I am a southeast part of the state public land guy during bow season too. I try, hard, to find a spot that is decent, that is far away from anyone else, and in an area that I can get to without having to walk near anyone else. I usually get to hunt the weekday's so that helps alot as far as seeing other hunters, but if I find a stand near mine, I usually try and find a new spot, I like to hope for at least 300 yards of my own breathing room. Gun season is a differant story I hunt the Eastern U.P. and very rare is it that I see another hunter.
The club I still belong to has a 250 pace rule between stands, which seems to work pretty good. The deer are definately pressured at that hunter density.
I used to think that one hunter per 40 acres was better but I since changed and like a maximum one hunter per 160 acres. You are almost always hunting unpressured deer that way if you hunt smart. Daylight deer movement continues throught the entire season. That's the reason I love to hunt the UP. After the 3rd day of rifle season I'll bet it's less than one hunter per square mile.
When we were looking for leased land, we were going with 80-100 acres per hunter. Our WI lease is 234 acres-170 woods, for 2 people, just about right, but we overhunt it if we go 4-5 days in a row. In the U.P, I like to be about 1/4 to 1/2 mile away from the nearest person, which is pretty easy to do if you want to walk a little. Out in PA, I walk in over an hour, and see usually 1 other hunter walking by, and usually there is no one within a 1/4 mile of me.
My hunting partner and I will once a year hunt in the same valley but facing each other on opposite sides of the valley. At the bottom of the valley is fairly deep water which the deer avoid. So there are even trails on both sides of the creek.
So there we sit only 100 yards away from each other, and when the leaves are down we can watch each others movements and radio any activity to the other guy.
Funny but true we have taken doe's nearly within the same 30 seconds, both of which were whoppers.
I had a buddy hang his stand in the same tree as mine, but he was videotaping my hunt. I have had people hang a stand within 50 yards of mine. If the deer know they are there the deer may avoid them and end up in my range.
This is no joke,, a few years back I was bow hunting from the ground, nice wind in my face and 2 knuckleheads with 5 gallon buckets, plop down, not 10 yards behind me! I couldn't believe it! Instead of saying something, I emptied a can of "OFF bugspray" right over my shoulder, a nice "potpourri" frangrance, then I moved. And then last year, I had another 2 knuckleheads set up about 50 and 100 yards, respectively. This was on the opener of gun season,,, and of course, they cut off every deer that was coming my way,,, shootin' everything that was brown.
So personally,, if I see another hunter,,, their TOO CLOSE.
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