Climbing method and success rate

Discussion in 'Bowhunting Talk' started by WildernessPhantom, Feb 4, 2020.

  1. WildernessPhantom

    WildernessPhantom Weekend Warrior

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    Hey all,

    I have thinking about my methods of success over the last 20 years here this off season as I always do. I have been thinking about how to put myself in better position for mature bucks. I have been using a stand and sticks as well as a climber for a long time. Looking back on my experience, I have pretty much only had success or opportunities with 3.5 year old deer or older using the stand and sticks. I love my climber but am starting to think maybe it’s the sound going up early in or the fact that it isn’t as concealable as the hang on. Getting 2.5 year olds within range isn’t anywhere near as difficult. I’m thinking about a saddle and sticks for a more quiet concealed climb in the hopes of fooling those smarter deer vs the climber. I hunt in a high pressured state in high pressured areas and am just trying to hone my skills. What methods do you all find puts you in the best position for older deer? Stand and sticks, climbers, or saddles? I use lone wolf stands if that matters. Thanks in advance and have a blessed day.
     
  2. oldnotdead

    oldnotdead Grizzled Veteran

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    The saddle is way quieter and allows you to keep the tree between you and the deer. Though you do have to take the practice time to get use to it and take full advantage well before season start. You will need a platform/ "foot" system.
    Go to you tube to see how to make a cheap fleece saddle to try it at GROUND LEVEL or a ft off ground to see if it would be for you. Put in a circle of tree steps just to practice moving around a tree off your line. Try shooting at that level and see how long you can comfortably sit and stand in it. They are expensive so always best to "test"first.
     
  3. Shocker99

    Shocker99 Grizzled Veteran

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    I don’t think a climber is noisy if you practice being quiet in one. There is an “art” to it I guess you can say. Definitely should try to avoid certain trees with shag bark which can break and be noisy but that goes for climbing sticks too.
     
  4. cantexian

    cantexian Grizzled Veteran

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  5. WildernessPhantom

    WildernessPhantom Weekend Warrior

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    I certainly will. Thanks
     
  6. oldnotdead

    oldnotdead Grizzled Veteran

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    Another great group of guys over there.
     
  7. S.McArthur

    S.McArthur Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Careful mentioning the word "saddle", it's rumored that a saddle hunter can hear it from 1000 miles away.
    But seriously, if you are interested, click the link cantexian posted, lots of good info in there.
     
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  8. WildernessPhantom

    WildernessPhantom Weekend Warrior

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    I did briefly and will go through all of it when I have a little time to really digest it all. Looks like a lot of solid info. I appreciate all the advice from you all that have contributed. Once I look things over I will see if I have anymore questions, which I’m certain I will and will post back. Before coming on this forum and asking questions, I’d never heard of saddle hunting before. Upon initial impressions it looks to be a great addition to any bowhunters arsenal. I am just trying to figure it all out to improve my chances on those older smarter deer in highly pressured areas. While I eat tag soup a lot, it can be frustrating but I love the challenge. I can admit that I pass on a lot of deer, but always have the philosophy that if I tag out on a younger one, I’ll never get that opportunity on a true wise old deer. I appreciate old does too. Lots of folks underestimate how crafty they really are. Thanks again and have a blessed day.


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  9. oldnotdead

    oldnotdead Grizzled Veteran

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    Oh boy ! On your doe statement, I sure don't...lol Read any of my in season post and you'll see my mention of the frustration in being able to draw down on a mature doe. I'm not a rack hunter though I do like a challenge of a big buck. The old doe is much more of a challenge for me on our place. They are tough smart and teach the herd. I firmly believe they dictate whether an area will be strictly nocturnal or not. I've watched epic battles between old doe and younger ones for territory. Standing on their hind legs for uncanny amounts of time tearing into each other besting the best prize fighters in hits landed. Then chasing the defeated doe until she and hers have crossed that unseen line to safety. They snort , growl and make some odd sounds. They'll slap the snot out of a belligerent young buck and run an older buck in knots jumping in and out of brush. Yep they frustate and make the best hunting days I have.
     
  10. early in

    early in Grizzled Veteran

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    I agree. Most stands are as noisy as you allow them to be, and choosing the right tree helps a lot. The trees I hunt from are pre-selected, so I don't get any surprises when I go to hunt. I don't like surprises. :biggrin:
     
  11. WildernessPhantom

    WildernessPhantom Weekend Warrior

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    That is awesome. I mean not being screwed by the old doe but the rest of it. I’m always on the lookout for the one that can ruin the spot. I agree that they teach the herd and educate the young. It’s why they are always on my list.


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  12. WildernessPhantom

    WildernessPhantom Weekend Warrior

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    I always scout and prep trees as well. Super pressured deer are an entirely different animal. I wish I had other options but going out of state isn’t really an option for me. I enjoy the challenges though. It sure is rewarding when it all comes together.


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  13. GMCmedic

    GMCmedic Weekend Warrior

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    I invested in the saddle idea cause one of the public properties I hunt is dwarf woods......between my buddy and I we saw 6 mature bucks and we were ground hunting for 5 of them. Ive spent more money on dumber things though.

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  14. oldnotdead

    oldnotdead Grizzled Veteran

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    Great thing about that site is they give DIY selfers great ideas on how to start " low key"
    I built my saddle, and man the guys over there are serous sewers( seamstress just sounds wrong)


    IMG_20190719_074952_hdr.jpg
     
  15. justinwmoe88

    justinwmoe88 Weekend Warrior

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    I’ve got two old nanny does on my property that make entry and exit difficult at times. I’d love to shoot one but in a one tag state I’m not wasting my only tag on a doe when there’s really nice bucks still around. Last season I had em both at different times broadside at 15 yards... Some people may know how frustrating it is having that happen then go home and watch a hunting show where someone shoots four of em and still has a pocket full of tags left...
     
  16. oldnotdead

    oldnotdead Grizzled Veteran

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    It's frustrating to have that many tags and end the season with just one taken. I can get 1 either or,1 buck and up to 6 doe tags. I usually go with the 4 for me the other two would be sign overs. just 5 years ago taking 2-3 doe wasn't as difficult. Now this area has been flooded by bow and gun hunters. Bow hunting has really increased A Lot. Many around here gun hunt but don't like gun season just too many huntingclose to each other. Near shootings and a death.
     
  17. justinwmoe88

    justinwmoe88 Weekend Warrior

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    Why is the dnr releasing that many tags of the deer numbers are that low
     
  18. oldnotdead

    oldnotdead Grizzled Veteran

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    The areas are large and they go by the whole area. Problem is, they also release highest buck take and age class by town. This area is slammed with hunting camps and farm leases. Farmers just started leasing around here. Every land owner hunts every season. I was surprised to call a southern nursery and find the guy I talked to was very familiar with where I live. We have guys from this site coming in from out of state to hunt right here.
    Point, deer are more nocturnal due to pressure but DEC here isn't like DNR's in other states. When we first moved here they hammered the area with doe tags and the unit next door was wiped out after a bad winter. That area 10 yrs later is still trying to recover. Our camp is over run with doe in a different unit and for 40 years getting 2 doe tags is difficult.
     
  19. justinwmoe88

    justinwmoe88 Weekend Warrior

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    Some people
    yeah our area used to sell over the counter doe tags until they were almost a rare sighting now until the population rebuilds its been a one tag deal either sex either whitetail or mule one tag one deer. But I have seen an increase in deer density again over the last few years so that is working nice.
     
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