It is a magical time of the year! What an absolute light switch change it was for us here in SW WI in a matter of days.
This past week has produced some absolute giants. We are here to give you an update on the action and give some tips of how we have successfully harvested multiple mature bucks in the last week.
For the whole story on my buck “The Big 8” head over to my blog about the hunt. On a more tactical explanation I will give you the quick rundown.
I did not see much rutting activity besides some 2 and 3 year olds. The morning I harvested mine I spent the night before observing from the road. I noticed a large amount of movement to the west of where we setup.
I selected my location based on what was around me and the previous rut activity over the years.
Picture a U shape, now think of the stand being on the bottom part of the U. With two wooded fingers being what forms the U and the center of the U being a food plot and winter wheat field.
The left side of the U has two ponds that bucks and doe frequent, with doe bedding and bucks getting a mid day drink.
The right right is bordered by another ag field and has a large ditch of doe bedding below it. I see movement from one bedding area to the other with bucks staying on the inside edge of the U shape.
Saturday November 4th was no different. We saw 4, 3-year olds in the first hour and finally at 9am we saw the first mature buck of the year.
The buck I refer to as “The big 8” was working the top 1/4 of a hill downwind of the large bedding area. We were able to snort wheeze him into 25 yards and drop the hammer.
A couple of important things to note. We saw lone fawns right away, that told me that there might be a hot doe or near hot doe who has been getting harassed enough to lose her fawns.
The rut drunk 3 year olds enhanced that suspicion with the mature 8 confirming it.
Right now is all about getting in the zone of a hot doe and sitting in the travel route for bucks who are searching.
Think back to the summer and early season. Where were the doe family groups living? Can you think of a couple groups you always had on trail camera or maybe saw during your September sits?
Now consider where they are bedding. Get in between two separate bedding areas or on the downwind side of a really good one and wait.
There is no perfect time to be in the tree as I think it can happen anytime. I do think if you made me choose I would say between 8:30am – 11:00am. I really believe mature bucks move all night and lay down for a bit as the chaos ensues around them at day break.
Once those 3 year olds and dink bucks stop running and grunting the mature deer will get up and start checking doe bedding areas.
Think of how you would get from point a to point b, most likely a bucks won’t be much different, they want to cover as much ground as they can. This is the rare time they take the route with least resistance, (i.e logging roads, field edges).
Tree time is your greatest tactic simply put.
Now, let’s take a look at the weather.
Know yourself, if you can’t deal with the cold, come to terms with it and select wisely. Much like the last two years it is going to be brutally cold this next week.
I don’t look as the pressure as much anymore as I believe this time of the year they will be moving regardless, it is all about how much you can take.
Top 3 days:
- Saturday Nov 9th: Movement might be subdued a tad but you should be able to sit all day, it is the last decent temp you will get for awhile.
- Sunday Nov 10th: The 10th is my favorite day of the year. I have had the most action on this day over the years. You will get that building pressure and still will have decent temps, take advantage.
- Sunday Nov 11th: My second favorite day of the year! Pressure will be off the charts and the cold will be brutal. Find a way to stay warm and you will see deer all day.
I truly believe the 7th -14th are the best days of the year. You never know when it will happen!
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About The Author
Taylor is the Owner and founder of 1080 Outdoors. He founded the company from his drive and passion of the Outdoors. He thoroughly enjoys Turkey and Deer Hunting in midwest. He runs a digital marketing company after he recently left the Law Enforcement profession. Follow along on Taylor’s hunting journey this year.