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Hi Gang,

I've been doing a bit of research on a pack hunt for some out of reach bucks. The Hammersley Wild Area keeps coming up in my searches. Would anyone be willing to share some insight/experiences bow hunting this area? I really enjoy getting away from the crowds and have done pretty well in the past doing the same in upstate NY and MI. Is the trophy potential there? Deer densities? Overcrowding? Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Best,

Ed
 

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I've spent time in the HWA, but not while deer hunting. As you no doubt know, it's a vast area; and if you're looking to get away from other hunters, this place would certainly have that potential. My guess is that there are deer in there that never see a hunter during the fall season; but as far as trophy potential or deer densities, perhaps someone else can speak more accurately to that. I would think that the deer population would be limited; just as is the case in many other areas in 2G. That being said, I think what you have in mind would be a very cool experience.
 

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I don't have experience with Hammersley specifically but have backpacked through some of the other wild areas in that part of the state. Being a wild area they don't timber and generally speaking that lends to marginal to completely useless deer habitat. If being in a govt declared wild area is what gets your juices flowing, have at it, but my recommendation if you want good hunting would be to adjust your line of thinking just a bit. There are vast public areas up there that are not designated wild areas, so they have active timber management and therefore better habitat. Many of these areas still don't see an archery hunter all season and have scarce pressure even in rifle. In fact I have found the wild areas are more crowded because they are interlaced with trails used by backpackers, dayhikers, and horse people. 100-120 inch bucks are going to be your representative "nice" mature bucks in the PA wilds with a select few in the 130's or 140's.
 
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