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There is a cool crisp chill in the air and the leafs are
changing color and starting to fall off the trees, ahh it's
October, my favorite month of the year! Besides the colors
of the hillsides and beautiful scenery October holds so
much for an outdoorsman to do. The first two weeks are spent
sitting patiently waiting for a whitetail deer to come in
bow range. Sending an arrow through the vitals of a deer is
one of the most challenging and spiritually rewarding
moments a hunter can ever experience. The leafs keep falling
and soon it's the middle of October. It's now time to lay
down the bow and pick up the muzzleloader in search of a
nice big doe. Waiting for the smoke to clear to see if you
got her or not only lasts a few seconds but it can feel like
forever. At this same time the busy bushytail squirrel is
now in season also and I will spend many a morning or after
noon in search of them just as they are in search for every
nut they can find. That same weekend the king of gamebirds
the ruffed grouse is also now open season for those men and
dogs that pair up and bust the brush and young hillsides
in hopes to take ol' thunderwings home with them. Every
grouse is a truly earned trophy! The following weekend it
is time for the beagles to hound the brush in chase of the
cottontail rabbit, there's just something about hearing the
howls of a beagle coming your way that never gets old. But
there is more to this weekend, it's also time for bird dogs
and their owners to start hunting the beautifully colored
ringneck pheasant. A good bird dog on point and the flush
of a cackling rooster is always a moment to be remembered.
After the daylight fades and the orange clad men and dogs
go home to clean their game and enjoy a nice meal a new
circuit of hunters hit the woods in the nights darkness.
The predator hunters take to the woods with their red lights
and calls doing their best to sound like a distressed
animal in hopes to bring in a coyote, fox, coon, or maybe
even a bobcat. There really is nothing like scanning the
dark night woods to pick up a set of reddish colored eyes
coming your way thinking you are their next meal only to
be surprised to find out that they are dead wrong. The next
day trappers start to hit the woods setting traps for the
furbearers. They are quick and discreet hoping no one sees
them and that little scent is left behind to alert any
predators at their set. It is truly one of the most exciting
things one can do, getting up early to go check your trap
line wondering if the next set will hold a critter for you.
You get there and yes..I caught a coyote, fox, or coon!
Now the leafs have all changed color and have fallen to the
ground making walking in the woods a noisy endeavor. Now
the hillsides and ridges are littered with scrapes and rubs
from the now rutting whitetail bucks, it's now time to get
the bow back in hand and spend time on stand hoping to lure
in one of these crazy bucks for a close shot. The chasing
can be a hectic scene when a buck or more than one buck
finds an estrus doe, a magical thing to see unfold. Besides
the scrapes you will also see hillsides all racked up from
the wild turkeys scratching for food and now they too will
come in season. Whether you break up the flock and call them
back in to shotgun range or you simply find them and pick
one off with a trusty rifle it makes for a fun hunt to end
the great month of October!
 

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Well said! October is definitely the best time of year.
 

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I am with ya 100% corey, October is the time to celebrate it all. Nice writing.
 

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I'm hoping to scratch "deer" off my list so I may enjoy other aspects of Octobers hunts.
 

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Well done, corey! You captured the essence of October hunting and the colors that surround it. It is a brief moment during the year, but certainly one none of us with hunting embedded in our souls, ever grows tired of experiencing.

I always add the migration of raptors to my fall experiece, and my closeness to Hawk Mountain in northern Berks County has made my enjoyment of hawks aloft, nearly as important as hunting the October woods. November brings the golden eagles along the north side of the Kittitinny Ridge, and if you've never experience it, I'll bring the coffee and share it with you.
 

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Nice read! As much as I love the rut in early November, October is probably my favorite month for many of the reasons you just described.
 
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