John's Journal...

Big Bucks Where No One Can Hunt Them but You

Bucks Through the Mail Service

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Thousands of acres of land throughout the country home trophy bucks. Often the landowners don't hunt these properties. But they also may not allow anyone else to because they've had bad experiences with hunters in the past or can find no benefits in letting someone hunt their lands. To have a trophy, big-buck hotspot no one else but you can hunt, solve a landowner's problem before you ask permission to hunt. Here are a few ways to hunt lands no one else can hunt by solving the landowner’s problems first.

In many rural sections of the country, the mailman knows everyone on his route. Because he travels his route in the Click to enlargemornings delivering the mail, he'll frequently spot big bucks crossing the road. Also, he'll usually know who owns the land where he has seen a buck and the possibilities for hunting that land. By making friends with the local mailman, I've found several big bucks in my county. Many of these bucks either have remained close to a homeplace or lived in very dense cover for a large part of hunting season. Often the mailman will act as a go-between to help me obtain permission to hunt big bucks on private property, because to bag a trophy buck, you first have to know a trophy buck exists on the property you want to hunt. The mailman once told me in the rural area where I lived at that time that, "Miss Ida Mae Jones has some very nice bucks on her place but doesn't let anyone hunt them. But if you want to hunt the crows eating up her garden, she'll welcome you with open arms and have homemade pie anClick to enlarged coffee for each morning you hunt." The next morning I went to see Miss Ida Mae Jones and told her I'd heard she had some crows she wouldn't mind me shooting. "Mind!" Miss Ida Mae said with a big smile on her face. "I'd almost pay someone to shoot those crows. You're more than welcome." Once a week for six weeks, I went to Miss Ida Mae's house and shot the crows in her garden. I also noticed her property had a large concentration of crows in one of her cornfields, about 1/2-mile from the garden. When I mentioned my observation to her, she told me, "John, you can go to any property I own and shoot crows. But I feel guilty about not doing anything for you. What do you need?" I mentioned that soClick to enlargeme of her neighbors allowed deer hunting on their lands and asked if she would put in a good word for me with her neighbors. Miss Ida Mae replied she would help me. Throughout the rest of that summer, I shot crows at least one day a week on some portion of Miss Ida Mae's 8,000 acres. Then when September arrived, she spotted me and hollered that she wanted me to come back to the house when I finished shooting. "I've just cooked a blackberry pie and made some iced tea." After my hunt, I returned to Miss Ida Mae's. She explained she hadn't asked any of her neighbors if I could deer hunt on their properties. "I've decided to let you hunt here if you'll bring your shotgun and tell anyone who asks that you're just hunting crows on my place. Also when you take a deer, promise you won't tell anyone where you've hunted." We struck the bargain. I took several bucks at Miss Ida Mae's for a number of years. Too often, we all think first of what we want when we consider deer hunting and what the landowner wants secondary.

Tomorrow: Bucks in Wide-Open Spaces

Check back each day this week for more about " Big Bucks Where No One Can Hunt Them but You"

Day 1: Coyotes for Bucks
Day 2: Bucks Through the Mail Service
Day 3: Bucks in Wide-Open Spaces
Day 4: Bucks in the Pines & Bucks Where No One Wants to Hunt
Day 5: Weird Places to Find Trophy Bucks Where No One Can Hunt


Entry 374, Day 2