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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Constantly working with the public as well, educating as needed......Good course for Hunters as well........

Photo: Lucy Wold, WGFD

Green River resident Ellie Taylor (holding inert pepper spray can) and her mother Sandy learn how to use inert pepper spray at a previous Living in Large Carnivore Seminar.

Contact: Lucy Wold, 307-875-3225, extension 18607 March 23, 2016

Seminar teaches large carnivore safety

BAGGS--Would you know what to do if you suddenly encountered a grizzly bear while hiking, if a black bear entered your hunting camp looking for food, or if you were surprised by a mountain lion in your back yard?

A free seminar titled "Living in Large Carnivore Country" is coming to Baggs, WY, Thursday, April 7, at the Carbon County Higher Education Center, 360 Whippoorwill, beginning at 5:30 PM.

The purpose of this seminar is to help people enjoy recreating in areas where there are large carnivores and to be safe in the backcountry and at home. The seminar aims to increase awareness and understanding of bears, mountain lions, and wolves by providing participants with current information and tools they can use to prevent conflicts and avoid dangerous encounters.

Presentations, including Power Point, video, and lecture will feature bear and mountain lion behavior and biology, bear and lion life history, population status and movements, proper food storage, encounters and what to do in an encounter situation, safety and legal issues, and the most current information on the use of pepper spray. A small portion of the seminar will discuss wolf biology and interactions with pets.


Large Carnivore Biologist Zach Turnbull and Dustin Lasseter, Bear-wise Community Coordinator, will present the newest information and answer questions.

The seminar is free and open to people of all ages and skill levels, but limited to 50 participants. Participants may call the Game and Fish office at 307-875-3225, extension 1-8607, to pre-register for the seminar.

The State of Wyoming supports the Americans with Disabilities Act. Anyone requiring auxiliary aids for this meeting should contact the G&F Region Office at: 1-800-843-8096. Every effort will be made for reasonable accommodations.
~WGFD~

 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Information on Wyoming Hunter Management area vs Walk in Area and areas you can hunt-

"HMA and WIA maps, HMA permission slips, and species information can be located via the Public Access page on the Game and Fish website. Remember, WIAs and HMAs are private property, so be sure to respect the landowner and the land. Access Yes provides the primary funding for these areas; please donate every time you buy a license."

Read all information here-

https://wgfd.wyo.gov/Ask-Game-and-Fish/span-id-docs-internal-guid-91ebb257-1686-7ffe-63
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Jason, why are the 'Private Lands-Public Wildlife' and 'PLPW' links on your website disappearing or being replaced?"

A

Don't worry, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department's access programs are still in place for hunting and fishing, continue to grow and are very popular. The major change is that there is a "new look" for our public access program, and it is called Access Yes. Access Yes has always been the funding mechanism for our hunting and fishing access areas known as Walk-in and Hunter Management Areas. We merged the Access Yes name with the access programs to ensure hunters and anglers understand the direct link between the Access Yes donations and Walk-in and Hunter Management Areas. Watch for the new logo (pictured here) to help identify these access areas.

Using our "public access" website, you should research Access Yes hunting and fishing areas before you head out to hunt or fish. Hunter Management Areas require a permission slip to hunt on those lands in addition to a license for that hunt area. Each Walk-in Area is only open for a specified time period(s) and a certain hunting and/or fishing opportunity. If you are having trouble determining what is private or public land, or have questions about our Access Yes areas, contact the Cheyenne Headquarters or regional office in your area.


Jason Sherwood
Laramie Regional Access Coordinator

Have more questions? Check out our Ask Game and Fish Archives

*With any Ask Game and Fish question please consult the current hunting regulations for more specific information on these requirements.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
GPS Info-


 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Some info from Colorado Game and Fish-


 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
More info from the Colorado wildlife division-

 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Here is another state with a large data base of information to go along with the others listed in this thread-

Idaho hunt information and Hunt Planner. Many of the Western States put a lot of data and statistics along with mapping and access information for those heading out to hunt their state- they help the hunters as much as possible- Idaho is no different, and they have some great country to hunt and enjoy.

