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August 01, 2008


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Good advice mike, I think the biggest thing you touched on, with any small parcel, is doing as little damage as possible on your way in.

Whats the point of having 40 acres if you walk over 35 of it to get to your stand.

good advice Mike, helps me re-focus on some old spots that may need a new look(scouting)

Eli will have one awesome season......the 2 best things in hunting are new property and new proerty that hasn't been hunted in along time. something special about the first few sits in a new timber and a new stand........ can't wait to see the pics of the whopper that he's going to shoot there

Hanback is right on the money! Slow and easy. Don't blow the deer out of there before the good times roll in.

Also, in Indiana, deer are even more sensitive to human/hunting activity than in some other places. It can't be stressed enough. If you're after a big boy, keep the activity to a minimum. I have a similar situation where I'm at.

I lease a small woodlot (about 15 acres) that doesn't look like much from the surrounding roads, etc. However, in the years when corn (like '08...sweet!) surrounds this property it can be unreal. There is a small pond inside of it too...which is nice. The fact that you have a creek running through your small piece of heaven is a tremendous bonus as well. I found a main trail last year on the west edge of this little beauty, and realized that I've been missing out on an opportunity for several years. I used to have a stand in the NE corner of the lot, and got lazy and complacent by only hunting that one stand.

A good rub line existed along this trail last year. Take a guess where I'll be set up for this season?
When the pre-Rut nears its end (think Halloween; plus or minus a few days)I'll be there. And Hanback knows best: HUNT ALL DAY LONG!!! If you can, of course.

What is around your new spot Eli? Corn, soybeans, CRP??

I like to look @ aerial photos and topo maps of every piece of ground I hunt before I ever step onto it. You can see quite a few details that you will miss from the ground and I think it gives you an excellent starting to do your scouting from. You can access free photos/maps from terraserver-usa.com.

Another thing I like to do is after you pick your stand sites, determine your routes into the new stands and clear those entry paths. Take some round up and a rake and clear everything out of your way. It will make going in/out there a whole lot quieter.

You will find that many times deer will begin using your trails (as they are lazy animals and will always take the past of least resistance).

I would also hang my stands EARLY! As Mike stated it's easy to bust deer out of small pieces, so clear the paths, hang your stands and WAIT for the right time to hunt your new potential honey hole!

Good luck on the new property.


no to start an argument but the only advice from the pros that i usually bi-pass is the aerial photo's........ i have them but don't find them to useful. they just don't show the real picture like the neighbor kids that are riding 4 wheelers down the ridge you thought the big boy traveled or the guy who got permission to make your perfect funnel a rifle range or other intrusion. maybe it's just that our topography doesn't change like OH,IN and some others
i know it is handy to have but it has never helped me put one on the wall...... most aerial photos are old also and some things change


No ruffled feathers here @ all. Just different opinions. I've found that aerials and topo maps can really give you an edge in starting your scouting on the ground.

Sure, some of the photos and maps are old, but unless major developement has happened I still find them relevant.

Funnels, pinch points, water sources, fence lines, I've found tons of good info from looking at an aerial photo both before and AFTER actual scouting to help put all the pieces of the puzzle together.

Have a good day,


10-4 on clearing the paths- then when the leaves drop, keep them clear. Amazing how quiet you can be slipping in. I walked in one afternoon on a cleared trail and when half way up the stand ladder, a real nice 3 1/2 year old presented himself to me at 35 yards. He ate well.

Surrounded by hardwoods. From the aerial views off the web, it looks like hilly terrian with no crop within a good mile or so.

I have been down there a couple times now, and the trails are obvious, but fooliage is very thick. It is looking like the oaks are going to produce nicely.

Thanks for the advice everyone.

I'm with Mike on the comment of first hunting the perimeters then toward the centers. On any new hunting land / situation, I always place an observation stand up first. This stand is set up for less obtrusive observing on a long range viewing point. After a few days of sightings, I will then relocate to the activity that warrants the best stand sitting.

I can remeber the young days when I charged into great deer activity spots only to ruin them over numerous , careless acts.(ie: marginal wind, bad entrance/exit paths, hunting to close to the feeding/ bedding areas, etc.) Start out conservatively, sense their mood and activity , then give them a change up once a chink in their armour is displayed.

Like your "honeyhole" mentioned above.....I had a similar spot on public land that was not more than one acre small. It was a clump of trees along an irrigation ditch out in the middle of a 300 acre cornfield. (The F&W area had it contract planted, then later flooded it for ducks in the fall.) My hunting buddies all hit the swamp woods while I gingerly took my climber and headed for the tree clump. Long story
short....after two sittings , I arrowed a nice 130" 10pt. Needless to say , that one acre heaven later turned into a "winner take all" area after my buddies found out about my buck!

And yes Eli.....you will have a great spot too!

Eli, What part of the state are you in?

Great article and advice for any hunter Mike. I only hunt on 20 acres most of the time and see few deer passing through from the bigger farms but I enjoy it all the same cause of no hunters to disturb me. I like to hunt in solitude most of the time and just enjoy nature at it's best.

With no measurable crops fields nearby, those acorns hitting the ground are going to be a DINNER BELL for every deer within miles.

I'm green with envy at this point.

But one other thing I'd consider is using the creek to your advantage when it comes to entering and leaving your stands. Good rubber boots will allow you to creep in the water to and from your stand (as long as you step carefully), will leave zero scent to spook anything and mask any sounds of you walking. Since you've indicated its along the edge of the property , should fit in to the "hunting from the outside in" advice Mike gave you , too.

If any of those oaks are along the creek, it gonna be LIGHTS OUT for anything that happens to wander by ...

Good luck and straight shootin' !!

Last spring, I went to a weekend seminar by Tony Lapratt. He only owns 50 some odd acres in MI and 1/2 of it is open. He practices what is called "time management for bucks" on his land. He has manipulated it to be a virtual deer paradise, uses low impact hunting techniques, and kills very nice deer on his place. The web site doesn't give you 1/3 of the details on his techniques...and if you haven't been through the whole seminar, you definitely won't understand the validity of what he proposes (nor necessarily be qualified to write pages on why it won't work).

I went to the seminar (2 full days), walked 8 - 10 hours on other properties he set up with the same techniques...and walked away willing enough to try it on my land.

I have 38 acres that I am modiying according to his practices. Time will tell if it works.

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