Hunting Washington Forum

Big Game Hunting => Deer Hunting => Topic started by: chuckster on June 28, 2019, 09:09:13 PM

Title: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: chuckster on June 28, 2019, 09:09:13 PM
Am not what I consider old by any means am 30. But I remember a time when things were different. My family would have a deer camp every year I started going when I was seven. My uncle would take me hunting and let my take my red rider, in my seven year old mind I really thought I would get a buck with that thing of course I knew it would have to be a head shot at close range but I was hunting. I remember when I was to young to have my own rifle I was in awe of thereís. The camp had many classics a win mod 70 .270, rem 700 30 06, rem 760 30 06, win 94 30 30 and even a old wwII surplus 6.5x55 Swede. All had beautiful wood stocks and the biggest scope was a 3 by 9. What I remember most was the ammo the old green and yellow box Remington core lock thatís all anyone needed. When ammo was talked about it was not about the newest and greatest only if you shot 150 or 180 out of your 30 06 and the pros and cons of each. That camp killed many deer but size was not a huge factor any buck was a good one and we looked forward to the storyís and the meat at the end of the day. When I was ten I was able to join the camp for real I saved up enough money to buy a Sears Roebuck model 54 30 30. I killed a doe with that rifle and could not have been prouder. At camp that doe might as well been a 5x5 buck they treated it as it was. Things have change so much we donít do the camp any more. We need to get back to the basics. I have my own two sons now and once they get old enough I will start the camp again and teach them the things that really matter about deer camp. friendship family good food and fun.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: meatwhack on June 28, 2019, 09:25:03 PM
Too many flat brimmers now days trying to get famous hunting.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: X-Force on June 28, 2019, 09:57:20 PM
Iím 33 and our first elk camp was a sight to see. $100 Walmart bows, arrows from somewhere... only 4 of us in camp, father and sons. Our camp grew to 15+ and weekends would be pushing 20. Now dad is 72, other older members donít shoot archery anymore. Elk Camp stopped existing last year.

Rifle deer camp is still going strong but itís not the same.

Looking forward and having kids like you just get them out there even small trips are an adventure.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: elkrack on June 28, 2019, 10:00:47 PM
I know how you feel I had a similar upbringing and definitely miss it. Times change and at least I have those great memories to hold onto! My kids are just getting into hunting and I hope to instill some memorable times for them but itís going to be tough because itís just not the same as it was 20 years ago. Meatwhack is 100% correct. Guys walking through the woods like a 13 year old girl walking through the mall holding a camera on a selfie stick🤦🏻‍♂️
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Remnar on June 28, 2019, 10:13:00 PM
 The lament of many before you (OP) . My advice would be find some people that have hunting at the same priority level as you and make some new memories. Those days and most likely people are gone .

 I do know where you are coming from though .

 Wish I was still 30  ;)

Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: erronulvin on June 28, 2019, 10:16:58 PM
The thing I miss about the good ole days of elk camp is being around family and friends, times sure have changed when our camp used to have 12-18 people and now its just my brother, dad and I, sadly I don't think my old man has to many years left in him to keep hiking the hills but he will always be camping.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Bigshooter on June 28, 2019, 11:27:54 PM
I live the good old days every year.  If you are missing out it's your fault. 
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: dmoua on June 29, 2019, 12:38:25 AM
Still living it. 20 years in the exact same deer camp with pretty much the same people. But we do have better equipment compared to what we used to have.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Eric M on June 29, 2019, 02:32:37 AM
I never got to experience what you had. My father was born in new york city and so was i. I had to learn everything i know on my own. Be thankful for the times you had. I plan to try to make some memories with my grandchildren. I was too busy earning when my kids were young.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: dilleytech on June 29, 2019, 07:51:33 AM
I have lost a lot of interest in late season archery any more. Iím also 30 and when I started bow hunting at 14 we would go to the same late season wall tent camp every year and it was a blast. I think what changed most is the animals. We used to chase animals around to each other all day and there were people everywhere and it was great. There just arenít the numbers anymore like there were 16 years ago. People seem to want to spread out more and find there own little honey hole that they can keep secret.. I donít see the same kinda wall tent camps coming back in the numbers there used to be until we get predators managed and game numbers back. Most guys I know are just traveling out of state now.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: JimmyHoffa on June 29, 2019, 08:23:28 AM
I think that is a big part.  Back when logging was going strong and there were many more animals and clear cuts to hunt them in, there were more people interested in getting out and forming a camp.  Most I knew started going to the east side once things slowed down and overgrew/hounds banned/bear baiting banned.  The bigger change was probably elk--the herd used to be twice the size and it was any bull.  When there were four or five spikes and a bull in camp each year, lots of people wanted to show up.  After a few seasons of empty meat poles and crashing reprod, a bunch of guys are going to Idaho or Wyoming.  Then the camp is even smaller so fewer animals.  Then the young guys all started switching to archery.  Now most of the camps are three or four retired guys.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: ghosthunter on June 29, 2019, 11:54:33 AM
Am not what I consider old by any means am 30. But I remember a time when things were different. My family would have a deer camp every year I started going when I was seven. My uncle would take me hunting and let my take my red rider, in my seven year old mind I really thought I would get a buck with that thing of course I knew it would have to be a head shot at close range but I was hunting. I remember when I was to young to have my own rifle I was in awe of thereís. The camp had many classics a win mod 70 .270, rem 700 30 06, rem 760 30 06, win 94 30 30 and even a old wwII surplus 6.5x55 Swede. All had beautiful wood stocks and the biggest scope was a 3 by 9. What I remember most was the ammo the old green and yellow box Remington core lock thatís all anyone needed. When ammo was talked about it was not about the newest and greatest only if you shot 150 or 180 out of your 30 06 and the pros and cons of each. That camp killed many deer but size was not a huge factor any buck was a good one and we looked forward to the storyís and the meat at the end of the day. When I was ten I was able to join the camp for real I saved up enough money to buy a Sears Roebuck model 54 30 30. I killed a doe with that rifle and could not have been prouder. At camp that doe might as well been a 5x5 buck they treated it as it was. Things have change so much we donít do the camp any more. We need to get back to the basics. I have my own two sons now and once they get old enough I will start the camp again and teach them the things that really matter about deer camp. friendship family good food and fun.

You just described our camp. Ghost Camp.
Yes five -six old guys. But a few younger too. Male and female.
The problem with younger folks these days is time. Their time to be out is tight. And when the animals are tough to find and you can only shoot spikes hard to get excited.

Hunting has become all about the individual, not the group. people do whatever they can to kill a deer even if its wrong.

When you get home everyone asks what you got. No one asks if you had a good time.

I always answer , I got what I went for, sleeping in a tent, good friends, long naps on a ridge under a tree.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: cbond3318 on June 29, 2019, 12:20:48 PM
I live the good old days every year.  If you are missing out it's your fault.


 :yeah: itís all in what you make it and you can pass those same
Nostalgic memories to your kids. Hunting is different than before but the before you talk about was different than that times old days. Get so tired of the hunting is ruined, the this or that. There is annoying people and fads in every generation, always was and always will be. Do it for the reasons you hold dear and enjoy every second. Happy hunting!
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Tbob on June 30, 2019, 12:20:36 AM
I grew up in a non-hunting home. Single mom and a bunch of brothers.. I didnít learn about hunting until I was an adult. Hunting camp consisted of me and a buddy trying to figure it out. Fast forward 20 years and itís now my brother and a different buddy in elk camp each year. Itís usually the best time of every year that  I have being out there with them. We rarely get anything. Every now and again it comes together for one of us, but man... just something about being in a camp with friends and family. I really wish I grew up doing this stuff ! Honestly though, even when itís just me in elk camp by myself, I still just love being out there, just part of it all. It never gets old for me, making new memories.. you just never know when youíre going to make your last!
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 01, 2019, 10:28:15 AM
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: DOUBLELUNG on July 01, 2019, 02:27:14 PM
Hunting really is what you make it.  I'd have loved to have that camp experience growing up, but I grew up in a mostly gun-free/nonhunting family.  I channeled that desire to fishing and asked for a rifle every Christmas from 12 on (never happened), turned 18 and started buying guns and took hunter safety.  Pretty much entirely self-taught with a little help from friends.

One easy way to get that old school flavor is to not bring electronics to camp: no cell phones, lap tops, etc.   
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: idaho guy on July 01, 2019, 03:16:53 PM
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.

that's some cool history-would you post pictures? I get it if you don't want too
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Wunderlich33 on July 01, 2019, 03:21:38 PM
idaho guy, bigmacc has posted a few pics from the past on some of his other threads.

Do a quick search of his posts and enjoy the reading.  Great memories of the great  Methow Valley
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: boneaddict on July 01, 2019, 03:28:06 PM
I miss it too .....


I had the best upbringing a young man could hope for, in Gods country.  Thanks Dad!
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: pianoman9701 on July 01, 2019, 03:30:54 PM
My dad never hunted. WWII was plenty of guns for him. But our neighbors across the street did and had a cabin up in Maine. We'd go in the summer and shoot red squirrels and the older guys would go back for deer in November. The dad's are long since gone, along with one of the sons - agent orange finally got him two years ago. I'm a few years younger than my brother and his last hunting friend from that family and they don't hunt much together anymore. So it's time to start a new tradition. Hopefully, my present partner Cab and I will be hunting together until his boy is old enough to start shooting squirrels. And bring some other friends into camp. We'll see.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 01, 2019, 03:32:58 PM
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.

that's some cool history-would you post pictures? I get it if you don't want too

Thankyou, and at one time years ago I posted 40-50 pictures I think and eventually pulled all or most off as it was brought to my attention that a lot of them were being copied, it took a lot of help and work from family members to put the pictures up because I do not do well with technology :chuckle:, so now I just tell stories.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Bushcraft on July 01, 2019, 04:37:46 PM
I know I have told numerous stories on here and to some through PM,s about the history of our camp in the Methow going back to 1917, when the camp was in its hay days(1920,s-1950,s) the camp could have had its own zip code, it even had its own name "Little Bellingham" and consisted of around 100 folks, all family and some close friends of my great grandparents and their kin, when all the tents and camps were set up in the big basin, it looked like an army outpost it was so large and organized, the whole camp took up probably 9-10 acres . Caravans of cars, trucks and utility trailers would leave Bellingham back in the day to make the 2 day trip to the valley, Stevens pass was mostly gravel back then and they would all get motels, pitch tents or sleep in fields of farmers they knew around Wenatchee or Cashmere then get up in the morning and make the rest of the trip(back then it was about a 5-6 hour trip from Wenatchee to Twisp and Winthrop. They would spend a month over there total just hiking, fishing, scouting and hunting, hunting seasons were mostly 2 weeks back then, normally going into the 1st week of November. Folks who couldn't spend the whole month would leave there tents set up and go back and forth a few times. Back then not many people hunted the Methow except for locals and a very few others, heck 90 percent of folks who lived in this state had no idea where the "Methow Valley" was or if it even existed let alone if the towns of Twisp and Winthrop were real :chuckle: my family and the camp knew where these other familys or locals hunted and stayed clear and in return they did the same. Huge "rendavues" would happen during the coarse of the season with these other groups either at Little Bellingham or on their turf, stories were told, campfires blazed until the wee hours and many big bucks were admired on the ridge poles, hands would be shaken and hugs given and "see ya next season" were the parting words. I started in the 50,s when the camp was slowly starting to shrink, it was at around 40-50 hunters when I started going as a young boy but even then the same traditions from the early days were still intact, we were always there during Halloween and I remember everyone dressing up (kids and grownups) and going from tent to tent trick or treating, my dad said they did that from year one(1917) and he remembered doing it when he was young back in the 1930,s. The camp is at about 10-15 nowadays and we bounce around the valley, the old original camps from the 1920,s that we knew and had the "rendevues" with are no longer around, the last one stopped coming back in the 70,s, they had been around since 1923, almost as long as my familys camp, thats when the "rendevues" stopped, now its just stopping in at camps that we have seen for awhile and just saying hi, lots of great memories of my own and stories and pictures passed down to us from my parents and grandparents. We are trying to keep it going with the grandkids and we will. Yes things were different back then, nobody gave a crap about what a buck scored, heck, every buck was a good buck, I know for a fact that my family members killed bucks that probably would have made some sort of "record book" but nobody cared, heck my dad and grandparents gave most all of there racks away through the years, yes, just gave them away, 100,s upon 100,s of sets. I remember walking into my grandpas shop as a boy and seeing the whole ceiling covered in antlers hanging in the rafters, a 40 by 30 shop completely covered from one end to the other and from one side to the other. He ran out of room and its where all the familys horns ended up, he said if any of the family wanted them they could have them, nobody wanted to deal with em and they were given away, I believe at that time(Late 1950,s ) it was in the vicinity of 400 sets of antlers, and a lot of them were some absolute monsters, my dad always regretted not taking them but he was young and just starting a family and was in the Marine corp at the time, he said he told grandpa "just get rid of em grandpa, we,ll get more".  Wool shirts, Levis and logging boots were the apparel of the day topped off with a crusher, red, orange or blue take your pick. Lots of open sights were the optics of the day with a few 4 power Weavers sprinkled in the camp. No road hunting back then, heck there weren't that many roads, most all our hunts originated at camp at around 1 or 2 in the AM with about a 4 hour hike ahead of you, my dad said he remembered 20-30 people around the campfire at 1 in the morning, all loading packs for their hikes, some one would say "well its time to get out of Dodge" and then the fire would be left empty as within seconds everyone would head out in all different directions, some would be seen again that night and some would not return for a day or two. When I was young I remember sitting around the fire listening for shots, when we heard one my mom would ask me if I knew who it was, eventually I got pretty good at knowing who had knocked one down just from the sound and direction from where the shot came from, how muffled it was etc. Everyone had their spots and if we heard a shot come from a certain area the others in camp would gather some rope etc and head out to help with the drag/pack out. Good times and great memories.