Link-

https://idfg.idaho.gov/ifwis/huntPlanner/
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
How to read "Drawing Odds"

 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
New Mexico "How to apply for the draw 2018/2019" I will also post in the application thread for this year.

 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Some important points here from guy Eastman......

Recently we covered Part 1 Digital Scouting, in part 2 we are taking it from screen-to-field for validation and pursuit! Hopefully you have several areas lined out on your mapping program and maybe you have tested your skills on some deer or elk in your local areas (if possible) or on a scouting trip in your unit. And now it's go time!

Day 1, be sure you are positioned to glass at first light! Cover as much ground as possible with your glass, using the master vantage points you highlighted during your digital scouting sessions. Think of this day as an expanded search and your primary goal is to look for animals from a distance and make note of your findings so you can have a solid hunt for that evening or the next day. Finding critters isn't a given at this point, but you should find zones with good habitat or sign that need a closer look.

Take your knowledge back to the maps and narrow down by applying your first hand/boots on the ground information so you can create a plan for that evening or the next day. Day 2 is almost always deep in the mountains on vantage points near the prime areas or animals you found earlier. Plan on going 3-5 miles or more and possibly an overnighter on the mountain if you are up for it. If you don't turn up animals within the first hour of light move to another basin and repeat this until you find animals. Many times, especially for deer, they will be bedded within a short window of the sunlight hitting their backs. Therefore, glassing the shadows and west facing pockets until late morning can be very helpful. If you only find does or small bucks, hunker down and watch for the next couple hours and pick the hillsides apart. I can't tell you how many times I have studied a feature for what seems like an eternity to suddenly see a buck get up, stretch his legs and lay back down or re-bed into his afternoon spot.

Elk tend to stay on their feet longer and allow spotting later into the day, however, that is not always the case and long hours in the glass are the answer in the event you can't find animals on the move. Unless you are lucky enough to find a shooter buck or bull right away you want to keep moving and find more prime features or animals during the mid-day slot. Don't let-up until you find one or more huntable situations. Once you find animals you should be able to position yourself closer for an evening hunt near where you last saw them and wait until prime time. For deer, chances are you haven't zeroed in on something you want to pursue at this point, so you will need to choose your most likely master vantage based on the days findings and sit there watching and waiting for movement until dark, once again-walking with your eyes is key, finding vantage points that open massive tracks of land is very helpful. Locate as many deer as possible, does, small bucks etc. and keep an eye on them. As evening approaches or morning comes, you will often start turning up the bigger bucks.

Tips:

1). Buy the best optics you can afford, this will increase your ability to find game drastically. If you are set on deer hunting make sure a decent spotting scope is in your pack as well.

2). When you scout or hunt your areas, make note of the time of year and habitats you find game in. It will help you find game in the future and identify the terrain more accurately from satellite imagery as well.

3). Deer and elk move from summer habitat to fall habitat and finally to winter habitat, with hunter pressure compounding each of these in different ways, so don't plan too certainly from your early scouting trips. Make sure you have plan B ready! A successful hunter must become a chameleon that can adapt quickly and use change as a tool to sharpen them into something better.

4). Don't miss out on first light or last light! Make sure you have a good headlamp and get into position at the crack of light and stay until last light.

5). If you are elk hunting listen very closely for bugles and don't be afraid to cow call or locate bugle as you uncover new country.

6). Returning to base camp on a separate ridge or drainage system allows for optimal spotting of new country along the way.

Use these strategies this coming season and I think you'll be surprised at how much more game you turn up and how much more effective a hunter you are because of it.

Good luck out there!

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Good info on acquiring private land access....

Where Deer Hunters Can Find Private Land Access Programs

DEER HUNTERS CAN HUNT THOUSANDS OF ACRES THROUGH SPECIAL, PRIVATE LAND ACCESS PROGRAMS AVAILABLE IN SOME STATES. AND YOU CAN DO IT ALL FOR FREE.

