David PetersenMemberOctober 29, 2010 at 5:29 pmPost count: 2749
Anyone out there have experience hunting deer in West Virginia, specifically the eastern part, Hampshire Countty? I got an offfer I can’t refuse from an old friend and will be there the week before Thanksgiving. He has 90 acres, half timber and very hilly, half open. Heavy mast crop. I have only two days to actually hunt, have never been the WV before and haven’t hunted whitetails in years except AZ Coues variety, totally different. I hear they have some nice bucks there. Specific questions:
I bought my deer license via internet and printed it out, but no carcass tag. Do they not use them there? Since it’s a CWD monitoring area I assume you have to bring the deer out whole to be checked?
I won’t have a tree stand so it will be ground brush blinds and depending on conditions, maybe some sneak hunting and stalking. Where to set up — on a trail back in the woods or on the edge cover? I presume they’ll be rutting but don’t plan on calling, rattling or scraping.
Dumb beginner questions, I know, but like I say I’m decades out of practice. Any advice will be appreciated. Thanks, dave
Stephen GrafModeratorOctober 30, 2010 at 9:50 amPost count: 2371
Hunting license – you might need to check what you bought. The license is broken into a bunch of different fees and 1 of them is for tags I think. You are supposed to tag the deer before taking it to the check in station.
I think Hampshire county is what they call a containment area. CWD was found in that county. People can voluntarily give a sample of the deer when checking in. Then you can see the results by entering your tag number into the website.
No treestand? I don’t think you will have to worry much about checking in the deer for CWD testing.. 😯 😀
Ground Blinds are pretty good option, but stay in it. Walking around is a low percentage method. Hopefully your friend can point out their travel patterns and help you choose a good area for a ground blind.
All info/opinions are anecdotal. I have never hunted in WV. But I do a lot in VA mountains which is similar to WV.
paleomanMemberOctober 30, 2010 at 11:59 amPost count: 918
A treestand will be your best option, I agree. I love my climber, packs light and climbs like a tree rat:) But if it’s not in the cards, you can make use of whatever cover you find in the woods, small blowdowns, depressions, etc. You can always find something to worm into. Bring a small folding saw for that work. Personally, I’d get back in away from any field edge cover – try to find the internal forest edges, where different cover types meet. For example along the edge of an older clearcut or other more dense cover, you may find some good spots, or even better, some small openings inside it, or find what I call “ribbons” of low brush the deer like to use as travel corridors and hunt to one side of them. I grew up in New England hunting very hilly country too and the critters always liked to bed on the “benches” half way up the hill too. Good luck. I’ll bet you’ll be back.
David PetersenMemberMemberNovember 3, 2010 at 12:02 amPost count: 2749
Thanks Steve and Paleo — This is a low-odds hunt, as my host has just taken up pully bowhunting and a main reason he wants me there is to help him transition to a longbow. Nor has he owned the land for long. I won’t have any time to scout or familiarize myself with the place, etc. I like the bench advice, as elk do much the same so it will feel natural. I was told to get the UU tag and I got that and everything else the website told me I needed, $166 total. But I saw nothing about a carcass tag being required and will need to check that out asap. Thanks again, dave
tailfeatherNovember 3, 2010 at 2:59 pmPost count: 417
If they are checking for CWD, you will likely only need the head….there’s a node in their noggin used to test for CWD. As far as the hunting…..tree stands would give you a leg up for sure (har, har), but it can be pulled off from the ground given a good blind and/or cover. In the hills, saddles are a fantastic spot to set up for whitetails…..also edges with good cover and hard mast.
Good luck, Dave.
William WarrenMemberNovember 4, 2010 at 1:56 amPost count: 1384
Since you have little time to scout how about finding the property on Google Earth and peruse the satelite view. Might offer some insight on the types of vegetation or crop lands that are there. You might even be able to see those internal edges Paleo spoke of. Also the County GIS may have topography available online which could help you get a view of the lay of the land. Not traditional ways to scout but hey you have only 2 days, you may as well use it to your advantage!
Chad SivertsenNovember 4, 2010 at 2:38 pmPost count: 84
Lots of good advice above. Google Earth, low saddles on ridges, those internal edges, fence corners. WTs like to travel the easy routes if not pressured but will be in thick stuff if they are being pressured. WTs tend to be nocturnal and the big bucks more so IMO. You should be able to find a scrape, check the end of ridges where it drops off or thick brushy areas to sit, both bucks and does visit scrapes. Scrapes on open edges could be nocturnal, try to find a scrape in heavy cover with multiple trails to it. Generally, in hilly terrain deer move down in the evening and up in the morning.
Find a scrape like that with fresh sign and stay there as long as you can. Remember midday hunting can be good during a full moon, especially during the rut.
David PetersenMemberMemberNovember 4, 2010 at 5:13 pmPost count: 2749
Thanks Duncan, I’ll see if I can get a link to the property on google earth. It’s refreshing to be the one getting advice rather than getting it. Learning, or in the case re-learning a “new” game species is fun. Elk will always hold top place with me but I’m downright excited to have a couple of whitetail hunts coming up, East and West, this winter. Thanks to all, dave
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