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About Grayfox

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    Sr HotSpotOutdoors.com Family
  • Birthday 04/24/1968

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    Gods Country

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  1. Well it's been a great year. It looks like we tied our previous calling/ kill total of 25 from a couple years ago and actually ended up with 27 total when including our trapped coyotes as well. It's too bad the snow has disappeared because they sure were coming in well the last couple times out. I hit one high the other night and couldn't recover it and judging by the hair left there it will probably make it and Mitch hasn't had a lot of time to hunt with me this year and I do miss those nights when he was always with me but I think I appreciate the times we do get out now a little more. We still have a great time and still enjoy being out together. We started the night out by driving by several of our spots trying to find one we could see at. It wasn't looking good for a while there but we settled on a spot we hunted earlier this year where Mitchell killed one. I put the caller out to the SW of our position and Mitchell set up south of me about 10 yards away. I had been calling off and on for about an hour and hadn't heard a howl yet when Mitchell said there's two South of us. I couldn't see anything and was trying to see where his gun was pointed. I kept scanning and still couldn't see them. I finally saw them way down in the SW corner of the field. I didn't want to take a long shot if we didn't have to so I turned on the caller again and immediately saw one start in. The other one disappeared and I thought maybe it was trying to circle down wind. I never saw it again and the other one closed in to about 120 yards. Mitchell wanted to know when he could shoot, I asked if he was on it as I dialed in on it too, I said take him when your ready and I heard him shoot so I squeezed one off too. Off it goes but I could see it was in trouble. After a short 40 yard run it was down. Another Vmax disaster. This will be the last year he uses these. Mass carnage! We headed to another spot and didn't have any come in but heard several groups howling a fair distance around us and one female that just wouldn't stop howling. It literally howled and barked almost non stop for the hour that we were there. I thought she might cross the road if I could admit ate her enough but it sounded like she was giving someone the business already. After driving past several,other spots, I knew of one that should have plenty of snow as it was in a big bowl. I got Mitchell's approval and off we went. It was around 4:30 when we rolled in to the farm yard. We parked the truck and headed down the hill. I put out the caller to the south of us and we sat about 10 yards apart to the north of it. I started the caller and immediately had several local dogs barking. After 20 minutes or so I thought I heard a female howl just once. Is asked MIT if he heard it and he thought it was a dog. I didn't think so. I kept calling and about 30 minutes later it lit up again from about 300 yards to the West of us. I quickly got up and backed up to sit next to and north of MIT in case it came in straight from the West. We sat quietly for another 10 minutes when she howled again but much closer. We were scanning real hard with the binoculars and I saw her come Around the corner of some brush about 130 yards out. She stopped and just sat down. We watched her and she appeared to be looking back and I thought maybe her mate would show. After a few minutes I sterted to worry about her leaving so I asked Mitch if he wanted to take her. He acknowledged and we both dialed the scopes up and centered the crosshairs. I asked again if he was ready, he said yes, I said on the count of three, one, two and we both shot and I watched her tip over to the right. Never twitched. I said I don't think that ones going anywhere and he laughs. We head over to collect her and called it a night. Again, it was a great year and I can't wait to get out again next fall. See you next year!
  2. Josh, I can tell you the Hornady 55 grain Vmax's in .223 that my son use's don't work the best. A lot of tore up animals, big holes and runners. Which seems hard to believe but you should see some of the blood trails and holes we get with a seemingly perfect shot. My little 17 Remington's seem to be the best that I've seen so far. I loaded up some 22-250 rounds up for one of my other guns with 55 grain hollow points, 52 grain Amax's and some Sierra 55 grain HPBT's #1365 which from what I read should be a good one. After I get done reloading for my 17's Mitchell's .223 will be the next one we find a load for. The plan is to load the 55 grain #1365's and some 60 grain HPs and see if either of them will do a better job. Rob
  3. K_Josh 87, Most of my sets are in open fields and an hour is pretty much a given on stand length. I've found, for me, that the coyotes don't necessarily come charging in. Not sure why but more times than not they will either answer back and still take their time coming in or they will come in silent to investigate the sounds. I'm not sure if it's from others calling and educating them or just the way they respond in the areas I hunt. When I check my records most sets are 45- 80 minutes in length. Because of my set length I can only get in 2-4 sets a night, depending on the driving distance between the spots. As far as sounds, it's about 50/50 for what I use. Sometimes I start out with howls and use mostly vocals and others I use more distress and toss in some vocals between them. It really depends on the response or lack of response I get at the set. Most if not all of the spots I hunt I'm confident that there is a coyote within earshot so it's just a matter of going with gut feelings on which sounds and how long it will take me to figure them out but being patient seems to work a lot better than the run and gun method for me. I use up far less spots and educate fewer animals this way. Rob
