A lot of hunters don’t realize that, as a buck matures, his core area often shrinks. A big bucks living quarters can be as small as 150 acres or 1/4 square mile. Theses are small sections of land which receive little or no human contact. Oddly, a lot of these secluded tracts are near heavily populated areas. All that’s required is feed, cover, and little human interference.
Bucks which inhabit these areas have become experts at avoiding human contact. They are skittish and wary. The good news is-these bucks generally try to return to these secluded patches of cover daily, even during the rut.
Once you’ve located a bucks core area, the best way to hunt him is to stay with his does and wait for him to make an appearance. Since these shy old bucks tend to check their does at night, some careful scouting will be required. I like to setup between the buck and his does and as close to his core area as possible without disturbing it.
I feel very fortunate to have been raised in a rural community nestled in the rugged mountains of Idaho. In my youth, the locals paid little attention to game laws and seasons. Back then everyone hunted for meat. There was a certain amount of red meat that was needed be brought in to get everyone through the winter and we hunted until that supply was met. Hunting wasn’t for sport. It was for survival. We killed a lot deer. Those were the run, gun, and grin days of hunting here in Idaho. I loved every minute of it.
Times have changed. Those days are gone. But I would like to thank all the old-timers who so freely shared their hunting lore and secret spots with me. The lessons have not been forgotten. Thank you all.