Every year when the calendar flips to August I suddenly realize that the season is right around the corner. I also realize that I have roughly a million things left to do before I am ready to hit the woods. This year is no exception and once again I have have a pretty long list of things I need to do, buy, fix or get ready before October 1st rolls around. Two months may seem like a long time but even after all my years of hunting I still find myself scrambling to get it all ready to go by the end of September.

My list of things to do this year includes buying some new arrows, new blades for my broadheads, getting re-fills for my scent killer sprays, a few new treestands and maybe picking up some new base layers as well. Getting new hunting gear is always fun but at this time of year the shopping certainly isn't the most exciting part of the season prep.

The most exciting thing I have to get together at this time of the year is a buck hit list. That is where all of our trail cam work comes in handy and while we aren't quite to the "hit list" time of the year yet, we definitely start paying some extra attention to the cameras come August.

This year we started finding some good bucks early in the summer but when our main food source got browsed down and other food sources, including a 40 acre corn field on our border, emerged those bucks became hard to find. Through talking with our neighbors we have reason to believe that they (and a few other good bucks) are still in the area but have managed to stay out from in front of our camera's lately.

Thankfully we have gotten numerous pictures of other deer all summer long and have been able to pick out some pretty clear travel patterns that will help us come fall. We've also tracked down a ton of good looking young bucks along with a few decent bucks as well. Not being able to find some of the bucks from earlier this year is a bit disappointing but we certainly aren't hitting the panic button yet. Here's some of the pictures that have been keeping us excited lately.

These pictures are a few of the younger bucks that I would love to see make it thorough to next season. We've gotten pictures of numerous up and comers and hopefully a few of them can lay low this fall and make it through to next year. They are showing some great potential and another year (or two) would really make a big difference.


buck hit list


buck hit list



buck hit list


We certainly enjoy seeing the younger bucks and it's always good to know that there is potential for some good sized bucks the following year. We know a lot of bucks get shot in our area but we also know that many do manage to make it through and get a few years under their belts. Seeing good looking young bucks already gets us excited about the seasons to come.

But, while seeing young bucks is fun nothing gets us as excited as finding a few good ones to go after this season. Despite losing track of a few bucks from earlier in the summer we have been able to run across a few nice ones and we will certainly be looking for these guys come fall.

This first buck is actually one of the bucks from this spring that we were able to come across again. We nicknamed him Shadow based on his resemblance to a buck we had on our hit list last year. Sticking true to his name, it looks like Shadow will be on our list this fall.


buck hit list



This next buck is a bit of a mystery for us. He resembles a buck we nicknamed Bob Marley this spring but his brows don't seem to match what Bob had going on. We can't seem to get a real good picture of him either that would help us to better ID him. We have pictures of him on cameras going to and coming from our plot so we know his pattern but just can't get a good look at him. He looks to have a good frame and a pretty good left side but his right side is either broken up or not sporting much growth. He's certainly one that we would like to get some more pictures of so we could get a better look at him. He may be the buck we called Bob Marley but without some better pictures we can't be certain.


It's hard to believe that we just over a month and a half away from the 2012 deer season here in Michigan. It seems like we did more this summer to get ready and get things set up on the property but we are still going to be racing the clock to be ready for the season. That seems to never change, and neither does my excitement as we near October.

Pretty soon we'll be putting in our final fall food plots, putting together our 2012 hit list and then finally I'll be hitting the woods and writing Whitetail Weekly entries about the progression of our season. Of course before we get to that fun, I still have a whole bunch of work to do. Don't you? It's crunch time!!


Take care, and thanks for reading!!