That's awesome!  Thanks for sharing.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 01, 2019, 09:24:11 PM
Another thing that I miss from the old days of deer hunting is back then like I said in my earlier post open sights and 4 power scopes were the norm, my first scope was a 4 power Redfield and I used it from the earliy 60,s up into the late 80,s, when I took it off I put it back in its original box and passed it on to the grandkids, its never been used again but is in good hands and in the family. I have many old "trinkets" that belonged to other family members myself, things that have special meaning including rifles, knives, packs, drag ropes, hatchets, mess kits, etc, etc, etc. Anyway with mostly hunting with open sights or "simple"optics(for a lack of better words) we were taught to learn why deer do what they do, why they react the way they do under different circumstances and to basically "think like a deer" at all times while you were in "their world", this was taught to us when we were very young with plenty of trial runs spent on the sides of draws with sling shots before the season just studying how deer reacted when spooked, my dad or a grandparent or uncle telling us to watch where they go, watch their body language from ears, to head to feet to determine where their first move may be. I think a lot of the old way of hunting is not being taught like it used to with all the new technology available with tons more showing up every year it seams. Four, five and six hundred yard shots are being taken with lots of accuracy with new technology available from rifles and ammo to high tech optics and range guessers, heck with enough practice and enough tech, guys are shooting out to 1000 yards, I,m not saying its not right, just saying back then 90 percent of the bucks you killed involved a lot of planning, a lot of savvy, some sort of a stalk and sometimes involving multiple people with all kinds of goofy hand signals. I remember my younger brother killing his first buck at the age of 13 using a 300 HandH with open sights, it took 4 people using 10 dollar 8 by 30 Sears binos about a half a day getting him in as close as possible to drop the huge 3 by 3(and it was huge, had a head like a dang Angus), we finally got him to about 250 yards where he took a good rest on a blow down and squeezed one off, he killed it in its bed with that 1 shot but unless you happened to stumble on to one while out walking thats usually how it seemed to happen and not all the "plans" came together either. My brother ended up spending 20 years in the military with half that time spent in SF as a Green Beret sniper, he credited a lot of his practicing with open sights when he was young to his being able to "slow every thing down" and drive tacks at 800 yards during his service career. Like I said, technology is great but it has changed a lot of how we do hunt now days. I know there are others on here that are my age or older that know what I mean, I am old enough to have experienced hunting without all this technology and young enough to see it being used by my kids and grandkids, BUT I am not old enough to have witnessed my great grandparents using "their technology" back in 1917, I have had to depend on pictures and stories, amazing how things have changed, some for the better and some not. Like I said, when I was young you needed to do a lot of practicing with your shooting and while in "their world" you better have learned how to think like them and you had better know what they were gonna do under any scenario and you had better know it before they do...........now their are apps for this and that and uncle google will help you figure things out :chuckle: Technology is not bad, don't get me wrong, things are just different today compared to 20 years ago, 30, 40 and more years ago and thats ok. The topic is how we miss the way things were when it comes to hunting deer, just throwing my experiences and thoughts out there. Like DOUBLELUNG said, if you want the true experience maybe try leaving all the electronics at home, it really is a more relaxing experience.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: ctwiggs1 on July 01, 2019, 09:43:16 PM
Big Mac C,

Is your camp the one that used to traditionally burn a stump every year?

Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: elkboy on July 01, 2019, 09:53:10 PM
Another thing that I miss from the old days of deer hunting is back then like I said in my earlier post open sights and 4 power scopes were the norm, my first scope was a 4 power Redfield and I used it from the earliy 60,s up into the late 80,s, when I took it off I put it back in its original box and passed it on to the grandkids, its never been used again but is in good hands and in the family. I have many old "trinkets" that belonged to other family members myself, things that have special meaning including rifles, knives, packs, drag ropes, hatchets, mess kits, etc, etc, etc. Anyway with mostly hunting with open sights or "simple"optics(for a lack of better words) we were taught to learn why deer do what they do, why they react the way they do under different circumstances and to basically "think like a deer" at all times while you were in "their world", this was taught to us when we were very young with plenty of trial runs spent on the sides of draws with sling shots before the season just studying how deer reacted when spooked, my dad or a grandparent or uncle telling us to watch where they go, watch their body language from ears, to head to feet to determine where their first move may be. I think a lot of the old way of hunting is not being taught like it used to with all the new technology available with tons more showing up every year it seams. Four, five and six hundred yard shots are being taken with lots of accuracy with new technology available from rifles and ammo to high tech optics and range guessers, heck with enough practice and enough tech, guys are shooting out to 1000 yards, I,m not saying its not right, just saying back then 90 percent of the bucks you killed involved a lot of planning, a lot of savvy, some sort of a stalk and sometimes involving multiple people with all kinds of goofy hand signals. I remember my younger brother killing his first buck at the age of 13 using a 300 HandH with open sights, it took 4 people using 10 dollar 8 by 30 Sears binos about a half a day getting him in as close as possible to drop the huge 3 by 3(and it was huge, had a head like a dang Angus), we finally got him to about 250 yards where he took a good rest on a blow down and squeezed one off, he killed it in its bed with that 1 shot but unless you happened to stumble on to one while out walking thats usually how it seemed to happen and not all the "plans" came together either. My brother ended up spending 20 years in the military with half that time spent in SF as a Green Beret sniper, he credited a lot of his practicing with open sights when he was young to his being able to "slow every thing down" and drive tacks at 800 yards during his service career. Like I said, technology is great but it has changed a lot of how we do hunt now days. I know there are others on here that are my age or older that know what I mean, I am old enough to have experienced hunting without all this technology and young enough to see it being used by my kids and grandkids, BUT I am not old enough to have witnessed my great grandparents using "their technology" back in 1917, I have had to depend on pictures and stories, amazing how things have changed, some for the better and some not. Like I said, when I was young you needed to do a lot of practicing with your shooting and while in "their world" you better have learned how to think like them and you had better know what they were gonna do under any scenario and you had better know it before they do...........now their are apps for this and that and uncle google will help you figure things out :chuckle: Technology is not bad, don't get me wrong, things are just different today compared to 20 years ago, 30, 40 and more years ago and thats ok. The topic is how we miss the way things were when it comes to hunting deer, just throwing my experiences and thoughts out there. Like DOUBLELUNG said, if you want the true experience maybe try leaving all the electronics at home, it really is a more relaxing experience.

This really resonates with me.  That's why I love to hunt archery and muzzleloader.  Yes, those weapons have changed drastically with technology, but it is still a relatively short-range activity where I get the excitement of stalking, still-hunting, and sitting still (ground, blind, stand).  Even when I do hunt modern firearm, I like to hunt the denser woods where it is still a short-range game.  I think it is less the weapon choice, and more about how you hunt with it.  I have a lot of respect for the old-time camps and traditions, and for the importance of passing the hunt to the next generation.  This year, I will mentor my sixth new deer hunter, and it has been the greatest privilege of my hunting career to do that.  If we value a lot of the things from the old camps, let's create it again in our modern day camps!  We certainly can choose to do so. 

Sorry for the rambling.  I hope you all are having a great summer.  Fall is coming...


Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: ljsommer on July 01, 2019, 10:40:00 PM
I've always felt if you want something - build it yourself. I am building a hunting legacy at my family with my boys after having it skip a generation. Say hi sometime.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 02, 2019, 10:12:28 AM
Big Mac C,

Is your camp the one that used to traditionally burn a stump every year?

 :chuckle:...no, thats wasn't us.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 02, 2019, 11:22:19 AM
Big Mac C,

Is your camp the one that used to traditionally burn a stump every year?

Got me thinking, I think I may know of who you are talking about, were they camped up a certain"Creek"drainage?
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Gobble on July 02, 2019, 12:33:33 PM
Am not what I consider old by any means am 30. But I remember a time when things were different. My family would have a deer camp every year I started going when I was seven. My uncle would take me hunting and let my take my red rider, in my seven year old mind I really thought I would get a buck with that thing of course I knew it would have to be a head shot at close range but I was hunting. I remember when I was to young to have my own rifle I was in awe of thereís. The camp had many classics a win mod 70 .270, rem 700 30 06, rem 760 30 06, win 94 30 30 and even a old wwII surplus 6.5x55 Swede. All had beautiful wood stocks and the biggest scope was a 3 by 9. What I remember most was the ammo the old green and yellow box Remington core lock thatís all anyone needed. When ammo was talked about it was not about the newest and greatest only if you shot 150 or 180 out of your 30 06 and the pros and cons of each. That camp killed many deer but size was not a huge factor any buck was a good one and we looked forward to the storyís and the meat at the end of the day. When I was ten I was able to join the camp for real I saved up enough money to buy a Sears Roebuck model 54 30 30. I killed a doe with that rifle and could not have been prouder. At camp that doe might as well been a 5x5 buck they treated it as it was. Things have change so much we donít do the camp any more. We need to get back to the basics. I have my own two sons now and once they get old enough I will start the camp again and teach them the things that really matter about deer camp. friendship family good food and fun.

Couldn't agree more  :tup: Today everyone seems to be caught up in the rack size, and age as the only measure of success. The hunting shows have created unrealistic expectations from the harvest, esp in Wa., We have huge deer in this state but not in the numbers seen in other states. Blacktail are definitely the hardest deer to hunt if you are looking for a monster, pair that with the terrain that they live in. I too, miss the days when you would spend months dreaming about the hunt, preparing mentally and physically, packing and repacking your gear, and passing other hunters in the woods and giving each other a friendly wave, it still exists in some areas, but nothing like it was 30-40 years ago. 
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: 2MANY on July 02, 2019, 01:09:55 PM
Flatbrimming, Facebookin, Snowflakes.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 03, 2019, 11:34:59 AM
Another thing I miss about the "old ways",  I know I touched on it a little in other posts but it really is and should be a time for friends and family to come together and form lots of memories, its amazing the conversation, memories and friendships that come away from a hunting fire. When my great grandparents started hunting the Methow over 100 years ago they actually knew and were close friends of a lot of ranchers, orchardists and cowboys from all over the valley, some were lifelong friendships that went on for decades. Some of the folks were brought up to Alaska where my great grandparents had some business ties with some fishing and canary operations to hunt bear, moose and caribou. A lot of folks from Alaska that my great grandparents knew would come down and hunt Mulies in the Methow, a lot of them through the years worked for Alaska FandG I remember. My great grandparents passed away in the 1970,s both were in their 90,s and both were in great shape until the last months of their lives, my great grandma was still out picking blackberries up on Mt Shucksin and at the base of Mt Baker well into her late 90,s. I remember as a boy some of the folks, friends, family and some real characters that would gather at the "little Bellingham fires, I remember 2 big bon fires 10 feet in diameter each with 20-30 people gathered around each fire telling stories of the hunt, 20 feet away were 2- 30 ft long ridgepoles spread between 3 big Ponderosas with 15-20 bucks hanging on each pole just glowing in the fire light, then you would walk a couple hundred feet to another big fire pit and there would be another family member with his clan and the sights and sounds were duplicated. I remember as a boy seeing 50 or more deer at a time hanging at Little Bellingham, all hung "head up", my great grandma was a stickler at having them hung head up, she would say "yep, there easier to clean the other way but they are a proud animal, their heads should be held high". My dad has told stories and had pictures from the 1930,s and 40,s of over 100 bucks hanging on the poles. Like I said everyone knew were everyone hunted and all piched in with dragging and packing, when a shot was heard from camp by folks who already had their bucks, 5 or 6 of them would drop what they were doing, gather some supplies and head out, you sometimes had to wait till the next day to see what hit the dirt. There was a friend of my great grandpa that was from Nebraska(where my Great Grandpa was born) who's son used to hunt with us, after WW2 was over my dad said he was back at camp that year, it was like he got off the boat, grabbed his gear and headed to the Methow, I remember my dad telling stories how "different" he was after the war, everyone noticed right away my dad said, it was very obvious. My dad was in his teens and grandma and my dad went out with Henry to hunt one day, a big 4 point came up the side of the ridge from the creek bottom at about 200 yards, Henry asked if "anybody was gonna kill the dang thing before he slips away", my dad said grandma asked if he wanted it, my dad said nope, "I want to watch Henry shoot it", Henry proceeded to stand erect, put his rifle up, put the peep sights on the buck and drop him with one shot. They got over to the buck and the round entered one ear and exited though the other, dead before it hit the ground. Well what was different about Henry that year everyone was noticing was actually a good thing, Henry was confident and had grown up a lot during the early 40,s, his time in Europe(battle of the bulge vet) and his time in the Army actually made a man out of him I guess you could say. My dad said he remembered him before the war being kind of the "camp clown", always making jokes, almost being obnoxious to a point and not being able to hit the broad side of a barn at 50 feet with a cannon, he had never killed a buck, had flat out missed, not hit or wounded but MISSED at least 10 bucks prior, he always had someone with him that witnessed, tree limbs snap, bark fly off trees and dirt kick up all at least 5 feet away from the buck he was shooting at. Henry always laughed it off but my dad said you could tell it bothered him. He came back to camp after the war still happy go lucky but with a new found confidence in himself, he ended up killing over 40 bucks after that up until he passed. Friendships are something to be cherished while letting the memories just happen, many, many of mine stem from the old hunting camps and now on a much smaller scale :chuckle: I am doing it with my friends and family, we are spread out between 2 small camps now and hunt all over the valley but meet up every day to talk about how many deer we DIDNT see, as far as deer numbers go, its a shame what has happened to this herd, the deer numbers are not close, not even a fraction of what they were, most of the group now go out of state to kill their deer but still come to the camp every year out of tradition, myself and a couple are the last holdouts, all of my deer have been Methow bucks and thats the way it will stay. This herd will never be what it was but memories and stories can still be made and told.

I remember another friendship my great grandparents had over there back in the day. I think it was the Late 40,s or early 50,s, my dad was in the Marine corp and received a letter from great grandpa wondering if he(my dad) would like to go in on a real-estate purchase, my dad said a couple other relatives were asked also. My dad said he wrote back to grandpa and basically turned him down, my dad was just married and he and my mom were planning for their future and saving for a home, nobody wanted to go in and it went away. My dad until the day he died a few years ago said it was the worst decision he ever made, the deal was to have 5 -6 family members go in and purchase some property by a lake from a friend of grandpa and grandma  for $17.50(yes seventeen dollars and 50 cents) per acre, the purchase involved thousands of acres(my dad could not recall exactly how many acres were offered up to grandpa and grandma), he thought it was the whole north/west side/end of the lake.......that property is now called Studhorse Mt.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 03, 2019, 05:05:12 PM
Another great memory from the old deer camp was of a fella named Paul, he was a commercial fisherman friend of great grandpa, he was of Slavic descent and talked with an accent, he was a lot younger than grandpa and grandma, if I remember right he was the son of one of grandpas Alaska buddies. He was about 6.2 and my dad said in his prime weighed in at around 250lbs, my dad said "he was one of the flat out strongest men he had ever met", he had hands like bear paws and forearms the size of a normal mans legs, he earned the nickname back in the day of "The Superman of The Methow". My dad said he packed out numerous bucks by making "back packs" out of them and packing them out on his back, didn't matter how big the buck was, he would just role the guts out, make a few cuts to the legs, run the fronts through the rears and start walking. My dad said that back in his prime he remembered Paul packing out 3 deer in one day, a buck he had shot, one my grandma had shot and one my grandpa had shot, all were roughly 2- 3 mile hikes. I got to know Paul later in his life when he was much older, he was pretty crippled up from years of fishing, his back was shot and he had arthritis in his elbows, knees and shoulders. I remember all the stories he would tell around the fire when I was a young man, and I remember the stories my dad would tell of him when he was in his prime. He would just come to be at camp in his later years, he no longer hunted much  because he couldn't get around much anymore, what he would do for us every year until he passed was to jump on his tote goat and drive the 50 feet from his tent to ours, drive it through the flaps of the tent at 2 in the A.M to tell us "ladies" it was time to get up, he would be in his one piece wool longjohns with a 44 mag holstered across his chest topped off with a big red stocking hat, when he was there we never had to set an alarm clock, never, For the 15 years I knew him, we never set an alarm.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: tracksoup on July 03, 2019, 05:12:44 PM
Awesome stories bigmacc!!
Thanks for sharing
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: elksnout on July 03, 2019, 09:43:58 PM
Yeah I get it. I'm bett'n even some of those old timers talked about "the good 'ol days" 100 years ago to some extent. We need to move forward men or we'll perish.....the cup is half full.

