Sizing them up - Page 6 - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #51 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 03:31 PM
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Experience has something to do with it too, as well as where you're hunting.

If you have shot a few 130+bucks, passing those 120's becomes easier. Same with location, hunting pa my standards are much different than if I'm in another state. That's not bravado, just a realistic assessment of where and what you are hunting. I won't pass a 130 in pa, and as a hunt winds down it's still really hard for me to pass a 130 anywhere, espessially if he's an 8, those are nice.

As far as getting all your bucks on trail camera, then figuring out what they score, that's a great idea too. But am I the only one who hunts areas he's never hunted before, with little or no intel? You better be prepared to judge a buck you've never seen before, and if you can't you'll be disappointed more times than not. Those 140+ buck jump out at you as "shoot now" the instant you see them. But those 115 to 130 also look big, just not as big and you gotta know by looking if he's 130, or be disappointed when you walk up to a 115.

Two things you can see at a glance that tell you alot, long points and long beams. Without both your probably looking at a 120 or less deer, unless something else drives up the total. No way a buck with 18" beams and 6" points can go over 120, unless spread or mass makes up for it and either of those features is also easy to see at a glance. Long points are easy to judge, but to get long beams they gotta turn back in towards each other or they're not long.

I'm not into hunting big bucks for score or glory, but score tells me alot more than just "a big 8" or a "nice 10", a score is just a far better description.
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post #52 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by fall gobbler View Post
That first one are the ones that are hard (for me) to pass.

yep. while these two are good bucks neither one has much mass to the rack. if they would have walked by, i would gladly take one home.


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So did you see any of the big does you had on camera?

just one. my wife took that one home keeping it warm...right around 350

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post #53 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by BUGLE BOY View Post
I have 3 bucks mounted and a 4th (my biggest) at the taxidermist now. But I don’t get them mounted to show off to anyone, heck, I rarely have anyone over to my house anyway! I get them mounted because to me they are beautiful creatures and I love to look at them every day and relive the hunt. Good taxidermy is truly art work. I also have a pile of bucks that I’ve euro mounted myself and they are on my wall as well.

But to some, this makes me an “elitist” hunter, addicted to “bone” and thumping my chest while bragging to everyone about how great of a hunter I am...
I’m the same as you. I have 5 mounted. All compound hunts. I would only have 4 but one is my first archery buck which was also my 1st buck ever and I thought it would be cool to have him mounted.

I don’t think guys are “elitist” for hunting big bucks. I was a big buck hunter for years. I’ve eaten tag soup many times because of it. I also don’t recall you ever talking down to anyone on legal bucks they have shot. The last 3 bucks I shot would have got an easy pass prior to my son starting to hunt. My good buddy who gets some nice buck but also some that are just legal used to think I was crazy passing up some of the buck I did.

Something changed when I took 7ish years off from archery hunting while dedicating all my time to getting my son out. Can’t really explain it. I don’t get out much and I’m content with a decent legal buck. Maybe it will change, maybe not.

Unfortunately, I think it’s the arrogant guys that some people let sway their opinions on all hunters no matter what game we are talking about.
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post #54 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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I'm a public land hunter and lucky enough to be surrounded by game lands. I have 20 or more stand sites where I use my climber. Running trail cams for me is tough (don't want them stolen). So almost every buck I see is usually a surprise. I read the sign and hunt on the latest Intel. So I guess I just need to lay off the trigger until, like many have said, you'll KNOW when it's a big buck
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post #55 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 08:17 PM
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I've killed my fair share of 110"-115" bucks in pa. Probably 10 of them in the last 12 years.

Not many people in your area are killing bucks of that size (Legit 110-115") year after year. When the vast majority of hunters in PA see a legit 115" buck, they saw a big buck that they'll be talking about. If you add one inch to all the measurements of a 115" buck (8pt) you have a 132" buck, its doesn't take much and its really hard to tell in the woods. For you to be killing the next caliber of buck (PY and up) you need to be willing to eat tags and most likely change the way you're hunting. You need to find these large bucks and target them. Lucking into a big buck on a hot doe or in a pinch point is not going to be consistent at all for your area, there just aren't enough of them around.

