Here are hunting conditions around various regions of the country, as reported from our staff and field reporters. What are the conditions in your area?
If you are not taking the time to be in the woods right now, do yourself a favor and make
the time. Rut activity is really picking up in Michigan. Scrapes and rubs are starting to pop up everywhere and the deer movement is really starting to ramp up. With the colder temperatures and the promising forecast there will be nothing holding the deer back from moving during daylight hours. On days where the weather is not cooperating, look for the breaks in weather and try to be in the woods during this time. This was one of the keys that help me with my success this past weekend (see the exciting full story at the end of the report!). Good luck this coming week and remember to be safe! ~Joel
Hunting was heating up the last weekend of October in Ohio. One morning I grunted in 5 bucks within 45 minutes, all looking for a fight. The last one, a monster 10 point, would not quite close the last few yards I needed for a shot, but
cold temperatures had them very active around Halloween. The first weekend in November promised to be great, but a warm front, and 2 thunderstorms really put deer movement to a halt. 3 other hunters confirmed that deer movement had dropped to zero around this time frame, even though I almost had a shot at another monster, who was 1 step away from taking my arrow (see attached trailcam picture). With some therapy I’ll be fine. Hopefully weather, now cooling off will get the bucks back active in Ohio, as I believe that the rut has not happened yet. Should be very soon, so get out! ~ Adam
When it comes to East Texas weather, I am upset as to the opening day temperatures. I have never experienced such a humid day. Today, November 4th, there was 85% humidity. Typical temperature in the morning was in the mid-seventies and lower sixties. (65 °F-74° F) the later parts of the day warmed up to a general high of about (77 °F-83 °F). Activity is inversely proportional to weather, and as the temperature decreases, the deer activity increases. Leaves are now 85% fallen, and the rut is mildly halted by the warm weather. When it comes to rut activity, the game is ON! Scrapes are being daily checked by bucks, and although the rut is not entirely full-fledge, the climax of rut will occur during the cold snap of Modern Gun. 85% of leaves are now on the ground. Although the leaves are not entirely fallen, and it is virtually impossible to stay quiet while walking to stand locations. Be sure that Sound Barrier’s Buck Bumper is in your stand and other equipment for maximum sound concealment, stealth, and elimination of inevitable mistakes (HERE). Good luck!
The noise level in the woods right now is very high, and this along with scent should be your major stealth concern. We have not had much rain lately and about 80% of the trees have shed their leaves. If you haven't cleared paths to your hunting spots, might want to take it slow (Sound Concealment Rule #3 - See other seven in our hunting guide HERE). More big bucks are falling so find some good weather and hit the woods.
Good Luck out there and “Never be heard again!”
Joel’s in depth harvest story:
I was really excited to be able to get out into the woods this past weekend but when I checked the weather the excitement quickly went away. The forecast was calling for thunderstorms Saturday night and rain all day Sunday. Watching the weather closely Saturday, it revealed that there was going to be a break in the weather right at prime time in the evening. My dad and I rushed out before the storm hit so we would be there right as the storm passed. The moment the
weather let up, the deer activity picked up. We had about a dozen does and fawns come out of a bedding area along with a three point. We enjoyed the evening watching the buck come and go, checking does, and feed in the food plot.
Sunday was supposed to bring more rain but when I checked it Saturday night it now wasn’t supposed to hit until early afternoon. The temps were a little warmer than the day before, being around 50 in the morning when they had been in the low to mid 40s.
I tried to get to my stand as early as possible Sunday morning. I arrived at 6:15, setup all of my gear and sat back waiting for the sun to rise. The wind was dead calm which can lead to swirling winds unless the pressure is high, which it was. This turned out to be my saving grace as thermals were rising.
With all of the rain we had the night before, the ground and leaves were really soft and quiet. This made it almost impossible to hear anything coming through the leaves. At around 7:10, I checked over my right shoulder and saw a buck at only 10 yards working his way through some thick brush behind me. He had his nose down and was walking slowly, making sure not to miss anything as he worked through. He finally started to head to an opening where I could take a shot, and I slowly drew my bow back at only 10 yards away. As he hit a small opening, picked his head up stomping lightly, I settled my pin and released the arrow. As I watched the arrow hit the deer quartering away from me, I immediately knew I had hit him
slightly back. I then knew I had to give the deer time. My father agreed that we had to give the deer time, so we made a plan to meet up after a few hours and track the deer together.
I went home and brought my wife and son breakfast. I anxiously waited for the hours to go by before we would meet to go track. I drove back to the property a little early because I just could stand sitting at home waiting. I met with the property owner to talk about the hit and what I had seen for blood. He was confident that we would find him right away. I wasn’t so sure. Once my dad showed up, we got our gear together and headed out to go track. I was taking them to where I had found first blood when the property owner had found good blood on the trail we were walking in on. We were only about 10 yards from where I had initially hit the deer so we decided to just pick up the trail there. As we were following the blood, we had only taken about 10 steps when I looked up and saw the deer. In disbelief, I turned around to my dad said “There he is!” I was so excited that we found him so quickly thinking I had made such a poor shot.
As we celebrated the recovery, I called my wife to tell that we had found him so she could come out with my son to see the deer and take pictures. I loved being able to share this memory with my family and seeing my son’s first experience with a deer. A memory I will cherish forever!