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stalking distance

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by mainecoon, Jun 2, 2014.

  1. mainecoon

    mainecoon Well-Known Member

    What is the closest anyone has ever stalked a deer, before being detected? Is there such thing as "competitive stalking?"
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Well, the first deer I shot in Colorado got so close all I could see was blurry hair in my 6x scope.

    I split the difference between daylight on top, and daylight on the bottom.
    And a 165 grain 30-06 bullet broke his neck.

    His nose was inches from my boot where he fell.

    But, I wasn't stalking, I was setting with my back to a little aspen tree.

    Competitive stalking?
    No, I don't think so.

  3. Liberty1776

    Liberty1776 Well-Known Member

    Competitive stalking? Sure - it's what wolves, pumas and coyotes do every day...:D
  4. MutinousDoug

    MutinousDoug Well-Known Member

    I'm terrible at sneaking up on deer or elk. If I can't figure out how to make them come up to me, they get away pretty regular.
    I did see a doe and two fawns on the other side of a big ponderosa pine while still hunting. It was the last day of muzzleloading season and although I was really hunting elk, I had a doe deer tag too. One fawn came out and walked past me from behind the tree. I was SURE the doe was behind the 1st fawn so I shot as soon as I saw ears and fur out about 6' away. I was frozen in place by the 1st fawn right next to me so I couldn't really move around to see anything but through my sights.
    Bad move as it was the other fawn. .54" conical shot chest through left thigh. Broke the shoulder, high up all the left side ribs and left femur right at the hip. A lot of messed up meat.
    I harvested about a half a veal.
    Now, I try to get them to stand back at least a couple of yards.
  5. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    I saw a pretty little buck one drizzly day and tracked along behind him. Wet grass and leaves made it easy to be quite silent. Finally saw his rump sticking out of a clump of brush as he looked out over a meadow. I kept easing along.

    At about ten feet, I pitched a marble-sized rock onto his rump. Mucho entertainment. :D
  6. 25cschaefer

    25cschaefer Well-Known Member

    When I was a kid we used to make a game out of it in Wyoming. We would each be designated a color of paint and we would get points for deer we painted in the river bottom. In the evening, they would come out into a big hay feild and we would determine the victor. we decided 50pts for hitting one with a paintbrush tied to a stick and 100pts for a hand print. I got quite good at it and eventually went for only hand prints, I got 4 in one day. The most effective way was to 'go indian,' we would strip to our underwear, take our shoes off, and smear ourselves with mud to camoflauge and mask sent. Deer can hear clothing brushing together and it was my belief that they could smell my breath so I ate what they ate before I would close the distance. My buddy got the bad end of it one day when an old doe didn't think it was funny, he got 15 stiches and we were told to leave them alone.
  7. 3212

    3212 Well-Known Member

    While hunting fall turkeys in PA,I was sitting beside a tree on a ridge.At sunrise a buck came walking up the hill.He looked like he had been "partying".As he passed on the other side of the tree I jumped out and said "Boo".He went vertical and took off.It was hilarious.
  8. osprey176

    osprey176 Well-Known Member

    Fred Bear stalked a doe close enough to slap it on it's rump,or so the story goes. The closest I ever came was kicking at a big hog in Florida. I didn't connect,he caught movement and jumped sideways,and I wound up on my back. I laughed so hard I nearly wet my pants as the pig ran off,squealing and grunting.
  9. bkb0000

    bkb0000 Well-Known Member

    I had a doe run right up to me and spew deer spittle/snot all over my face when she realized I wasn't a bush.

    I've never stalked anything close enough to tell the tale, though.
  10. twofifty

    twofifty Well-Known Member

    sweet! It musta went airborne in a nano-second.
  11. twofifty

    twofifty Well-Known Member

    Got close once

    Stalked a doe to within 12' or so, belly crawling through tall lush July grass, starting out maybe 75 yds away. Sun in her eyes, wind toward me. No rifle.

    I was fully clothed, baseball cap to hide my eyes and shade my face. Took maybe an hour.

    As I got closer -say 30yds out- I noticed she'd stop feeding more often to look around. Closer yet, she'd spend more time sniffing and scanning than eating. At some point, movement was an inch at a time, then 1/4", then less. She'd probably hard a faint rustle or noticed the grass moving mysteriously. By then I'm just barely and only occasionally keeping an eye on her. Taking 30 second breaks between moves.

    I chickened out at 4 yards and stood up. Foooom, she did a 1/4 turn, took three giant strides and entered thick cover.

    The experience will stay with me forever.

    25cschaefer: Dabbing handprints, now that's stalking.

