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Author Topic: Eastern WA Pheasant opener  (Read 6998 times)

Offline 307_BOWS

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Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« on: October 13, 2012, 03:25:11 PM »
Is anyone going to skip the eastern Washington pheasant opener next weekend to head to South Dakota for opening weekend of the grand-daddy of all pheasant hunts? I am flying out to Wyoming next week to meet up with some friends to drive over and kill some birds for 5 days! Just curious if any one else travels over there.
If you have never hunted pheasants in South Dakota before, it is like nothing else. This is from an hour hunting last year, which was nearly a 10 year low population.

Offline wildweeds

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2012, 05:05:18 PM »
Went to south dakota ten years ago,have been 4 more times since.10 years ago our hunt was the maximum number of hunters allowed @21 and we had 63 birds killed in 47 minutes.Not really my style for the super shootout,but we had to partake in it as the landowner puts on an opener hunt for his clients/engineers/and sales reps.He has no dogs,we hunted for free because of the supply of the dogs to put on a show for the partygoers.The rest of the week we hunted solo on his land and it was far better dogwork wise.

Offline 307_BOWS

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2012, 05:43:56 PM »
Yes, I have to say that big hunting groups, although productive, aren't as much fun as smaller groups. This here was much the same way, we had 14 hunters i believe, and a few just walking with out guns and shot our limits in less than a hour like you said. Still I have to say that it is a sight to see all of the birds flushing, especially  when you get to the end of the field.

Offline wildweeds

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2012, 06:56:39 PM »
The sheer numbers of birds airborne at one time are amazing.We hunted a crp section the guy had,he had planted a feed plot in the middle of about 5 acres of corn,when we pulled up and got out of the truck,the first door shut caused about 300 to rocket out of the corn,we got ready and headed for the corn and halfway to it another 100 or so birds took flight,when the dogs got 50 yards from the corn we had 6 dogs pointing and backing at one time.Really quite cool.My dog that first year was a pup,and he did great,got lots of points,and we got to reward him for pointing by shooting a bunch of birds over him.

Offline 270Flat

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2012, 07:24:12 PM »
Will be hunting SE Washington. Have got the pups onto some birds in the last couple of weeks. Can't afford to go  East to hunt. Good luck to all!!
Women want me... Fish fear me!!

Offline WAcoueshunter

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2012, 07:35:59 PM »
I went to SD last year. Pretty cool to see that many birds, but all in all I would rather hunt here and have a hunt last longer than thirty minutes.  I didn't know it beforehand, but there can definitely be too many birds.  :twocents:

Offline jetjockey

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2012, 04:30:06 AM »
I went to SD last year. Pretty cool to see that many birds, but all in all I would rather hunt here and have a hunt last longer than thirty minutes.  I didn't know it beforehand, but there can definitely be too many birds.  :twocents:

I agree completely.  It's cool to see the "South Dakota" flush once or twice, but after that it can be like fishing in a trout pond.  Sometimes getting one bird in an entire day is a lot more fulfilling than 3 birds in 22 minutes.  Now, with that said, later season SD pheasant hunting is about as good as its going to get.  Birds are a lot more skidish and it takes a lot better dog work.  Numbers are down a little as well because of all the birds that have already been killed.  Plus you don't have to worry about the crops still being in or young birds that aren't completely colored up yet.  The crowds really die down about mid November as well.  When people ask me about SD pheasant hunting, I usually suggest going around mid Nov or later.  You can still limit every day, but you certainly won't do it in 20 minutes, and it may take all day.   Plus, you don't have to wait till noon to start hunting like you do in Oct.  I believe Nov 1st is when they move the start time to 10am.

Offline HoofsandWings

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2012, 08:35:30 AM »
I am jealous. I do not fly and the doctor has limited me to 4 hours driving.
I always wanted to hunt the Dakotas, but either it was time or money or logistics.
Gathering is easy. Hunting is a challenge.
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Offline thinkingman

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2012, 08:55:27 AM »
I went to SD last year. Pretty cool to see that many birds, but all in all I would rather hunt here and have a hunt last longer than thirty minutes.  I didn't know it beforehand, but there can definitely be too many birds.  :twocents:

I agree completely.  It's cool to see the "South Dakota" flush once or twice, but after that it can be like fishing in a trout pond.  Sometimes getting one bird in an entire day is a lot more fulfilling than 3 birds in 22 minutes.  Now, with that said, later season SD pheasant hunting is about as good as its going to get.  Birds are a lot more skidish and it takes a lot better dog work.  Numbers are down a little as well because of all the birds that have already been killed.  Plus you don't have to worry about the crops still being in or young birds that aren't completely colored up yet.  The crowds really die down about mid November as well.  When people ask me about SD pheasant hunting, I usually suggest going around mid Nov or later.  You can still limit every day, but you certainly won't do it in 20 minutes, and it may take all day.   Plus, you don't have to wait till noon to start hunting like you do in Oct.  I believe Nov 1st is when they move the start time to 10am.

  Sometimes getting one bird in an entire day is a lot more fulfilling than 3 birds in 22 minutes. 

I totally agree.
Not dissing SD....I WILL make that trip someday but for now, I like to really "hunt" for my birds.
“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser men so full of doubts.”
― Bertrand Russell

Offline Hornseeker

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2012, 09:07:35 AM »
I need to do it... Have never had anything like that. I've hunted 4 days now in MT and have killed a couple birds each day, missed a few too... but I am still chasing that elusive "Limit"...
Chuck Norris puts the "Laughter" in "Manslaughter"

Offline fethrduster

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2012, 05:18:06 PM »
I too have no desire to go all the way to SD just to shoot a few pheasants.  Not to rain on anyone's parade, but it seems to me more like pheasant killing than pheasant hunting.  If all I want is to kill some pheasants, I can do that at the local release site and be limited out in 20 minutes, which is what my friend and I did last Wednesday behind my setter.  Pointed 5 birds in 20 minutes.  Too easy.   They look the same, taste the same, cackle the same....

Offline Stilly bay

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2012, 05:46:52 PM »
I too have no desire to go all the way to SD just to shoot a few pheasants.  Not to rain on anyone's parade, but it seems to me more like pheasant killing than pheasant hunting.  If all I want is to kill some pheasants, I can do that at the local release site and be limited out in 20 minutes, which is what my friend and I did last Wednesday behind my setter.  Pointed 5 birds in 20 minutes.  Too easy.   They look the same, taste the same, cackle the same....
:yeah:

I like to work for my birds... that being said every now and then I enjoy a good slaughter.
but three pheasants a day isn't enough to drag me out of WA. being involved in group hunt is even less appealing, I can do that at my local release site every saturday morning with 30 or so of my new best friends.

although I probably should go there before the population crashes for good and they institute pheasant release sites there.
"Love the dogs before loving the hunt; love the hunt for the dogs." - Ben O. Williams

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Offline BOWHUNTER45

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2012, 06:08:28 PM »
Jeeeez.. You guys are mean  :dunno: :chuckle: It would be nice to go to SD at least once  :dunno: :yeah:

Offline SpringerFan

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2012, 08:01:33 PM »
Jeeeez.. You guys are mean  :dunno: :chuckle: It would be nice to go to SD at least once  :dunno: :yeah:

You need to read some stories or talk to folks who have had wonderful hunting dogs. Steady to flush and shot. Well trained.

Took them to SD and the dog lost it's mind. Too many birds. Makes them a little crazy.

Sure, some dogs will do better. And you can say it is the training. But I know of a few dogs who were really good that went deaf.

Think I will stay more local and keep my dogs in sight. Good lord willing.

But yes, the meca of bird hunting. Only $3K per person for 3 days to hunt for 30 minutes. That is more than a Lawyer or Plumber...... :twocents: :yike: :yike: :yike: :yike:
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Offline Stilly bay

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2012, 08:08:59 PM »

Sure, some dogs will do better. And you can say it is the training. But I know of a few dogs who were really good that went deaf.


Tri tronics makes a hearing aid for situations like that. "can you hear me now?!"
"Love the dogs before loving the hunt; love the hunt for the dogs." - Ben O. Williams

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Offline 307_BOWS

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2012, 08:21:10 PM »
I can agree that sometimes it can be an outright slaughter, but others you really have to work for your birds. It can be tough when none of the fields have been harvested and the grass is tall and thick. To our group it is more than just going and killing three birds a day, it is a time that my family and friends get together no matter where our lives take us in the world.  :twocents:

Fortunately, another guy in our group and I both have family close to each other that have farms that we hunt for free, so it makes it a bit easier on the pocketbook.

