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Best time of day to hunt??

Old 10-08-2008, 01:41 PM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,357
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

If I was hunting crowded public land, 10 AM to 2 PM might be the best time to hunt. I do not hunt crowded public land, and deer movement where I hunt is dictated largely by deer habits and customs rather than hunter habits and customs.

These days I only hunt mornings and afternoons. If first legal shootinglight is 6:30 AM and last legal shooting light is 5:30 PM, then I will try to be in position at least by 6 AM (preferrably by 5:45 AM) and will hunt to about 10 AM; I will then leave the woods; I will return in the afternoon and try to be in position at least by 3 PM. I think the very best time in my experience is probably 6:30 AM to 7:30 AM and 5 PM to 5:30 PM. Between 10 AM and 3 PM I'll drive back to the house and take a nap, work on writing some patent applications (I work for a law firm writing patent applications), or do some shopping around town. I am not after monster racks -- just any mature deer, buck or doe.
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Old 10-08-2008, 04:59 PM
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Location: Trumbull County, Ohio
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Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

I see the most deer in the three hours before dark. For some reason, I almost never see deer in the morning here in ohio, in PA yes, but not here in ohio.
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Old 10-08-2008, 05:03 PM
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Location: Somewhere in Michigan
Posts: 5,702
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

Pre rut I am a big fan of sitting predawn til 3.5 hours past and 3.5 hrs before dark til dark...
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Old 10-08-2008, 08:11 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: turners falls mass USA
Posts: 319
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

all day if you can.......it seems that at first light or at dusk are the best but i see alot of action from 11 am to 2 pm.that when other hunters are headed out or headed in and they get the deer moving.sit all day if possible.especially during the rut.
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Old 10-08-2008, 08:15 PM
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Location: arkansas
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Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

Anytime that i am off work
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Old 10-09-2008, 04:05 AM
Typical Buck
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 585
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

Here in NC I see more deer the last 90 minutes of daylight. I also hunt mornings when I can and all day during the rut.
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Old 10-09-2008, 11:53 AM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,357
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

I like the morning best -- just as a personal like/dislike sort of thing. I am a morning person and feel very energetic then. It is cool to be out in the woods in the dark, going to my ambush spot, and then resting peacefully in the dark, maybe listening to some owls talk to each other. Additionally, when I take a deer in the morning I can take my time gutting my deer and getting it out of the woods. If I kill a deer at the end of the day, for example 15 minutes after sundown (where I hunt legal shooting light extends to 30 minutes after sundown), when I gut the deer I am working with diminishing light and I know I will be hauling the deer out of the woods in the dark. Additionally, I also know I have to go check the deer in before I can go home and get a hot meal.
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Old 10-09-2008, 02:39 PM
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: So. IL
Posts: 27
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

Most of my hunting has been in the evenings, after work or school. I've killed and seen deer in the mornings and evenings. I mostly have hunted private ground with the only pressure being from me. So the idea of being the stand when most hunter's leave is a sound one if you know that the adjacent properties have hunter's that are doing that. In the past several years i have sat all day, i have seen deer move at mid-day, even had a half-side bed down on a ridge 50 yds from me one year.However, last year I went out about 2 during gun season as soon as i got back from school, and there was a mature buck feeding across the corn field between me and my stand. It depends on hunting pressure on your property and adjacent properties as well as the time of the year. During the rut I would prefer to sit either the last 4 or the from 12-dark if possible. Also, you stand a better chance of not spooking deer during the daytime and might catch on off gaurd feeding somewhere as your walking in. Take your time walking in go slow and quiet and keep a watchful eye, you never know what you might get a nice surprise.
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Old 10-09-2008, 03:06 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 214
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

According to the deer activity graphs on T.R.Michels' site, deer are generally most active in the fall within a couple of hours of sunrise an sunset. He saysthey are waht scientists call "crepuscular", which means they are generally active at dawn and dusk.

I see more deer at those times thatn at any other time.
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Old 10-10-2008, 03:31 AM
Typical Buck
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Dover, Ohio. Tuscarawas county.
Posts: 827
Default RE: Best time of day to hunt??

From my own experience, the morning is the best time. It'snormally colder, and I just think it's better. Even though it took me 4 years since I started hunting to get my first deer in the morning. I had only gotten deer in the evening till the biggest buck I've shot so far came in front of me at 15 yards.
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