We all love hunting season. In fact, many outdoorsmen only venture into the field during the early September to late October hunting season. Leaving the rest of the year to bird hunters, trappers, anglers and the like. Hunters in pursuit target elk, mule deer and antelope every season faithfully. But, a “New Kid” on the block has emerged and Idaho hunters have taken notice. The almighty White tailed deer, America’s number one big game species has taken a foothold in southeast Idaho and he is here to stay and growing to trophy class sizes!
I grew up during my teenage years hunting whitetails in East Texas and trust me, what you see on television is 70/30. About 70 percent is bogus hunting on ranches with feeders but the other 30 percent is honest hard hunting and these individuals had to work to get these shots.
My experience has been long hours in the woods covering swampy boggy bottom land and seeing only the white flag of the whitetails tail bounding over logs and blow- downs. This was all before store bought tree stands became popular. Now with the advent of tree stands and all the other scents, camo patterns and even manufactured rattling horns whitetail hunting has become the darling of the hunting industry.
Hunters spend tens of millions each year on new gadgets to increase their odds in bagging an old mossy back buck. Personally, I do not believe you need to fall for all the hoopla. We never used scents or scent blockers, the camo pattern really did not matter because the key to camouflage is movement. We still managed to harvest bucks and doe’s without spending a fortune on gadgets and self-proclaimed miracle scents and food plots. But, I will say that tree stands have made the sport a bit easier as they lift you off the ground and give you ten times more area to view than sitting in a ground blind.
Since most Idahoans have never hunted whitetails you are in for a real treat. If you love to elk hunt then whitetail hunting will turn you into a deer-hunting addict. I love to mule deer hunt and I do believe a mature mule deer buck is one of the hardest deer on earth to hunt. But I also have this addiction to large non-typical whitetail bucks that seem to know your every move and slip in and out of woods and pastures like a ghost. These ghostly bucks keep me coming back for more.
If you are interested in getting hooked on a species that will completely take control of your life before and during the season then white tail hunting is for you. Your best bet is the south fork of the Snake River hunting the corridor of woods on both sides of the river. A good portion is private land but you can find public land by looking at a topographical map. Much of the public ground can be reached by foot, but a small portion of hunters do access tough, out of the way areas by boat.
Hunting season is fast approaching and to hunt this area you have to make a choice or to have drawn earlier. Your best bet is to go to http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ for more information on seasons and requirements.