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Deer season prep, when do you start?

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Camping' started by RRTX11, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. RRTX11


    Dec 27, 2010
    Central Texas
    I am curious as to what people do to prep for deer season? What, when and how do you get ready for deer season? Or do you just grab your rifle and head to the ranch, lease or public lands?

    Hunting is South Texas, here is my routine.

    May- feeder and blind repair and prep
    June- fill protein in 8 feeders (get cameras up and taking photos)
    July- fill protein, check cameras, replace batteries, reload ammo
    August-fill protein, cameras, round up food plots
    early September-fill feeders with corn, cameras, plow,
    3rd week of september- plant 2 1/2 acre oats patches, mow senderos, weedeat around blinds and feeders, clip branches and cleanup shooting lanes.
    October- wash and vacume seal all my clothes for the season twice with baking soda, label hot/cold weather, feeders/corn, sight in .308
    3rd week of October- top off feeders, kill rattlesnakes, clean all the blinds out of spiders, wasp nest. 2 weeks off property prior to opening day.
    4th of Nov- confirm zero with .308 on way to ranch.
    5th of No- get in the stand at 5:30 a.m. and enjoy.

    January- Make Sausage.

    What do you do to prep for THE season?
  2. IndianaMatt


    Jul 8, 2008
    What about target practice with your rifle!?

    I am preparing now for my first deer hunt ever. Registered to get my license, spent some time throwing lead downrange, read, read, read about deer hunting, and go through an inventory of what gear I've got vs. what I still need. SO excited!

  3. RRTX11


    Dec 27, 2010
    Central Texas
    Pretty much every weekend that I am not prepping for deer I am shooting IDPA or USPSA or at a range. Being at the range often I put around 200 rounds down range with my REM 700 .308 per year. When I sight the rifle in for Deer at 100 yds in the fall, it goes in the case and doesn't get touched again until the day before the season starts, when I confirm zero. The rest of the year when I shoot it I shoot it at range between 100-500 yds. The shots to feeders range from 98 yards to 225 yards, so I just zero at 100 for the season. Good luck with your first hunt.
  4. IndianaMatt


    Jul 8, 2008
    Nice! Yeah, I'm getting pretty excited about it. Spent the afternoon at the range practicing, followed by lots of wandering around Bass Pro in perplexed bewilderment over what clothes, stands, gear I'll need.

    I think I'll just wear jeans and my red hunting Woolrich coat.
  5. RRTX11


    Dec 27, 2010
    Central Texas
    Over the last 10 years, whenever someone ask me what I want for my birthday or christmas, I tell them, anything camofluage. Bass pro shop is too proud of their stuff IMO. Good luck on your hunt.
  6. BK63


    Sep 15, 2005
    I always go out to my spot about a month ahead of time and look around and see what's going on. I usually see the same sign every year, scrapes and rubs. Take the gun to the range to make sure it's on, and then go. I use the same check list every year to make sure I have what I need for the day. I take a turkey seat that is low to the ground and a turkey blind webbing that is about 2.5 feet high to mask movement. I sit up on a ridge and watch a valley. This has worked good for years. I bring a back pack with extra clothes. When I'm walking that mile in at 4am I'm usually sweating by the time I get there and put a dry shirt on. Nothing worse than sitting in wet clothes. Bring my lunch, stuff to drink, drag rope, knife, all that kind of stuff, and enjoy the day. Usually I'm not there past 8am, but there are days that go by and I don't see anything. It's still better than sitting at a desk at work all day. I see other things go by, fox, lots of squirrels and stuff. I just enjoy being out there. Just make a list ahead of time and you won't forget anything.
  7. method


    Mar 27, 2002
    Cleveland, OH
    I got a really nice hooded camo jacket at Walmart a few weeks ago for 30 bucks. Was at Bass Pro last week, and found the exact same jacket, maybe labeled differently, for 50 bucks.
  8. Hummer

    Hummer Big Member

    Mar 16, 2003
    Western Colorado
    My prep begins a year in advance to make sure I have everything needed for the next years hunt and camp supplies. Every year during my hunt I make a new list on a legal pad of things I want to repair, replace or add to my hunting gear, camp trailer or truck. This gets me working on or shopping for things well in advance instead of just before season when the prices on hunting supplies are much higher.

    Conditions during my deer and elk hunts can be severely cold and snowy so that success and even survival depends on being well prepared. For example, last year I realized all my long handles were worn out so I pitched them all and began shopping the sales at the local Cabela's. Over a few months I picked up 8 pair of synthetic, moisture wicking longies of different weights and manufacture. Also added new camo gloves, shirts and pants. Now I'll have much better choices for the different weather conditions--and at HALF the cost of the hunting season catalog prices.

    By late August I make sure the propane bottles are filled, the heaters, stove, refrig, lights and chainsaw all work. I assemble tire chains and tools for most contingencies. The last thing I want is to lose 2 or 3 days out of my 9 day season to drive to town to fix something.

    My base camp is an old 17 ft. camper trailer that I haul to the national forest about 4 hours away. Last week I broke down and bought new trailer tires--the old ones I bought 26 years ago. :whistling: It wouldn't do to have a blowout or accident en route.