Offline BOWHUNTER45

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2012, 08:24:53 PM »
 :chuckle: :chuckle: :chuckle: :tup:

Offline jetjockey

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2012, 12:53:46 PM »
Jeeeez.. You guys are mean  :dunno: :chuckle: It would be nice to go to SD at least once  :dunno: :yeah:

You need to read some stories or talk to folks who have had wonderful hunting dogs. Steady to flush and shot. Well trained.

Took them to SD and the dog lost it's mind. Too many birds. Makes them a little crazy.

Sure, some dogs will do better. And you can say it is the training. But I know of a few dogs who were really good that went deaf.

Think I will stay more local and keep my dogs in sight. Good lord willing.

It's ALL about training and experience.  If a dog has experienced it, it isn't an issue.  That's why summer camps in the Dakotas are so valuable to a dog... 

Btw.  There are many places to hunt pheasants in SD that are self guided for under $1000 for three days.  Hell, we pay about $750 for 4 nights lodging and three days hunting on a 5000 acre farm we have all to ourselves.  Unfortunately demand is making those prices rise, but you don't need to spend $3000 for a great SD experience.

Offline HighCountryKing

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #18 on: June 11, 2013, 07:22:18 PM »
Do any of you have good recommendations where to go in south Dakota for pheasant hunting? I'm looking to bring my own dog and hunt with a small group and self guided hunts. Any tips would be helfpul.
Keep hunting and fishing, High country rules.

Offline TVHunts

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #19 on: June 11, 2013, 08:06:15 PM »
I did the DIY hunt last year in Martin SD about 2 hours South of Rapid City.  As said in a previous post,  last year was a very down year due to drought = no cover.  Just my luck....The farmer we rented a mini ranch house from said it was the worst drought in 30 years for that area.  We worked hard to get our birds, 2 guys & 2 dogs.  There are a couple Motels in Martin you could check into and there is a huge refuge (LaCreek WF)  to hunt which is where we spent all of our time. I don't think there is many bad places to go in SD.  The 21 hour drive straight through home, not so fun!  He may still have space available and is a super nice guy.  www.sdpheasants.net

Good Luck
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Offline T-Bone

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #20 on: June 12, 2013, 07:02:14 AM »
Thank you TVHunts for the nice tip.

Other than distance and $$$, my main reason for stalling on a SD pheasant hunt is the style of hunting at many of the resorts. I grew up in Iowa in the Soil Bank years of the 1960's and experienced those pheasant drives...Never Again... No Thanks...No Way!!!

I prefer to hunt pheasants either by myself with my wife and maybe a friend and my Springer. I realize the Platoon Attack and the socialization is important to some, just not for me.

Tom
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Offline canyonduck

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #21 on: June 12, 2013, 07:25:32 AM »
amen

Offline eastsidemallard74

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #22 on: June 12, 2013, 07:37:43 AM »
I've hunt North and South Dakota, the hunting is better in South , but you save alot of money in North because the farmers hate the roosters. They are(for the most part) happy to allow you to hunt. We hunt near Minot, and there was alot of birds for our group of 12, actually enough to limit every day for the"4" days your allowed to hunt :twocents:

Offline TVHunts

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Re: Eastern WA Pheasant opener
« Reply #23 on: June 12, 2013, 09:01:53 PM »
Thank you TVHunts for the nice tip.

Other than distance and $$$, my main reason for stalling on a SD pheasant hunt is the style of hunting at many of the resorts. I grew up in Iowa in the Soil Bank years of the 1960's and experienced those pheasant drives...Never Again... No Thanks...No Way!!!

I prefer to hunt pheasants either by myself with my wife and maybe a friend and my Springer. I realize the Platoon Attack and the socialization is important to some, just not for me.

Tom


I hear you on the distance and the $$$.  This wasn't so bad, we were 1K a piece door to door including the lodging, licenses, fuel, and food. 

I am not into the group hunting thing either, when the bird gets up and I shoot I like to know it was mine and my dogs.  Not the " I think I got a piece of it too" crap that happens when your in a group.  Or someone elses dog running out and retrieving the bird my dog put up.  I find it very peaceful with it being just the dog and I.
I pretty much hunt alone 90% of the time also.   At a disadvantage most of the time but thats half the fun, working for them. 

Can't wait until October  :tup:
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