Elksnout
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: idaho guy on July 03, 2019, 10:57:25 PM
Yeah I get it. I'm bett'n even some of those old timers talked about "the good 'ol days" 100 years ago to some extent. We need to move forward men or we'll perish.....the cup is half full.

Elksnout
 

 :yeah: donít let the flat bill army get you down! Those Instagram hunters are changing the look of hunting for some but I still hunt the same. i do have a way more accurate rifle and rangefinder though👍 I have had lots of camps come and go over the years. Most of those are great memories and we are making new ones.i have always hunted quite a bit solo as well and still enjoy that. We will be deer hunting a completely new deer camp this year which I am looking forward too
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: no.cen.wa on July 04, 2019, 09:10:59 AM
I like the posts of longtime hunters on this topic, some are bored I guess, sad.
If topic is of no interest,,, just don't reply.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 04, 2019, 10:16:45 PM
Yeah I get it. I'm bett'n even some of those old timers talked about "the good 'ol days" 100 years ago to some extent. We need to move forward men or we'll perish.....the cup is half full.

Elksnout

You bet they did, and I was there to hear a lot of it, every bit of it was valuable and 100 percent priceless. Listening and paying attention helped me kill a lot of nice bucks in my life,... no Bragg, Just fact :tup:

bigmacc
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 04, 2019, 10:24:20 PM
Awesome stories bigmacc!!
Thanks for sharing

Thankyou tracksoup.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 04, 2019, 10:40:52 PM
I like the posts of longtime hunters on this topic, some are bored I guess, sad.
If topic is of no interest,,, just don't reply.

Thanks no.cen.wa, man, times are different arnt they.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Boss .300 winmag on July 04, 2019, 11:03:08 PM
🤔
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: idaho guy on July 05, 2019, 11:05:15 AM
I like the posts of longtime hunters on this topic, some are bored I guess, sad.
If topic is of no interest,,, just don't reply.

This is a great topic I also like reading the old timer stories. I think we need to still look at hunting the way we want too and not worry about the guys falling over themselves trying to get some fame and pimping out over priced product. We can still pass on our own traditions as we see fit. I don't think the old way of hunting has to be gone at all. Its probably overshadowed by the flat bill army though since that's the only hunters really pounding social media etc. Great topic and op said he misses old way of deer hunting he doesn't need to not hunt that way anymore.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 05, 2019, 11:27:01 AM
I may have mentioned this one before or maybe PM,d someone about it but another old story of Paul(the commercial fisherman)I remember was back in the 40,s, Paul had told my dad that he and my mom should park themselves under a certain tree that was in one of the old migration routes we knew of(back when big migrations actually took place in the Methow) because of a big storm that hit a couple days prior, Paul was going to sit on a particular boulder that sat high on a knob with a draw coming up on his left and one coming up on his right, it was one of the best spots to be in the valley during migrations, bar none and like I said "it was". The tree my mom and dad sat at was about 400 yards to the north and west of Paul and was also in a " herd highway", especially after some weather. My mom had never killed a buck up until that day and Paul figured it would be a good spot for her because the shooting in this hole they were in was 50-60 yards at the most from the base of the tree they would be sitting at, they got into the tree and piled old limbs and branches around themselves to form a blind, my mom had her lever action 30-30 ready to go. After sitting in the dark in 6 degree temps for 2 hours and hearing deer after deer moving through the thickets to all sides and directions of them my dad said "your mom didn't come down with a cold sitting in that weather, hearing all the deer moving around and not seeing them gave her buck fever", the sun slowly lit up the area and now they could see shadows moving through the trees and my dad said the numbers were huge, hje figured a couple hundred deer had moved through before they could even start to make out which were does and which were bucks. My dad had hunted this particular tree many many times during storms and migrations but said he had never seen so many deer come through this hole before and he never did after. A huge 4 by 4 came up the trail slowly moving through the trees at about 30 feet to the left and my dad told my mom "theres your buck, he's a dandy", my dad said mom raised her 30-30 and began the deed. Before the dust settled with deer crashing and bouncing all around them, it was total mayhem, my dad said it sounded more like a herd of elk crashing through a thicket of jack pines in all directions. When the dust finally did settle all that hit the dirt was 4 rounds of unfired 30-30 ammo, my mom had ejected all the rounds without pulling the trigger. Well thats only part of the story, Paul had wanted my mom at that tree because of the close shots that would be available, the other part of the story is about all those deer coming up through that hole that day(my dad said he estimated at 3-4 hundred total), It seems Paul had made his way 100 yards or so down hill from his Boulder and parked himself in the draw to the right, soon as he heard or seen deer starting to come up he would blow a whistle and role rocks down the hill, the deer would hang a left and head north, the next draw they hit was the one heading into the hole where my mom was, Paul put in a lot of work that day to help another hunter as he always did, packing, dragging, being a birddog it didn't matter, he enjoyed helping others. Paul got a kick out of what happened that day my dad said and he asked if he could have the four 30-30 rounds to keep as a reminder of that day, he got a kick out of it and for years he would pull out those bullets and tell the story of the "deer detour". My mom killed many bucks after that until she passed away at a young age but she always enjoyed Pauls story of that day when he would tell it around the fire, in his rich, slavic accent, the year before Paul passed he gave those 4 bullets to me and I have them to this day.

Just an add on here, I myself over the last 20 years have sat at Pauls old boulder and at the tree, I have went into these areas after the season was closed with my son or grandkids in the first 2 weeks of November, just to see what we could see moving through while weather was hitting or had hit a few days prior in some instances. Very sad, wanting to show the younger ones the migrations I grew up watching come through some of these areas are only memories now. We went into Pauls boulder for 4 days straight after 2-3 feet of snow had dropped up high(the first big storm of that fall), the temps dropped, wind was blowing and it spitted snow at the boulder all 4 days with an accumulation there of about 8 inches. 25 or more years ago we would have seen a thousand deer come through sitting on that boulder over those 4 days in November, this time 41. Kind of puts into perspective what has become of this herd over the last 25 or so years.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 05, 2019, 11:45:03 AM

I forgot to mention "that certain tree" in the story of Paul and my mom has many more stories involved with it(as some on here know), "grandpas tree" as it is affectionately known has a lot of history in our camp, someday I may get around to telling a few more of them. 
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Karl Blanchard on July 05, 2019, 11:46:13 AM
How many of the Instagram hunters are really out there. Sure if you are on social media you are gonna see a bunch of it but I spend a hundred plus days in the field a year in 4 or 5 states and 95% of the guys I run across whether in the field, at a trail head, at the gas station or grocery store are just regular guys out doing something they enjoy.

Hunting is very personal for everyone and we do it for different reasons. Family, friendship, camp atmosphere, etc. Big part of hunting for me personally is the opposite. I want to retreat from people and life. I crave solitude. I also enjoy taking my dad hunting. Kids are coming of age and that adds that much more enjoyment to something I already love.

Like others have said, if you aren't getting what you want out of hunting you must only look in the mirror to see the cause. You want a big camp life, start one. You want to hunt with family more, press it a bit. I know if i didnt prod my father to go he would likely go fishing instead. You wanna backpack hunt, then get the gear and go sleep in the woods by yourself. There will always be an excuse one can think up not to do something  :twocents:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 05, 2019, 12:08:30 PM
How many of the Instagram hunters are really out there. Sure if you are on social media you are gonna see a bunch of it but I spend a hundred plus days in the field a year in 4 or 5 states and 95% of the guys I run across whether in the field, at a trail head, at the gas station or grocery store are just regular guys out doing something they enjoy.

Hunting is very personal for everyone and we do it for different reasons. Family, friendship, camp atmosphere, etc. Big part of hunting for me personally is the opposite. I want to retreat from people and life. I crave solitude. I also enjoy taking my dad hunting. Kids are coming of age and that adds that much more enjoyment to something I already love.

Like others have said, if you aren't getting what you want out of hunting you must only look in the mirror to see the cause. You want a big camp life, start one. You want to hunt with family more, press it a bit. I know if i didnt prod my father to go he would likely go fishing instead. You wanna backpack hunt, then get the gear and go sleep in the woods by yourself. There will always be an excuse one can think up not to do something  :twocents:

I got to ask ...what the heck is an "Instagram hunter" and a "flat bill hunter" that I keep seeing be brought up? Man I must be getting old :chuckle:....I really do miss the old way of deer hunting :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Karl Blanchard on July 05, 2019, 12:48:38 PM
How many of the Instagram hunters are really out there. Sure if you are on social media you are gonna see a bunch of it but I spend a hundred plus days in the field a year in 4 or 5 states and 95% of the guys I run across whether in the field, at a trail head, at the gas station or grocery store are just regular guys out doing something they enjoy.

Hunting is very personal for everyone and we do it for different reasons. Family, friendship, camp atmosphere, etc. Big part of hunting for me personally is the opposite. I want to retreat from people and life. I crave solitude. I also enjoy taking my dad hunting. Kids are coming of age and that adds that much more enjoyment to something I already love.

Like others have said, if you aren't getting what you want out of hunting you must only look in the mirror to see the cause. You want a big camp life, start one. You want to hunt with family more, press it a bit. I know if i didnt prod my father to go he would likely go fishing instead. You wanna backpack hunt, then get the gear and go sleep in the woods by yourself. There will always be an excuse one can think up not to do something  :twocents:

I got to ask ...what the heck is an "Instagram hunter" and a "flat bill hunter" that I keep seeing be brought up? Man I must be getting old :chuckle:....I really do miss the old way of deer hunting :chuckle:
terms used for folks who hunt in order to gain status or monetary gain from social media.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: dilleytech on July 05, 2019, 01:02:01 PM
How many of the Instagram hunters are really out there. Sure if you are on social media you are gonna see a bunch of it but I spend a hundred plus days in the field a year in 4 or 5 states and 95% of the guys I run across whether in the field, at a trail head, at the gas station or grocery store are just regular guys out doing something they enjoy.

Hunting is very personal for everyone and we do it for different reasons. Family, friendship, camp atmosphere, etc. Big part of hunting for me personally is the opposite. I want to retreat from people and life. I crave solitude. I also enjoy taking my dad hunting. Kids are coming of age and that adds that much more enjoyment to something I already love.

Like others have said, if you aren't getting what you want out of hunting you must only look in the mirror to see the cause. You want a big camp life, start one. You want to hunt with family more, press it a bit. I know if i didnt prod my father to go he would likely go fishing instead. You wanna backpack hunt, then get the gear and go sleep in the woods by yourself. There will always be an excuse one can think up not to do something  :twocents:

Well put. Hunting never really was a social event for me. If I can go spend a few days in the hills and not see anyone thatís perfect.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: idaho guy on July 05, 2019, 01:38:01 PM
How many of the Instagram hunters are really out there. Sure if you are on social media you are gonna see a bunch of it but I spend a hundred plus days in the field a year in 4 or 5 states and 95% of the guys I run across whether in the field, at a trail head, at the gas station or grocery store are just regular guys out doing something they enjoy.

Hunting is very personal for everyone and we do it for different reasons. Family, friendship, camp atmosphere, etc. Big part of hunting for me personally is the opposite. I want to retreat from people and life. I crave solitude. I also enjoy taking my dad hunting. Kids are coming of age and that adds that much more enjoyment to something I already love.

Like others have said, if you aren't getting what you want out of hunting you must only look in the mirror to see the cause. You want a big camp life, start one. You want to hunt with family more, press it a bit. I know if i didnt prod my father to go he would likely go fishing instead. You wanna backpack hunt, then get the gear and go sleep in the woods by yourself. There will always be an excuse one can think up not to do something  :twocents:

100% agree I never actually run into those guys in the woods :chuckle: I enjoy family camp type hunts and also solo hunt quite a bit. I am more aware of what I call the flat bill army because my kids best friend was following Hushin and a few others for a while. I do like to watch hunting videos and pretty prevalent there too. Its funny I rarely see the "instagram" hunters in the woods I travel. There is still a lot of big elk camps( mostly families) in Idaho I have gotten to know over the years. Really cool people for the most part. Make hunting what you want!   
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 05, 2019, 05:27:42 PM

I feel very fortunate to have been brought up in a family where hunting was as close to a religion as you could get. I do agree it is personal on how we approach it and how we choose to experience it. Once again I feel very fortunate to have experienced it with friends and family, seeing many "firsts" of a lot of young ones and also being involved with some of the "lasts" of a few of the older folks. I have experienced stories told that some may find unbelievable, but have been backed up by pictures in some cases or verified by 10 others that have earned the respect of truth through the years. I have hunted with a handful of others trying to help a younger one get his first buck and I have loaded up at 1 in the morning and left camp by myself not returning for 5 or 6 days. A lot of personal dilemmas and problems have been solved by sitting next to a 1 man fire, at 8000 feet, by myself with a quartered buck hanging in a nearby tree, just sleeping under the stars for 4 or 5 days cleansing the sole in gods country, and then again my dilemmas and problems have been solved by sitting around a fire with 15 of my closest family members and friends. For me I feel I have been blessed, Ive hunted in this state when it was hard to beat, Ive heard stories and seen hundreds and hundreds of pictures of mule deer hunting in this state where I would have put it up against any other state as far as quantity and quality. I know it is hard for a lot of the younger folks on here to comprehend what some of us are trying to convey. Stories of driving to school with your rifle in the truck in case you seen a buck on the way, heck I knew a guy who drove a pop truck in the Methow years ago, he peddled the same flagship brands as me, just different parts of the state. He would call me and tell me stories along with pictures of him in his uniform in the back of his pop truck with a big buck he had killed during his deliveries. Yes this was Washington, it was the Methow, it was Entiat it was excellent Mule deer hunting and its something that unfortunately will not be witnessed again and thats whats sad. When some of the "old guys" get on here and tell these stories of healthy herds and a Game Dept that actually took care of the herds to put forth a quality product for the hunters of this state, we are sharing little bits of hunting history and you know what those stories should be told, they should be shared because some day no one will be around to tell them. Stories of 2-300 deer moving through a draw at daylight on a cold November morning in the Methow was common at one time not that long ago, now it is just that, a story or a memory and thats where I feel bad for the younger hunters, it truly was something to see.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Karl Blanchard on July 05, 2019, 07:51:03 PM
Hope it was Pepsi bigmacc. If it was that other brand I don't know if we can be friends anymore :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: CAMPMEAT on July 05, 2019, 09:07:42 PM
I always thought deer huniting was for girls. Elk hunting was a true game changer for guys who never hunted elk and thought deer hunting  was tough.........I do miss the good ol' days of hunting both....
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 05, 2019, 09:57:52 PM
Hope it was Pepsi bigmacc. If it was that other brand I don't know if we can be friends anymore :chuckle:

Yes it was Karl, my blood still runs Pepsi blue and always will, 43 years :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Ellensburg on July 05, 2019, 10:09:07 PM
Too many flat brimmers now days trying to get famous hunting.

