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Late Season strategies for ridge hunters

Discussion in 'Ohio Whitetail Deer Hunting' started by Troph-E-Hunter, Dec 13, 2002.

  1. I was wondering if anyone has some good thoughts for late season bowhunting in extreme hilly areas. Some things that make my property unique are...

    - Steep valleys and ridge tops
    - Very low count of nut bearing trees (hence the low squirrel count)
    - No fields within .5-1 mile of property
    - Cedar patches on ridge tops
    - Power line strip that cuts through property

    I have posted some threads before with advice for ridge hunting and it was great. What makes this different is the "late season" focus.

    Please let me know your thoughts and feel free to ask me questions.
  2. My guess would be to try setting up near the power lines near some good crossing trails. Just to see what is stiring and get better ideas for your next move.

  3. Late season the bucks seem to focus on sleeping and eating.. Ive read that bucks tend to walk the top 3rd of the ridge.. So try and find a trail that connects the bedding area(powerlines or cedars) with a feeding area. Put a stand somewhere around a trail that crosses the buck trail...its worked for me....
  4. Ridges just don't "cut it" in late season...especially if you have no mast (acorns) left (you can hunt the ridges in areas that have red oak acorns left (deer typically eat the white oaks acorns 1st, then start hitting the Red oaks during mid november and usually there is enough red oaks left to last them until mid-january).

    So, since you have no mast (acorns), I'd suggest that you forget about the ridges, and try to hunt the bottoms of the hollows. Find some green stuff and they will be there. Best thing possible, is honeysuckle...this stuff grows in "open areas" and the deer love it. It will also grow fairly high unto the hills..again, it's found just about anywhere there is "bareness"/thickets. Since you have a set of power lines running through the property, I'd say your "first-growth" (edges before you get into the woods) on the powerline is predominetly honey-suckle....this would be the spot.

    My second recomendation is Persimmons....if you don't know what they are, do some research and find out. Anyway, there usually is ample supply of these and they are still on the trees. They'll all be gone by Mid-January though..deer love um, and make sure if you find some you try some....make sure they are ripe though, don't eat any green ones....those you only give to a "buddy" early in the year to'll lock your jaws up if you pick it off the tree and try it.

    Now in the hollows, yep, wind is tough..but hunt low only in a prevailing wind (strong wind out of one area), because the wind is really "swirly" down in those hollows in "low/no wind"'ll get busted. Also be prepaired to spook a lot of deer once you find them....they bed and eat in the same general area, and getting into them is tough. But once you find them, you'll see a whole mess of them.

    On the Ridges, your chancess arn't "that good" because there isn't a lot of food left "up there" and the typical "moving patterns" of deer has decreased a lot.

    The stuff about bucks and "1/3 (or was it 2/3rds) up on a hill" is not a very good methodolgy to live by....this is only true if you don't want to get scented/busted. I'd love to be able to hunt hollows all the time, but it's almost impossible to because of the wind.

    I've hunted "hill country" since I was 12 or so (bout 20 years) took me a while to figure "late season" hunting, but have got her figured out now and see lots of deer in the late season.

    Good luck and let me know if you want/need some more "pointers".

    Jesse (longest post ever? I get a reward or something..hehehheheh)