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Author Topic: Grouse question  (Read 1050 times)

Offline Kyle19

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Grouse question
« on: September 18, 2017, 07:48:13 PM »
This is my first year hunting and was wondering if anyone had advice on terrain for grouse.  After scouting 633, 651, and 627 on the limited time available with school and work.  I have yet to see one after 5 days.  Are they in higher elevations this time of year?  Also are these productive areas or should I focus time elsewhere.  I usually mountain bike a few miles and stop and walk off trail frequently.

Thanks for your time,
Kyle



Offline Skyvalhunter

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2017, 07:56:15 PM »
The rain brins them out usually right after it stops. The seek they gravel roads to pick up fine pebbles for their gizzards to help with the digestion in what they eat. Cooler and damper weather will bring them out more. Keep riding those gated roads or driving those less traveled logging roads.

Offline scottcrb

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2017, 09:31:27 PM »
We've seen a ton this year in 336,340,342 from 2000 to 5000 ft . Most aren't far from logging roads or water. Had over a dozen in one drainage yesterday they flushed way out in front though

Offline Mfowl

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2017, 11:06:41 PM »
Don't know much about westside grouse but I have seen plenty on the eastside this year. Mostly blue grouse. I find that the ruffed grouse like the denser cover along streams or in canyon bottoms. I often find them in lush damp green spots in the woods. Blues are usually on the upper half of the mountain and ridge tops. I like to focus on areas with diverse vegetation like a clear cut edge or a slope above water. Ride/drive until you see one on the road and then hunt that vicinity. Also take note of what is around where you found that grouse and why it might have been there then focus on similar areas. Berries are also important this time of year, the grouse can be congregated in a patch that is in season.
Fish hard, hunt harder!

Offline porcupine

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2017, 11:34:25 PM »
The last four years I've walked a lot of miles of logging roads and trails in GMU's 627 and 633 with my dog and have only seen two Grouse. Look at the harvest reports on the WDFW web site and hunt the areas, GMU's, where they have been found.

Offline Kyle19

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2017, 11:33:55 AM »
Thanks for the info, I will probably focus on other areas and after rain.

Offline Stein

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2017, 12:11:13 PM »
There were a bunch in 346, several flocks of 6-12 birds right on the trail.  Head up a trail until you smell fried chicken...

I saw almost all the birds in the morning, within 2-3 hours of sunrise seemed to be when they were moving the most.

Offline TenkaraTim

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2017, 12:16:59 PM »
My dog and I have put in about 20 miles in several days out in GMUs 454, 460 and 335 and still haven't seen a grouse when I have a gun in hand, when hiking we have found a half dozen or so.   I'm totally new to this grouse game so figure it is just going to take some miles, sort of seems like the equivalent of steelhead fishing.

Offline fish vacuum

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2017, 04:19:32 PM »
The recent rains got them out in more of a normal routine. It's Always best right after a rain. Hit those closed roads.

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Offline Pegasus

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2017, 06:07:06 PM »
The recent rains got them out in more of a normal routine. It's Always best right after a rain. Hit those closed roads.

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Yup. I never go out after grouse until after a good rain. Its like magic. Out they come picking gravel off from the hunting roads or trails in the morning. They don't move much from year to year either. You will normally find them near the same location day after day, year after year.

Offline fly-by

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2017, 08:24:30 PM »
Hiked about 12 miles today in 460  and saw birds from 2300-4500 feet, where we topped out.  Higher east/west ridgelines  had the most birds.  I would stay on trail and try to cover distance on slightly overgrown roads.

Offline Cab

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #11 on: September 26, 2017, 01:45:07 PM »
my best tips for grouse is to use your hearing more then you would think. I know grouse hunting is a visual type of hunting but do not underestimate being able to listen and locate birds. I would say 50% of the birds I've shot I heard before I saw. I would hear them "clucking", drumming after rain/in dust bowls they make or often just something moving (them running away). It's going to be pretty rainy this weekend so get out and best of luck!

Offline pianoman9701

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #12 on: September 26, 2017, 01:55:43 PM »

cooing and clucking
"Restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens based on the actions of criminals and madmen will have no positive effect on the future acts of criminals and madmen. It will only serve to reduce individual rights and the very security of our republic." - Pianoman

Offline Eric M

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #13 on: September 26, 2017, 03:26:56 PM »
Lots of grouse in 245 this year. Blue and Ruffed.

Offline DOUBLELUNG

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Re: Grouse question
« Reply #14 on: September 26, 2017, 03:43:12 PM »
Ruffeds will be in the same areas year round.  Blues migrate uphill in the fall and winter in large diameter Douglas firs; once you find where the blues are in elevation, hunt that elevation band; the next time they will be at that elevation or higher.  That works pretty well until there is snow on the ground, at which time the blues mostly spend their time in the upper canopy of the firs and are extremely hard to hunt.  On the west side after the leaves fall off the alders, you can often find the ruffed budding in the upper canopy of the red alders.  I've had fun in December in Lewis County walking the closed roads looking with binoculars into the tops of the alders for ruffed.
As long as we have the habitat, we can argue forever about who gets to kill what and when.  No habitat = no game.

 

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