public land encounters

Discussion in 'Iowa Whitetail Conference' started by -iabowhunter-, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. -iabowhunter-

    -iabowhunter- New Member

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    Just curious, who on here has stories worthy of sharing about public land. I like to hear stories like people stealing stuff...and getting caught, good strategies to hunt public..anything like that!
     
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  3. bukket

    bukket New Member

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    This fall I was hunting a small piece of public ground that I rarely see other people using. I have access to the back side of the public through a farmer's field that allows really easy stand access. Getting to that stand from the public entrance wouldn't even be worth getting there.

    As I was walking across the field for an evening sit I noticed movement along a ditch in the public area...another hunter. I kept walking on a string towards the edge of the timber where I crossed the ditch to access my stand. This guy was going to the same spot. He beat me to the crossing point by about 90 seconds and was so engrossed in fighting the thick brush and burrs that he had no clue I was coming up behind him.

    I couldn't resist.

    I snuck up along the edge of the ditch as he jumped down into the water and ended up less than 3 feet away from him. He was looking at my stand and ready to wade over when I spoke up and asked how deep the water was. The guy literally jumped out of his skin and couldn't even speak at first he was so startled. All he could say when he caught his breath was "Where in the hell did you come from?"

    I felt bad. He was a nice enough kid and told me he hunted this spot every now and then because nobody else is ever there. When he found my stand he thought he had it made. I told him he was there first and if he wanted to hunt it I'd back out but he was pretty uncomfortable and backed out. His walk in and out pretty well ruined the hunt that night but I couldn't stop giggling to myself the rest of the evening.
     
  4. Liv4Rut

    Liv4Rut Active Member

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    Two come to mind to me.

    the first was I hunting this spot up on a ridge that had a creek below me about 50 yards. It was the first day of the season so a lot of foliage yet. About 9am I see a guy crawl down out of a tree that I did know was there and he went over to the creek and walked out into the middle of it. He then unzipped and started peeing. Midstream I hit him with the loudest grunt call I could muster and he cut it off and crept back to the bank and grabbed his bow. After about a minute, he whipped it back out again and started to go and I hit him with another loud grunt. He cut it off and grabbed his bow again. I was laughing so hard.

    The next time I was hunting a willow bottom and brought in a pole saw to trim up a couple branches. An hour later a hiker comes through and when he was almost below me I said something and startled him. He talked a bit and went on his way. About 10 yards later he saw my pole saw I layed by a tree. He looked at it a bit and came back to my tree to ask if it was mine because if it was not he was going to take it. I thought that was funny.
     
  5. in2harrisonCO

    in2harrisonCO New Member

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    I was in my tree saddle and had a guy walk right underneath me...that was a rush. I didn't want him to see me. It worked, the guy checked out some trimmed branches at the base of my tree but never looked up. I think it may have given him a heart attack... I was in a Gilly suit just hanging there.
     
  6. SplitG2

    SplitG2 New Member

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    Was hunting public several years ago during the rut. Did a little rattling sequence and a little while later I heard something behind me. I slowly turned around to see a guy sneaking down the side of the hill with a bow in his hand and a climbing stand. I figured I'd let him walk on by so I had turned back to look forward again and just waited for him to come by. It was taking him way too long so I turned around again to look where I originally saw him. He was now 15 yards behind me starting to set up his stand. I wasn't sure how to go about letting him know I was there, so I just clanked my rattling antlers on my stand a couple times. He looked right up at me like a deer in the headlights. I was actually surprised to see how fast and quietly he packed up and left in the same direction he came.
     
  7. Sevenbirdies

    Sevenbirdies Sevenbirdies

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    I had brought a young guy out one evening to sit in a great funnel stand I had setup on some private land that butted up to army corp land where I was set up. We had a 150yrd wide alfalfa field between us where the deer were piling in every evening. We get settled in and about 45 mins to sunset a Volvo station wagon rolls up along the dirt road hugging the field and parks right behind my guys stand. After 5 mins I realize it's not leaving so I bolt down my tree, get in my truck and drive out of the campground and pull up in front of the car blocking it in. A freaked out young 20 something rolls down her window frantically and a cloud of pot smoke rolls out. I let her know she's trespassing on private property and ruined our hunt- she apologizes profusely and I leave her with one hell of a buzzkill..
     
  8. meyeri

    meyeri PMA Member

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    Last spring I set up on some public land in a wooded finger that jutted out perpendicular into a long narrow field and after calling about an hour I could see this guy working his way across the field edge with his bow in my direction. I figured he'd see my deeks any second and high tail it out of there so I sat tight. I was in a home made ghillie suit sitting against a tree and at about 75 yds I thought he spotted me when he pulled up his binoculars and was looking right at me. I waved my hand at him for about 5-10 seconds and when put down his binoculars I thought he was gonna turn around. Nope...he kept on going in my direction. At this point I started laughing to myself that he couldn't see me so I started waving at him more; I felt like a kid in a parade float trying to get this guys' attention but he still kept coming. Pretty soon he's at about 30 yds and he drops to his knees when he finally sees my deeks. I finally yell out "YO!" and I think he about crapped himself at that point.

