Scouting for the 2008 Mule Deer Hunt

Scouting for mule deer. What does that mean? When you’re looking at a huge area, you’ve got many different levels of scouting.

We’ve hunted CA deer zone X12 before and it has huge deer habitat. It seems as if the entire unit holds deer. We’ve concluded that the biggest bucks are in the most difficult spots to reach and as we approach the age of 60 those spots are really getting difficult. However, we’ve got a couple more years left, we hope.

The biggest advantage we have now is that we’re willing to pay a packer to get us back into fairly remote county – instead of carrying our packs in and using the remaining physical resources to get to where the deer are.

This weekend we hiked into a prospective site that we’ve not been to before. It holds plenty of remote ridges over 10,000 feet and plenty of places for big bucks to grow old. My brother, Rob, and cousin, Wes did spot one of those type bucks on the trip, but mostly we were just trying to figure out where to set up our base camp.

We have another spot we know well and it will serve as our backup. We had another spot that looked good, but the packer said he couldn’t reach it. I guess that means that it’s really good.

The Hoover Wilderness is one of the prettiest spots on earth. I’m always awed by the scenery.

I brought my fly rod and tested the fishing. The creek was loaded with eight in brook trout. If we use this site, we’ll be bringing some bread crumbs and vegetable oil.

We didn’t see a lot of bucks, but we believe that some of the deer have not reached the highest elevations yet and the moon was full. It was so bright out at night that one didn’t need a flashlight.


5 thoughts on “Scouting for the 2008 Mule Deer Hunt

  1. Awesome. I pity the poor people that will never see sights like that. Looks an awful lot like some of our camps in Hell’s Canyon – beautiful places, indeed. I think I’m heading out this weekend – your pics gave me the itch!

  2. That first photo is as good as life is going to get, unless you are covered if mosquitoes/horse flies. Awesome!

    For all the stuff you have done, I can’t help but wonder if you are not one of the world’s greatest wet fly fishermen.

  3. Love the pics, it is indeed one of the most beautiful areas on earth. My hunting buddy and i drew X-12 this year, we hunted little walker river drainage, rickey peak,and areas around Mt. emma. opening weekend was hot, around 80 all week. we made rookie mistakes by not hunting high enough and staying close to molyebdonite creek,doe faws and spikes.which outfitter did u use? is that buckeye ridge or Flatiron ridge or none of the above.. the bottom line is that we were not sucessful in 7 days of hunting the first week and the last weekend, any advice for the next time we draw the zone… Rich Harrison, stockton ca,

  4. Great country!bucks are sitting tight and moving at night. The moon was full during the opener. Going back at the end season no moon and working the sage brush during the day.
    Its not over yet!

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