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#1 Speedy

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Tomorrow at this time I'll be in the air leaving the deep freezer on my way to the sun.  My buddies here look at me funny when I talk about hunting coues deer.  I guess that's good as we don't want the word to get out!  I grew up in the midwest but I was always fascinated with the desert and the critters that live there so that's part of the appeal.  Back in the 1990's we planned a one time trip to the Wilcox area for mule deer, but the first time I saw a coues that's when I knew they were special and I wanted one.  I got another chance to hunt them 2 years ago and actually missed a nice buck.  I'm still learning the ways of these grey ghosts and to make it extra challenging I hunt exclusively with a recurve bow.  The biggest challenge with that is figuring out where to hunt them, because most of the places I've seen are not very conductive to getting withing 30 yards of these deer.   So if you have any tips on that let me know.  Seems to me higher in elevation is better so I'll be packing a tree stand and a decoy and headed to the Santa Ritas.  I also have a javi tag too so I might be exploring some new territory too.  They are another critter on my life list.

 

I'm also looking forward to the food, especially Sonoran dogs.  You guys out there are probably laughing but those hot dogs are the bomb, and I grew up in Chicago!   If you drive one of those food trucks up here you'll make a killing.  Hopefully Ruiz on 6 ave and 22 st in Tuscon is open on Saturdays as I will be stopping on my way thru.

 

I'll report back here on my adventures since you guys are the only ones who understand.  Don't worry your secret is safe with me ;).



#2 creed_az_88

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I'll be checking in on this. Keep us posted.

#3 trphyhntr

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no one laughs at sonoran dogs. 



#4 turbo

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How is the hunt going?  I hunt stickbow too, and yep, ambush placement is crucial. I break out the range finder sometimes, range the terrain  a bit and realize that thicker brush can be better for us.



#5 Mathews

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no one laughs at sonoran dogs. 

Lmao I knew I would find you here..

Good luck getting within 30, more of a man than I am

#6 Speedy

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Well I tried again, but who thought the weather in WI would be better than AZ?   It rained the first 4 days so I was glad I brought my raingear!  But the deer didn’t seem to move much when it rains like they do at home.  Maybe it's all the lions chasing them since it’s so dang quiet.

 

The day I flew in (1/14) stopped for 2 Sonoran dogs (which were as good as I remember) then made it to my camp with some daylight left.  That eve I went looking for the tree I put a stand in 2 years ago and saw a lone javi working a hill side.  Tried to get in front and he disappeared but the wind was swirling.   The skies opened up walking back to camp and then it kept on raining.  Next day put on the rain gear and went to a ground blind and as I was setting up I turned around and 15 yards behind me was a decent 3x3 (6 pt) coues.  He had no idea I was there but heard me walk in and thought I was a doe so the rut was on.  I carelessly nocked an arrow so it clicked ever so slightly and he took off.   The next day (raining again) went to town the watch the Packer game at 1 pm and what looks to be a mule deer (or hybrid) walked by the blind while I was in the bar.  dang curse of the trail cam, sometimes I think it’s better not to know.   On Tuesday the sun finally came out at 2:30 and while I was reading a book out of the corner of my eye saw the outline of deer walk thru a gap in the brush at 15 yards.  I also saw a shadow moving so I knew there was another one following.  The lead doe stopped behind a downed tree 20 yds away and as I put the book down it made an ever so slight sound and she bolted, and then I saw the buck trailing was bigger than the 3x3. She came from a direction I never expected and was also downwind too so maybe that's what happened. 

 

Because it was wet these deer made no noise walking so it was very hard to stay on high alert sitting for hours.  After these encounters I put out my doe decoy and had a doe and later a spike come in and circle it so that might have worked as I think I could have pulled off a shot.  But dang these deer are jumpy.  I did have another doe up on the hillside see my decoy from 60 yards away and she snorted at it for 30 minutes.  And next time I read a book it's not going to be in my hand!

 

I got chased out 1.5 days early by a severe winter storm warning of 14” of snow and 80 MPH winds so I changed my flight home.  I really needed a few more days, with the rain (and the game) I really only had 3 decent hunting days out of 7.  The last day (1/19) I went for a drive to see more country and man it’s so vast I could spend a month out there looking for hunting locations.  Never saw another javi which is what I was hoping for but I was road hunting at the time.   Still fun and I have the coues bug even worse now.  I had 2 opportunities and proved I can get close but just failed to follow protocol.  Getting the draw on one with a trad bow is going to be another matter entirely.  I’m going to have to be very patient and wait for the right moment.  I think my decoy may help when it doesn’t scare anything away which it did 33% of the time.  I’m still learning which makes it even more fun. Plus I’m not as picky as back home so there’s a good chance any average 3x3 or better buck is a shooter.

 

Thanks to all those who gave me tips and encouragement and maybe I’ll get another chance to do this again.  You guys have a cool thing going out there so let’s hope the rest of the world doesn’t figure it out too soon!



#7 turbo

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Thanks for the debrief.  There is a magic to these Coues.  Been focused on mulies lately,  However, Coues are poor man's sheep as Jack O'Connor said.  

You will come back and harvest one of the toughest animals on Earth with a stickbow, a Coues.

When bored, google this guy Tracy; he he show up when you google "camo vs plaid."  He seems to kill every thing in the lower 48, but the Coues deer...  

He says, (paraphrased): "still working on that Coues..."



#8 oneshot

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Glad you had a great time Matt, hope you visit So. Arizona again soon and get your Coues...
Did you send me the pic of that Coues hybrid???... Maybe post it here for more opinions...

Deny everything, admit nothing, make counteraccusations

Another Glorious Day to Excel

 Moons Out, Goons Out, Hydrate and do some damage

Never Submit, Never Surrender


#9 AzPlumber

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Sorry it didn't work out for you. I think the cheese hat scares them, they aren't accustom to seeing one like WI Deer are.



#10 Speedy

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Time to revive this tread, I'm headed out west on Saturday to give it another try!  Hopefully the weather will cooperate this time.  Might be my last shot for awhile to cross a coues deer off the bucket list so wish me luck. I have a Javi tag again too. 

 

Funny, growing up in the Midwest as a kid all I did was read books about the desert and the critters and plants that call it home.  To this day it still fascinates me more than any other place. 



#11 PRDATR

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Temperatures are warmer than usual but I don't see any rain in the 10 Day Forecast. The Coues Rut is starting to kick in and the rain and cooler temps we had Tuesday night and yesterday will only help.


All over Az in the big red truck

#12 yotebuster

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Good luck. Cold as heck in ND this weekend. Pheasant and archery deer season closed on Sunday so now theres nothing left to do but drink and icefish. Im missing AZ bad right now!

#13 PRDATR

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Good luck. Cold as heck in ND this weekend. Pheasant and archery deer season closed on Sunday so now theres nothing left to do but drink and icefish. Im missing AZ bad right now!

 

Varmint hunt.


All over Az in the big red truck

#14 trphyhntr

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Good luck. Cold as heck in ND this weekend. Pheasant and archery deer season closed on Sunday so now theres nothing left to do but drink and icefish. Im missing AZ bad right now!

i would gladly be ice fishing right now. 



#15 Speedy

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Yeah, you and most everyone else up here!

MinnesotaLakeBoastsWorldBiggestIceFishingQGg4hyZELOCl.jpg

 

 






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