    One other time on public I setup in the dark and about a 1/2 hour after sunrise I hear the worst sounding hen call I have ever heard in my life. I'm thinking this guy is a terrible caller and he's just on the other side of this ridge so I better back out of there. I try to wait him out but after about an hour of his half hen/half duck calls I decide I can't take it anymore. I pack up my stuff quietly and as I'm trying to sneak out a couple of couple hens and a couple gobblers that were just about to crest the ridge bust outta there. Turned out that all along it was those two hens making all the "terrible" calling racket. Lol I now feel pretty confident that any scratch I can turn out on my slate call will sound better than those wild turkeys did!
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2014
  9. JRudd

    JRudd Aim small miss small.

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    Lol all had me laughing!!

    I had a guy try to sneak up on my duck decoys once.. I'm not sure how he didn't see me and my buddy.. he damn near crept between us and we weren't being still by any means.. just looking at him with a "are you serious right now?" kind of look. Finally I couldn't take it anymore and started getting worried he was gonna shoot in our direction so I whistled at him (20yds away). Biggest disappointed face I've ever seen on a 30+yr old duck hunter lol
     
  10. TeenageHunter

    TeenageHunter McNorrisBieber Staff Member

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    The only public land I've ever been on is Viking Lake in Southwest Iowa (I'm always on private). I was out shed hunting and after walking around Viking the entire day and finding a tiny 4pt and a 2pt I called my Dad (this was back in 8th grade) I was walking sort of by the camping area and I hear a "Hey! What do you think you're doing?! Can't you read?" I turn around to see a guy in his 60's standing there with his dog on a trail I said "What are you talking about?" He said "See that sign?" I was like "What the do not enter? You're joking right?" He was dead serious. He then started to claim he was a game warden and that shed hunting was illegal and that he was going to call the police when he got to cell service. That was a dead give away that he's probably not a game warden. He would be the police. I was laughing and he followed me to where my Dad picked me up and started chewing my Dad out saying how shed hunting and going off the path is illegal and that he was a game warden. No idea who the guy was, but he was obviously just making a fool of himself. I pull out the regulations and asked him what his name was. He told me his name and he obviously wasn't a CO or anything. He was just a crazy old bat.
     
  11. Hardwood11

    Hardwood11 Well-Known Member

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    LOL
    A kid in my high school did that, he took a shot and sunk a drake mallard decoy
    Ran like he** and the guy with the dekes chased him but had waders on.
    He told the story in shop class, hardest I laughed that year!
     
  12. -iabowhunter-

    -iabowhunter- New Member

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    Wow these are all hilarious!
     
  13. iabwhntr

    iabwhntr Active Member

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    This one is my favorite!!! Good stuff!!:D
     
  14. earl

    earl Stonecold

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    Was hunting public land a while back got settled in nice way before first light opening day. As it got light I heard some noise in front of me a hunter climbing a tree around fifty yards he could not see me because of the foliage. He was running a little late. As the morning went he made all kinds of noise and moving all around. So a little before 9am I couldn't take it anymore and decided to get down and take a pee and get out of there nice and quite. So I went and laid my bow down and walked in the middle of the creek. I whipped it out and in mid steam I heard that guy grunt as loud as he could so I grabbed my bow thinking maybe he seen one. Waiting a minute he did it again this time i knew it was on me as I heard him laughing his head off. So I slipped out of there thinking what a nut. As I got back to the truck it was just me and his trucks and I noticed how clean his tires where. So I whipped it out, I never laughed so hard.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2014
  15. meyeri

    meyeri PMA Member

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    lol Well played...
     
  16. JUNIOR

    JUNIOR Active Member

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    Liv4Rut!!!!!! Laughing so hard right now. Same story. Is this a joke on liv? Lol
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2014
  17. 2-bucks

    2-bucks PMA Member

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    By far my neatest public land encounter was in Colorado. I was archery hunting elk but muzzleloader season was on. I had a small herd with a medium sized bull patterned coming to a wallow three days running. They were coming in from the north east every evening. On day four i make my move with perfect wind. i get in early and lay down in some grass on a hillside 30 yards from the wallow and have a deadfall in front of me. at the perfect time i hear them coming and get ready...only to have it be a muzzleloader hunter walking right through the bedding area with the wind at his back. I was so pissed i could have exploded. Now keep in mind i am over 2 miles from the nearest road and the direction he came from was over 5. This guy walks past the wallow then turns toward me, never sees me, and walks right to the dead fall at my feet then skirts it to my left. i could have litterally touched him if i reached out my bow. At first i was so pissed i did not want to say anythng, then he was so close i was afraid i'd get shot if i scared him. I never said anything and he eventually walked off. Can you imagine how bad it would scare the crap out of you that far in the middle of nowhere and have someone talk 4 feet from you. I'm pretty sure one or both of us would have died if i had. Him from a heart attack and me from a muzzle loader bullet. Oh well....at least i know my camo was good.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2014
  18. -iabowhunter-