BERNIE BARRINGER - JULY 13, 2018
Deer hunters private land access programs
I came from a nonhunting family. In fact, my parents wouldn't even let me own a gun. I'm not sure if the concern was more about the gun, or about the thought of me with a gun. At any rate, I bought a bow when I was 14 years old and it changed my life. This was the 1970s and, in Iowa where we lived, all I had to do was ask a few farmers for permission to hunt and I had access to more land than I could possibly hunt before and after school.

Those days are long gone. Today, unless a kid grows up in a hunting family or, even better, one that owns property; he's going to have a hard time finding a place to shoot his first deer. Good deer hunting property is leased or owned for hunting. While going out to ask for permission can still open a few gates, the success rate has become so low it's not even worth trying in many areas. I hate the idea that deer hunting has become very difficult to get into for a youngster without a place to hunt.

Some areas have abundant public-hunting land, but those options are limited in the eastern half of the U.S. In many eastern and southern states, up to 95 percent of the land is privately owned. Many of these landowners are transplants from suburban areas who have little or no background with the outdoor lifestyle, so they are not at all receptive to someone who comes knocking for permission to kill their deer.

PRIVATE LAND OPEN TO SPORTSMEN

Where are the kids going to hunt? And for many of us who do not own property, where are we going to hunt?

My first introduction to access programs designed to open private land to sportsmen took place on a Kansas deer hunt a few years ago. I was driving back to where my travel trailer was parked, when a doe ran across the remote gravel road in front of me. I slammed on my brakes just in time to miss the huge buck that was following her. I grabbed my binoculars and watched them race over a hill in the tall grass prairie. He was the kind of buck that makes your heart pound in your ears.

I spun around in the road and headed to the other side of the section to see where they might come out, but I found that they had disappeared into a brushy draw in the middle of the section. There was a white sign on the fence that stated "WIHA." I was fully aware of the Walk in Hunting Access (WIHA) lands, because I had seen the pheasant and quail hunters working it with their dogs. But clearly I had been missing out on the deer hunting opportunities.

deer hunters private land access programs
In the Midwest and western whitetail states, private lands available to hunters are primarily grasslands that provide bird hunting. But there's amazing deer-hunting habitat on these properties as well. Photo: North Dakota Game and Fish

MIDWEST PRIVATE LAND PROGRAMS

Kansas' Walk in Hunting Access program is geared toward bird hunters, but the amount of excellent deer hunting to be found on these lands is mouth-watering. And it's mostly overlooked. I have hunted Kansas many times since that trip. Before I go, I spend some time going over the WIHA brochure and the map of WIHA lands on the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism's website.

I have since killed a nice buck on land in North Dakota designated Private Land Open to Sportsmen (PLOTS), and other states that have similar programs. Most states in the Midwest now have a program that offers the landowners some compensation for allowing the public to hunt the land. In the Midwest and western whitetail states, these lands are primarily grasslands that provide bird hunting. But there's amazing deer-hunting habitat on these properties and, in many cases, the deer-hunting pressure is minimal.

NORTHEAST PRIVATE LAND PROGRAMS

In the Northeast, the programs are growing by leaps and bounds with more and more land being enrolled each year. About half the states in the northeastern U.S. have a program of some sort that allows hunter access. These are not geared as much toward the shotgun-toting crowd, and many of these parcels offer excellent deer and turkey hunting. With so much of the East being privately owned, the public lands can be utterly overrun with hunters. Yet the Voluntary Public Access lands are little known and lightly hunted in many areas.

WESTERN PRIVATE LAND PROGRAMS

In the Western states, these lands often fall under the heading of Block Management programs. Montana has tens of thousands of acres enrolled. Wyoming's Private Land Public Wildlife (PLPW) is much the same. Much of the land in these two states is sagebrush with small creek bottoms running through it. You will really have to spend some time with a list of lands and aerial photos picking through these properties. If diligent, you might find a gem of a property to hunt.

SOUTHEAST PRIVATE LAND PROGRAMS

The Southeast is lagging behind in the availability of private land that's open to public hunting. Texas and Louisiana each have a program, as does Georgia. The Peach State kicked off its private land access program thanks to a $993,000 grant from the Federal Natural Resources Conservation Service. In the last two years, Georgia has partnered in 19 contracts for several thousand acres of public access. In a part of the nation where much of the land is tied up in private ownership, timber leases where hunting is restricted, hunting clubs and urban sprawl, many more states should follow Georgia's lead.

