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Christmas parties, Fog, & Deer

This past weekend I didn?t get to hunt but twice due to the Christmas season activities? i.e. Christmas parties & a cantata.  This is fine though because it was cold and wet all weekend and I enjoy seeing everyone during the Holiday season.  So this blog post will be relatively shorter.
The first time I went in the woods this weekend was on Sunday morning (yes we hunt on Sundays!).  Sunday morning it was pretty cold.  It was also very foggy and raining.  I put on as many layers as I could and by the time I got to the stand I was sweating a little. It didn?t take long for me to cool down in this weather though!  I went to the stand that Jason (the camera guy) and I put out last Thursday.  I can tell you from the walk in that the deer are definitely back eating corn again.  Man they had every cob cleaned except for one! I took a 360 view when it got light enough so you can see the setup.

It was so cold that I was literally hunched down in the stand just trying to stay warm.  This is a 12 foot ladder stand hooked to an oak tree that is overlooking a small open area in the woods.  The tree that the stand is on backs into a downhill slope, so directly behind me is a small valley.  I had been sitting there and I wasn?t moving at all when I heard something jump, run, & gallop away very quickly.   This sound came directly from behind me.  I never moved and never even saw the deer, but I believe it was a buck as this deer was traveling solo and sounded heavy as it took off.  That deer had to have smelled me or something because I wasn?t moving at all.  He sounded to be about 20 ? 30 yards behind me coming up that small slope.  I wish he would have been to his left about 50 yards because I may have had a chance at him.  Anyway, that?s how it goes sometimes.  They come from everywhere that you can?t see!  As the deer ran off it blew 2 times.  It sounded like it paused and started blowing again.  So I took Adam?s advice and I blew back at the deer twice.  Sure enough? the deer stopped blowing at me.  Obviously this didn?t help me get a shot or anything, but at least it got that deer to be quiet.  As I think about it now, this is the second time that I?ve been in there and heard deer blowing around me.  If this happens one more time I may move the stand to a different location in there to see if it helps.  Maybe sitting out on that hilltop allows my scent to spread more.  Who knows?  If you?ve got any insight on this, respond to this post!  So about 2.5 hours was all I could take of the cold and wet and I went back to the house. 
This same morning my dad had gone down to the hunt over the soy bean field.  They just started cutting the soy beans this week and so the visibility was a little better.  He said he saw 4 deer in the field at about 350 ? 400 yards and he could tell that one was a good sized buck.  Though, he said when he put his scope up that he couldn?t find the deer.  It was so foggy that he said he thinks the scope was reflecting light or something off the mist in the air and it made it difficult for him to see anything (at that distance) in the scope.  So while he could see them with his bare eyes, he couldn?t find/see them in the scope.  Has this ever happened to you?

So Sunday afternoon I, like any good son, went back down to the soy bean field to see if I could see any deer!  I did a 360 view of the bean field on my way in so you can see the setup.





I walked through the muddy field and ended up at the box stand underneath the tree.  I like this stand because it provides a good wide area to look at, but it also makes it hard because you?re inside the box and have to move to see out of the corners.  There are 3 windows in the box stand and in order to see the areas where the windows aren?t you have to move around a little.  I usually like this stand early in the season because I can sit in there without getting torn up by mosquitoes!  Then as the season changes and leaves fall I get into the woods more.  This box stand is heavy and is constructed out of thick lumber.  Getting it down under that tree was no easy task!  Here?s what it looks like.




Once in the box stand I shot a video so you can feel the ?boxed in? feeling that you get from sitting in the stand.

I sat and sat and watched it rain and text messaged etc for a while.  I then began to wonder if I could look through the scope and see the other end of the field with the mist & fog everywhere still.  I put my scope up and I will say that it seemed cloudy inside of the scope.  If you?ve ever looked through and old scope or a cheap scope you know that it isn?t clear or if it has let moisture in the scope then it looks somewhat foggy.  This is the feeling I had when I tried to look long distances.  I also wondered if the IPhone camera could look through the scope.  I put it up and it can see through the scope, but it is hard to hold it still enough to do it.


Then right as it was starting to get dark, I saw movement of brown way down in the left corner about 350 yards (the same place my dad had seen the deer earlier that day).  I put the scope up and dialed it all the way to 9.  I watched the deer for a while hoping that a big buck would come out.  It was getting really close to dark and it was getting more and more difficult to see the deer.  I could have pulled the trigger, but it wouldn?t have been a good shot + I had to hurry to get to the Christmas Cantata at the church.  If I would have shot at the deer I know I would have looked for blood for at least 30 minutes!  So, even though I did have my safety off and wanted to, I didn?t force the shot.  I sat there for about 15 more minutes and then left.
That?s the weekend recap and next weekend will consist of both deer & duck hunting for me.  Hopefully I can get some better footage next weekend.



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