Rut Report: November 2

Day No. 2 of a 13-day rut hunt is in the books. Discover what North American Hunter Senior Managing Editor Dave Maas learned during his day in the Wisconsin woods.

The air temp was only 18 degrees this morning, with winds of 10-15 mph. The problem was, instead of being north or northwest winds, which is common during a cold front, this morning (November 1) they were from the east/southeast. I don’t have many treestands and ground blinds placed for winds of this direction, so our hunting party was scrambling a bit.

I finally spotted my first deer at about 10 a.m., and it was a small 2x2 grunting continuously while chasing a doe. They ran 20 yards from my tree. I sat on stand until noon; 5 hours in one spot in these temps was about all I could take today.

One of my buddies spotted a lone doe this morning, another friend saw one spike buck, and my brother saw a few antlerless deer plus two 4x4s. Both of his bucks were alone and traveling from 10-11 a.m. The biggest buck, a 115-class 3.5-year-old, walked into his shooting lane and he passed on the shot.

The temps climbed to about 35 degrees for our afternoon hunt, and I spotted a half-dozen deer from the ground on public land. I passed on a couple of fawns, but the two biggest deer, 110-class 4x4s, didn’t come any closer than 60 yards. One was slowly following a doe (not chasing) and the other was cruising solo. The other members of my group didn’t see much.

Shooting time arrives 1-hour earlier tomorrow (Sunday) due to the time change, so I need to hit the hay. The winds should change to straight south instead of southeast, and I hope the rut action will be a bit faster tomorrow!

P.S. I almost forgot. About the Spiderman mylar balloon in the photo above: After our morning sit, I met up with a buddy and we found this shiny object flopping on a blowdown deep in the woods. I assumed it escaped from a child during a birthday party or something, but after taking this photo, I noticed a lot of writing on the back of the balloon. It was released by a grieving relative in tribute to a youngster who died. Suddenly the frustration I felt about a slow morning bowhunt seemed trivial. It’s all about keeping it in perspective.