IDENTIFYING AND SCOUTING PRIVATE LAND OPEN TO HUNTING

Most state wildlife agencies have a section of their website dedicated to these access programs, and many have print brochures, maps and guidebooks to locating these lands.

deer hunters private land access programs
Here's an example of a map sheet provided by the North Dakota Game and Fish. Each map sheet gives hunters a detailed look at available privates lands through the state's Private Land Open to Sportsmen program.
With the increasing number of sources for aerial photos online, hunters can often go to a state agency's website and look at aerial photos of each of the properties. If they do not have aerial photos included, hunters can go to Google Earth or Bing Maps and analyze each of these properties for likely-looking habitat that might hold whitetails.

Although there is no substitute for boots on the ground when it comes to scouting, you can eliminate the unproductive areas beforehand and focus on the stuff that looks good. Chances are, if it looks good, it is good. It's been my experience that these private land access parcels aren't nearly as heavily targeted by deer hunters as the more well-known public lands.

PRIVATE LAND ACCESS IS "FOOT TRAFFIC ONLY"

One of the advantages, if you want to look at it that way, is that nearly all of these programs require foot traffic only. That means no motorized vehicles are allowed. I have found places a mile or more from the

road that I am convinced I am the only deer hunter who sets foot in it prior to the gun season. Even then, it gets little pressure. That's partly because these places aren't public knowledge and partly because it's so darned hard to get a dead deer out of there. But if I find myself with a big buck on the ground, I am happy to figure out a way to get it back to the road. I carry a large plastic sled and a two-wheeled deer cart with me. I will use either one depending on the terrain and density of the cover.

And remember, this is private land and the landowner can make it as easy or as hard as he wants. In one case in North Dakota, I was hoofing it out of a large pasture with a stand, climbing sticks, my bow and a backpack full of gear when the landowner happened to be going by. He opened the gate when he saw me and allowed me to drive in, "just this once" to retrieve my gear. He seemed genuinely excited that I was out there trying to shoot one of those crop-raiding deer.

Landowners have a lot to gain by allowing hunters on their land. Reducing crop depredation by deer is one of the reasons. This is especially true in the Midwest. In the South and East, some property owners just like the thought that a responsible hunter is keeping an eye on the place for them.

And therein lies one of the biggest advantages of all for both hunters and landowners. The programs build strong communities and allow neighbors to be neighborly. These programs give hunters a chance to put on their best behavior and cast hunting in a positive light to a world that has mostly lost touch with consumptive use of wildlife.

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
just to sidetrack a bit-----nice video showing what it's all about.....

 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
Pointers from Colorado-

 
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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
Interesting.....Field Cleaning a game bird!

 

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Discussion Starter · #39 ·
Good article for glassing out West-one of the most important skill sets needed.

What You Need to Know About Glassing
Steven Rinella

The act of looking for animals from a spot-and-stalk position is usually referred to as "glassing," since you're almost always using binoculars or spotting scopes. Success as a glasser begins with the ability to pick out the right places to do your glassing from.

The criteria for a good glassing position varies according to location, but generally you're looking for an area that gives you a relatively unobstructed view of the surrounding country. Often, but not always, such positions are located on areas that provide a vantage point which rises above the surrounding topography. But of course there's more to picking an observation point than just looking for a high spot.

Besides having good visibility, you should select a fairly comfortable position or you'll have a hard time staying put for any appreciable amount of time. Depending on the circumstances, you might need a spot that offers either a windbreak or a touch of breeze, or perhaps shade or direct sunlight - though you never want to set up where you're looking directly into a rising or setting sun.

Experienced glassers will have spots that they prefer in the morning and others for the evening depending on where the animals have been seen before and where the sun is in relation to where they are looking. Glassing knobs with 360-degree views are great, of course, but so is that little shelf of rock that lets you peek down into a narrow wedge of a valley floor that includes a couple of prime game trails. Especially if that little shelf of rock is close to a few other good vantage points.