Haha! I think I am a flatbrimmer.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Karl Blanchard on July 05, 2019, 11:11:30 PM
Hope it was Pepsi bigmacc. If it was that other brand I don't know if we can be friends anymore :chuckle:

Yes it was Karl, my blood still runs Pepsi blue and always will, 43 years :tup:
Haha! Good man! I'm 16 down and 27 more to go  :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: 2MANY on July 05, 2019, 11:33:35 PM
I've never known any way but the old way.
Does that make me old?
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 06, 2019, 03:57:21 PM
Hope it was Pepsi bigmacc. If it was that other brand I don't know if we can be friends anymore :chuckle:

Yes it was Karl, my blood still runs Pepsi blue and always will, 43 years :tup:
Haha! Good man! I'm 16 down and 27 more to go  :tup:

Absolutely, keep working hard and see if you can pick up that "Ring of Honor award", my wife and I had a blast in NYC, they role out the red carpet for you and money is no object, unreal and a proud moment for me :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 06, 2019, 04:01:04 PM
Sorry for getting this offtrack, I,ll make up for it later with another story of the old way of hunting.  A 100 year family history and a guy may have a few :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: hardrichard on July 07, 2019, 11:51:07 AM
Bigmacc......you know who this is brother :hello: and I too MISS THE OLD WAY OF DEER HUNTING :tup: I shared in a bit of that history you speak of and it was very special its a shame how its changed over there for my  :twocents: the last good year was 2003 for deer its always good spending time with family and friends in deer camp but there's been a hell of a lot more camp then deer lately  :chuckle: take care my friend.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Remnar on July 07, 2019, 03:19:33 PM
 :chuckle: like the handle @hardrichard
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: hardrichard on July 07, 2019, 05:17:32 PM
Thanks Remnar I appreciate it :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 12, 2019, 05:28:28 PM
Another old way of deer hunting I miss is the "mystery of the hunt" (I guess you could call it). Back in the 70,s my dad had a lot of his Ironworker buddies in camp and a couple of those guys (including my dad) were what you would find in the dictionary if you looked up "TOUGH". Back in the 60,s and 70,s my dad and about 3 other relatives and a handful of friends were pretty much the cats meow when it came to building stuff out of iron, they worked from coast to coast, Alaska, and a few foreign countries, the pipeline, the Columbia center, dams, skyscrapers you name it, if something big was to be erected, more times than not my dad and his buddies used a spud wrench or had a weld on it during that time period, around the west especially. Well my dad was the last to survive, all friends and family(except one other that I know of) in this trade eventually died on the job and to this day are missed. They produced some of the most "colorful" memories of hunting camp for me, they all had each others back while hunting as they did while on the job. One night we were around the fire and it was cold(early 70,s if I remember right :dunno:), the temps never got above freezing for 2 weeks, in fact most of the time it never went above 10 degrees, in fact we had to keep milk, eggs etc close to the fire to keep them from freezing. We had around 20 folks left in camp total(about 10 others had left a few days earlier) and we all had nice bucks hanging except for 1 guy. Well, Paul(not the Paul that I told stories of earlier) was hardcore to say the least, he was lean, mean and in the prime of his life. A small snowstorm hit a couple days earlier and my dad told Paul of a spot about 6 miles to the east  that deer would be pouring through, my dad including a couple others offered to go in with him, he declined the help and I remember him saying "I,ll be back in 2 days with a big boy, if I,m not, then come look,in for me". Paul grabbed his sleeping bag, rifle, some jerky, candy bars and some canned chile along with a jug of water and headed out, 2 days went by and I remember my dad getting a few of us together to go get him, about the time we were getting ready to head out here came Paul. No buck and a look on his face I have never seen before or since. He proceeded to load his truck very calmly told everyone goodbye and pulled out, it was something I will never forget, he never came hunting again. After the season my dad talked with him and everything was ok, I remember my dad telling me "oh he just seen something" but I never did get the whole story. Paul was killed in an accident on the job a few years later. A few years after that I asked my dad what happened on that trip, did Paul ever tell you "what he saw", my dad never said anything about it, in fact up until my dad passed a couple years ago the story was never told to anyone, it was between Paul and my dad.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Mtnwalker on July 12, 2019, 06:25:43 PM
Paul didnít even give a ďhey guys, donít go over thereĒ or anything before he left? Hmm..
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 12, 2019, 06:46:08 PM
Paul didnít even give a ďhey guys, donít go over thereĒ or anything before he left? Hmm..

Absolutely not, just a strange look on his face while he loaded up to leave. To this day my dad was the only one who knew what happened or what Paul seen on that 2 day trip 6 miles from camp, my dad took it to his grave.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: hardrichard on July 12, 2019, 09:18:17 PM
Hey Bigmacc I still remember that story about Paul I always looked forward to it being told around the campfire......always gave me chills especially when I was younger ;) your brother and I always had our theory on what he might have encountered but like you said we never ever got told by your dad. kind of spooky :yike:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: elksnout on July 14, 2019, 11:06:18 PM
I appricate the old stories and the old timers who tell them. It's dawned on me that now I'm now a sixty something... :chuckle: :chuckle:  Does that make me an old timer?  :yike: Thank you bigmac for your stories of the history of your families hunting heritage and local history of the great mule deer herds that once roamed our state. I have nothing close to compare but do have fifty years of hunting deer and elk on the west side. Specifically the SW section of the state. I keep telling my son who's become a great hunter in his own right (and my bestest hunting partner) what I've lost in those fifty years....

I'm going to ramble a bit with my thoughts.

I remember.....
When you could leave I5 and either go up the Coweeman or Kamala River and come out at Cougar. We'd spend the day doing that. Now you need a $300 trespass fee. Go figure. I loved driving thru Camp Kalama and seeing all the yellow and green log trucks and equipment and the smell of cut old growth doug fir. Man that's a great memory for me with my dad. I remember all the elk camps at the old Camp Coweeman site too. You still could find some of the old railroad trestle's from the old logging days out across some of the canyons. I remember during elk season driving out of Cougar and there being a stream of log trucks heading up in the dark. Seeing their marker lights in the rearview was cool. They would be lined up in front of the restaurant left running and ready to go. When I was in grade school that highway turned to gravel not far east out of Cougar. We would be flying up that road in the dark on Friday nights packed into the tiny standard cab of my dad's 1960 Chevy pickup dodging pot holes to get to elk camp up on Clear Creek. I'd be left behind at camp to protect my mom wity BB gun and maybe get a bull :chuckle: :chuckle:
One time I walked across a downed tree which fell over Clear Creek. Then I froze and wouldn't come back. My mom freaked. Our family friend Lorraine who grew up with my mom in North Dakota and who's husband was my dad's hunting partner crawled across with a stick to get me. Still can see that. On one trip there was a lost hunter. Everyone gathered around a big fire and fired signal shots during the night. Then there was the night we all heard a cat just inside the trees wailing and scaring all. And one morning we woke up to elk tracks all around both pickups and campers. Anyone remember when elk meat was hung in front of the camps under clear or black visqueen instead of either being hid or placed under blue hillbilly tarps? Sometimes it was fun to just drive around during the day checking out all the camps. In the national forest there used to be logging. When we drove up the 90 road you better have  your CB on to monitor where the log trucks were and also radio out your location based on the milepost lest you get ran off the road. Those loaded logging trucks can get mighty scary on a blind corner! Up until the mid 90's hunting deer in the national forest was great hunting. Elk hunting lasted just a bit longer. Now roads are  bermed off or torn up. The cuts are now a sea of reprod you can barely walk thru let alone see into. The deer are all but gone. There's still some of the traditional camps going up each year. Pretty much for tradition if you look at the harvest stats for those units. Campgrounds used to stay open too thru the fall. Now almost all close shortly after Labor Day. You never saw tourists up there until St. Helens blew. That ruined that country in my opinion over and above the lives lost and the devastation left behind. Any bull was legal. Spikes made up the bulk of the harvest. Hell a raghorn was a big deal then. Anybody remember Hoo Hoo Lake? We used to set up the coldest military wall tent camp in history there each fall until the mountain blew. We have pictures of us hunting up on the Plains of Abraham in short sleeves in fall before the mountain erupted. There was an old pack trial we used that went up a spine of a ridge just north of Ape Canyon. In the bottom of that unnamed canyon the country looked like a scene out of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It's all gone now when the flows came out that side of the mountain. Muddy River, Pine Creek, Bean Creek, Smith Creek, Clear Creek, Clearwater Creek. Smith Butte. There was the nicest forest service campground on the Clearwater near where it dumped into the Muddy. All gone. But I persist. I still go although the last couple years I haven't hunted elk in Washington instead making my "big hunts" out of state. Rather I just camp in that country mostly these days. I do have a still somewhat decent deer hunting spot entirely in the old growth in the Wind River unit. Not a lot of deer but the last week of October has been good to me there. Good luck to all this fall.

Elksnout   
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Skyvalhunter on July 15, 2019, 06:11:57 AM
Good memories and good times
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 17, 2019, 08:01:02 PM
Hey Bigmacc I still remember that story about Paul I always looked forward to it being told around the campfire......always gave me chills especially when I was younger ;) your brother and I always had our theory on what he might have encountered but like you said we never ever got told by your dad. kind of spooky :yike:

Yes it was spooky, I got "chills" typing the dang story on here, I will never forget the look on his face as he loaded his truck in record time, said goodbye and was gone in a heartbeat, I,m afraid it will remain a mystery, like you, I have my theory(I think he seen something that scared the crap out of him), but the guy was hardcore and spent countless days in the wilderness by himself for years from Alaska to Wyoming and everything in between, he seen a lot in his day, if it was something he seen it threw him for a loop, and thats a fact.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: PA BEN on July 18, 2019, 05:38:20 AM
I live the good old days every year.  If you are missing out it's your fault.
:yeah:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 18, 2019, 05:42:06 PM
Another thing I miss back in the hay-days of Methow deer hunting was when the seasons ran up into November, sometimes to the 9th, 10th or 11th. Weather could change on a dime and be 60 degrees then one day the wind would start up and within an hour the temps would be in the teens and an hour after that you would be in a whiteout. I remember my dad getting us out of bed to drive to different spots at 9 or 10 o'clock at night after a storm had passed, we would walk into different draws or saddles and just sit under trees and listen to the deer move through, sometimes it sounded like literally thousands of head moving through the thickets, it was pitch dark but you could hear them moving, you could hear the antlers snapping off the limbs of jack pines and the movement and sounds sometimes lasted for an hour before it became quiet and still again. We would go back to camp and catch a couple hours more sleep(ya right :chuckle:) then be up at 2 A.M and head out, my dad knew right where those deer were headed and about 4 miles away from that draw or saddle we would hit a trailhead and hike in about 3 miles get set up in the dark and just wait. By shooting time the herd was working its way up the draw we were watching and headed for a saddle, we could make out deer moving in and out of the fog and trees, my dad said "sit tight and no moving or talking, the bucks are coming", my dad knew we heard antlers moving through those jack pines the night before and he knew they were pulling up the rear during their travels. Sure enough a couple big bucks came into view, then more does and a few more bucks, a couple of those were huge 4 by 4,s but my dad never even put his gun up, I couldn't figure out why he wasn't shooting, then after another 50 or so deer moved through, here came the one he had a feeling about, the buck he thought was a big boy when we heard it move through that dark thicket hours and hours ago, my dad slowly raised his rifle and dropped the big non-typical in his tracks, we got up to him and to this day it is the biggest bodied deer I have ever seen, with the guts out, hide off and legs cut off at the knees he weighed in at 327 lbs if I remember right, the Game guys came up to camp and weighed him and figured on the hoof he was probably right around 400 give or take, it was an 11 by 7 that was heavily palmated and HEAVY, a roman nose and a heavily scared up face along with numerous old scars and notches to both ears, just a monster. I remember my dad saying there was a "big deer" moving in the dark that night and we found out the next morning almost 7 miles away that he could not have been more right. I posted a pic on here years ago of it and pulled it down. Man I miss those times with my dad, the guy always amazed me, when deer were on the move he could spot a herd in one area and 6-8 hours later and 10 miles away could put you right on their doorstep and set you up for a 100 yard shot, he did it more times than I can count. He used to teach us "YOU need to know what they are gonna do before THEY know what they are gonna do", and he did.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 19, 2019, 05:21:28 PM

I miss the old cowboys that would come to our camp, a few were real characters, but all were welcome at our camp, some I remember their names and most I don't because I was so young but I do remember listening to the stories swapped between them and my family around those little Bellingham fires. Later on in life I became close with one who to this day I still call him friend, he and his wife spent time at my home and my wife and I at his. He would come up to our camp 3-4 times during hunting seasons back in the 70,s, 80,s and 90,s, most of the time him and his wife would ride their horses up to camp with a pack mule carrying steaks, other food, a little beer and a little hooch, man those were some good memories. The guy was and is a real teller of stories but was NOT a BS,r, like a lot of cowboys he just had "a way" of tellin a story :tup:. He is the one who told me the story of "the Mule Deers graveyard" he found up near Spanish Camp in the Pasayten along with many, many more of his real life adventures. Sometimes they would come up to camp and we would have 10 or 11 bucks hanging, he would walk down the ridgepole looking at every buck like he was dissecting their life by the scars on their face and the nicks and scratches on their antlers. He loved how we hung our deer head up and he loved the story of why we did it, he would say "they sure look prettier hanging that way when you turn on the firelight". Him and his wife came up to camp one year during a draught time, we had seen some bucks but at that point none of us had pulled the trigger, most of what we were seeing were tiny to say the least, horns and body( some on here remember that time period) and pretty soon we had to get serious about putting meat in the freezer. My friend looked at the ridgepole and was astonished that nothing was hanging, at this point in time camp consisted of around 15-20 folks for that time period. He offered us to come to his property and shoot a "nuisance" whitetail that he had running around terrorizing his cattle, we said ok, none of us had ever shot a whitetail at that time and now we would  be doing a service to someone who had taken care of us through the years. Well we show up at 4 in the A.M, have coffee, eat flapjacks and draw straws for who is going to shoot this flagger. One of my partners is "the chosen one", we are all taken out to a spot on the ranch, its still dark, its cold, were dodging prize bulls on the way out and its about a confusing of an ordeal as I have ever been involved with. Its right at shooting time, we are all sitting in lawn chairs, facing towards the backside of a small coulee when all the sudden we see a flash, we all say "what the hell was that", he says "thats the alien deer I want ya to get". Well I was not "the shooter" I was a "spotter" so I put my binos on this "whitetail" and I said "SH#T ITS A DAM$ BARRICADE WITH BLINKING LIGHTS " . Well we didn't shoot that barricade that day but we had a good breakfast, good conversation and a "good hunt" and a great laugh during a slow year. We ended up with 5 of THE smallest bucks we have ever killed that year, but it was a hunt and a time I will never forget because of the "folks" that were there.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 19, 2019, 05:28:50 PM

