Hot weather Mule deer: Advice Needed.

jmoudy

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Was hoping some more experienced hunters could help me out with a little advice. I hunt out here in California in the southern sierra nevadas. It's way hotter this year than the last two years and we had a extremely dry year in regards to both snow and rain.


Everything I have read online in hot conditions or early season when they are in velvet is that they tend to be up very high in elevation and some what closer to water sources. I just got back from a 3 day hunt and no bucks spotted at all. In fact, no bucks were taken or very very few seen where I was. It was up between 6000-7500ft elevation.


Keep in mind it's been very hot compared to the last two years.


I found some nice spots where there are nice water sources. However, they are lower in elevation say around 5000-5500ft vs 6000-7500. There are nice peaks an ridges in these areas but little to no water or they have to travel a great distance to get to water. Would it make sense for me to try out the lower elevations where it would be a little warmer BUT there are great water sources at this time of year when they are in velvet?


In fact, any tips or advice on hunting hot weather Mule deer in velvet would be greatly appreciated.


Thanks.
 



6x7

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Hard to say if you would have got some scouting in and found bucks when it wasn't so hot,at least you would know where there at.Areas I hunt deer are from the tops to the valley floors elevation doesn't mean anything and sitting on water is not necisary deer are where they are and I usually never find them standing near it,this summer up north it has been way cooler summer tons of rain and lots of vegetation growth.
 

d10hunter

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I spoke with a game biologist and they had a tracking collar on a deer that traveled 3.5 miles everyday to drink water. Hope it helps.

Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
 

6x7

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3.5 for us seems like a lot, but for a 4 legged critter it's a breeze walk and brose it's what they do for a living.
 

Hikingwithguns

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For coastal deer I like to still hunt along ridge lines where breezes are blown by rising hot air in the midday, that is where I see the most deer. Also have had success stand or still hunting around water sources.

No idea if that will work for your deer though.
 

OPAH

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High and ridges with saddles for the buck, with a water source some where with in 5 miles. find the saddle between the water and ridge be there very early (dark) you should be able to catch him coming back to the ridges.
 

Tuolumne

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Only deer we saw during opening weekend were within 1/4 mile of water. We put some serious miles in too. Lot's of lion and bear tracks everywhere.
 

OPAH

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Bruce / Bubblehide / Justguy

A couple months ago same subject was a link to a Diaphragm Beep type call, recall what the link was?
 

Bubblehide

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Humm, the OP never came back to his own thread.


OPAH, I recall the thread, vaguely, but I have no idea where it's at.
 

mattys281

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I've seen desert deer water right in the middle of the day when it's well over 100°. I'd find a nice water hole and sit it all day everyday until something horny shows up.
 

OPAH

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I think he is sitting quietly and listening intently to the superb knowledge that is being presented here.
But I found he link if anyone is interested, I have the can vacuum type bleeps and it does work on doe's
Here is the diaphragm call link if anyone is still interested

http://www.elkinc.com/deer-talk-w-dvd-package-save-5-40/

OK jmoudy time s to stand up and let us know your awake,
 

jmoudy

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I've been following. Thanks for all the posts. I was up at D-9 and will move over to D-8 next week. Thanks for all the advice.
 

Bubblehide

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jmoudy, the zone makes a huge difference, so now that you have told us: in the D-9 zone, mature bucks tend to have a huge territory compared to mature bucks a little further north. As such, patterning these mature bucks is so much more difficult, as is finding them once you have found them once. Elevation is not so important in this zone. What is important is food, water and security; so those out of the way places become paramount. If your just looking to fill the freezer, than it will be much easier, as young bucks still hang with does, and it's a whole lot easier to find a group of deer, than it is a lone buck, or small bachelor group. Those out of the way places can be way into the woods, or just off a main trail/road; I generally look for benches that provide good cover, and a view of approaching danger. Perhaps with a back side that is thick in vegetation that does not allow for a stealthy approach. But this will be in close proximity to, or in a good feeding area.

In my experience, when the temperatures are in the 80's or below, the deer will disperse well. When the temps are in the 90's, the deer will be withing 2 miles of water (there are always exceptions). When the temperatures are in the low hundreds, the deer will usually be within a mile. when the temperatures get to 110 or so, the deer are usually withing a 1/2 mile of water. Frankly, in some zones, I prefer to hunt when those temperatures are super high; I look for those out of the way water sources, and plan my hunt approach so I can glass into those daytime shady spots.

D-9 can be very thick and steep, and it can be impossible to find the deer without pushing them. But when it is hot, they tend to hold tight and let hunters pass by them. In places like this, when the deer do hold tight in the thick stuff, I have seen a lot of guys successfully pushing deer out by rolling small boulders down the steep canyons. Just keep in mind that they don't always get a shot due to the thick brush providing such good concealment.

D-8 can be a very different story as the terrain is so much more varied; it may depend on where you plan on hunting.
 

Zharriseng112

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I was on a bachelor group this past week that were traveling just over 2 miles to water everyday, but I was at 11000'.
 

Gr8bawana

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I've seen desert deer water right in the middle of the day when it's well over 100°. I'd find a nice water hole and sit it all day everyday until something horny shows up.
I have a buddy who has been bow hunting deer in NV for a very long time, mostly in southern NV where it's very hot during archery season. He tells me he sees quite a few deer come to water after 10 am.
 

jmoudy

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Good stuff. Thank you fellas.

Will be going out this Tuesday and Wednesday. Looks like it will be in the 100s in the valley and maybe 90s up where I'll be.
 


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