Maine Camp 2019

SportsmanNH

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Our Maine camp consisted of the same 5 hunters . We have been hunting Maine together since 1981. Two sets of Brothers and me
The typical Sunday of meeting up in NH and making the 3 1/2 ride up to me camp, unloading the gear and then off to set some tree stands.
This year one set of Brothers decided to hit a different area 15 miles north of camp that they haven't hunted in 5 years due to lack of sign where they hunted last year.
The same with the other set of bro's but they just shifted over a couple miles . I did not bother to set up a stand . I would still hunt until I could find the deer movement.
Some different cuts in the area really messed up the deer patterns the last few years.
I do have a few pics to add to the stories but only one is from the woods. The rest is at camp . My group is the WORST in taking pictures in the field including me ! 😐

Monday Morning--- The spot I want to go to is 2 miles from the road . I took my time getting there because the woods where LOUD ! About a inch of hard crunchy icy snow
on top of frozen solid leaves . You weren't going to be sneaking up on a deaf deer walking on this stuff. I managed to get to where I wanted to be just before legal light.
The plan was to only take a stand for 2 hours tops. An hour after light I look over my left shoulder and I see a deer slowly creeping through some whips , cutting across the corner of a 5 year old cut.
I slowly put the scope up and see it is a small doe. Maybe 75-80 lbs. She only about 35-40 yards from me. I can see her back trail where she walked out of the spruce about 60 yards away. Nothing trailing her , and she is not looking back. I decide I am going to take a picture of her. I lean back behind the tree Im sitting next to and reach into my vest pocket to get my phone out.
THUNK chh chh chh ! I drops the freakin phone and it rolls about 3 feet in front of me. She heard it , and now her eyes are glued in my direction. Her neck is now a periscope looking over the whips on full alert. After 20 seconds of rubber necking , the screeching and stomping starts. I figured with nothing to lose since I have been had already , I reached down to get my phone. OMG you might of thought somebody was beating on her. She runs back into the spruce where she came from . For the next 20 min she ran back and forth to my left and right screeching her head off. When the little witch finally shut up she was probably 200 yards away.. Every deer within 1/2 a mile must of heard her. No sense in staying in this area now so off I went . It was fun though. Action in less that 2 hours in the woods !

At our noontime check in , one of the brothers a few miles from me had seen a big mature Doe walk by and bed down within 100 yards from him. Nothing else showed up behind her. She just lay there in comfort until she got up and went off browsing away. One of the other brothers that went 15 miles north also had a big Doe walk by at 50 yards. Easy shot. That brother is the only one of the 5 of us that had drawn an any deer permit . He let her slide by. It was only the 1st morning. But it was encouraging so far. We had seen 3 deer already on the 1st morning in 3 different areas.
 

SportsmanNH

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Monday Afternoon --- The Fun Starts !

I venture over about a mile or so from where I was in the morning to an area with lots of long swamps. I wanted to check out a couple bedding areas that I located over the years.
Its a very tough spot to get into undetected. Its like paradise for them. They can see you coming when going up the steep face and they can see you coming if you try to come from the back through the cut. Beds everywhere , but no deer in sight. I did not see any running tracks , so I figure they had got up and moved off to browse. I counted 17 beds. Some fresh , so a few days old. This is a strip of small spruce thats 50-60 yards wide and 300 yards long. Steep ledge on one side and a cutting on the other. They can slip away in the opposite direction without you ever seeing them. 4-5 beds look like they were fresh from that morning, including one huge corker with a rub and scrape next to it . They had to be from the morning because they were headed in the direction I just came from. The tracks were a couple hours old but maybe I could catch them browsing in the next cut over about 1/2 mile away. I follow them through the other side of the 1st cut about 1/4 mile . Nasty ! Fell over the slash at least 3 times but made it to the other side of the cut and to the edge of the next swamp. I climbed up on a little knoll to look around and to figure out how I am going to get out of this freakin mess. LOL Standing there looking at my options of how to get out of this nasty mess with the least amount of falls , I look over the other side of the grassy swamp I am next to and spots some movement. Its a deer walking slowly and carefully over the same type of knoll Im standing on.
i get a good look at it with the scope and its a big Doe. I watched her for the next 20 min walking the edge of the swamp and scoping behind her. She was by herself. Evidently not part of the band I tried following. Im 3 miles from the truck and its 2:30. Decided to head back and hunt my way back to the truck.

The 2 brothers that went north sat in their tree stands all afternoon. They had better snow , almost 3 inches where they were. The brother without the any deer permit , at 3:15 is sees a big deer come up the bank of a valley he is set up next to. Its a Racker ! He is only 10 feet off the ground. The second he lifted his gun the buck spots him and bolts straight away , heading for the valley . POW POW ! Two quick shots. He has no idea if he hit it shooting through the small beech trees ! 😳
 