    Being prepared means I can spend my time in the woods hunting from dawn to dusk (or dark to dark :supergrin:), instead of tinkering with things in camp. That goes a long ways toward getting my elk every year.
  9. RRTX11


    Dec 27, 2010
    Central Texas
    Hummer, interesting prep you go through compared to mine. When I think of deer/elk hunting that is more along the lines of what I think of. You have to learn to pack light, but pack everything you could possibly need as you do not know what environmental factors are going to come into play throughout your hunt. Packing the animals out, meat storage, getting your gear prepped and packed......Much different that the hunting I do.

    I didn't mention in my initial post. It is considered roughing it where we hunt because it takes 30 minutes to get to a gas station....Ranch house, cable tv, internet, beds, kitchen, grills, smokehouses, most importantly football.....many ammenities that a lot of people hunt do not get to have.

    My hunting style can spoil you over time....Which is why a lot of us try and get a Colorado hunt in every once in awhile.

    Good stuff.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  10. filthy infidel

    filthy infidel 100% Infidel

    Apr 24, 2007
    North Carolina
    Good luck to you all. I'm a newish hunter- shot a few whittails over the last few years and I'm trying not to bug my neighbor too much (he took me hunting with him the last two seasons). Found some hunting ground, have my own stands, just need some time in the woods now.
  11. Prep? It nevers ends for me.

    10months out of the year, I'm doing something in regards to preparing to hunt. If it's saving dollars, buying supplies, buying ammo, investigating new WMA/WEA, reading up on new rules/reg changesm submitting for quote permits, cutting trails & gathering supplies for ground blinds, reviewing harvest data, etc.....

    It never stops.

    For example, archery starts around the end of Aug for me, and I hunt to spring turkey into late April or early May. Every time during all times and season, & every min/hour of the day, I'm thinking or what I'm going todo for DEER season. I might go out during sml-game and have a squirrel in my sights, but I'm thinking and prepping for deer.

    It never ends, your always preping imho.

    Some have different issues to overcome so no two person has the same prep. A person in Alaska would have a very different prep than some one in Ohio or some one on the ranch in Tx or someone in the swamps of Florida.

    The same goes for the public vrs private lands and what you have todo
  12. RRTX11


    Dec 27, 2010
    Central Texas

    Which was the purpose of my thread.....what do YOU do to prep for season. Sounds like you do a lot of odds and ends and alot of mental preperation. Hunting in South Texas is a lot different than hunting in Michigan, Idaho or Alaska. My prep could be considered overkill by some, but I know there are many more out there that do a lot more than I.

    For instance, when I harvest an animal.....I go back to the house and get the John Deere Gator and drive in right up to the deer and take it to the skinnin tree. Some people have to gut it and quarter it in the field and haul it out. Lot of different styles of hunting.
  13. havensal

    havensal Nozzle Jockey CLM

    Aug 14, 2003
    Western, NY
    Let's see.

    Jan- Fox and Coyote hunting, Deer season is still a ways off. I do try to cut trails through the snow with the 4 wheeler to help the deer. May even try some reloads for next season.

    Feb- Same as Jan. I may start thinking about what I want to plant and clear for next season.

    Mar- Now I am thinking more about what I want to plant and what I want to clear out. May even decide if I want to move or add stands. If snow starts melting I get the range ready and start shooting.

    Apr- Trout season. I do need to finalize my decisions on what to plant. Need to order soon if I am going to have my seeds in time. More shooting.

    May- Turkey season. I have to order my seeds. Need to start clearing and preparing to plant. Start mowing some of the overgrown fields. Cutting new 4 wheeler trails before the ferns get tall enough to hide everything. This is usually my busiest month. Seems like everything needs to be done in May. I think I am going to delay my food plots until June next year.

    Jun- Planting my early food plots. Clearing and mowing. Finish cutting trails. Usually start working up some loads or setting up any newly acquired rifles.

    Jul- Too dang hot to do a lot. Work for a couple of hours in the morning. Still mowing and clearing. Plant some of my mid-season crops. May put up a trail camera or two. Still shooting.

    Aug- Plant my late season crops. Last bit of mowing, clearing. Install trail cameras. Dust off Bow. Mostly bow shooting now.

    Sep- Salmon season. Take kids squirrel hunting. Still building up arm strength for bow. Check trail cameras weekly. Spend some time sitting in stands dreaming of big bucks.

    Oct- Archery season opens. Still sitting in stand dreaming of big bucks, this time with bow in hand. Still checking trail cameras. Rut doesn't really start until the end of the month or later. Turkey starts. I hunt fall turkeys with my bow. Have to leave the bow at home while taking the turkey hunting.

    Nov- Archery and turkey still. Rifle opens up just before thanksgiving. Rut should have started by now. Rut will end the first day of rifle season. I try to get out a few times for Fox, Coyote and Coon.

    Dec- Rifle ends and the ML opens for a week or so. That ends just before Christmas. Nights are longer so more Fox, Coyote and Coon. After Christmas and New years it starts all over again. :supergrin: