It’s December and the pinnacle of most of our seasons has come and passed with the rut. But by no means is it time to hang up the camo and head for the couch. On the contrary, now is the time to throw on an extra layer, eat a good hardy meal and get in the woods. The late season is the time that separates the men from the boys, the hard core from the fair weather hunters. For those that man up and brave the cold, the late season can be some of the best hunting to be had all year. So why, you ask, should you bother freezing your keester off this month during the late season? Let’s discuss…
- The second rut is about to kick in. As many of you know, not all doe get bred during the first rut in November. Those that have not come into estrus yet, many times early born yearlings, will cycle in now and those bucks will once again get after them. Although you won’t see as much consistent action as during the rut, if a doe gets hot, she’ll attract a crowd and you want to be there when they pass by.
- Deer are heading back to consistent bedding and feeding patterns. If you have access to a preferred and unpressured feeding area, you can see some incredible action. Just be aware that a mature buck will most likely be one of the last deer to step out into a field, be prepared to wait til the end or set up inside a staging area. Soybeans and corn can be amazing to hunt over this time of year.
- The weather can really get them moving! With cold weather and snow sweeping across the country, the deer will be on their feet and scurrying to fill their bellies with high energy food. If a major cold front or a big snow hits, drop what you’re doing and hit the woods.
- There is still time left in the season! Things might get tough, but you won’t kill a deer while sitting on the couch. Head out into the woods, enjoy yourself and get your deer. You counted down the days all year til hunting season, it’s still here, so squeeze every little bit out of it!