Hunters Face Tough Conditions
The buck season is underway in Kentucky and is about to start on Monday in West Virginia and the Monday after Thanksgiving in Ohio. One thing for sure, weather-wise conditions are not going to cooperate with this year’s hunt.
The biggest risk to hunters this year is the very dry ground. Now that the autumn leaves have fallen, they are laying on the forest beds. Since the weather has been very dry this month, those leaves are dry and crinkly. That’s a fancy way of saying hunters will be crunching through the woods making enough noise to send the deer deeper into the woodlands and out of harm’s way.
Most hunters like a nice rain or snowfall before opening day to settle the leaves into the woodlands. While a fresh mantle of snow provides hunters with a nice background to scope out a 10 pointer, snow on the ground allows for hunters to track their deer. In addition, once bagging a buck, hunters can more easily drag the deer carcass to their cars or lodges.
This year’s first snow fell Halloween week during bow and arrow season but nearly three weeks removed from buck season. Since then not only has it not snowed but also it hasn’t rained much. That three week mainly rain-free spell has allowed leaves to dry out. Even this past week’s rains were too light to mat those leaves into the forest beds. Bottom line the leaves are dry and noisy.
For hunters heading deep into the mountains, be advised that many hunting lodges saw trees felled by the October snowstorm. Desolate lodges may be tough to get to since downed trees may not have been cleared.
In addition, many out of the way hunting stands deep into the woods may be hard to get to due to the downed trees. For these reasons, my friends at DNR are recommending hunters heading into the high country get there early and scope out the grounds.
Weather-wise opening day in WV and most of the first week of buck season will be dry. The lone chance of rain comes late Tuesday when a shower or two will be scattered.
Days will start out ion the chilly 30s, but days will warm under bright sunshine into the 50s for hunting lodges/posts in the mountains but near 60 in the river valley towns.
Good luck to all.