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Location: Denver, CO
Joined: 04/01/2009
Posts: 109
Archery mule deer

Living and hunting in Colorado for years, and I've somehow managed to never hunt deer.  I have a couple of preference points, and have seen some bruisers near tree line where I elk hunt.  I think I may draw next season.

Other than stumbling on good bucks while elk hunting, I'm clueless as to how to effectively hunt them, especially with a bow.  With elk at least they bugle to give you some sort of idea, but deer, I just don't know...

I'm looking for any recommended books on the subject.

 

 

numbnutz's picture
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Location: portland,oregon
Joined: 09/06/2007
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I'm not too sure how people

I'm not too sure how people hunt them in CO, but where I'm from the vast majority hunt them with the "spot and stalk" method. Get to a good vantage piont and glass, sometimes fore hours, look under trees, rocks, logs, shaded areas. they can be hard to find, i look for anything out of place, suck as an ear sticking out, an antler sticking up, flash of tan. once you see one plan your stalk, get the wind right, use the terrain and most important move very slow. take your time pick your land marks. once you get within range you know the rest. good luck.

GooseHunter Jr's picture
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Location: Colorado
Joined: 09/28/2005
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I think here trying to get

I think here trying to get informnation on where a good area for mule deer is harder than getting elk information.  I have never really been muuch of a deer hunter, just usually have a tag with me while elk hunitng.  Spot and stalk seems to be the method of choice.  So you need to hunt somehwere were you can see along way to spot one and then make a plan to get close especially with a bow.  We elk in unit 4 and I took a nice mule deer a few years back with a rifle.  I have heard that the northern part of the unit is pretty good for deer and it is more open area where you can see a ways.  I too would like to dedicate myself to a mule deer hunt sometime....maybe sooner than later as I have 7 PP for them just still not sure where to burn them at.

gatorfan's picture
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Location: Chula Vista, CA
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There are several ways to hunt them

 

As mentioned above, you can try the popular spot and stalk method.  But there are other ways to hunt them also.  Other than during the rut, the bigger bucks tend to move very little during the day and can often be found in bachelor groups.  There's a reason that the big boys are usually only seen during the rut.  Aside from spot and stalk, just look for fresh sign.  Sign can include fresh scat, heavily used trails (although mule deer don't always follow a "trail"), rubs, etc..  I can't speak for areas outside of Southern California (other than 3 trips to Southern Colorado) but I tend to hunt trails that lead from bedding areas to water sources.  A lot of guys use trail cameras and therefore try to pattern them.  There are pros (seeing what the area you plan to hunt is holding) and cons (someone might steal your camera angry, you might get discouraged with not seeing anything on your camera and give up on an area this actually is holding nice bucks).

Once the rut kicks in, it’s a completely different story!  Find the does and you will find the bucks!  Pass on the little guys if you have the patience and you’re likely to be rewarded.  Of course all of these methods are affected by the number one distracter…other hunters.

Anyhow, as far as a recommendation for books, here's one: Back Country Bow Hunting by Cameron Hanes, there's also some good information in this article: http://www.biggamehunt.net/articles/mule-deer-those-western-deer

Good luck and happy hunting!

hawkeye270's picture
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Location: Fort Collins, CO
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Hunting mule deer during the

Hunting mule deer during the rut out here is out... Colorado's bow season is no where near the rut. That would be kind of a cool hunt though. Rutted up mule deer are pretty darn obliveous and so it would give you a much better chance of getting one with a bow. I'm not sure what our surrounding states offer as far as rut hunts. You are talking about hunting up near treeline. I suggest that you get out there a bunch over the summer and find the drainages that the big bucks are using. During archery season they will still be using the same bowls that they were in July and therefore scouting will be key. Hunting them up high during archery season is going to be a spot and stalk affair. You will need good glass that you can look through all day. It is really going to come down to your ability to spot them at long range and then your ability to plan a stalk that won't get you busted.

The other hunting methods are going to be a little harder to put into affect up in the alpine where you can't scout as much. It is a unique hunt but there are some giant bucks up there.

numbnutz's picture
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Location: portland,oregon
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In oregon there are 2 or 3

In oregon there are 2 or 3 rut hunts for mulies with a bow, those tags are hard to come by though. its a draw hunt and they give out like 30 tags and have a few thousand people applying. I dont think there are many states out west that do muley rut hunts with bows, i think there are afew that do rifle hunts? I would love to draw one of our archery rut hunts but I still have a few years to wait unless i get extremly lucky.

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