If you want age, just don't shoot them until they look like a bull. Realistically if you're second guessing the score or body size, they probably aren't big enough.
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post #56 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by RacksnQuacks View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by BUGLE BOY View Post
I have 3 bucks mounted and a 4th (my biggest) at the taxidermist now. But I don’t get them mounted to show off to anyone, heck, I rarely have anyone over to my house anyway! I get them mounted because to me they are beautiful creatures and I love to look at them every day and relive the hunt. Good taxidermy is truly art work. I also have a pile of bucks that I’ve euro mounted myself and they are on my wall as well.

But to some, this makes me an “elitist” hunter, addicted to “bone” and thumping my chest while bragging to everyone about how great of a hunter I am...
I’m the same as you. I have 5 mounted. All compound hunts. I would only have 4 but one is my first archery buck which was also my 1st buck ever and I thought it would be cool to have him mounted.

I don’t think guys are “elitist” for hunting big bucks. I was a big buck hunter for years. I’ve eaten tag soup many times because of it. I also don’t recall you ever talking down to anyone on legal bucks they have shot. The last 3 bucks I shot would have got an easy pass prior to my son starting to hunt. My good buddy who gets some nice buck but also some that are just legal used to think I was crazy passing up some of the buck I did.

Something changed when I took 7ish years off from archery hunting while dedicating all my time to getting my son out. Can’t really explain it. I don’t get out much and I’m content with a decent legal buck. Maybe it will change, maybe not.

Unfortunately, I think it’s the arrogant guys that some people let sway their opinions on all hunters no matter what game we are talking about.
I hear you. My son took his first buck last year (spike) and his first buck with a bow this year (four point) and I couldn’t be happier for him. My time afield for myself has been limited due to taking him out as much as he wants and teaching him as much as I can. Some of our best father/son talks have been in the stand together regardless of whether we see anything or not.

But a funny thing happened this year. A week or so after he shot his buck, we were on our way into town and saw several nice bucks chasing does around. He then said that next year he was holding out for a bigger one. I never pressured him or said anything to him about shooting big bucks or anything, he just took it upon himself to make that decision.

I guess I’m raising an elitist...
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post #57 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 09:22 PM
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Originally Posted by BUGLE BOY View Post
I have 3 bucks mounted and a 4th (my biggest) at the taxidermist now. But I don’t get them mounted to show off to anyone, heck, I rarely have anyone over to my house anyway! I get them mounted because to me they are beautiful creatures and I love to look at them every day and relive the hunt. Good taxidermy is truly art work. I also have a pile of bucks that I’ve euro mounted myself and they are on my wall as well.

But to some, this makes me an “elitist” hunter, addicted to “bone” and thumping my chest while bragging to everyone about how great of a hunter I am...
No, it makes you a pathetic loser until you show us pics of this years buck. You know you want to...😉
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post #58 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-18-2019, 11:49 PM
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I love getting pics of big public land bucks. I’ll find big sheds every year too. Putting myself in position to kill one in November is a different story. I get all worked up when I see a 100 incher. I love it. I do pass them some times but not very often. It’s too much fun. I love that time a year and won’t regret what I decide to shoot. I just hope the first buck to come within 35 yards is a 130 incher!
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post #59 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-19-2019, 05:49 AM
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I have no problem passing on bucks and do it every year. I would much rather shoot a doe for meat and wait on a bigger mature buck. I never feel like I have to shoot a buck every year and would much rather extend my season into late season than shoot a smaller buck in early season. Usually I know by a bucks size and demeaner as soon as I see him I know he's a buck I'll shoot.
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post #60 of 93 (permalink) Old 12-19-2019, 07:22 AM
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I never understand some posts, if you are a horn hunter some really put you down
what I do with my tag and my time off is my business as it is yours Im happy with everyone of my friends with any animal they harvest doe, buck large or small its their tag
IM 56 and hunted all my life in Pa and other states and have harvested many deer whitetail and mule and yes Im a horn hunter happy to let every basket rack 6 ,7 or 8 pt walk buy some yrs I let 15 or 20 walk by maybe take a pic and enjoy the experience looking for the bigger ones I watched all year.This year I watched 3 150 or maybe better main frame 10s with a few kickers all year 50 or more pics all summer and fall of each never had the chance at any of them
Took a doe in early archery and still have a doe tag and my buck maybe get lucky in late season maybe not but its my season
I was put down yrs ago when posted a pic of a nice 120 ish 8 pt when asked if I would mount it and said no it wasnt big enough so never posted another harvest pic since
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