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About sneakem33

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    Shooting critters and eating them

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  1. sneakem33

    Are coues deer in trouble?

    This year was super unusual, there was very little water in the Southern units. Tanks that I had never seen dry. Very few deer in the hills comparatively, most of the deer way out on the mesquite flats. Most of the coues in the cholla as I think that's where they were getting the majority of the water source from feed. The rut was super weak and sporadic. Most of the reports out of Mexico are very similar. The deer in the thick $hit and flats have always been in that habitat, no one likes to hunt it because it's tough and not conducive to glassing and seeing bunches of deer. How many places do you go anymore and see crap tons of does and no bucks. I personally still find good bucks, but I'd be lying if I said that I find them like I used to, it takes a serious amount of work to find a good one anymore and buck numbers are wayyyy down. The amount of rifle tags issued is absurd, this coming from a CO guy who's state whores their wildlife for the almighty $$$. We have or had approximately 450,000 deer in CO and don't issue those types of numbers of tags and we're slaughtering our deer herd to reduce CWD. Arizona has a much smaller deer population, you'd be naive to think it's not having an effect...
  2. sneakem33

    Are coues deer in trouble?

    IMO... The amount of rifle tags is unsustainable. Every time I read about a rifle coues hunt it's I shot my deer at 550, 605, 680. Ray Charles could sneak within that type of range. Too many deer are being shot, many of them shooting any buck with horns, and the large bucks take a beating as they are fewer in number anyways. Technology has improved to the point that even so-so marksmen are slinging lead at that range. This is not meant to be a bashing of rifle hunters... it's just numbers of deer hitting the ground, Especially with a few units issuing tags in the thousands, and most in the 600-800 range. People bitched about the OTC bow hunt are killing all the deer. It's been limited now, and rarely do many units get near reaching the quota for coues. Most Southern coues units there are only a handful of bucks killed... Mule deer are another story... I definitely see less mature bucks during the rut, it's been steadily decreasing for years. Sure, someone kills a slug every now and then... but proportionally the number of large bucks seem to be getting less...
  3. sneakem33

    Good buck

    Story is short and simple. Had a tough hunt, punched my 2023 tag on the last day on a smaller buck, jacked my ankle pretty bad packing it out. Unfortunate, because I had a Javelina tag and a 2024 tag. Fortunately after a few days of rest at camp I was able to get a brace on it and limp around killing my javelina. By the last few days I was able to navigate a little on the hillsides, so I got after the coues again. Encountered this buck the day before I killed him, bumped him with does and really couldn't pursue him where he went. Returned the next day, turned him up around some does, slipped in and had him walk to 12 yards behind a doe. Could only see his head and we were in a standoff. The doe eventually blew, the buck bolted but curled back to look for the doe. Stopped at 27 for a brief moment and I arrowed him....
  4. sneakem33

    Good buck

    Punched my tag on a good buck a couple of days ago, just thought I'd share a picture since it's so slow these days...
  5. sneakem33

    Colorado Regulations and Rules

    Colorado issues points against your license privileges' per violation, much like a drivers license. If you accumulate 20 points in a 5 year period, you will be sent in front of a hearing examiner that will recommend a suspension anywhere from a year to life depending on the severity of the charges. Also Colorado differs from Arizona on the private property. In Colorado it does not need to be posted or marked or fenced. It is your responsibility to know where you are at all times. Hunting in Arizona was a shock to me with regards to private property and use the first time I hunted it. The legal postings and use are way different than Colorado. In Colorado shed hunting is considered anything in the act of shed hunting, no touching/stashing/looking/scouting/marking with GPS. In the Gunnison basin there is also an hourly closure from sunset until 10am through May 15th because of the Sage Grouse mating season. Doesn't take much to lose your license in Colorado, one minor slip up can put you over the threshold quite easily. Inherently in Colorado picking up 1 antler could be the end of your hunting privilege's for a while. Shed hunting 5 points, possession of an antler 5 points, harassing wildlife 10 points.... you're at 20, Yep, there is a lack of enforcement, but the consequence is high if you do get caught. I don't think people are really aware of the risk, all for a stupid horn. I love picking up bone, but I'm not going to even chance it....
  6. sneakem33

    Colorado Regulations and Rules

    Sounds like you got lucky. The private land thing could've landed you 20 points alone and a date with a suspension hearing, which is reciprocal in 48 states... Colorado is a different beast, it's your responsibility to know the law, know the boundaries even if unmarked.
  7. sneakem33

    Thanks AZ...

    Man... its super slow in this place anymore, thought I would share a couple pic's from my recent endeavors. Hunted the late rifle and then stayed for the OTC archery. Killed a decent buck with the gun, rut was slow but we saw some great deer, watched a giant get killed, couple good one's gave us the slip. Archery hunt, the deer never really got going until the day before I left, saw a couple amazing bucks, just couldn't get it done. Had a great time with some buddies, also enjoyed a few days solo.
  8. sneakem33


    Realistically the real smugglers only run a few routes, and most of that country is gnarly and tough to access by vehicle. They can't risk getting caught, otherwise the cartels will get rid of them and everyone they know.... Most of the people you see are illegals, they cross anywhere and are likely to avoid you anyways and start running, maybe steal your crap from camp.
  9. sneakem33

    Not AZ/NM...

    I never enter anything in the books, but I did rough tape him at about 86".
  10. sneakem33

    Not AZ/NM...

    The secret to getting so close is failing miserably a bunch of times...lol Realistically I drew a decent tag, spent a ton of time looking over a number of goats. Found a couple of really good bucks and decided that I would make a play on them with the longbow, knowing I could switch to a rifle in a few weeks and shoot a grande, so there was no pressure to fill the tag. Failed on a few stalks and while doing so, turned this buck up, which would have been a no brainer even with a gun in a few weeks. Had I known this buck existed I would have brought the compound or held off completely until the rifle opener. Really it just worked out that was the only thing I could hunt him with at the moment in time... I botched a bunch of stalks on him during the day and eventually I caught him dogging a doe that I know was headed to water. I caught them traveling in a wash and ambushed him in a brushy spot about 35 yards out, which is about as far as I feel comfortable shooting. Shot was a little forward, but managed to get enough penetration to get the job done... There's a long winded play by play on another site, but that's the short of it. Ironically enough the largest I've ever taken with any weapon... I knew he was big but stunned when I walked up on him...
  11. sneakem33

    Not AZ/NM...

    But a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and then...
  12. sneakem33

    Photo of Your Very First Coues

    I would say that he was a fairly young deer (3.5) with great potential to be a giant. Ironically that ear facing the camera is almost 2" larger than the other and his horns are a little willowy. Being my first coues, I didn't wait for him to grow up any more, he was plenty big enough.
  13. sneakem33

    Draw results

    Tag 38 in one of 2 units... The anticipation is killing me.
  14. sneakem33

    Its Time To Change the Arizona Bonus Point System

    I think it's just fine as it is... even with crappy NR odds I seem to be able to draw a couple tags here and there. I think that comes with a realistic outlook on what's possible to draw. Obviously a crap ton of people chase a couple glory units with very few tags and minuscule drawing odds are going to be disappointed that they don't draw every time they have a pile of points.