Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Planning For The Mule Deer Season Opener
Yesterday was one of those days that was just plain fun. My friend Mike Turallo came down from LA to go over some maps, photos and discuss scouting strategy for the deer season opener out here in SoCal. He just got back from scouting and both of us were excited to go over his findings.

This is one of my favorite things to do as a hunter. Listening to the stories from other hunters and, if they ask for advice, sharing the knowledge I have inside my pea-brain. Mike, who is a man of many talents (drummer, videographer, prospector, hunter to name a few), is fairly new to hunting, but has a really good idea of what he needs to do to be successful.

Here's a little back story for you. Mike and I met on one of our recent trips hog hunting up in Central Cali. We had both been to this particular location on separate occasions. We got to hang out for three days, in the rain, hunting hogs and just having a great time. I had to leave early and despite the weather our buddy Jeff killed a hog a couple hours after I left and Mike was there to help process it. That's what I like about Mike - he's the guy that is 'one with nature' and wants it that way. He wants to scout, hunt, shoot his animal and butcher it himself. That's exactly what I do and why we get along so well. That and the fact that we both like a good Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Mike and I have exchanged multiple emails in trying to get out and scout. My busy life hasn't given me the opportunity to get out as much as I would like to, so I have just offered Mike what I can in the way of scouting knowledge. He really did it on his own and did a fine job at that.

Yesterday he brought his maps, laptop and ideas to my house and we set up in my man-cave (a.k.a. my garage) where we had a cool place to talk, drink a beer and review his 4-day scouting trip. I was very impressed with his diligence, assiduity and skill. He has some really good backpacking experience and that really helped him. We looked over one photo where he described seeing three deer across a valley using separate trails. He took plenty of photos and then he surprised me. I was all ready to give my advice when I decided to keep my mouth shut and see what Mike said next. I was all ready to show him on the map and in his photo where the best ambush spot would be. He beat me to the punch! He pointed out the area he thought was right and he nailed it. Not only that, but he found a great tree to climb for a better vantage point, took some photos and while up there noticed an even better area. That, my friends, is scouting. You glass, you hike, you glass and then you make up your mind. By spending a good amount of time on this area, Mike was able to find a spot that overlooks two open areas instead of just one. Great job, Mike!

I hope to get out at some point to help glass for Mike and just have a great time being in the outdoors. It's great to see someone so ambitious and eager to do everything he can to be successful. I commend Mike on the hard work and it will pay off. In the meantime, I am going to be out scouting for bear this weekend. I hope to find a good spot for the archery opener in a few weeks. Until then, time to hit the gym and then fling some arrows.

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