I may have a few others, I know there may be one or two on here that may have a story or 3 :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Alchase on July 19, 2019, 06:30:15 PM
Yes sir, need to get Idabooner to open up his long list of awesome stories!
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 23, 2019, 12:44:33 PM
I miss the time of year that hunting seasons used to be. We used to actually have snow a lot of years and actually be hunting in cold temperatures :chuckle:. Back when seasons were two weeks you had people who loved to go over when the weather was usually warmer during the first week who were usually in RV,s and were basically hunting a very healthy "local" population of deer in the Methow, then they would pull out with their trailors and motorhomes etc. before the weather became a little more sketchy and the next wave of folks would come in for the second week(usually going in to the 1st week of November) to have a chance at hunting more of the migrating herd. Like I said before the little Bellingham camp was usually up for 2 weeks prior to the season (all wall tents, usually around 15-20 of them) and usually the last folks would pull out a week after the season ended. I remember back in the 80,s (I think)  there was about 20 of us left with about 4-5 big tents set up and it was 2-3 days left before the season ended. The temperatures had been in the teens and low 20,s for most of the second week of the season but no snow, just cold and clear. The temperature actually climbed about 10 degrees one day and a front blew in from the north and dropped about a foot and a half of wet snow on us during the night, we were up all night knocking snow off the tents to keep the whole camp from caving in. By morning the snow had stopped, the skies cleared and the temps plummeted into the single digits. My dad said we better "shut this down and get out of dodge", he had heard another front was coming in the next day and was bringing more snow and now all this wet heavy snow was froze solid with another round on its way to drop on top of all the ice. We all had our deer and were basically camping the last few days anyway so we started to breakdown camp and load up so we could just load the tents in the AM and take off. We got up at daybreak and here came the snow and I mean it was snowing harder than I have ever seen it snow only this time it stayed cold, the temperature was in the mid 20,s. We were breaking down tents and such for about an hour in this blizzard and it was getting to be touch and go wondering if we may be here till spring :chuckle:. The snow slowed and we had about an hour to go while we were chaining up the rigs we had chains for and getting everything buttoned down when deer started coming through camp, gods truth! A huge migration was in full swing and was probably triggered a couple days earlier when the 1st storm hit, there was a couple draws to the north of us that skirted a pretty good migration route and their was so many deer coming through they were just scattering into draws and moving through. We had deer running through camp all around us, dodging vehicles and US! One of our guys grabbed a camera he had in his truck and snapped a few pictures of a couple real dandy bucks that traveled through coming to within about 15 feet from him(I had permission to post the pics a few years ago but pulled them down), all total about 100 deer give or take came through our camp that morning, weaving in and out of us, our stuff and our vehicles, I will never see anything like it again. Well once we hit the road it took us close to 5 hours to make it down a dirt road out of camp that was about 5 miles long and usually took about 20minutes or so to travel. The road was solid ice underneath about 5-6 inches of fresh snow, we had to put the driver side tires in the ditch to keep us from sliding over the bank on the passenger side which 1 jeep and a truck/camper unfortunately did, the road was froze hard as an ice rink. We had guys out in front with axes and hatchets trying to chip ruts in front of the trucks, we had about 5 rigs in our group and there were probably about another 10 rigs behind us trying to get out also. Love it, you just don't get that anymore during the regular season anymore, I remember more years than not hunting in snow back in the day and I remember hunting in single digit temps many times during the regular season, just had to throw on an extra hickory shirt under the Black Bear :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 23, 2019, 02:12:27 PM

The old cowboy that I called friend,  one year took me up to a pond that used to have water in it ;) back when, man we used to catch some big trout in that stupid little pond, some were the size of footballs but their meat unfortunately was about the same color as a football :chuckle: real muddy, any way I was over there at his place one November, the weekend prior to Thanksgiving actually. He said lets go get on the horses and I,ll take you up and show you a couple of the "nicest looking bucks you'd ever want to see, just real pretty, almost could be twins". He had been watching them for a couple weeks after him and his wife had taken a ride one day up to the pond to have lunch, they spotted these 2 big bucks with a harem of about 40 does on the opposite side of the pond, one of the bucks was on one side of the herd and the other stayed to the other side, he said he had not seen them get closer than 50 yards of each other in the 6-7 times he had rode in to watch them. When he and I got up to the pond on horses(to much snow to drive) the deer were not there, they had been hanging out there for about 2 weeks he said. Then we spotted one of the big bucks along the shore line stuck brisket deep in mud, his tongue hanging out and breathing hard(no telling how long he had been there), my buddy rode up to around 20 feet of him, grabbed his lasso and dropped the loop around his rack on the 1st shot, the loop did not go over his head or neck but got tangled in his massive rack(a big, heavy horned bugger with about a 28-30 inch spread), he put his horse in reverse and slowly pulled the buck onto solid ground, the buck was not thrilled to say the least, it was thrashing and actually made a couple false charges towards my buddy and his horse. Now "how do I get my rope back" he said, he got as close as he could by guiding the buck into a thicket for cover and to put some trees between him and the buck and he slid down the rope and cut it with about a 2-3 foot tail of rope hanging off it with a big birds nest in the rack. As the buck just walked off he said "man, I,d like to see the look on the guys face that finds those sheds". I know Ive probably told this story before but don't think I ever told "the rest of the story", turns out he had seen the buck on and off through the winter, still with the rope tangled in his antlers. One day the following April he had some time to kill and rode up to an area above the pond, he spent about 4 hours just wandering around the south end of a big hill and found his rope, BOTH sides of antlers were still knotted up in the rope, he said "when one side dropped it never hit the ground until the other side came loose", he had that mess of rope and antler in an old wood apple crate and would pull it out when the conversation got slow :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: hunthard on July 23, 2019, 02:26:56 PM
Love the stories bigmacc, keep em coming :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 23, 2019, 03:38:05 PM

Im sure I've told this one on here before but maybe not :dunno: This is not my Story but one that was told to me by my cowboy friend, backed up with a picture that hung in his living room for years. I will try to tell it as best as I can remember. He was asked years ago to take some photographers and a writer from Outdoor Life magazine up into an area to get some pictures and write a story about a small little "turf war" I guess you would call it between Canada and the U.S about deer that were migrating from Canada into the U.S way up around the headwaters of the Chewuch up in 30 mile turf. He drove them up there in his truck as far as they could get up there in November, it was a pretty mild November at that point and he thought they could get pretty far in. He said they turned up a particular drainage and went in about a mile when he spotted a HUGE buck down in a hole off to the side of the truck, the big buck was laying down the hill aways and he told the photographer to get out and get some pictures of that big boy. The picture taker had a pretty expensive set up my friend said, he grabbed everything and instead of just taking some pictures he decided to go down the hill aways, sliding in the loose rock and gravel on his way. My buddy said he didn't go to far when the big buck stood up, he said he had a neck on him like a 55 gal drum and was not happy with this guy disturbing him, about 10 does busted out of the brush in all directions but the buck stood his ground. My buddy said he yelled at the guy to "get his a$$ back up the hill, now", the guy did an about face and scrambled the 20 feet or so back up the hill with the buck moving right behind him, the photographer ran around the back of the truck to the other side as the buck rammed the side of the truck leaving a dent and huge holes in the side of the truck. priceless memories.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Alchase on July 24, 2019, 05:35:00 AM
Keep them coming Bigmacc, all we need is a campfire and it would be perfect, LOL
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 24, 2019, 09:29:34 PM
Paul (the commercial fisherman friend of my grandparents, AKA the superman of the Methow) used to have one spot he would hunt and I mean ONE SPOT. The whole time I remember Paul during his time of hunting and hearing the stories my dad would tell of him when he was in his prime, he had a favorite spot. I mentioned it in another memory of the old camp, he would see over a thousand deer siting in this spot over a 5-6 day period when the weather was kicking the deer in the butt, the draw was in a direct line with one of the best migration corridors in the valley IMHO. I remember as a boy Paul coming back to camp after dark(after being gone since 3 or 4 in the AM), grabbing a bite to eat and me waiting intensely by the fire for him to come sit and tell us what he seen that day. He talked with a slavic accent and had a real deep voice and everyone that knew him could listen to him for hours, the way he talked and how he sounded was captivating. Paul came and sat by the fire and told us he had seen 160 that day with 14 of those being bucks, the weather was dropping snow up high for the last week and the migration was in full swing. Paul continued his story of the day by saying as of that day he had seen over 800 deer come by his spot with over 50 of those being bucks, it was his 4th day at his spot! Nothing was of his liking so far I guess and no one knew why he wasn't pulling the trigger. Pauls spot was about a 4 mile hike directly out of camp and to the north, a few days later I remember playing in the snow at camp and hearing a shot come from that direction, my mom asked "do you know who that was?", I remember saying "Paul got one!". Paul hauled his buck out on his back(nothing unusual, hence The Superman of The Methow nickname :chuckle:) and when we heard him coming down the trail a lot of us young ones couldn't wait to see what Superman was packing out. Well he came through the thicket and on his back was a 230 lb 2 point! Yep a 2 point, it was a huge 2 point I remember them saying it was about 26'' wide and I remember the horns being thick. Paul had seen over 50 bucks come through his spot that week and that was THE ONLY 2 point he had seen, all the bucks he was seeing were 3 points and bigger with a total of 3 or 4 being spikes. He was holding out for a 2 point because a few weeks earlier his wife had given birth to twins, 2 girls and he wanted a buck that would remind him of the time. After time Paul basically just came to camp just to be at camp in his older years, he would just ride his tote goat around from tent to tent and camp spot to camp spot and BS with anyone that would listen and we all did listen, I miss him till this day. I also to this day try to make one trip to his spot every season, taking my grandkids out there and showing and telling them the history of that spot. Years ago I remember going out there after Paul had stopped going, back in the 70,s I remember seeing a few hundred come through there on particular years and I have killed many nice bucks out there with a few being some real dandys. It started slowing down of corse during the 90,s just like the rest of the valley and now days even in mid-late November I will go over after the season has ended and its been dumping up high for days, I'll hike out to the spot and be lucky if I see 20 deer off and on during the whole day, I went out there 3 years ago after a series of storms had dropped feet of snow up high, went out there a couple days after the storms and sat in the spot for 4-5 hours, 3 days straight and seen 57 deer come through and 6 of those were bucks, same circumstances, same spot, same amount of days back in the 70,s, 80,s and 90,s would have produced 300-400 and back in the 40,s 50,s and 60,s would have showed you 600-700. You see the trend.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 25, 2019, 03:28:25 PM
My last one for awhile, some of my fondest memories of the Little Bellingham Camp back in the day was how everyone pitched in and how everyone had each others back(as I've mentioned before), from packing deer to helping set up a camp or break one down, it truly was like a community of good neighbors. One year back in the mid 60,s (I believe) my dad brought over a fella who had just married my moms sister, he was from Arizona and had moved up here a year earlier. He was an experienced hunter and had killed numerous bucks in northern Arizona. The weather was perfect for the migration, temps were cold and storm after storm was hitting at all elevation. I remember at camp (about 3300 feet) we had about a 5-6" of snow on the ground, we were about in the middle of the window of opportunity for the migration, it was at peak swing. My dad had an idea for Rich(my new uncle), my dad and 4 others to go hit another area he knew of about 15 miles south of camp, they all loaded up in a couple rigs and off they went. They got to a trailhead my dad knew of(kind of the back way into this area) and they all headed in for about a 6 mile hike, it was about 6 in the AM, my dad wanted to go in at daylight because it was good hunting all the way in to the destination. Sure enough about a mile into the hike they started spotting deer, then more and more, by the time they made it in they had seen about 250 deer, all does not a horn anywhere, 90% of the deer were bedded and never got up, they layed on small fingers about 100-150 yards away on both sides of the trail. The majority of the deer were in about a 2 mile stretch of trail and my dad said there were probably hundreds more they couldn't see that were farther off or bedded in thickets, they were walking through a staging area, my dad knew that but figured the deer would have moved out by then because of the weather, where they were it was below zero and about a foot and a half of hard crusty snow was on the ground. They got to the spot and spread out about 100 yards or so apart watching 2 huge football field sized meadows, each person looking at it from different angles and vantage points, my dad had done the same thing in the same spot a few years earlier with 4 guys and they knocked down 4 huge bucks in a 3 hour period, 3 of the bucks were traveling together and were all dropped at the same time while the 4th one was killed while they were cutting up the other 3 about an hour later! Rich was about 100 or so yards to my dads left sitting on the other side of a small finger watching an entrance into the huge opening, my dad could not see him. A few hours went by and nothing was stirring, lots of tracks in the snow going through the openings but they were days old. All the guys met up to start the hike out except for Rich, my dad walked over to where he was and no one home. They called for him and no answer a couple hours went by and they started a HUGE bonfire they said was visible from miles away, 3 of the guys headed out on a shorter trail to get back to the main road while my dad and another guy stayed back, they had followed footprints in the snow and lost them in a couple different boulder fields and dense thickets full of blow downs. The other 3 went down in record time, rounded up about 20 more Little Bellingham residents along with notifying authorities and headed back in, it was pitch dark and cold. They gathered at the big bonfire while some went out with lanterns and flashlights and those at the fire would sound off signal shots every now and then, nothing. The next day in the afternoon Rich was found on a dirt road by another hunter, wandering down the road dazed, lost and all but naked, frostbite on his lips and cheeks, 2 or 3 fingers and some toes. He was 9 miles from the small finger he was sitting on. They took him to their camp and put him in a tent while someone else hauled a$$ to get help(no cell phones then). The folks that found him said he claimed he had seen "aliens and a spaceship" and fought them off using his rifle as a club the night  he was lost and wandering in the woods, when found he had nothing but his long johns on and a pair of socks, no hat, rifle or his backpack. He fully recovered loosing only 1 finger and a toe and later on in life was very embarrassed by the ordeal but did not remember much of it, probably because of panic and shock. A few days later my dad and a couple others went in the short way and went looking for his stuff, my dad had a good idea of the way he went after he was found where he was. About 4 hours of wandering they found his rifle, completely busted apart laying next to a car sized boulder, about another 200 yards of following his trail his backpack was found then a few hundred yards further were different items of clothing scattered along about a 100 yard path then a few miles more of a zig zagging trail they popped out onto an old skid road and followed it another mile or so to the main road. He was very, very lucky, under those conditions he very easily could have died. A few years later he admitted to my dad he had taken some prescription diet pills for the first time earlier in the morning before they headed out, could have been the cause of the hysteria :dunno:, don't know. My dad said the huge boulder his rifle was laying next to had scratches and signs of being "smacked" with something, my dad figured that boulder was "the spaceship" he had seen in the dark, not a shot was fired from his rifle but it was completely destroyed from pounding on the boulder.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: HillHound on July 25, 2019, 05:31:17 PM
 bigmac  your stories are great. They just keep getting better. I find myself getting on here hoping that you have let us see another peek into your great adventures in what was definitely a much different time.
I canít imagine what they put in those diet pills now not to mention what they would have been putting in them then! :yike:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 25, 2019, 08:27:53 PM
bigmac  your stories are great. They just keep getting better. I find myself getting on here hoping that you have let us see another peek into your great adventures in what was definitely a much different time.
I canít imagine what they put in those diet pills now not to mention what they would have been putting in them then! :yike:

Thank you, like I,ve said before, right around 58 years history for me (that I remember anyways :chuckle:) and 102 years total for my family, yep a lot was seen, done, attempted and sometimes successfully completed during those 102 years, lots of priceless memories and yes it was a different time.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: JakeLand on July 25, 2019, 09:59:32 PM
bigmac  your stories are great. They just keep getting better. I find myself getting on here hoping that you have let us see another peek into your great adventures in what was definitely a much different time.
I canít imagine what they put in those diet pills now not to mention what they would have been putting in them then! :yike:

Thank you, like I,ve said before, right around 58 years history for me (that I remember anyways :chuckle:) and 102 years total for my family, yep a lot was seen, done, attempted and sometimes successfully completed during those 102 years, lots of priceless memories and yes it was a different time.
you should really put a book together! Pics would be a total bonus!!! I would just a couple
Thanks and keep on typing
Jake
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 26, 2019, 11:44:48 AM
Seriousely, this is my last "missing the old days of deer hunting" stories for awhile, you don't know how long this takes, one finger at a time :chuckle:. One of my favorite stories of my great grandparents that my dad told and happened back in the 50,s(I was there but to young to remember it), like I said it was one of my dads favorites , I,ve probably told it here somewhere before but its worth repeating. As best as I remember my dad said it was a beautiful couple weeks in the Methow, it had snowed earlier then cleared up and stayed right around freezing for days and days, lots of sun and beautiful blue skies. One day in the afternoon grandma and grandpa packed a lunch and took a hike out into an area that was very open with sagebrush knobs and nice views, they weren't expecting to see anything but took a rifle with them just in case. They made it out there after about a 3-4 mile walk down a popular trail used by a lot of the Little Bellingham bunch and as they got close they could here motor bikes. They noticed a couple boys from camp that were in there early teens riding in figure eights around a big sagebrush knob. They watched the 2 boys going round and round enjoying themselves on a nice springlike day when grandpa noticed the tips of an antler in the tall brush, he motioned for the boys to come to them. They rode their bikes to them and grandpa asked if either of them had a tag, if I remember right both had already got deer or they didn't have tags and their parents were not at camp, they had went fishing. Grandpa said "theres a buck laying in there right in the middle of where you guys are riding", the boys looked in astonishment at the horns sticking up out of the sage less than 100 yards away. They had been riding around there for quite awhile and the buck never moved and was never noticed. Well grandpa had grandma get ready, he gave a couple grunt sounds and the big buck stood up and grandma killed it, within seconds A SECOND BUCK stood up that they didn't see, could have been a twin to the first, grandma slowly handed the rifle to grandpa and he killed that one. Those bucks must have figured they were hid or trapped and were not going to give themselves away. Heres the eerie thing about "that spot", I and a friend went out to that same knob 30 years or so later, sat right on the exact spot those bucks were killed, we went into it 2 hours before light. I sat on one side of the knob and he was about 20 feet away on the other side, we could not see each other even when its light because of the knob and we were both watching areas the other could not see. We both went to sleep knowing we had a couple hours till shooting time. We actually woke up late, we missed the "golden hour", and then I hear a very faint whisper, "get over here", I crawl quietly the 20 feet to my friend knowing he sees something, when I get to him he is hunkered down hugging the ground, I do the same. He whispers and uses hand motions that "theres 2 bucks laying down the hill less than 20 yards from us". We both got ready, SLOWELY raised up to our knees and killed both 4 points in there beds without them even knowing we were there, both bucks were quartered away looking the opposite direction. They must have moved in when it was dark and we were asleep and bedded down. I have got another story from the old deer camp that is similar that I will tell later, its one that makes you shake your head and say "well I guess that kind of stuff does happen"
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 26, 2019, 05:10:04 PM


Sorry, I got to tell this one, only because it didn't really happen that long ago and there may be some on here that actually remember the "broad story" of this, my part of the story is actually a reaction to the main story I guess you would say, or at least its a side story. I,m thinking it was during the 80,s :dunno:, it was bluebird weather and had been for a few years, Sullivans was dried up and if I remember right we were in the midst of the "draught" period in the Methow. I remember I hunted the whole season in a pair of Wranglers, a t-shirt and a pair of Pony tennis shoes, only wearing a coat in the wee hours of the morning while getting to different haunts, when the sun was up it was balmy, vacation weather. Well I think there was around 20 of us in Little Bellingham that year, the hay-days were long gone but we did have a few deer hanging when a Game dept fella we knew came up to camp to BS and mentioned someone was stealing deer out of camps, just cutting them down from ridgepoles at night and disappearing, if I remember right it was happening not just up north but up and down the valley. I think it was the last 3 or 4 days of the season and we were filled up despite the weather, I think it was on Thursday 2 fellas pulled in a 100 feet or so away from us with a small tent, they yelled over "ok to camp here", we said sure. After they got set up they came over and BS,d with us, nice guys I remember, they told us they worked for Boeing and were on strike so they had a "vacation" and decided to come hunting. One guy was probably in his 30,s and the other looked a bit younger, they had never hunted the area, heck, they had never been to the Methow, they had heard of it after the pass had opened years earlier and them and there wives had drove over in the late 70,s and they had not been back since. Well they had no idea where to hunt or where they were even at for that matter,  after seeing about 5 bucks hanging(the rest had went home)they flat out asked "where did you get those", I told them of a spot about 10 miles away that was easy to get to, and wasn't giving away any secrets, in fact it was hunted by a few and every now and then a buck was killed there but it was easy to get to and was easy access. The 2 guys spent the night at our fire and were good folks, it was late, we told them good luck and they left to hit the sack. The next day rolled around and we were just "camping" in the beautiful weather, someone said "those guys arnt back", it was late afternoon but I knew they were ok, no way they could get "turned around" were I sent them. Just before dark they rolled in hooping and hollering out the window of their rig, they backed up near the ridge pole and proceeded to pull out a HUGE buck(if I remember right it was a non-typical and had like 14 on 1 side and 12 on the other, just a freak)and it dropped to the ground. We beat feet over there and they were more excited than any one I had ever seen shooting a buck and I have seen many young, old and in between who have killed there first buck but this was the most over the top but it was warranted, the dang thing was huge. They told the story. They had went to the spot I told them of, slipped down the hill aways, spread out a bit a hunkered down, everything I told them to do. Well they fell asleep, woke up somewhere around 10 o'clock because the sun was beating down on them and one of them sat up and was taking his boots off to just sit in the sun with his shoes off when he looked down hill and this monster was laying down the hill at about 50 yards! Looking the other way, the buck had no idea these 2 guys were above them! They were both shooting 30-30,s and shot a total of 17 shots to kill this buck, we heard the whole story. Now this was a huge buck, I've seen many huge bucks but I aint kidding you this was a DANDY. We told them of what was going on with deer getting swiped off of ridgepoles and what happened next was unbelievable. We went back to camp and after awhile one of the guys left and the other stayed at camp, he sat in a lawn chair with his 30-30 at his side, a few hours later his friend showed up, it was late and we went to bed. When we woke up the next morning I looked over to see the monster hanging in the tree, he was still there totally wrapped in about 40 feet of heavy chain and numerous paddle locks, gods truth. No body was gonna steal THAT buck,..... never seen those guys again :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 26, 2019, 05:26:53 PM

There are a couple guys on here that know some of this, not all, but some, they are pretty quiet and I respect that, but, when I,m gone its all here, so now I don't have to do this twice :chuckle:, you know what I mean, thats dad telling me to "be smart and think before you do something stupid". Everything is ok, no need to call :chuckle: :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: hardrichard on July 26, 2019, 05:57:46 PM
Hey Bigmacc am glad all is well :tup: I pipe in from time to time and like many on here love reading your stories and ill tell you folks there legit and special and even better in person around a campfire after a long days hunt and a cold one in hand :chuckle: I know I cherish those days for sure :tup: take care my friend nothing but love brother :)
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: WildlifeAssassin on July 26, 2019, 06:21:58 PM
Great stories, thanks for sharing, very entertaining.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 30, 2019, 02:26:18 PM
I miss those years that made you shake your head and say to yourself or anyone who would listen for that matter, "Man, that will never happen again". Back in the 70,s 4 of us headed over driving 2 rigs loaded to the gills with all our gear, tents ,stoves,  food, etc, etc, etc, the 2 big Fords were full cab high and all the way out to the opened tailgate. Most of little Bellingham had been there for a few weeks and a lot had already went home, the 4 of us could only get a week off that year so we went over for the last week. The migration was in full swing because of a few storms that were dumping up high one after another. Well we made it over the North cascades and somewhere on the east slope I had to "do some "business" so we pulled over and I dropped over the bank about 30 feet and got myself into some thick stuff and while there looked to my right at some movement and noticed a bunch of deer slowly moving across a hillside about 60-70 yards away, the herd had a couple small bucks and then bringing up the rear was a monster, the deer didn't see me so I quietly moved up the hill pulled my rifle from the gun rack and made my way back down the hill, the deer had moved aways up a draw but were just poking along. At this point I had went in and down maybe 60 or 70 yards were I could look better up into the draw when all the sudden I jumped a bigger buck who was laying next to a big deadfall probably 20 feet from me, scared the crap out of me cause I swear it sounded like a bomb went off when he busted out. I threw my rifle up and put a round at the base of his scull, the bullet exited through the bridge of his nose and dropped him in his tracks. We got him out in 2 pieces, we threw him on the back of the tailgate and tied him on with some twine I had under my seat(all our rope was buried) and off we went. We came into Winthrop when my buddy started flashing his lights at me, I pulled over by the old John Wayne building and got out only to look back and see my buddy parked in the middle of the road and my buck laying in the street, the "twine" had snapped. It was about 8 or 9 in the Am and luckily no one was in town to see the fiasco. We got him loaded back up and continued. We got off pavement and I wanted to check and make sure everything was secured before we hit rougher roads so I pulled into the rifle range, there were about 10 or 12 guys there shooting and we parked over to the side, me and another guy started lashing the buck down better(a HUGE 3 by 3, wide, tall and thick) when the other 2 guys came over and said "look up under that tree to the left", we did and could see a buck laying there all by himself less than a hundred yards from the "war zone". My buddy got into his truck, got his binos out and put glasses on the buck, it was a big 4 by 4. This is where it gets good :chuckle:. Well, he got his rifle out of the gun rack, waited for a cease fire and everyone went down to check targets and after everyone got back(about 15 minutes later) one of the guys claimed "the range was hot". My buddy took a chair all the way at the left end, put a couple sand bags down as the rest of us watched the buck under the tree. Everyone was shooting and no one had a clue when my buddy squeezed one off, the buck died in his bed, about a150 yard broadside shot. After about another 20 minutes or so some one asked for a cease fire and everyone headed downrange to check their targets, we did the same, only veered slightly to the left and up hill aways. By now a few guys had noticed us going off track and were wondering what we were using as a target, we grabbed the buck and hauled him back to the parking lot and gutted him there at the range, not a guy there could believe what they were seeing. Now we had to get this buck loaded, we ended up putting him on top of the load in my buddies truck, we looked like the Beverly hillbillies leaving that place with 2 huge bucks added to the mess :chuckle:. This is a true story, you can't make this stuff up, after about driving 2 miles on a pretty rough road we pulled over to check our "lash up" when one of the guys looked up the hill to see what turned out to be a 5 by 5 trotting broadside at about 100 yards, he grabbed his gun out of the rack, dropped a round in to his rifle, and started up hill after him. He got up hill quite aways and we lost track of him and then a few minutes later we hear a boom and then crashing and stuff breaking like a boulder rolling down hill to our right, then quiet. About 20 minutes later he comes into view and walks downhill to the truck like nothing had happened, he checks his rifle, puts it back in the gun rack and says "I missed him" lets go. We got everything checked out, loaded up and headed down the road for the last 6-7 miles to camp, we get up around the corner and theres the buck laying in the middle of the road! He killed the dang thing as it was quartering away from him going up hill, he dropped it about 150 yards up hill and it was steep, that darned thing rolled all the way down hill and over the bank and onto the road just the way my buddy said he planned it :chuckle:. NOW, we load that deer onto the "traveling fiasco" and finally role into camp with 3 huge bucks before a tent was even up, the next morning the 4th guy went out of camp late(we all slept in) and didn't make it 100 yards out of camp when we heard a BOOM, we knew it was him and we took off up the trail to see him off to the left gutting another big 4 by 4. Its a good thing we brought fishing poles that year, we got a lot of fishing in :tup:..........That WAS the Methow folks, pre wolf and  pre predator explosion. Sometimes it was almost unbelievable unless you were there to actually experience some of this, some of the stories my dad and grandparents would tell from the teens, 20, 30,s and 40,s top some of my experiences by a mile. A few of them I have already told, there truly are to many to tell let alone remember.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: grundy53 on July 30, 2019, 06:24:35 PM
Thanks for the stories Bigmacc! They are great!