SportsmanNH

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The buck disappears of the edge of the slope. He hears nothing. Gets down out of his stand and walks over to where the tracks should be . Finds the running track and nothing. He follows it to the edge of the slope. Blood everywhere ! The track now goes from running , to looking like a one horse cart with wagon wheels and a blood streak down the middle . Oh No ! Figures it might be a gut shot. Another 30 yards and he sees the buck laying there with his back legs spread out like a floor rug . The buck picks his head up and looks back at him , then turns his neck sideways , almost like trying to tell my buddy " Shoot Me Right Here Right Now ! " He fires and the buck is dead instantly . When he walks up to him he is looking for a bullet hole on either side but cant see one. He flips the deer on its side and lifts up his leg . Let me put it this way. In the 53 years I have been hunting , I have never heard of this happening.
In golf terms , he shot both golf balls off of the tee and flung the driver off into the woods somewhere on a " hole in one " shot. He shot that bucks family jewels right off . Thats the only thing that was hit. Didn't even go into the body or guts. Just grazed the skin . No wonder that buck was asking to be finished off ! He had nothing left to live for ! 😭 🙂

No pics from the woods . Here is one on the game pole 189 lb 8 pt. Nice wide rack

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SportsmanNH

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Tuesday --- My buddy who saw the big Doe that bedded down on Monday sees the same Doe do exactly the same thing again. She walks by and then beds down within sight this time.
She lays there like she is waiting for somebody for almost 2 hours. Cant be any better buck bait than that. But nobody shows up. She finally get up and just slowly walks away in the same direction as the day before. Again , no followers on her trail all day. Nobody else saw anything . I checked out that bedding area and there was nothing new. Like everyone took the bus left town. No new tracks or beds.

Wednesday ---- I hunt a different spot figuring I should give that bedding area I had been hunting some rest . The place Im going is kinda thick to get there but beautiful place to sit on top of this steep slope overlooking a 10 year cut. Its about 1/3 rd of a mile from an old grown up logging trail I walk down to get there.There are only 2 real good spots that the deer use to climb up after feeding in the cuts and farm fields on the other side of the cut. I waited till there was cracking light to walk into the thick spruce. I didn't go 150 yards and could hear a deer trotting. It was close. So I duck down to look for legs under the branches. Sure enough maybe 20 yards I see legs moving going to pass by me on my left.. There is a small opening , maybe 5 feet wide it will pass through. And out walk a small Doe that has no idea I am there. She flicks her tail a couple times and walks off . I stayed there hunkered down waiting for another for over 1/2 hour. But once again. No followers. Sheesh ! Looks like I am running into the ugly ones no bucks want to play with ! 😳 So I make it over to the cliff and am there for an hour or so and BOOM ! I hear a shot that I know who it is. It one of the other brothers shooting his Rem 700 35 ultra mag . I am a mile and a 1/2 and I know its that gun. Sure enough , 20 min later I get a text of a big buck down that looked like he nosedived into the ground. My buddy heard him for over an hour ripping up the ground and smashing trees. Heard a few grunts and could of swore it was 2 big bucks fighting . There would be breaks of silence. And then the beating up of trees and ripping up the ground would start again. Sometimes last for only a min and sometimes for 5 min.. Then he finally sees a deer coming from the same direction the Doe he has sees for the last 2 days. He did not see her this morning. Instead it was a heavy racked buck slowly making his way towards my buddy. He was coming through a bunch of beech tree saplings that still had the light brown leaves. He get to 55 yards and freezes. My buddy wanted him to go another 10 feet into a decent shooting lane. That wasn't going to happen. With the wind swirling that morning , it was a good thing he was up 25 feet. The buck turned his head sideways and offered a decent neck shot . The buck was stone dead before he hit the ground. What you see in this picture is the exit hole. The buck never even flinched.

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Here is another one from the game pole 200 lbs even 9 pt with a nice tall thick rack

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SportsmanNH

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Thursday--- Today I manage to kick up 2 Does out of one of the cuts near the bedding area with a ton of beds. About 1/2 a mile from it. I saw them very well running in the scope. It looked like a Doe and her spring fawn. The brother with the any deer permit just got a glimpse of a deer going by at long range just before dark. He did not see another deer the next 2 days. So his any deer permit went unfilled

Friday and Saturday went totally uneventful. We saw no more deer . I will say that in 2019 where we hunt , we saw the least amount of hunters in years. There was hardly anybody else hunting .

Here are the last 2 pics . The 2 bucks hanging from the game pole. The 200 on the left and 189 lber on the right


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Packing up and getting ready to load the bucks on the truck
200 lber on the left and 189 lber on the right.


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And thats all folks !

I already cant wait till Maine Hunting Camp 2020 !!!
 

NH Hunter

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Thanks for taking the time to write up a report. It’s a nice read on June night.
 

VTHunter08

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wow that 8 is really wide! couple beautiful bucks and nice write up!
 

Mountain Hunter

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Thank you for sharing! I drive through Solon every year on my way up to hunt. That's a nice area.

I can't wait for fall!
 

NH Hunter

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I remember Lane saying he was hunting out of a lodge in Salon for a few years. I want to say 2008 and 09.
 

Gwlambo

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Great trip report and what a successful season for you guys. Great reading in the summer time and ditto on the excitement for this fall!
 

Mountain Hunter

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Pine Grove Lodge. I think Hornz hunted with the whole family one year as I bumped into them at the gas station in Bingham one fall.
Yes indeed. The owner Bob Howe, is a really nice guy. I reported my 10 pointer there last year. He was to only place I could find that would weigh him on Thanksgiving.
 
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