    -iabowhunter- New Member

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    That sure would make me mad! Elk aren't easy critters, especially giving after them with a bow
     
  19. Packnasty

    Packnasty New Member

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    When I grew up in Wisconsin, I had a great public land spot which was surrounded by private land. I had "my tree", which was about a mile or two back through some very thick woods. I had maintained a trail out to my tree which was nicely trimmed, and I knew it like the back of my hand. My first year living in Iowa, I drove the 7 hours back home for the gun opener and was gonna hang and hunt for an all day sit in my tree. I wake up nice and early, get out there 2 hours before shooting time, and pull up to find that the entire piece of public land had been clear cut.

    With no plan B, I drove to a different piece of public land and still hunted the morning. All I saw was orange.
     
  20. AIRASSAULT

    AIRASSAULT PMA Member

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    Two stories.. I think I may have shared them on here before:

    5 years or so ago, I was walking through some public land to get to a turkey hunting spot. I was on the edge of a high-line clearing and saw something white run through the trees on the other side of the clearing. I kept watching and soon counted 7 or 8 beagles and a guy with a walking stick mushroom hunting. I walked up to him and kindly notified him that dogs weren't allowed on public hunting land that time of year because of nesting birds. He snapped at me and told me he knows the law and that this was a wildlife management area and not the same as public hunting :rolleyes:... I turned around and left and headed for a different spot. I wasn't going to say anything because I realize most people don't know that law anyway, but, because of the manner in which he replied, it pissed me off so I called the CO. The CO showed up after I had left. He called me back later that evening to tell me what happened. He said he arrived in the parking lot and waited by the guys vehicle until he came out of the woods. The guy walked up with all of the dogs by him and when the CO notified him of the problem, the guy said "they're not my dogs" and just got in his vehicle and left them there. The CO said there was nothing he could do to prove any different because they had no collars.

    Another story that happened this year:

    My dad and I took up trapping this last fall. The weekend before trapping season opened we headed to some public land to scout it out and we were quite a ways back in there.. I can't take my dad anywhere without him having to drop a deuce somewhere in the process.. So, while we were back there, he found a nice brush pile and did his business. Fast forward to a week later. We were back in this spot right after daylight with all of our gear waiting for 8am to arrive so we could start setting traps. While we were standing there, we noticed a deer hunter walking toward us with his bow. He saw us and then turned around and left. We spent the whole day in that area setting traps and worked our way quite a ways back in there. We were almost done for the day and walking back to where we had started. I was walking by a brush pile and I heard someone say "HEY".. I stopped and turned and there was that same bow hunter we saw earlier tucked into a homemade blind/brush pile.. He must have waited for us to work our way back in there before setting up for an evening hunt. Anyway, I said "Sorry, we are almost finished." He said, "Ok, thanks. I've been hunting this blind since last weekend." "Were you guys here last weekend too?" I said, "Yea, that was us." So, we walk over a ways and set our last traps, and then all of a sudden it hits me... My old man dropped his trousers like with in 50 yards of this guy the weekend before and took a dump with a wide open view to him... I about dropped on the ground laughing so hard.. Of course, dad didn't think it was quite as funny as I did. I bet that guy had a good story to tell his friends..... "So, there I was, sitting in my deer blind and some guy just walks right up next to me and takes a crap...." haha
     
  21. bremerbuck

    bremerbuck New Member

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    I know this is a public land encounters but I hope this still will count. About five years ago I was hunting some of our farm land in notheast iowa. It was the opener of bow season and I had a nice buck on camera everyday so I went to that spot and right at daylight could see him coming down the fenceline I stood up and got ready. As a watched him he stopped about 200 yards out like he was staring at something. Then all of a sudden turned around and ran in the opposite direction. Confused sat down and checked the wind trying to understand what had happened. A few minutes later a guy stood up in the fenceline went out into the opening where the deer was standing fell to his knees picked up his arrow and was shaking his head walking towards me. So I stayed in my stand he acctually began to climb up it when i yell who the h*** are you! He fell about 2 steps to the ground on his butt. Then we had a nice conversation about tresspassing and to make matters worse he had been lieing to our 93 year old land lord about how he was out there taking pictures of the deer. Some people!
     

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