Themes and Life Hacks for Deer Camp & the Cabin

Discussion in 'Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting' started by TrailMarker, Oct 29, 2020.

  1. TrailMarker

    TrailMarker

    Messages:
    939
    Likes Received:
    1,092
    Over the years, I have had the great opportunities to visit quite a few lodges, lake camps, deer camps, rental cabins, cottages, you name it. Most of the places were pretty well kept, and you see a vast amount of ingenuity overall, and some down right cool and funny things. Although I'm still waiting on my "deer camp", occasionally I set things aside, or think about how I might design it and what features I would want to incorporate, themes, storage, furniture, mounts and so on.

    For instance, one of my buddies keeps all the old licenses and unused tags up at his deer camp. I already kind of stole this idea and have a few years worth of the tags, nothing like looking at a fish bowl of $20 unfilled tags over a couple of beers and having some laughs.

    That same friend has a wall in his camp that is dedicated to signatures of visitors, pictures and racks from previous years' hunts, pretty cool!

    In Canada and Upper Michigan, I have seen water reclamation, basically catching all the water from the roof and containing it in barrels for use, and an outhouse with a "Canadian Drainfield", basically a buried plastic 50 gallon drum acting as the "tank" and a few more PVC laterals coming off of that in a sand bed as the drainfield. In another instance (this was in Canada also), these guys ran what seemed like a mile of hose uphill to some beaver impoundment. That camp always had good water pressure! Another guy ran his whole camp on solar & batteries.

    Have seen some really cool porches, screened in, open, custom benches and built-in storage ideas. Bunk beds, attic storage, buck poles...the list goes on and on. As far as mounts, of course there would be spots for deer mounts and a bear rug, but have thought about getting a big racoon or woodchuck mounted because of all the grief they have caused me at properties! I think they would both make good corner pieces, the coon could be perched on an old wood fence as a corner mount, and the the woodchuck could be standing up in a raised garden bed. Haha, I bet those mounts would get some laughs. I think a map of the property or aerial picture is a real cool feature too.

    One guy, designed a cable/pulley system so he can cross a creek to get to his hunting stand.

    How about a sauna? Have seen quite a few nice ones, nothing beats a sauna or working plumbing at a camp, I'm not saying I need it every day, but ...

    Anybody want to share their deer camp engineering or funny traditions?
     
    motdean, DM90 and HUBBHUNTER like this.
  2. Tilden Hunter

    Tilden Hunter

    Messages:
    2,763
    Likes Received:
    3,478
    Location:
    Negaunee, MI
    There's no running water or electric at camp, but it does have a toilet and septic. We use the gutters and a rain barrel for grey water to flush.
     
    jiggin is livin and TrailMarker like this.

  3. stickbow shooter

    stickbow shooter

    Messages:
    11,419
    Likes Received:
    21,078
    Location:
    Wellstabama
    I visited a camp in northern Iron County that there fridge was in the ground. They had a pit dug under the camp and they made a pulley system to raise and lower food into the pit then they would cover it with a door. Neat design. Had a silence of the lambs vibe lol.
     
    motdean, DM90, Tilden Hunter and 7 others like this.
  4. Biggbear

    Biggbear

    Messages:
    2,199
    Likes Received:
    4,070
    If there was a bottle of lotion, and an Autotrader in a basket next to the pit I would have bugged out of there!
     
  5. UPHuntr

    UPHuntr

    Messages:
    503
    Likes Received:
    94
    We wired and insulated our out house. Had the wireing go to an out door plug that we ran an extension cord to back to the cabin. The outlet on the cabin was on a switch. First guy up in the morning turned on the switch which turned on electric heat and light in the outhouse. Also we made a water shed on the back of the cabin that had 2 55gallon plastic drums we filled with water from the local artesian well, plumbed it into the cabin with a shallow well pump and an electric 25 gallon hotwater heater and we had running water for showers and dishes.
     
    motdean, Stubee, vsmorgantown and 3 others like this.
  6. Joe Archer

    Joe Archer Staff Member Mods

    Messages:
    17,122
    Likes Received:
    14,023
    Location:
    New Baltimore Michigan
    As seen in the picture, in the 80's when I was the ultimate spike killa - I'd hang horns and skinned out deer tails on the wall with the arrows that took each one.
    That tradition morphed into just labeling the arrow with the date and description of the deer taken.
    091518_VCR2.jpg
    <----<<<
     
    motdean, LabtechLewis, DM90 and 4 others like this.
  7. uofmball1

    uofmball1

    Messages:
    474
    Likes Received:
    793
    Location:
    Grand Rapids
    We have a large areal photo of our property and it is very useful. We use it for showing new hunters the property and where all of the stands are.
     
  8. greense1

    greense1

    Messages:
    314
    Likes Received:
    748
    Location:
    Marenisco, MI
    We’ve got the spent round hung on a nail/screw for every deer shot out of camp. You write name, date, weight and points on the rafter. Some also have the antlers there. Something most people find kind of cool. We’ve been a fairly successful camp in sheer numbers of bucks taken. Not a great picture but you can see a few of them.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. Lumberman

    Lumberman Premium Member

    Messages:
    4,558
    Likes Received:
    5,198
    Location:
    Grand Haven
    That’s cool!
     
    DM90 likes this.
  10. Chessieman

    Chessieman

    Messages:
    2,011
    Likes Received:
    1,807
    Location:
    N.E. St. Clair County
    I use to keep the spent shells in the blind mounted on the wall. Got rid of them, to many running deer. On my panelling in the blind I have painted a scale of my shooting areas with certain visual marked with yardage. My brother writes down deer shot from his blind noting who, date , sex and points. When he sold his house he took the blind with him and still uses it this day.
     
    motdean, DM90 and up520 like this.
  11. Joe Archer

    Joe Archer Staff Member Mods

    Messages:
    17,122
    Likes Received:
    14,023
    Location:
    New Baltimore Michigan
    I'll add that I keep a camp log of all hunts. Include names of hunter, location hunted, deer sightings, kills, temperature, wind, and cloud cover. Occasionally, significant events of the day like setting up stands, or sign found when scouting an area.
    <----<<<
     
    B Smithiers, Stubee, DM90 and 2 others like this.
  12. DM90

    DM90

    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    344
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    Maybe have the raccoon mounted on top of an old school metal trash can! lol :D;)
     
    up520 likes this.
  13. Woodsman Traveler

    Woodsman Traveler

    Messages:
    95
    Likes Received:
    220
    It puts the lotion on the skin.....
     
    DM90 likes this.
  14. Luv2hunteup

    Luv2hunteup

    Messages:
    34,249
    Likes Received:
    27,604
    Location:
    Somewhere Near the Tip of the Mitt
    Camps do not have working plumbing, cottages do. Camps seem to have names but that is not required at cottages or lodges.
     
    up520 and B Smithiers like this.
  15. Lumberman

    Lumberman Premium Member

    Messages:
    4,558
    Likes Received:
    5,198
    Location:
    Grand Haven
    We have an old beat up garage sale mounted bobcat that has provide a good decade's worth of entertainment. Now he resides tucked back in the wood shed were you won't see him until you are under the canopy right next to it. I know its there and it still startles me. Imagine what happens when we send the new guy out.
     
    motdean, up520, 3X8 and 2 others like this.