Deer Bedding

watsy

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Jul 8, 2021
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I'm brand new to hunting and have been scouting my ass off since May. Yesterday I found a game trail that I followed into a small clearing (about 2.5 acres) of yellow grass, some dead fall, on a ridgeline over a creek. It is hard to move around in the Southern California Mountain Sahel so finding a game trail was nice, hearing water was great, and so was seeing a clearing of any kind was exciting. I didn't see any deer sign or sign from other animals except the game trail but it did smell like a barn. It smelled like barn animals for sure. Any input would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 
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HortoTheSlayer

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May 17, 2018
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Most likely cows you're smelling and might be an area used for grazing..But if there's water nearby it wouldn't hurt to setup a trail cam and see what's walking around out there. Might want to wait until the NF forest open back up tho..
 
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MJB

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Nov 20, 2012
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Keep exploring the area, everything that walks leaves a track, so clean the trail as you go but leave your footprint that way you have a time stamp using your track to compare to fresh tracks.
Look for scat around the scrub oaks with acorns on them. You can also see the chewed bush ends and find scat.
Hit the shoreline and look for tracks.

Deer do smell like livestock but it's usually in pockets while hiking not a continual smell.

Good luck
 

watsy

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Jul 8, 2021
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Most likely cows you're smelling and might be an area used for grazing..But if there's water nearby it wouldn't hurt to setup a trail cam and see what's walking around out there. Might want to wait until the NF forest open back up tho..
Thanks for the guidance. Trail camera was put up, and hopefully someday I'll get to go back in and look at what it grabbed. The order to close the forest came in about 5 hours after I got back to my truck.
 
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watsy

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Jul 8, 2021
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Get to a high vantage point before sunrise sit down and glass for a few hours at first light. Glassing kills animals.
Done and done. There are deer in this general area as I've seen them when I glass. The particular area of which I'm speaking is obstructed from glassing.
 

HortoTheSlayer

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May 17, 2018
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Thanks for the guidance. Trail camera was put up, and hopefully someday I'll get to go back in and look at what it grabbed. The order to close the forest came in about 5 hours after I got back to my truck.
Happened to me last season when they shut it down for the fires..cams got to soak for almost 2 months. Hopefully you get some good stuff on your cam.
 

Fishnplay57

Active Member
Apr 14, 2021
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Have 5 cameras i can't even get too. Same thing last year. Let them soak. Sucks i already know whats in my area.... Nothing i can do about it... By the time they decide to open up again... Ill be in another state......will hope to be able hunt when i get back...... Good luck to all....
 
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SurfNHuntSD

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Oct 1, 2013
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www.sandiegoturkey.com
The deer beds I find usually have all the tell tale signs.. matted down grass, scat and piss smell nearby, animal musk smell, and sometimes a shed nearby. Find the entry/exit points and ut up cams to see what you find.
 
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KoozeDeer

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Jul 18, 2016
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Any area with that much sign is likely not Nat Forest. (All kidding aside) I’m sure you will see something on your camera
 
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SteveHazard

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Oct 24, 2018
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How long was the camera out there for?

Unless you checked it very soon after setting up you put it in a bad spot or the sensitivity is too low if all it got was you.
I set up a camera a month ago and it picked up something everyday... until it it bugged out and stopped working on day 5 for some reason. That was a major piss off, three weeks of it not detecting stuff

Speaking of cams any recommendations for inexpensive ones that work. I want to get more and would prefer volume over super great image quality. I know most of the game cam megapixel numbers are interpolated anyways.
 
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HortoTheSlayer

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@SteveHazard in my few years of using them I have a $30 wildgame cam an $80 stealthcam and If I had to choose between the two I would go with the Wildgame cam. I think the model I have is the Terra 12..it takes great video and solid pics..I bought it from Walmart during the holidays but also check out Camofire they have trail cam tuesday specials every week. Left it out for over a month on video and still had plenty of battery when I retrieved it.
 

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