It sucks to put all your eggs in one basket by climbing to some lonely high point and then not having anywhere convenient to move to when it doesn't produce. In other words, it's a lot better to work a string of high spots that are connected by a continuous ridgeline than it is to scale an isolated peak.

Wind direction matters. It matters less and less as you get higher and farther from your target area, but it's of vital importance when you're sitting close to where you expect to see animals. If you're glassing a few meadows that are only 200 yards away and you've the wind at your back, you're running the risk of blowing all of the game out of there. You also want to consider your visual presence. It's best to select areas where you can maintain a low profile.

Having a backdrop of brush or rock is helpful, because it keeps you from skylining yourself. Getting into the shadows is better than being in direct light, unless you're freezing cold and need the sun. And if you are in the sun, take care to hide or shade shiny objects such as watches, rifle barrels, and tripod legs. Nothing screams "I'm up here!" to an animal quite like a flashing beacon of reflected light that's bouncing off the lens of your spotting scope.


Many hunting areas, such as this alpine bowl, are best viewed from below rather than above.
Not all good glassing spots are up high, either. There are certain types of country more suited to glassing from the bottom up. Such locations include cliffy areas, where climbing up high requires a serious investment of time and energy. Also when you're glassing up into open basins or hanging valleys, or looking at a semi-open hillside that would be impossible to glass from above.

When you're selecting a glassing position, remember that your goal is to find an animal and then go after it. If you're up on a rock spire towering 2000 feet above the valley floor, it's going to take you a long time to climb down when you do see something. Always consider the position of the sun and then be realistic about how much time you have to reach an area that you're looking at. If you've got an hour of daylight left on the last day of the hunting season, it won't do you much good to be glassing a bunch of locations that are a mile away. Not only will you not be able to reach those areas today, tomorrow isn't even an option. If you're hunting in the morning, on the other hand, you have a much longer window of time in which to reach any animals that you happen to locate. And if you've got several days before the season ends, you can even change position on subsequent hunts in order to get closer to really far-out animals that you might have located. You might then need to find a new and closer glassing location in order to re-locate those animals once you get into effective stalking range, but that's all part of the fun.

Once you've selected a good glassing location and taken your position, it's time to actually start looking for animals. Now you're relying on your game-eye, a term that refers to one's ability to spot animals in their natural habitats. It's nearly impossible to train someone to have a good game-eye, as it can only be achieved through time and practice - and even then, some people will just never learn how to be good at spotting game. (It seems to have little to do with the natural quality of your eyesight. There are plenty of guys with 20/20 vision who can't spot squat for game, just as there are a lot of guys with bottle-bottom glasses who see animals that would escape the notice of 95% of other hunters.) With that said, though, there are some tips and tricks that can help you do a better job of locating game.

Most experienced glassers use a divide-and-conquer when confronted with a vast amount of turf that needs to be picked apart for animals. Basically, they break the landscape into manageable chunks and then scour those individual chunks with the help of binoculars and/or a spotting scope. When doing this, start with the easy pickings. For instance, imagine a large hillside that's covered in vegetation types ranging from grassy openings to thick brush to scattered stands of mature timber. Cover those large openings with your binoculars first, simply because it's easy to quickly scan them and rule out the presence of any game that might be standing in plain sight.

Next, check the smaller openings. If you still haven't found what you're looking for, it may be time to put your binoculars on a tripod or stabilize them against your knees and start doing some detail work. Go back to those openings and scour the edges, and give a careful look at any brushy patches out in the middles of the openings. Then start picking apart those large expanses of brush, looking for any holes or thinly canopied areas that you can see into. Use your binoculars to pry your way into every possible nook and cranny that might be holding an animal: shadows cast by trees and brush; sheltered areas beneath overhanging rocks; the areas along or near game trails.

