth hiring Dan to scout your property. We pay tons of money for gear but in the end the real key is how to use the gear. A good stand is worthless if it's hung in the wrong spot. The best bow on the market will do you no good if you don't have a deer to shoot it at. What you learn will pay you back over the rest of your hunting days. It's the old "teach a man to fish" theory. It's great to be able to ask questions in the woods in real life situations. Oh, and he's a lot of fun to hang out with too!
If you go scouting with Dan tell him to leave his dang monkey at home! :lol:
kyrie eleison



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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby Black Squirrel » Wed May 04, 2011 5:53 am

magicman54494 wrote: Oh, and he's a lot of fun to hang out with too!
If you go scouting with Dan tell him to leave his dang monkey at home! :lol:

Ok, I'm having Dan come here, whats with the monkey? Dan, leave it at home, let carol take care of it for the day. ;)
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby dan » Wed May 04, 2011 6:02 am

Never mind Magic... He is a monkey hater :roll:
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby PLB » Wed May 04, 2011 6:15 am

dan wrote:Never mind Magic... He is a monkey hater :roll:

I'm confused??? :lol: :lol: WTF???? :lol: :lol:
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby Singing Bridge » Wed May 04, 2011 6:21 am

If I see a damn monkey its gonna get shot! Then you can take it home and use it for bear bait. :mrgreen:

Getting back on track- excellent point from Dan regarding a plane fly over looking for heavy cover on those slopes. For those that think that would be a huge hassle, I have done it and recommend it. You may get lucky just by going to a local SMALL airport like I did. There were fairly new pilots just LOOKING for an excuse to get up in the air with their small plane, I didn't pay for anything but fuel and it was a lot less than you'd think. It's best to go in the winter when the leaves are off, you can see the heavy cover areas better and even see deer trails in the snow. Seeing the trails gives you a great sense of the elevation and patterns the deer use moving through the area. DO NOT constantly look through the magnified viewfinder of your camera, this can really trick you brain and make you dizzy with vomiting for a week!

In summary, I do not like hassles of any kind when it comes to deer hunting... I was stunned to see how easy a fly-over was to put together as well as how economical it turned out to be.
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby Hodag Hunter » Wed May 04, 2011 7:30 am

Magic, don't worry about the map as I have another......will hook up soon and you can give it to me then. Just got your voice message.......can still hear you yelling for help. :lol:

As Dan and Bridge mentioned the flying in a plane is a good idea.......my "plane" pictures are on another laptop which I forgot to bring along. I had (2) pictures printed off but they were of no-good as they were in areas we didn't walk.

My last fly over was 2006 so it wouldn't have showed recent logging anyhow. The Rhinelander airport charges me about $100 per each hour of air time and I never have burned an hour yet.

I have always had the same pilot (did this 3 times) and after the first year really new what I wanted. The last time we did it he would fly low and bank the plane hard where I was looking out the window straight down at the ground.....after about 30 minutes of this I was ready to head back, my son who was in the back with my buddy kept yelling "do it again, do it again". When we finally landed my bud and I both blew chuncks and I have what I thought a pretty tough stomach......my boy was just laughing. Pilot even said it was one of his "better rides".
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby headgear » Wed May 04, 2011 7:33 am

Good read here, I wasn't there and have no idea what kind of land Hodag hunts but I feel like I learned something today.
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby DEERSLAYER » Wed May 04, 2011 1:20 pm

Singing Bridge wrote:...There were fairly new pilots just LOOKING for an excuse to get up in the air with their small plane, I didn't pay for anything but fuel and it was a lot less than you'd think...

That is a good idea. I have checked into fly overs three times in the past, but it was always hundreds of dollars so I skipped it. Maybe if I contacted a pilots school they could direct me to some new pilots that would be more affordable.
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby Gardner Swamp » Wed May 04, 2011 1:42 pm

magicman54494 wrote:One thing I really learned a lot from was listening to how much noise we made as we were walking. At times we were split apart and I could stop and listen to how much noise I could hear from different distances. I'm usually out alone so it was fun to get a feel for how far human sound travels thru the woods.

Another thing that stood out was that as hodag asked questions about each set up is that each setup is different. Dan's dvd's give general guidelines but each spot has to be investigated like a crime scene. Where does he bed? Why does he bed here? How far can he see? What wind? How does he most likely enter and exit? Where are his food sources? Is this a morning spot or evening spot? Some beds were slam dunks and very easy to read. (I love these kind) Some were harder to figure out and the buck had more options which makes picking a tree a bit more difficult. Eithor way you just make your best guess and go with it. If your right or wrong you learn something.

If your new to finding beds don't get discouraged if your not having great success right away. The more beds you find the better you will get at finding more. Soon you will just look at maps or the lay of the land and know where to look. Then you can find beds with less effort and time.

It is well worth hiring Dan to scout your property. We pay tons of money for gear but in the end the real key is how to use the gear. A good stand is worthless if it's hung in the wrong spot. The best bow on the market will do you no good if you don't have a deer to shoot it at. What you learn will pay you back over the rest of your hunting days. It's the old "teach a man to fish" theory. It's great to be able to ask questions in the woods in real life situations. Oh, and he's a lot of fun to hang out with too!
If you go scouting with Dan tell him to leave his dang monkey at home! :lol:



Well said Magicman!!
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby kenn1320 » Wed May 04, 2011 2:47 pm

Fly over, brilliant idea. I get so frustrated looking at satalite images of tree's with leaves on them. You get to the spot and what looked thick on the aerial is wide open understory. I flew in a 4 seat sesna one time, didnt barf, but if the pilot had done anything but fly level like I told him, it could have got ugly. :mrgreen:
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Re: Scouting Time with Dan and Magic

Postby virginiashadow » Wed May 04, 2011 2:52 pm

COOL

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