"A Dilemma on the Calendar"
By Dan Stephany, Bass Pro Shops Altoona Receiving Manager and Outdoorsman
Welcome back to those of you who have been following along with our Facebook page and blog articles each week. On the Trail Tuesday is a weekly update about our journey through this 2013 hunting season chasing mature whitetails on public ground. Last week, I headed to the stand with high hopes riding a big cold front that pushed through ushering in some of the coldest weather of the season. My anticipation couldn’t have been higher as I settled in to my stand with several hours of daylight left. By the time I climbed down, I was confused and a little frustrated after only seeing three deer, a mature doe and two fawns off in the distance. In hindsight, I may have overlooked one important factor – the lunar cycle.
While we had a great cold front move through, we also were in the waxing gibbous phase of the moon. Many game biologists will agree that the waning crescent moon phase is the best for deer movement. With the late rising moon phase, the deer movement was probably in the few hours following sunset, and not during shooting light.
My dilemma is fighting the urge to head back out this week and try to make something happen when it may not be right yet. When I have done this in the past, I have gotten tired and frustrated with not seeing deer. By the time the rut hits, when I should be spending the most time in the tree stands, I am burned out and not as willing to head to the woods. So today, I will not head out to the stand, but instead will stick to the plan - wait for the moon to line up with the calendar and hopefully stack the odds in my favor for wrapping my tag around a mature whitetail!
For those of you putting time in the stand – good luck! I have heard of some awesome deer hitting the ground already. I look forward to sharing with you again next week as we take this journey together!