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harvey lee

Opener

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Seen a few last week. It was in the 70's most of the week with Wednesday hitting 81 so they were just out feeding and enjoying life. Didn't seem like they were too interested yet.

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No rifle tag, but I'll be hitting the woods with bow in hand. I know a lot of diehard archers hang it up when the orange army comes out, but they do wonders for moving deer! I'm going to sit in the same spot I shot my archery buck last deer opener and see if lightning can strike twice. Even if I don't connect, I can't let the tradition die. It'll be the (lucky) 13th year I've hunted deer with my uncles in North Dakota. Same location. Same hotel in the evening. I just pray we don't get a big ice storm like two years ago. What a nightmare drive home that was on an inch of glare ice.

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GNF has announced that all tags have been sold.First time in a long,long time that has happened before the season opens.

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GNF has announced that all tags have been sold.First time in a long,long time that has happened before the season opens.

Saw that, too. But 48,000. Wow. That is low. Needed, I'm sure. But still...how times have changed.

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Saw that, too. But 48,000. Wow. That is low. Needed, I'm sure. But still...how times have changed.

Can't agree with this more. In 2005 deer were everywhere, and tags seemed unlimited. Haven't hunted ND in a few years but I don't think I've missed much. Hopefully the good old days return but it's going to be hard to beat the 2004-2008 hunting opportunities for deer and pheasants.

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Well, it was an interesting opener. For the first time in 13 years, our party came home empty handed. I was the only one who got a shot...and I was bow hunting! Broadside buck at 15 yards. Complete passthrough. Bloody arrow. Two and a half hours of looking, never found it. Blood trail was nonexistent. I feel pretty sick about it, so instead of trying to fill my tag I'm calling it a season. The shot was ideal, and it still got away. Wouldn't have happened with a rifle in my hands.

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Had one of the best openers in the last 25 years. North Dakota Game and Fish may say there are not many deer but I would debate that with them all day long just from what I saw, it was very good. really could not have asked for much better.

Got in the box stand about 1pm and sat there until 2pm or so and then headed into the woods about 100 yards away to my climber. Wind was 20-25 and by the time I got out 0f the climber it was 35mph with gusts to 50mph and I was moving to much in the stand to shoot if needed.

From 2 to 4pm, I saw approx. 3 bucks and 12 doe in that 2 hours but since I figured the rut was going to be better this week, I decided to hold out until the rut cranked up. I passed on all 3 of the bucks but the largest was a modest 8.

Saturday morning I got in the stand about 6:30 and sat till 10am. See another 13-15 deer and a couple bucks and one I would have shot at but it was a poor shot through brush so I let it walk.

Got back in my evening stand about 1:30 and texted a buddy to see if his invite to bow hunt his land was still open, he said come on up so now, I could hold out and hunt ND this week or shoot a buck and go home, do a few things and head back up to northern MN to see if I could harvest a does or buck with my bow tag.

15 minutes after I set the northern MN trip up, I medium 8 walked by, stopped in front of me at approx. 15 yards and I let him have it, Got out of the stand by 3:45 or so and so much for my hunt in North Dakota.

Overall I saw approx. 50 deer or so with 10 being bucks for the 7-8 hours I sat.

Butchered the deer this am, make some plans for the rest of this week later today and then I am going to head out for northern MN to see if I can whack another with my bow.

From what I saw this past weekend, the rut in the area I was in in North Dakota should be going very well by mid week. Hopefully where I am going for this week, maybe an 1.5 hour drive from where I was will have the bucks running also.

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