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: DeerSkin on July 31, 2019, 03:25:49 PM
Where are all the old school hunting pictures? Come on guys I know you got them, letís see! :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on July 31, 2019, 04:46:33 PM
Where are all the old school hunting pictures? Come on guys I know you got them, letís see! :tup:

Well I can only speak for myself here but 4-5 years ago I posted 40 or so old camp pictures going back into the 30,s all the way up into the 2000,s, all old pictures of my family camp, I had a lot of help from my wife, daughter and grandkids since I'm pretty clueless with most technology these days. I found out after a few months(from some one on here) that a lot of my familys pictures were being copied, I had to get a grandkid over here to pull most of them off.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 01, 2019, 11:04:37 AM
 
I think it was in the 90,s(could of been late 80,s?) my buddy and I were the last holdouts, neither of us had bucks yet and there were 4 or 5 days left, the weather had been mild but the forecast was for snow and cold temps coming soon. We had seen a few bucks but we had time and with the promise of weather we were optimistic the migration would kick in. The wind changed the next day and started coming out of the north, I remembered the temps dropping into the teens within an hour dropping from the high 40,s but still no snow, clear blue skies. Well we were hunting most at about 4-5000 feet elevation and we knew those temps were below zero up high and along with other factors could be just another kick in the butt to get the bucks excited. The next day we started seeing some small bunches of does and small bucks starting to move, 15-20 in a bunch which was a good sign, Mother Nature was whispering in their ears at this point that something bigger was on its way. The next day we were seeing even more on the move(I think we seen around 200 that next day) but still blue skies, low teens for temps and a steady wind coming straight out of the north. The third day after the change was crazy, we were seeing 2-3 hundred a day but all were does and yearling bucks then the evening before the last day the wind changed direction and during the night a front had moved in on top of the cold temps. We woke up to a little snow falling and just a dusting on the ground, it was the last day so we weren't gonna venture far. We made it out to our spot and by the time we got out there it was just turning light and we were in blizzard conditions with about 8-10 inches on the ground and still piling up. I was sitting on a spot this day where normally I had 2-400 yard visibility in most directions, today I had about 20 feet! It was dumping good, my partner was a few hundred yards away watching a different draw but it was coming down so hard I couldn't even tell what direction he was away from me, my bearings were all screwed up. I just sat there waiting for it to slow down so I could at least gain SOME visibility but It came down for another hour or so. I could hear deer bouncing, trotting and walking by me on all sides but could never see them, only once in awhile I would catch a glimpse of a shadow moving through, almost like ghosts. Well when it started to slow down there was an easy 15-16 inches on the ground, it finally stopped suddenly and I could see, what I did see was unreal to say the least. I looked slowly all around me just moving my head VERY SLOWLY and there were deer all around me, litterly hundreds moving, standing, walking all around me, I made a slow move for my rifle that was under a tree and one of them started the stampede. I flipped my scope covers off and whistled knowing at least a few of them would stop and be curious, sure enough a couple big bucks(a 4 by 4 and a 5 by 6 stopped and looked back, I dropped the 5 by 6 and within a minute I heard my partner shoot. We met up while we were getting the deer out and he had killed a big 3 by 3, we sat there for awhile and BS,d, he had the same experience, he couldn't see for an hour or so but could hear deer moving through and when the snow stopped, he was surrounded, he actually joked that he shot his in self defense :chuckle:, he said he felt threatened. Well we started dragging, one buck at a time. On the way out we were seeing deer running all around us with about 25-30 of those being bucks. About half way out we ran into an older lady sitting on a stump, she said she had just sat down, I looked across the draw and saw a big rack laying in the limbs of a deadfall, I but my binos on it and sure enough it was a big non typical bedded down. We showed here where it was but all she had was a 30-30 with no scope, the buck was about 220-250 yards away, I asked her if she was a good shot and if she did a lot of practicing, she said yes on both questions but did not feel comfortable shooting that far with her set up, I asked her if she would like to use my rifle(270 with scope), she said "Oh that would be nice", she got behind the stump, used it for a rest and after about a minute or so of getting comfortable she squeezed one off. We were watching with our glasses and seen the hair fly on its front shoulder, the heavy head tipped over into the limbs and there it layed, she handed me my rifle and calmly said "thank you", then said "now the work begins". She asked if on the way out we could let her son know that she had a buck down and send him over, we said you bet and we headed out. Maybe a mile down the trail we ran into a fella sitting under a tree, he looked to be to old to be the ladys son but we asked if he had someone back there, he said yes, his mom. We asked him how old his mom was and asked what she was wearing(just to make sure we weren't sending the wrong person to her :tup:), he described her to a tee including hair color, he also said she was 78 or 79 :dunno:, we told him about the buck and what happened and how calm she was AND how she certainly didn't look that old and he said she was some sort of a competitive "trick shooter" back in the day growing up in Oklahoma. We only met her that one time, we went to were they were camped the next year but they were not there, another guy there said her husband had passed and she moved back to Oklahoma. I would have loved to listen to her tales and I would have loved to have known just how big that nontypical was, we heard a couple different stories from guys that were camped by them some said it was 28inches wide and had 15 on one side and 9 on the other and some one else said it was 28 wide but was 13 on one side and 9 on the other, who cares really, it was a real dandy!
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: buglebrush on August 01, 2019, 11:31:16 AM
With this state swirling down the drain of a predator pit, it's hard to imagine deer like that.  Enjoying the stories.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 01, 2019, 12:36:12 PM
With this state swirling down the drain of a predator pit, it's hard to imagine deer like that.  Enjoying the stories.

Well, its like a lot of us have been saying, those of us who have a history in the Methow anyways. As time goes on less and less of us will be around to tell theses stories but like Ive said many, many times there WAS a time when this state and certain areas within it would rival any "mule deer state" you would want to put it up against, in quality AND quantity IMO. I know Ive mentioned this before also but those of us who were fortunate enough to hunt the valley pre opening of the North Cascades Pass really had something special and I consider myself very blessed to have been chasing deer around this valley back in those days and have heard first hand the stories and seen pictures of my family actually hunting it for decades before me. I know its hard for someone in their 30,s and 40,s to contemplate some of what it was really like over there really not that long ago, heck it was still real good into the 90,s but trust me it really was very special and looking back on it really makes me feel blessed to have been there during those times and on the other hand feel very sad and upset on where this herd is now and how politics (basically) are at the root of the many issues that have and are contributing to the demise of this herd.....sorry, just my  :twocents:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 01, 2019, 02:22:32 PM
With this state swirling down the drain of a predator pit, it's hard to imagine deer like that.  Enjoying the stories.

Well, its like a lot of us have been saying, those of us who have a history in the Methow anyways. As time goes on less and less of us will be around to tell theses stories but like Ive said many, many times there WAS a time when this state and certain areas within it would rival any "mule deer state" you would want to put it up against, in quality AND quantity IMO. I know Ive mentioned this before also but those of us who were fortunate enough to hunt the valley pre opening of the North Cascades Pass really had something special and I consider myself very blessed to have been chasing deer around this valley back in those days and have heard first hand the stories and seen pictures of my family actually hunting it for decades before me. I know its hard for someone in their 30,s and 40,s to contemplate some of what it was really like over there really not that long ago, heck it was still real good into the 90,s but trust me it really was very special and looking back on it really makes me feel blessed to have been there during those times and on the other hand feel very sad and upset on where this herd is now and how politics (basically) are at the root of the many issues that have and are contributing to the demise of this herd.....sorry, just my  :twocents:

Heres a great example. Back in the 70,s and 80,s my dad was in his 40,s and 50,s and could still hike circles around folks half his age. It was common for him to have a huge buck on the pole opening morning, a buck amongst bucks that he had scouted and spotted 2-3 weeks prior. After killing his buck he still hunted hard the rest of the season only just using his eyes. We would continue going into "our spots and haunts", we all had our favorites and dad would go by himself and check out other areas, some of which were at the opposite end of the valley and 30 miles away, he would leave at 3 in the A.M and we would not see him till way after dark. He would go into areas that only locals knew of, areas he had not been in in 30 years or spots that held fond memories for him when he was young with my great grandparents back in the 30,s. He would sit at the fire and tell us of his day, what he seen and which ones he would go after if he had a tag. Some years the list was long, he would come into camp with a list of 6 or 7 big bucks, all in different areas, he ran down body size, how many points and what ways were the best to get to him and( in his respected opinion) if he thought they were going to be there the next day or days, he could tell by just watching a deer for awhile if he was going to be there the next day or not, I honestly never seen him wrong on this. Well he came into camp one night and he had 5 big bucks that he knew weren't going anywhere, he had routes into each one all planned in his head and wanted to know if any of us wanted to get one. Another of the spots was in an area that no one in camp had seen horns in for ever, in fact it was kind of a spot we would joke with him about, but it was an area "he knew big deer hung out in", he always had a feeling, he had not been there that day but he "had that feeling". One of the guys was sleeping in a hammock and we volunteered him to go with dad the next day, we all went to bed and we told him in the tent he was going for a ride with dad the next morning, when we told him where they were going his exact words were "OH GREAT" in a real what a waist of a day voice this is going to be. They were gone before we were out of bed the next morning and they rolled into camp that evening. They got out of the truck and walked towards the fire and explained it "was worth a shot" and how they had not seen a doe one, they explained the 2 or 3 spots they walked into glassing some beautiful country and how they seen nothing, they got back to the truck about an hour before sundown and started the hour and a half drive back on a horrible dirt road. They were about a mile into the trip when a 5 by 5 jumped off the bank and onto the road and stood there staring them down, my dad said "I,ll be darned, there are still deer up in here, there he is partner, I can't get you any closer". My buddy jumped out and the buck bolted over the other side into some real thick stuff, he went in after it. He got down hill a few hundred feet and it opened up into a huge opening with the buck standing on the opposite side, he killed the buck, gutted it, propped it open and left it there till morning. We went in the next morning and did a deadhead around a hitch ball on one rig and pulled him up out of the hole with another rig, a huge 5 by 5 to this day is known as the "#$%@^& Buck", my brother still hunts that area at least once or twice during the season along with a few others in our group every year but another buck has not been killed up there since, I swear it was my dads proudest day ever seeing that brute hanging on the pole, the guy killed over 70 Methow bucks but one he never pulled the trigger on was his favorite, we heard about that trip every year until he passed and how only one other guy believed in that spot, the guy that shot that buck to this day tells us all "thank you" for volunteering him that day and "buys us a beer" every year as a thank you. :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Claymore15 on August 01, 2019, 03:07:11 PM
Ahh memories of the ol'man and the midnite rides, in a 69 bronco sitting on a tool box, because there was only 1 seat, and the buck that Bigmacc speaks of sits behind velvet ropes and is lit 24 hours a day, to behold all the greatness, in the guys house, Dad was really kinda of spooky good at finding deer.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 01, 2019, 03:22:41 PM
Ahh memories of the ol'man and the midnite rides, in a 69 bronco sitting on a tool box, because there was only 1 seat, and the buck that Bigmacc speaks of sits behind velvet ropes and is lit 24 hours a day, to behold all the greatness, in the guys house, Dad was really kinda of spooky good at finding deer.

 :chuckle: :chuckle: :chuckle:.....there you go, I heard the killer of that deer had many book offers because of that buck, but then he later killed "THE @#$%@#$ BUCK", jeeze, its like he just keeps stepping in it :chuckle: :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 02, 2019, 03:58:21 PM
I think this was during the 90,s, my brother a buddy and myself were the last guys left in camp, weatherwise it had been miserable, pretty much hunted in rain almost every day which is unusual for the Methow, you may get rain here and there but these were downpours and drizzle with just a few breaks here and there during the 10 days we were there and when we did get the breaks it would fog over within minutes, just miserable. Well it was the last day and we knew that even though we were hunting in rain every day we knew it was snowing a few thousand feet above us and they were moving through migration routes in small waves not the big migrations but they were moving every day. My buddy and I had our deer, not yet for my brother, it was the last day and we were breaking down camp, in a monsoon! We were all soak and wet and everything getting packed was wet, not fun. My brother looked up on a hill behind camp and said "sh#t, there a buck right there going across the hill", the buck was a dandy, by himself and running full speed from right to left at about 300 yards, the hill is pretty open where he was and we got a good look at him but all we seen was a big rack, we couldn't count points and within seconds it disappeared into a draw. We were scrambling to get binos and a rifle and when we did we sprinted about 100 yards to a spot we could see up into the draw aways, we all got down under a tree and put glasses on him only to see him cresting a bench in the draw and dropping out of sight, it was a huge buck, rack and body, a dandy, heavy 4 by ?. We all sat under the tree for a few minutes trying to keep dry and talking about how big that bugger was, we were sick. We all agreed he looked like he had no idea where he was by the way he was moving and by his body language, he actually looked "lost", he had probably moved in during the night and bedded, then wasn't quite sure which way to go or where he was. Well a few minutes went by, we were soaked, it was raining even harder, the wind had picked up and we picked up our stuff and were headed back to our packing. We made it about 50 yards when we heard what sounded like a rockslide on the hill, we all looked up to see the buck hauling tail back from where he came from, not bouncing but running like a horse, on the same trail he was on when we first seen him. We did an about face and headed back to the tree where we had a better vantage point AND it was somewhat dry. We got there and searched but no buck, we stayed put for awhile and sure as a silver dollar that buck came running back through again going the OTHER way, this time we were in place when he came back across. We figured about 300 yards running full speed directly parallel to us but way up hill at a pretty good angle, my brother litterly had seconds to get him in his scope, compute and squeeze, he computed everything and made one of the best shots I have ever seen, he had only one shot and he knew it, BOOM and the buck went nose first into the sage and shale, another 20 yards and about 2 seconds he would have been gone. Not many guys could have made that shot in those conditions with all the running back and forth, pouring rain and wind, etc. etc., but when your previous job was as an SF sniper I guess you could say he made it look easy, the bullet exploded his heart. It was straight up hill to get to him and steep but all down hill to get him to camp, having said that, it was one of the worst drags I,ve ever been involved in, it was so steep, wet and slippery plus the hillside was full of rock outcroppings, drop offs and loose shale, we were all beat up by the time we got him down, but it was worth it. A 276lb (field dressed) 4 by 5, a true monster. I guess he just wasn't good at taking directions.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 02, 2019, 05:18:56 PM

To whom it may concern, you know who you are :tup:. Print these or write them down, I know you know most of these but I aint writing them down again :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 09, 2019, 05:35:20 PM
I killed my first buck at age 11,(remember that number) I remember my dad and I sitting on a ridge in the Methow on a very cold morning, we watched an area that he ran around chasing deer when he was my age, once again, he "had a feeling". We watched a big bowl at the south end of a big rockslide for what seemed like forever to and 11 year old when all the sudden my dad said "theres some horns", I put my Sears binos on the spot my dad said they were and sure enough, there they were, 5 or 6 bucks just milling around with a bunch of does, probably about 25 deer total. My dad said "theres a good one in there" and he started pointing and telling me the best way to get into the bowl, he told me those deer weren't going anywhere as long as I didn't spook them. The guy was uncanny, he really did know what deer were going to do before THE DEER knew what they were going to do. The deer were about 400 yards away, my dad told me the plan and the route I should take and off I went with my trusty 6MM, he told me to keep looking back at him and he would help me out with hand signals, off I went. I made it aways and looked back but could not see my dad, I was wandering in and out of thickets, dips and draws but I knew what direction he was, I just couldn't see him. I got up onto a small ridge my dad had me head for and looked back with my binos, there he was, motioning(what I found out later) was "they're right there", I put a sneak on  :chuckle: and headed for the top of the ridge. I got up to the top on my hands and knees and while peaking over all hell broke loose, there was deer, horns and more deer busting out in every direction. I seen buck after buck go over another ridge about 50 yards from me(there were a lot more bucks in there than we thought :chuckle:), I brought my rifle up and waited for just one of those bucks to stop, finally one did, he stopped on top of the ridge, turned broadside and basically said "here I am", I put one in the chamber and started shooting, fired 1,2,3, I kept firing and firing, he went down, he was wounded, I had buck fever, I started reloading and kept shooting, he was dead. I snuck up on him, poked him, he was really dead. I looked back at my dad through my binos and gave him a "I got him" fist pump, he returned the sign. He had 5 on one side and 6 on the other, I notched my tag and put it on the horns. My dad had told me earlier if I got one which way to start dragging(all downhill :chuckle:) then he would come in from another direction and he would help. I drug it about 10 feet :chuckle:, my dad showed up after about an hour and a half and off we went. We got back to camp, my dad said "great job, you killed that buck at 11 o'clock, its points add up to 11 and your 11 years old, you won't forget that number". Well, I won't forget that number but its not my favorite number, 14 is my favorite and that has a lot to do with baseball, but when it comes to hunting, the number 11 will always be special :tup:.....and oh ya, I fired 11 shots at that buck, only hitting him twice.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Muskrat on August 09, 2019, 06:34:37 PM
Me too miss the old way of hunting.

Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: BLH69 on August 09, 2019, 07:00:06 PM
Shot my first buck on October 11th at 11:00. I was born 10/11/69 at 11:00. Packed in to Wolf Creek.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 09, 2019, 07:09:28 PM

Good old number 11  :tup:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Pathfinder101 on August 09, 2019, 07:14:29 PM
I miss the old days, just like everyone else. 
ButÖ
I really prefer my new sub-moa bolt action rifle to a 30-30 lever gun
I really prefer my Kenetreks to wet tennis shoes
I really prefer Kuiu, Sitka and Kryptek to damp flannel and jeans
I really like using my spotting scope and binoculars to spot and stalk (instead of Dad sending me on a death march through a draw while he watches to see what I scare out of it)
I seem to get lost a lot less now that I have a GPS
My Eberlestock daypack makes my rifle a lot easier to carry than a leather sling
I havenít been chased off anyoneís private property since I started using OnX
My sleeping bag is light enough that I will actually carry it on a hunt now
You would have to beat me with a 2X4 to get me to carry binoculars on a strap around my neck again
My backpack doesnít rub little holes in the small of my back like my Army surplus pack did
I havenít had to hitchhike out of the woods since I started buying new trucks

SoÖ like you guys, I really miss the old days.  Iíd go back if I couldÖ but Iíd really like to bring all my gear with me  :rolleyes:.

(Dang.  I miss my mullet though..)
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 09, 2019, 07:19:27 PM
Shot my first buck on October 11th at 11:00. I was born 10/11/69 at 11:00. Packed in to Wolf Creek.

Man oh man we used to see some big bucks up in there, killed a few too.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: JimmyHoffa on August 09, 2019, 07:23:40 PM
Kind of funny; but wet shoes and clothes, iron sites, foggy scopes, green box ammo, etc barely seemed like any upgrade was needed back when every trip quite a few animals seen and shots presented.  Wasn't until the numbers of animals dropped that gaining an edge seemed a necessity vice luxury.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 09, 2019, 07:26:47 PM
I miss the old days, just like everyone else. 
ButÖ
I really prefer my new sub-moa bolt action rifle to a 30-30 lever gun
I really prefer my Kenetreks to wet tennis shoes
I really prefer Kuiu, Sitka and Kryptek to damp flannel and jeans
I really like using my spotting scope and binoculars to spot and stalk (instead of Dad sending me on a death march through a draw while he watches to see what I scare out of it)
I seem to get lost a lot less now that I have a GPS
My Eberlestock daypack makes my rifle a lot easier to carry than a leather sling
I havenít been chased off anyoneís private property since I started using OnX
My sleeping bag is light enough that I will actually carry it on a hunt now
You would have to beat me with a 2X4 to get me to carry binoculars on a strap around my neck again
My backpack doesnít rub little holes in the small of my back like my Army surplus pack did
I havenít had to hitchhike out of the woods since I started buying new trucks

SoÖ like you guys, I really miss the old days.  Iíd go back if I couldÖ but Iíd really like to bring all my gear with me  :rolleyes:.

(Dang.  I miss my mullet though..)

I hear you Pathfinder and I,d go back if I could also, but I wouldn't change a thing, including the mullet, I had a few of those  too through the years.....when I had hair :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: DeerSkin on August 12, 2019, 10:15:23 PM

Good old number 11  :tup:

Couple Nice looking whitetail Pathfinder101 👍
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 23, 2019, 11:18:02 AM
One year back in the 70,s it was another one of those very warm years in the Methow, sunny and hot for the end of October/first of November, it was another one of those years that we spent most of the time hunting in t-shirts and tennis shoes. We we seeing deer, mostly locals averaging 60-70 a day but very few bucks and those were yearling spikes and small 2 points. We decided to go into a spot we knew of at a much higher elevation that very few people knew of, everything but the weather was indicating the rut was near and this spot was an old "ace in the hole" my family had going back to the beginning (1917). We all got up at around 2 A.M and hit the trail, it was about a 5 mile hike in to get to the area. We made it in at daylight and 4 of us got spread out. We spent most of the day in there and between all of us only seen about 35-40 deer with no bucks. We met back up in the early afternoon, had some sandwiches and started our hike back out while it was still shooting time. We made it maybe a mile when my buddy spotted some movement along a ridge to our left, we put the binos on it and it was a big 4 by 4 just kind of "jogging" through the thickets parallel to us at about 200 yards. My buddy said "I'm gonna take him", he got down on a knee and dropped the buck. We all started to walk up to him when about 100 feet up the hill all hell broke loose, 9, yes 9 bucks exploded out of a jakepine thicket, all the bucks were hauling tail for the top of the ridge, all we seen were horns and they were all BIG, we were all scrambling to get our rifles ready as one by one they went over the top of the ridge. There were 3 bucks left to crest the ridge and disappear when another buddy gave out a yell(and I,m not kidding), he knee jerked a yell of "STOP" :chuckle:, well I,ll be darned if those 3 bucks all stopped and looked back at us and within seconds we all said "I got the middle one, I,ll take the right and the other said I got the one on the left". We all fired and all 3 bucks went down, one got back to his feet and was dropped immediately. We made it to the bucks and we had 2 dandy 4 by 5,s and a real dandy 6 by 7. There were a couple bucks that went over the ridge that were even bigger than the ones we got, couldn't tell you how many points but they were big, heavy racks. We never would have even seen those bucks if by buddy would not have shot that 4 point who was out for a jog that day, turned out to be a great season, we got a lot of fishing in after that, in 70 degree weather too by the way. We still go into that spot once in awhile and I have taken my granddaughters in there many times, we always stop in that spot of the trail and I throw a rock into that thicket and I tell them to get ready to yell "STOP"
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on August 23, 2019, 05:04:14 PM
Its all these memories that make me say how sad it is what has happened to the Methow as far as hunting goes. Ive said many times, that in its day, I would have put it up against anywhere or any state as far as quantity and quality goes for top shelf mule deer hunting. What this state and its Dept of Wildlife has let happen to this herd is just plain horrible. Sorry, I know a lot of folks are to young to know what I'm talking about and I know there are some in positions of power that can't wait until folks like me are not around to tell these stories of the great hunting there was in this state, the abundance of quality animals and the great opportunity that was available right here in our own backyard. What we are seeing now and have been experiencing over the last 25 years will soon become the norm and in another 25 years IT will be the "good old days", this is what they want and will get, we will go out to hunt and seeing 2 or 3 deer during the week will be a good week of hunting, a balance will be set to opeese the antis and the hunter, the politics that are being played will sway heavily in favor of those who are against hunting but will not shut the door on us as hunters. As said, those of us that "hang in there" will see our handful of animals during our trips and a few will kill there animals and then those days will be the "good old days", and so on and so on. As a hunter with memories of a time when game animals where nurtured in this state and where taken care of and managed to put forth a quality product for the sportsmen and women of this state(and they were),  it is very sad.....just my opinion and  :twocents:...It could be turned around but politics in this state will not let it happen, we as hunters in this state are outnumbered and pretty much powerless and is getting worse for us with every passing year.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: no.cen.wa on August 24, 2019, 08:22:50 AM
 :yeah: So sad, bigmacc your right, at least we got to see it when it was good!
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Calvin Rayborn on August 25, 2019, 08:57:03 PM
Most boys these days are too tacticool for school;  Think it has a lot to do with the Internet and social media, no offense to the forum   :chuckle:
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: bigmacc on September 11, 2019, 05:21:34 PM
:yeah: So sad, bigmacc your right, at least we got to see it when it was good!

Yes we did and what some need to know is, it wasn't that long ago, or at least for some, not that long ago(age). Some on here are 20, 25, 30 or even 40 years old. Fact is, hunting in this state was exceptional even 20 years ago, when some of you were born for that matter. 25, 30 or more years back, heck, you guys would have been living the dream of hunting right here in your own back yard. Seen my 1st sheep released up the Swakane 50 or so years ago(by mistake, told the story before :chuckle:), seen elk the size of clidesdale horses, (which was just normal) hanging in garages up at Camp Grisdale on the Peninsula in the 50,s,60,s and 70,s, seen mule deer in the Methow and the Entiat that would rival any other state as far as horn size and especially body size, seen many, many killed that were 30" and wider and 300lb plus. I have said it a few times, I have known and still call "friends" many folks that were part of the Department of Game back in the day, what we have nowadays isn't even close to what it should be, this fact is a shame for future hunters of this state. Sorry to be negative. I have young ones that will only know by stories and pictures of how great the hunting was at one time in this state.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: ljsommer on September 12, 2019, 09:01:49 AM
The only positive heritage I have to hunting is my grandpa, who hunted elk and deer in the mountains of WA successfully for years. I have two of his elk antlers hanging in my house.
My dad (alcoholic, left when I was 4) was a poacher and of the worst sort. Out of season, night hunting with a spotlight. Not a cool guy.

My grandpa died when I was in my late teens and I never got the chance to be introduced to hunting by him due to his physical health.

Fast forward to today - I am not sure how many folks from previous generations understand how little people in their 20's or 30's care about hunting. I have friends that love guns, love to shoot (and shoot very well), love hiking and camping, strong, fit, tough, but I can't pay them to come hunting with me. Not one friend. Their reasons are usually the same: "I work with guys that hunt 3 weeks a year, and they only bring something home every 4 or 5 years".
To them, the odds are so low and the time commitment so high that they just can't rationalize it.

On the other end of the spectrum, breaking into an existing camp/group/clique as a new hunter is extremely difficult. Honey holes are jealously guarded secrets which is partially why this sport has historically relied so heavily on familial tradition.

I am sure if I lived in Idaho, Wyoming, or Montana this would be a very different conversation, but my friends see how much time, effort and money I've poured into this sport since I picked it up a few years ago and they see that I've got nothing to show for it and man, it's a tough sell. Which makes starting my own "hunt camp" tradition extremely difficult.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: ljsommer on September 12, 2019, 09:02:57 AM
Oh, but I have to echo what others have said about modern gear - having top tier rain gear means I can hunt 10 hours straight in a downpour and have a blast, sneaking around like a (warm, dry) ninja.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Bill W on September 12, 2019, 09:09:56 AM
I'll just say I started hunting in 1960 and I miss the old way of deer hunting also.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Pacific Ghost on September 12, 2019, 01:38:35 PM
Hey bigmacc.  Just sent you a private message.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Dave Workman on September 15, 2019, 01:55:55 PM
Its all these memories that make me say how sad it is what has happened to the Methow as far as hunting goes. Ive said many times, that in its day, I would have put it up against anywhere or any state as far as quantity and quality goes for top shelf mule deer hunting. What this state and its Dept of Wildlife has let happen to this herd is just plain horrible. Sorry, I know a lot of folks are to young to know what I'm talking about and I know there are some in positions of power that can't wait until folks like me are not around to tell these stories of the great hunting there was in this state, the abundance of quality animals and the great opportunity that was available right here in our own backyard.

'bigmacc,' you're a marvelous storyteller and no slouch when it comes to historical perspective.
Lived through it myself and the same thing has happened to the Teanaway. Back in the day, some monster bucks came from the Okanogan, Chelan and Teanaway, and your assessment of the management problems.
When an agency seems more interested in boosting a predator population so city people can wander around on the weekends and listen for some howling than they are in providing quality opportunity, real and abundant opportunity for the people who pay the freight, something is genuinely wrong.
Today, it's almost as if hunters are considered a necessary evil, because shooters and hunters actually provide operating funds. Where are the two- and three-week deer seasons with full weekends at both ends?
Where are the two-week elk seasons with three full weekends?

You look at the regs pamphlet. What is this year, 136-138 pages? Page after page of "special permit hunts." More hoops for hunters to jump through. When I was a kid, the regs pamphlet was pretty easy to understand and you could study it in an evening...while you were looking forward to opening weekend.

I wrote about this stuff years ago at the old F&H News.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Furee65 on September 25, 2019, 04:37:12 AM
Here are a few older photos i found at a garage sale the other day of some old WWII buddies on a BC Hunt.
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: Furee65 on September 25, 2019, 04:44:43 AM
More neat old photos
Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: wapiti22 on September 27, 2019, 05:01:36 PM
Those are cool pics - thanks for sharing!!
Title: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: littlemac on October 08, 2019, 08:53:09 AM
Heading out this weekend to take our 6yr old grandson hunting. Weíll set up camp and while it is now in a 22 foot Ď98 4x4 Tioga and not a 16ft trailer dad had in the late 70ís, we hope to approximate the feelings we had as kids on our first hunts.  The game is less plentiful but we really had sporadic luck through the years, but the experience was great every year telling stories around the fire and hiking through the woods in anticipation of ďthe big oneĒ.  Good luck this season with your experience and hunt.

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Title: Re: I miss the old way of deer hunting.
Post by: 2MANY on October 08, 2019, 09:03:25 AM
I still deer hunt the old way.
Perhaps some day I will finance a flat brim.
Until then...................Good luck.