19 replies [Last post]
Joined: 01/10/2003
Posts: 274
help me with mule deer hunting

Another thing is if busted do not get up and move till they are totally out of site. That Way they wont get used to totally watching out for any movement. They will blow it off as nothing. Especially as you said they are always there. This way they will not move out of this area. You will get them.Here is my buck I took at 10 yds this year. With my bow.

[ This Message was edited by: supersider34 on 2003-01-13 22:50 ]

help me with mule deer hunting

OK, if your within 300 yards of that mulie buck, it should by rights be hanging on your wall. Sorry, but that is the way I see things. If your trying to get within 200 or closer your going to have to brush up on your tactics and keep the wind at your back all the time and that is hard to do 100% of the time.

I have gotten very close to bucks when scouting but for some unexplainable reason, during the season is another story, just like the elk. I end up shooting them between 250 and 400 plus yards. I carry in my pocket some flour in a plastic bag...helps check the wind. Hunting during the rut, anything goes cause those bucks are crazy with doe's on their minds.

Wear nothing that can make a flash, like eyeglasses. No gold or silver frames etc. No shinny belt buckels, watches either. No after shave lotion etc.

Location: Arizona
Joined: 04/08/2002
Posts: 98
help me with mule deer hunting

DS was right, crawl!

Joined: 09/30/2002
Posts: 5
help me with mule deer hunting

Suppose I'm behind the times, but just stumbled on this thread. I have to agree w/ patience, patience, patience. Your country is diff. than ours in western Wyoming, but--except for the rut--I very seldom see mature bucks with the does. Younger bucks often. You know where they're feeding, figure out where they are bedding, and as stated above ambush them along the way. Most of those Big bucks will be off the feed areas and well toward their beds before shooting light. As stated above, watch your scent.

Location: Idaho
Joined: 09/20/2003
Posts: 138
help me with mule deer hunting

You should in no way feel pressured to make a 300 yrd shot and if you don’t feel comfortable then don’t do it no matter what other do.
I live in west central Idaho and have hunted mulies all my life. In fact I had never seen a white tail tell being stationed in the east.
Do as those above have suggested and belly crawl as close as you can, stop and look often seeing what the deer are doing. If they are looking your way stop don’t move until everyone of them goes back to feeding.
If they move off let them settle before continuing or just pull back and make a new stock. Look for any cover like a fencerow or small depression that may give you a few more yards, you may only notice these while on the ground.

Our habitat here ranges from open field to high deep brush and timber-covered canyons. Growing up I learned a few things and one is a whistle will most time stop a mule deer right in his tracks and give you a chance at a shot.

Also while they don’t respond well to deer calls I have had them come running to a predator call ”rabbit squeal “on more then one occasion. I don’t think I would try this on your stock but maybe give it a try back in some cover and see what will happen. Bucks don’t seem to like the squeal and come in shaking their heads and blowing if they are going to come.

Also I found out some years back that cattle can help. Here in the spring the ranchers turn the cattle out and if you have ever heard a heifer or bull in a brush pocket then you know they are anything but quite.
I watched an old bull one time going through a brushy canyon I had been hunting . I knew that there were a couple good bucks staying in there but couldn’t get a stock on them with all the noise I made going through that brush.
When this old bull went through he was crashing about and bellowing . I watched two nice 5X4 just get up move out in the open ,let him go by then go right back in and bed down where they were . So I figured why not as I couldn’t do any worse then I was . To make a long story short 25yrd shot broad side thanks to making noise and acting like a cow that they hear all the time .

I also say this I hunt all day. While mornings and evenings are the best IMO to still hunt at about 11 if I havnt seen what I want I set up my spotting scope and start looking at brush pockets and deep grass . don’t pass this time of day up many a good buck has been taken mid afternoon .I think they get used to all the morning and evening pressure .
Lastly I have never and I repeat “never “ killed an elk , deer or black bear at over 150 yard and the only center fire I ever used was a 30 30 marlin with a 4 power scope . Now days I use traditional Black powder only ,a 1756 flintlock long gun in 54 cal with a round ball for deer and cow elk but change to a 436 conical for bulls .

IMO it maybe frustrating when you don’t fill your tag but to me getting close is part of the game if its not them I would suggest setting that 06 aside picking up a 65 swed with a 10 X scope slap some bipods on her and sight her in for 4 or 500 Cry . I don’t think that’s you though or you wouldn’t be asking these questions ,. Best off luck and good hunting Wink

Location: Boise, Idaho
Joined: 10/04/2004
Posts: 10
help me with mule deer hunting

If you can't accomplish the ambush technique previously suggested, then start looking into your stalking technique. That means you can't overlook anything. Shiny objects, squeaky equipment, load clothes (nylon or stiff cotton), heavy boot steps, heavy breathing, etc. all can tip off a wary deer. Wear fleece, wool, or sueded fabric. Knee pads and leather gloves work well if you have to crawl through the desert. Never let them see your movements, and never ever let them scent you.

Rifle bipods (the kind that mount to the forestalk) work well for open country too. There's no reason you can't pull off a 300 yard shot with a bipod and a decent scope. Good luck... post pictures!

Location: Southeast Washington State
Joined: 09/28/2004
Posts: 117
help me with mule deer hunting

Well, I am getting into this kinda late, but here goes:

My only successes with getting in range on Mulies in eastern Washington come from covering a lot of land and basically ambushing them. You might consider working with a buddy with one of you getting in behind the herd and have the other one drive them to you. I've had some success with that. Given that we are restricted during general season to 3 point or better, you won't find shootable bucks in with the rest of the herd. If you do find a big herd, you need to pattern them without disturbing them, then go to where you think they are likely to be before they get there and try and get where they can't smell you. You have to be a stone until they get close enough to take the shot, but it is either that or just cover a lot of ground faster than they do and hope you intercept deer sooner or later. I chased one herd for 10 miles before I got within 250 yards or the only shootable buck in the herd, only to have a group of poachers spook them out of range before I could get my shot off.

Joined: 09/23/2004
Posts: 137
help me with mule deer hunting
Quick-Sand wrote:
OK, if your within 300 yards of that mulie buck, it should by rights be hanging on your wall. Sorry, but that is the way I see things. If your trying to get within 200 or closer your going to have to brush up on your tactics and keep the wind at your back all the time and that is hard to do 100% of the time.

I think he meant keep the wind in your face at all times. because if the wind is at your back the mulies will wind you and be gone faster than you can say "busted". but I agree that maybe you should spend some time shooting at 300 yards and become confident with a long but reasonable distance. 300 is a long shot but not uncommon and certainly is within range.

Location: granada hills
Joined: 01/13/2005
Posts: 6
help me with mule deer hunting

300 yard shots are quite do-able as long as you practice at that range. I took a deer this past year at 500+ measured yards. Before everyone jumps down my throat, I agree that is too long to shoot. I practice at that range and use a rangefinder, bipod, and scope with built in drop compensator. If you can get within 300 yards, I can get you those deer everytime. You need to watch the wind, sudden movements, keep quiet, move very slowly, and camo can help out a lot. Practice , practice and practice some more. Shoot off a bench, shoot prone , shoot with a bipod, shoot kneeling, shoot standing until you have confidence in your shot. Next time you will have a gorgeous wallhanger.