As you look into tougher and tougher locations, make sure to slow down more and more. No successful glasser would take just a quick glance at a promising hillside and then call it quits. Check everything multiple times, and make a mental list of any intriguing shapes or shadows that you couldn't see clearly. You can come back to examine these spots with a spotting scope once you've completed your initial few passes with a set of binoculars. All the while, remember that you're not just looking for animals; you're looking for parts of animals as well. A bit of antler glistening in the sun, a twitching ear, a shadow cast by an animal's leg.


There's some game out there, somewhere. Finding it requires a well-honed game eye.
Another way to break down a large area is to glass it using a grid pattern. This works especially well in areas with a more homogenous appearance that aren't conducive to the divide-and-conquer method. (It can also be used in conjunction with divide-and-conquer; see illustration below.) To grid, you divide the overall view into manageable pieces and cover those pieces with your binoculars in the same sort of back-and-forth pattern that a typewriter uses to cover a page.

Simply pan your binos from one end the area to the other, then tilt them up or down a slight bit and pan across the next strip of cover. For the sake of mixing it up, you can grid top-to-bottom if you like. Be sure to allow for plenty of overlap on each pass so that you don't miss anything. When looking at a small hillside, one or two passes might be enough to rule out the presence of game. But in seriously vertical country, or when you're looking from a very high vantage point, it might take nine or ten passes to fully cover a patch of terrain.


When glassing big country, mentally divide the terrain into several pieces based on geographic features. Then work each piece individually with your binoculars. When covering larger pieces of ground, scan them using back-and-forth or up-and-down gridding patterns to ensure that you're not missing anything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Glassing strategies such as divide-and-conquer and gridding are hugely helpful, but when using these techniques it's only natural that you're going to focus the bulk of your energy on those areas where you most expect to see game. Identifying such areas is a learned skill that comes from a lifetime of hunting and observing animals. But there are some shortcuts to mastering this discipline. At all times, keep in mind the three basic things that critters need-shelter, food and water-and look for the places that provide these necessities.

For big game, shelter is typically synonymous with bedding areas, which are usually located in proximity to good avenues of escape. Some species, such as whitetail deer, prefer to bed in thick vegetation, where they are hidden from view. Others, such as mountain goats, bed out in the open where they can see predators from a long ways off and where they have steep cliffs to their back so that they can climb to safety when pursued.

Food is most often found in open or semi-open areas where there's adequate sunlight to foster the growth of preferred low-lying big game grub such grasses, forbs and shrubs. Such openings might be found amid sparse stands of aspen, creek-side clearings, grazing pastures, the edges of beaver ponds, the bottoms of avalanche slides, agricultural fields, orchards, or in areas cleared by forest and brush fires.

Water sources differ according to location as well. It could be a high-country seep in the Rockies, a man made water catchment in the desert Southwest, a mud puddle along a dirt road in California, a bubbling brook in Maine, a vast swamp in the Southeast. Learn how the animals in your chosen hunting area are using the habitat to get what they need, and you'll quickly become a better hunter.

Recognizing patterns is equally important, or perhaps even more important, than recognizing habitat features. What this means is that when you see an animal you're able to figure out why it's hanging out where it is. You can then take that bit of knowledge and use it to your advantage by searching out others that offer the same sets of circumstances - and hopefully locating animals there as well.

As an example of what I'm saying, let's say that you're watching a big pasture. There could be many things about this corner that make it special: it's lower or higher than the rest of the pasture; it's wetter or drier than the rest of the pasture; it's shadier or sunnier than the rest of the pasture. it's breezier or calmer than the rest of the pasture; it's closer or farther away from a cattail marsh than the rest of the pasture. Whatever the deciding factor might be, it's the smart hunter's responsibility to figure it out and then extend that piece of knowledge to the next patch pasture that he happens to hunt.

Another sort of replicable thing that you should strive to understand is how a particular animal looks in a particular setting. Hunters often find that it takes them a while to spot the first deer of a day, but then as soon as they find one, they start spotting deer all over the place. Often, this happens because the hunter has suddenly figured out what a deer looks like in the context of a particular backdrop of vegetation and quality of light.

