View Poll Results: Is big-game hunting better in the snow?

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  • Yes

    97 81.51%
  • No

    22 18.49%
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Thread: Polling our readers - Nov-Dec 2016

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by smitty55 View Post
    I'm a bit surprised the no vote is even at 17%. I'm guess there are certain instances out there, maybe, sorta... hehe. jk

    From a deer hunting point of view I love it just from the scouting aspect for a start, to know for sure where there is actual recent and past activity, is invaluable info, let alone the ability to still hunt or push a fresh track. Plus for the first time all year you can actually see those ghosts in the bush much further away. Bonus for shooting. Then add in the security of being able to track your game after the shot, that seals the deal big time for me. No worry bout getting turned about either, and dragging game out sure is nicer.
    Lastly, snow means colder weather, and what deer hunter doesn't yearn for that, specially during the rut.

    Just sayin... I can't see it being any different for moose or even elk hunters. That's why I'm a tad surprised at the responses.

    Cheers
    To me, the 17% reflects 17% of hunters have not hunted in snow.
    It also reflects that the author of the article (and the magazine editor) don't know much about hunting.
    That's a big reason why I no longer subscribe to the magazine - most "hunting" articles (Bruce Ranta's aside, if he still contributes) are written by people that don't know a lot about hunting - and that goes double for articles about dogs and hunting.

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  3. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by werner.reiche View Post
    To me, the 17% reflects 17% of hunters have not hunted in snow.
    I think that is a narrow minded statement. I've hunted in the snow quite a bit, and I recognize that there are some great aspects and some not so great aspects about it. Many of the issues are well described in previous posts in this thread. From my point of view, it's not an easy question to answer. I would certainly say that I have had less success hunting in the snow for big game.

  4. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by rf2 View Post
    I think that is a narrow minded statement. I've hunted in the snow quite a bit, and I recognize that there are some great aspects and some not so great aspects about it. Many of the issues are well described in previous posts in this thread. From my point of view, it's not an easy question to answer. I would certainly say that I have had less success hunting in the snow for big game.
    Could you outline some of the "not so great aspects" of it.
    The only thing I can think of is if its deep enough that walking is difficult.

  5. #14
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    LowBanksarcher and Marker's posts bring up some valid points.
    But to reiterate and maybe add some of my own:
    - getting around quietly in the bush under many snow conditions (crunchy, crusty, etc.) is impossible. This also applies in many snowless conditions, but when the leaves are on the ground and wet, it is generally much easier than most snow conditions.
    - access to spots can be severely restricted when snow is deep
    - snow is often accompanied by uncomfortably cold weather (I'm talking -15C and below), which makes it hard to sit still in a treestand for extended periods. It can make simple things a challenge (stiff/numb fingers), like: flipping a safety on or off; cocking or decocking a gun or crossbow; entering and exiting treestands;. It can also be dangerous if something goes wrong and you get stuck in the bush overnight.
    - deer may leave certain properties altogether when the snow is deep
    - more gear can be required - more clothes, snowshoes, maybe a sled to carry gear or recover game, maybe a heater for an enclosed blind.

    Anyway, you get the idea. I agree 100% that there are some aspects that are way better in the snow, but for me, based on my experience, I don't think its a straightforward question to answer.

  6. #15
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    A lot of your rationale seems to confuse "more comfortable" with "better hunting" - and many of the negatives you've identified are related to cold, not snow. If the cold bothers you, by all means stay at home - but not because the hunting is poorer - but because you don't like the cold.

    Cold can be an issue with/without snow.
    Noise can be an issue with/without snow.
    I've never hunted big game beyond Dec 15th - never have had too much snow to get around by then - but that's in 55B - I guess up north there could be a lot by then.
    For every property deer leave due to deep snow - there's another where they herd up. Need to adjust where you hunt with the weather.

    The advantages of the cooler weather, more active deer, easier tracking and locating trails, further visibility with snow on the ground, easier trailing of wounded deer, easier deer dragging on snow - the positives far outweigh the negatives.

    My favourite hunting is the first heavy snowfall of the year (3 inches or more). This seems to leave the deer careless and disoriented.
    Last edited by werner.reiche; January 4th, 2017 at 09:43 PM.

  7. #16
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    I have often hunted right up to the end of the year, including this year, so I have a bit of experience hunting in the snow/cold. No, I don't like hunting in -20 C, and I don't know many people that do. I do know though that I am often one of the only guys in the woods where I hunt when the snow is deep and the temperature is frigid. In my experience, hunting is not "better" on December 31 than it is in November. The deer don't move more at the end of the year than they do prior to the gun hunt or during the peak of the mating season, and lately, there is almost never snow on the ground at those times down here in the south and east. Sure, I would agree that a few inches of snow makes for easier hunting, but when the snow is deep, the opposite is true - hunting is neither easier nor better. Anyway, we are all entitled to our own opinions.
    Last edited by rf2; January 4th, 2017 at 10:01 PM.

  8. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by werner.reiche View Post
    Could you outline some of the "not so great aspects" of it.
    The only thing I can think of is if its deep enough that walking is difficult.
    Deer disappear one of the property I hunt in 46 as soon as the snow get too deep to go yard elsewhere. Pretty common issue in early December. I have other places to hunt but not everyone does so that could explain why some of us don't like hunting with snow on the ground. Nothing to do with not knowing what they are talking about...
    Last edited by seabast; January 5th, 2017 at 04:24 AM.

  9. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by rf2 View Post
    I have often hunted right up to the end of the year, including this year, so I have a bit of experience hunting in the snow/cold. No, I don't like hunting in -20 C, and I don't know many people that do. I do know though that I am often one of the only guys in the woods where I hunt when the snow is deep and the temperature is frigid. In my experience, hunting is not "better" on December 31 than it is in November. The deer don't move more at the end of the year than they do prior to the gun hunt or during the peak of the mating season, and lately, there is almost never snow on the ground at those times down here in the south and east. Sure, I would agree that a few inches of snow makes for easier hunting, but when the snow is deep, the opposite is true - hunting is neither easier nor better. Anyway, we are all entitled to our own opinions.
    I would disagree, deer move a lot more to the bait pill when it get cold and the snow get deep. We shot tree deer in one evening the 29th vs three the first 3 weeks of December. Our trial cam also shown more action later in the year. Again, depends on the location.

  10. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by rf2 View Post
    .... In my experience, hunting is not "better" on December 31 than it is in November. The deer don't move more at the end of the year than they do prior to the gun hunt or during the peak of the mating season, and lately...
    My observation (with a lot of trailcam backup) is that deer move more in December than in November. More importantly, they move more in the daylight and spend more time feeding. All of which should make for better hunting, particularly if you're looking for a big buck.

    But yes, we are entitled to our opinions - that was the point of the survey.

    Still shocked by the results though.

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