Ground hunting in tall grass

Discussion in 'Iowa Whitetail Conference' started by fishorhunt, Dec 24, 2003.

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  1. fishorhunt

    fishorhunt New Member

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    Do any of you hunt from the ground in tall CRP grass? I hunt an area that has 100's of acres of CRP with little timber around it. This morning I was delayed on my way to work watching a 150 and a 170 class buck mill around in this grass. Not a tree big enough for a stand within 200 yds. I'm guessing you'd have to be darn lucky to get a buck to walk by you in the grass but thought I'd see if any of you had any tips.
    [​IMG]
     
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  3. ironwood

    ironwood Active Member

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    The first buck I ever took was out of a tall stand of switch grass. Keep in mind this was with a gun. I expected deer to be bedding in this bowl shaped area of grass because of experience from pheasant hunting the spot. I walked up to the bowl wind in my favor and whistled. Up he jumped bounding away and on his fourth rise from the grass I took him. I was pretty pumped to have that come together the way it did. The area that deer was taken holds some of the largest bucks I have ever laid my eyes on, lots of grass few trees. I would think as a bow hunter you would have to hunt an edge as if in a ground blind.
     
  4. raven

    raven New Member

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    Don't tell me you were watching those big bucks this am while I skipped the morning hunt! Nice bucks! Just think how big they will be next season....

    Anyway.....I hunt CRP fields quite a bit and will tell you that I see the biggest bucks of the year in these habitats. But that's probably no surprise to you. Big bucks love those big CRP fields, especially those having switchgrass.

    I hunt small timber strips -- the ones following any drainage that run through such fields. Usually the trees are small but that's just how it is. The biggest buck I've ever taken in my life I shot last year out of an 8 inch diamater black walnut tree. I missed a 160 inch 8 pointer at point-blank on October 13, 2000 while hanging off a 6 inch diamter osage limb. The buck I shot this year was out of a black locust, trunked straight as an arrow, but barely half as big around as a telephone pole. Keep in mind that these trees are small but they have super hard wood and will hold a fairly lightweight hunter if one doesn't get too high up (my friends think I was born a monkey so you may not wish to follow my crazy ways....)

    Anyway, bottom line is that the big bucks are there, one just needs to find a way to hunt them. The thing is many hunters avoid these habitats, because as you said, finding stand trees is tough, because they are small, or because there are no trees at all. For what it's worth, north/south running draws through CRP offer the easiest hunting, while east/west generally make things tougher because they line up with prevailing winds. Of course, that is a glaring simplification and generalization of the pattern....there are tons of exceptions! What else is new, right....but the challenge is what I love...

    Ground blinds work in grassy habitats too. But often they must be placed out well ahead of time or deer will shy away from them and brushing them in is often mandatory. Plus, it is hard to predict just where deer will be in those open habitats. So figuring out just the right spot to ground hunt without having deer drift downwind of your local can be tough.

    With a muzzleloader your options open up some. I often lay flat in the grass on late season hunts waiting for deer. The surrounding grass traps your scent a little and you have, of course, much more range with a muzzlegun than with a bow.

    That is just a little of how I hunt these places. Good luck out there! (Sorry these words may have come out as a big rambling mess....I am typing fast as I am on my way out the door)

    Raven
     
  5. muddy

    muddy Administrator

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    digging a hole in the ground big enough to sit your feet in and then put your rear end on the lip of the hole with some sort of homemade back rest would work also. gets you down closer to the earth and no skylining. you'd have to play the wind and mark the holes or fill them back in at the end of season of course. you'd also have to be ready at all times as your sight would be limited.

    raven - when you hunt those small trees are you using your treesuit or a stand?? how far up do you go??
     
  6. moosehunter

    moosehunter PMA Member

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    if your hunting with a muzzleloader, wait for a windy noisy day then zigzag into the wind. this works great if the grass is tall enough to obstuct thier vision. keep your gun ready though (like bird hunting) cause they will bolt and a running shot is likely..........good luck and remember to lead [​IMG]
     

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