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Discussion Starter #1
So, I'm a newbie to PA hunting and plan on going through Clarion to SGL 72 and/or 74 for some pheasant action- then plan on going to the Marienville area to chase some grouse in the ANF.
Any comments? Suggestions? If things go decent, I'll be back on Saturday as well.
Thanks for any comments. Good luck to all.
 

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Good luck on your hunt. Don't forget, Turkey are in season in those areas as well on both days.

We'll be looking for a report and pics when you get back. (When you find the grouse, don't give us a report telling where. Save that info for yourself).
 

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dap said:
Good luck on your hunt. Don't forget, Turkey are in season in those areas as well on both days.

We'll be looking for a report and pics when you get back. (When you find the grouse, don't give us a report telling where. Save that info for yourself).
+2... Good luck!
 

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timberdoodle said:
+ he can whisper it
Or just PM it to me.

Baddgrouse, my suggestion is to ignore timberdoodle (and me) and have yourself a great time. Your plan sounds like a good one. If the grouse hunting peters out, you might want to try Buzzard Swamp, just east of Marienville, for some pheasants.

And don't forget what dap said too - a turkey over Thanksgiving would be a pretty special prize.
 

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Good luck to you...Thanksgiving morning is my favorite day of the year to be in the woods...for the past 16 years I have spent it by myself, with my english setter of course, chasing grouse. I have had some memorable days grouse hunting on Thanksgiving morning...until my wife calls and tells me to get my butt home.
 

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BaddGrouse,
Go slow and safe and have fun, could be a 4 Wheel drive kind of day, should be seriously beautiful in the woods around Marianville. Shoot a couple of nice Grouse and post some pictures for us all to see. Might take a walk thru the Laurel Mountains in Somerset County myself, early on Thanksgiving morning and be home around 1:00 PM. We are having our regular family and friends over for Thanksgiving dinner,
plan to help my wife set up for dinner, she really out does herself, and I pitch in also, it's one of my favorite holidays. In our home we still thank God for all he has given us.
Happy Thanksgiving everybody

Pine Creek/Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone! Yes, my better half is headed to FLA with her sister to have a Turkey dinner down there with her other sister and parents.... Me? I'm hunting!!!!
I'll be visiting my mother later. I do have a 4x4 pickup so? I really hope the snow is not 1ft deep or more- I won't last long.
From what I've been reading, Grouse tend to hold tighter in snow... Looking forward to it big time. Bringing my good camera for some memorable shots. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
 

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I've found the grouse hold great in 4" of fresh fluffy stuff. If there is a foot or more, many will be snow roosted. If you see any holes in the snow, make sure to check them out. The birds will be busting out of them between your feet and throwing snow all over you. Those really get your heart a-pounding.

Are you taking one or both dogs?
 

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my buddy and I are headed out at some spots her in 5C, he got his first pheasant on sat, a beautiful rooster, and I got my first bird yesterday a nice hen followed by my second about a minute later. we managed a limit yesterday! ive never really pheasant hunted because my grandfather was always telling me the hunting is nothing like it used to be and I probably wouldn't get any pheasants without a dog, but man am I loving this my knees were like jello when I went looking for my birds.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yes, I'll be taking my lab and my Brittany pup. I ran them together sunday and was impressed. Earlier this year I had them out together and it was kind of a circus- mainly because Molly was soo young and she just wanted to chase Beau and bite his legs...She definitely knows what's going on now. Beau my lab (he's 3 yrs old) has really calmed down on his ranging- he's 20-30 yds but works more diligently then he used to. He's a flusher so may not work on grouse...I just don't have the heart to leave him at home all day. Molly is doing pretty good on her ranging but I expect her to bust a bird or two. SHe seems too fast right now...but I suppose some actual bird scent on her nose and she'll lock in. First time I had her on chukars, she flushed the first one, but since then she's pointed 6 in a row... its awesome when she's ranging so quickly and then just screams to a halt and locks in.

I will probably run them together for pheasants... not sure yet on grouse. The thought of a grouse taking off between my legs has me.....excited! Just checked weather- Turkey day will have about 6-8" of fresh snow in Marienville... Looks like Saturday will be a really nice day to be out- sunshine and close to 30's... Hope I find something Turkey day to make me want to come back on Sat.
 

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I have a lab and a setter that I will run together on pheasants. They are both to the point now where I'm comfortable doing it. The lab is always within 15 yards of me and the setter isn't. When the beeper goes off the lab knows she has to walk at heel with me up to the point. The setter also knows he's not allowed to break when the lab and I walk past. They were both in their 5th year of hunting before I was confident that I wouldn't mess up my setter by doing this and turn him into a long distance flusher.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, I'd like to have tons of tailgate pics and dogs on point... didn't come close. State Game Lands 72 was un-eventful. I spent maybe an hour there- it was nice to let the dogs finally stretch their legs after about 2 hours in kennels.
Headed to Marienville and frankly- had no clue where to even go... Ended up going down "lamonaville Rd" a ways until I found what I thought looked decent.. Medium sized evergreens interspersed with saplings and some larger trees...Nothing but a ton of deer tracks. Snow was about 4-5in..I thought the conditions today were pretty good- but I'm no expert.
Packed up and went around to Buzzard Swamp Rd and went probably half way to the swamp and worked into what I thought initially looked thicker...but probably too many evergreens again. Nothing again.

Thinking about today and the cover I was in, compared to the cover that I've flushed grouse in years back in Ohio & Wisconsin... The stuff today was no were near as thick as the past stuff. I'm used to thick stuff that you can hardly walk through with grape vines all through it, etc...

Does anyone have pictures of grouse habitat in PA that actually holds birds? Or maybe some of you know generally where I was and you can tell me "Birds are there- you just didn't get lucky" I'm not looking for any hotspots- I just want to learn for next time. I was looking for sections of forests that were clearly different in age...Most everything I saw today was the same except the area east of Marionville on 66, Trees looked very mature. It takes probably years to pinpoint hot areas and I know on first trip I shouldn't expect miracles.... oh well, at least the dogs and I will sleep good tonight!
 

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I've been there, driving hours on end to the areas with tons of birds only to find nothing. Its tough when you're hours away from home and don't know the area to try and find something. I just treat them all as learning experiences, sounds like you're doing the same.

Better luck next time.
 

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The next time you go to those exact same spots under the exact same conditions, there will be birds everywhere. That's why they call it hunting and not........
 

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We drive a lot of the big clear cuts on public land around marienville during bear season.. Usually couple grouse flush in each drive..
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Sounds like I need to find those clear cuts!

I got redemption today in Ohio. Got 2 pheasants from birds released on the 27th. Proud of my lab!
 
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