Scott's Outdoor Blog

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Shed Hunt: Part 2

Here are the pictures from Saturday's shed hunt.  Rachel and Vanek joined Staab and I, and we were able to cover more ground than usual.  The first spot we checked had plenty of deer sign, but no antlers.  Here's a picture of Vanek searching for some barren-ground whitetail sheds.

   We headed over to check around a pond that always has lots of deer sign around it.  I spotted some tall tines sticking up out of some dead leaves behind the dam.  As I walked over to pick up antler, I could hear voices over the pond dam yelling that Vanek had found one too.  I was hoping they were a set, but no dice. 

We followed the main drainage to the South, checking out all the feeder draws along the way.  At the upper end of one of the feeder draws, just before it trickled out into pasture, Staab and I mumbled and pointed at the same time at this fresh set sitting under a tree. 

We finished out that drainage and circled back towards where the trucks were parked.  Rachel wanted to get home to watch the K-State basketball game at noon, and the rest of us were getting thirsty.  The way back revealed a good omen for the coming fall.  The hunter sees his shedow. 

Back at base camp we had a few beers and snacks.  Rachel headed home, leaving behind the antlers from the day before.  We needed them for the picture of the pile at the end of the day. 

It was hard to leave the picnic table and beer behind, but we still had a bunch of stuff we wanted to cover.  Things were kind of slow before Staab got on the board with this pick.

We got a call from Big Red, saying he was on his way out to meet up with us to go try another spot.  There were a lot more canyons to walk here, but we decided to give the new spot a try. 

The next spot looked a lot like this.  Between the heat, and the lack of sleep from the night before, I was really starting to drag.

Lots of open canyons, but not as much deer sign as the other areas we'd walked.  This place kept us interested because we've never walked it before, and were pretty sure nobody else had either.  After a few shedless miles, we decided to start circling back towards where we started.  Then out of nowhere, Big Red was on the board!  He didn't seem too thrilled.

We were almost back to the truck when Staab and Vanek saw another canyon they wanted to check out.  The main canyon split off in a "Y" pattern.  They were gonna walk up the right side first, cut over the top, then come back down the other side.  I saw an excellent opportunity to lay down in the sun and catch a nap.  To my surprise, they had antlers in their hands when they came back, but nothing special.  At this point everyone had hit the wall, and we were overdue for beer.  We cut across open pasture to make a beeline for the truck.  We were all surprised when Staab spotted these old, weathered, tines reaching out of the grass. 

Here we are with the sheds from the weekend.  Not a bad 2 day total. I think we ended up with around 23.

The drive home provided an odd reminder of the next season around the corner.  Potential buyer maybe?

I think he's interested.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Shifting Gears: 2011 Shed Hunt

  I hit the road after work Thursday evening, headed back to Kansas.  It was to be my only chance this Spring to look for the sheds of the deer I'll be hunting in the Fall.   I made it home around midnight Thursday night, and Staab met me at my parents' house around 6 the next morning.  His previous shed hunts this year  had his eye trained and his mouth running. I'd have to be sharp if I wanted to put some bones on my pile.

We started our search as the sun was supposed to be rising.  I'm sure it was there somewhere, but the drizzle blocked it out for the most part.  We hit two main canyons that were full of fresh deer sign, but empty of antlers.  As we rounded the mouth of the major canyon and began to head East, I looked down and to my left at my first shed of the year.

It felt good to get on the board first.  I guess I still got it.   That first shed got the juices flowing, but we covered quite a bit of ground after that with nothing to show for it. 

After getting the goose egg at a spot I thought might pay off, we headed for an old standby.  About 50 yards from one of my treestands, Staab tripped over these.

The wind picked up, the rain turned to sleet, and we kept covering ground. Staab ended up stumbling upon another one alongside a canyon trail.

It was time to head back to the car for a little wind and water break.  We stopped by the Solomon's place and talked to Gary, who had picked up 3 sheds off the field behind his house a few weeks ago.  One was from a buck I recognized from the fall.  We decided to go back and see if we could match some sets. 

As we were walking through some stubble that bordered the winter wheat, Ryan spotted one we almost passed over.  It was really camouflaged in that yellow grass. 

I don't really care to talk about what happened next, but I'll post the pictures....

We thought that last shed Ryan found was the match to Gary's shed, and the deer I had passed in October.  I checked the video when I got home....

Here's some close of pics of the set I took when I got back to snowy Minnesota.

The day ended up being a lot of fun.  Unfortunately I forgot the final score.  We were dead tired by late afternoon and planning to get up early and do it all again on Saturday.  I'll get that trip report up here tomorrow....