In other words, finding a mule deer in dry grass (look for the white rump) is nothing like finding a mule deer in the snow (look for the brown body), which itself is nothing like the maddeningly frustrating task of finding a mule deer against a patchwork of snow and dry grass. But once you see an animal in a certain type of setting, something in your head clicks and you suddenly know what you're looking for. Achieving that moment of clarity is one of the many joys of spot-and-stalk hunting.


This is a classic high country basin where elk, deer, sheep, and goats might be found. In this instance the glasser is looking for elk and deer. All the X's besides the black ones are possible locations to spot elk and deer. RED icons: These spots are where the glasser looks first and looks fast. Big openings, void of much cover where an animal will stick out. BLUE icons: These spots are covered during the 2nd pass. Medium sized openings with scattered trees and cover that might conceal part or all of an animal. GREEN icons: These spots are either so small that they're not really openings but just gaps between trees, or are so far away (like the green x's far right) that a spotting scope might be needed to glass it well. These are also spots that you might glass up a bedded animal. BLACK icons: These spots are not going to hold elk or deer so no need to glass them until the afternoon doldrums set in and you look up there in hopes of catching a goat or sheep.
When you're sitting up on a glassing position for an hour or so without seeing anything, you'll inevitably start wondering how long you should wait before moving on. There is no simple answer to this question, as it really comes down to what animal you're hunting and what kind of terrain you're hunting in. If your glassing an alpine basin for Dall sheep in Alaska, for instance, you pretty quickly determine whether or not there's a pure white animal standing against a backdrop of black shale and green grass.

Conversely, if you're hunting the brushy mountains of Sonora Mexico for Coues deer (otherwise known as gray ghosts) you might spend two or three days in one spot before you pick out the deer that you knew all along must be there. In that sort of terrain, you're not just glancing around for something white. Instead, your eyes are prying into every little nook and shadow in search of a leg, an ear, or an antler tine. In those situation, confidence plays a huge role. Sometimes, you must force yourself to believe in your spot and know that something's out there - even if you don't actually really believe it.

Another reason to hold tight is that bedded animals will eventually get up and move around, and you need to be watching when they do. Many hunters are good enough to find bedded game on occasion, but only the best of the best can do it consistently. When an animal is on its feet, however, the movement will usually catch your eye long before the actual shapes of the animal do. What's more, animals that are up on their feet aren't necessarily in view.

Big game usually moves slowly as it feeds, often just taking one step every few minutes. You could easily be watching a hillside of oaks for wild pigs and not see a lone boar simply because he's spending an hour in a narrow out-of-view draw that happened to collect a bunch of acorns that rolled down the slope after falling from their trees. Suddenly that boar steps out from the draw and there he is, seemingly emerging from thin air.

Another thing to consider is the shifting light. As the sun moves across the sky, shadows change and either lighten or darken an animal enough for you to see it. And the shifting rays of fun can reveal things as well. You could be staring at a huge patch of willows and not see a single thing, and then suddenly the sun busts through the clouds and you see the palm of a moose antler as clearly as if it were firefly lighting up in the pitch of night.

Speaking of light, many species of big game are crepuscular, or active primarily during the twilight periods of dawn and dusk. If you had two hours a day to glass for animals, you'd be wise to pick the first and last hours of the day. That's when you're going to spot 75% of the game you see. In general, it's very hard to rule out an area until you've had the chance to study it during those magical moments of rising and falling light.

Binoculars vs Spotting Scopes



There aren't many serious glassers who spend hour upon hour staring through a spotting scope. Not only can spotting scopes give you eye fatigue in short order, but the field of view on a spotting scope is typically much smaller than that of binoculars. Instead, do most of your glassing through a set of binos, preferably on a tripod. Use the spotting scope primarily as a specialty tool for investigating suspicious looking (i.e., gamey) shapes and objects, and also for judging the size and/or legality of distant animals that you initially found through your binoculars.

Now and then, of course, you'll use your scope to scan faraway country that's simply out of reach for a pair of binoculars, but give your eyes a break as you soon as you start to feel any discomfort. You'll want your eyes to feel fresh and ready when you finally get a chance to look through your rifle scope and make your shot.
 
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