buckman4c said:Tide- I hunt a rugged SGL in SE Pa. I know this isn't where you hunt but your right about the pressure isn't what it once was and it tends to be concentrated. One of the biggest problems we encounter is trying to figure out where that pressure is concentrated. One year its in the area I'm hunting and the next year no one can be found. This past season I extended my hunting area even further. Needless to say, during all of rifle season (3) hunters seen, two of which were blood trailing and one that walked through. What we also saw were plenty of deer. When I walked out the first day there were ZERO cars left in the lot. When I walked out the first Saturday at lunch time there were (7). Which I would consider "low" pressure. The last day ZERO.
Just to add something on my first post. For us, wherever the acorns are good so is the hunting. Good up high, shooting up high. Spotty or bad acorns high and the majority of the shooting is in the valleys. The difference for you is your valleys which I believe are forested whereas ours have ag fields. Still, the acorns could be good high or low for you and certainly effect your hunting.
Your hunting some really big areas and it sounds like you have the right idea. Isn't it working out that you would ask?
I am always looking to learn and hoping that others will too. It still amazes me how people will hunt the same stands year after year whether there is sign or not. My first goal is to be at least 1 mile from a lot if possible and then look for sign.
The reason I brought up hunting the tops is I grew up hunting #58 in Beaver Station Columbia County. The effort it took for us to get way back in was the reason for our success. Every opening day it was anywhere from 3 bucks to 5 bucks by 10:00 am for the 5 of us. The very spot we hunted is now easy to find. They put a road in and the parking lot is where we used to walk to. Now the walk is easier in where I hunt, and I see a decent number of deer (8-20)on opening day and bucks (can shoot a legal one every year). Like I said up top, I always try to learn something.