    Nice job bkb0000.
  12. 25cschaefer

    25cschaefer Well-Known Member

    Another "game" we played was a real life version of whack-a-mole. We would lie on our bellies near a prairie dog hole with a peanut butter sandwitch and ball peen hammer. In the spring they are not very smart and come out of their holes with their noses in the air with absolute pleasure on their face, smelling their favorite food... whack! My friend and I got 20 each one day, and bad sunburns, but it was fun. Sometimes it took 30 seconds, sometimes 20minutes. They smarten up pretty quick though.
  13. Davek1977

    Davek1977 Well-Known Member

    I've touched a living, wild deer, but, am afriad it was suffering from the "blue tongue" disease whitetails occasionally succumb to in these parts. Barring that experience, there have been other times I've gotten extremely close (10 ft? less?) One incident that always sticks out in my head was a hunt ofnthe family ranch. I was on an ATV, scouting out some draws, wondering if I should hunt them. I noticed some mule deer does roughly 50 yards below me, and a bit ahead of me. They were already aware of my presence obviously, from the sound of the ATV. However, the ATV was ALL they were seemingly worried about....I slipped off the opposite side of the atv, and started making a wide circle towards the deer. They were enthralled by the ATV, and never paid me any mind til I yelled "HEY" with the barrel of my 7mm all but touching them at that point! I didnt take the shot as I had no interest in a doe at that point, but enjoyed seeing how close I could get while they were distracted
  14. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Well-Known Member

    I've gotten within feet of several deer. Some were me sneaking up on them, some were me sitting still and them walking into me.

    I am teaching my son how to sneak up on animals, using the rabbits and birds in our backyard. I can get to within about 12-15 feet before they take off. My son? At fifty feet he starts to run, thinking he can catch them.

    Now my favorite story. I was up in a tree, leaning in the fork of it, bowhunting deer. It was a warm October morning, early bow season here in Ohio. Sitting right on top of a trail, I wasn't going to blow it by fidgeting. That's how the squirrel got there. He was moving around in the tree, sometimes kinda close to me. Then he got on the branch of the fork I was in. Having visions of being bitten and clawed by a scared squirrel, I figured I'd give a little twitch and cough before he got within biting/clawing/chewing wrong nuts range. He came unglued. Took a flying leap out of the tree, flopped around a time or two as he landed, then sat on the ground screaming at me for a while. I had to laugh. Usually it's me on the ground and the squirrel in the tree.
  15. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    My little old buck spun through his own bunghole and came by me at about five feet. Nose stuck out, ears laid back, fifth gear overdrive. My raucous laughter was likely somewhat unsettling, as well. :D

    As far as a critter coming close: I was sitting on the ground, leaned up against a tree and watching an open area, hoping for Bambi. I caught a flicker of motion about ten yards away. Fox. So, I lip-squeaked like unto a little mousie. He'd dart closer, stop, and listen. I'd squeak. He finally came close enough that I boinked him in the nose with my boot toe. HAIR! Stuck out all over. Tail like a bottle brush. And a rapid effort to be elsewhere at a high rate of speed. :)
  16. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

    If the conditions are right I can almost always sneak to within 10 or 15 yards of a wild hog. Deer are A different story but like Art I've caught a few that were day dreaming and got within spitting distance.
  17. Robert

    Robert Moderator

    I got to within no more than 15 feet of a nice young bull elk on my very first hunting trip. I had a cow tag...
  18. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

    Bedded elk in thick cover can be plum ignorant especially during the middle of the day. I've been within a herd at very close range on multiple occasions during elk sleepy time midday. The secret to that game tends to be knowing where they are bedded and planning your stalk with everything in your favor. However I have still hunted my way into bedded elk by accident on occasion as well.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2014
  19. Robert

    Robert Moderator

    I was walking into the wind and heard him off to my left in the brush. I froze in place and he came out of the scrub oak on my left and slightly behind me. He crossed the trail behind me and I slowly turned around. He looked at me, sniffed the air and slowly walked across the path and back into the brush. Pretty awesome to be that close.
  20. jmr40

    jmr40 Well-Known Member

    I've never actually stalked close to anything, but have had game animals stalk, or walk very close to a few times. Twice I've had whitetail doe almost close enough to touch.

    Once while quail hunting 4-5 does were loping along at a fast trot towards me. I simply froze behind a small 6' pine sapling. When the lead doe came past the tree we were inches apart before she saw me. All of them scattered. I had another very similar situation a few years later.

    I've had coyote, bobcat and foxes come to my turkey and duck calls and get fairly close.

    The only real attempt at stalking, unsuccessful, was a roughly 250 lb black bear. I was really deer hunting with a 50# recurve when I rounded a bend on the trail I was walking and saw the bear ahead of me about 50 yards away. We were walking in the same direction, the ground was wet and the wind in my favor. I paused a second and considered just going somewhere else. But the bear was legal to take and I decided to give it a shot. I followed him for about 100 yards. Pausing when he stopped, and trying to close ground when he moved. I never got close enough for a comfortable shot. After about 100 yards he moved off the trail to my left. I did the same, walked about 30 yards and sat there the rest of the morning, but never did see him again.

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