  4. 123fish, A Female coyote has a higher pitch howl and bark than the males. After a while you can tell the difference. Rob
  5. Got number 21 a couple weeks ago. Called for about 45 minutes when I saw two enter the field from the South and walk to the top of a hill 250 yards out. I lowered the volume on the caller and they lit up. That's the first time I've ever had them howl like that within site of me. Sounded like a dozen of them out there. I tried a few things to coax them closer but they wouldn't budge. So I lined up one and shot, looked like a hit but I didn't hear the bullet hit so I chambered another one and as it was trying to get away I sent another down range. I thought I could see it on the side of the hill but drove out there and sure enough the big female was down. Then #22 fell to a daylight set up North. A buddy had wanted me to come up to his cabin and try a little day calling this weekend and I've never put much faith into it around here but decided it would be a good time to get away for a day or so. We drove up Thursday night and checked on a few of his properties before dark. Pretty thick country with some rolling hills. We gave it a shot Friday morning at two spots but nothing showed. We tried again Friday night and had a female howl back but she stayed in the spruce swamp about 400 yards to the South and wouldn't show herself. The wind picked up pretty good and it had been snowing off and on. We saw a few tracks at one spot and made a plan to try it this morning and them get home before the temp and wind really picked up. We got set up before daylight and as soon as I could see I started the caller. I let it play for 15 minutes and saw one coming in from the NE. It came in fast and I was waiting for my buddy to shoot as he's never got one before, when he tells me to take it if it stops. It ran a little down wind and stopped for a broad side shot. I hit it a little high and back but it didn't make it 30 yards before going down. Tiny little hole on one side and no pass through. That's what I love about those 17 Remington's and taken with my first reloaded round! He saw a second bug out when I shot and due to the thick cover we/ he never got off a shot. Turns out he went to crank up his scope power and he cranked up his elevation setting on his scope, the last time I took him he had a similar issue. I'll get him one, one of these days.looking forward to hitting the March moon hard then the guns will get put away.
  6. OTC, Have gun, will travel!😀 Having a good amount of land to hunt is in my opinion the biggest factor in killing these things around here. They get pounded during the day with dog hunters but they sure don't mind coming to the call at night. I travel an area of almost 80 square miles during the year so I do put a few miles on and only get in about three to four sets a night. 69 sets so far this year with 30 animals taken. 24 of the 69 sets were successful, 35% success rate. Rob
  7. Tough night for hunting last night. Heavy clouds for most of it with little glimpses of the moon but still enough to get out. I set the alarm for 10 last night but must have been a little tired as I slept through that and got up a little after 12. I asked Mitch if he wanted to give it another shot and he said he was in. We hit the first and second spots with no takers and no howling. The wind was picking up a little bit out of the NE and it was almost 4 and I knew he had to work at noon so we decided to give it one more shot at a new spot we got this year. The winds out of the NE as we walk in from the West side of the rolling field. There was a cow pasture directly to the East of us and another farm to the South about 1/4 mile away and we were sitting directly South of his barn. He had piled several round bales up and we climbed up and had an even better view from there. I started with some howls and settled in to wait. After 20 minutes I turned on the cat distress and let it play, varying the volume for a couple minutes when I see one comeing in from the farm yard to South. I let Mitch know and he get on it. It starts coming in and then apparently found a mouse under the snow and kept bouncing its front feet on the snow trying to break the crust. After it did that for a while it slowly started making his way down wind of the caller. We were both on it as it slowly crested a small rise and I asked Mitch if he was on it and wanted me to stop it, he said yes and I gave a couple woofs and it locked up and Mits gun barks and the coyote makes a short run towards the caller and goes down. His 4th of the year and a good looking male. We tried walking into one more spot but when we got in there, the snow was too sparse for any visability so we called it a night. Rob
  8. Between Mitchell and I we've called and killed 20 coyotes this year. I think two years ago we had our best year with 26 so I think we have a pretty good shot at breaking that this year. I started out last night with the first set hearing several groups howling around me but couldn't get anything to show. I was supposed to go back home and pick Mitchell up but after texting him around midnight he said he didn't think he could stay awake past the first set so he was just going to go home to sleep. So I decided to hit a new spot we got this year that I had been saving. The wind was right as I drove into the yard and after scanning with the binocs I could see one crossing the field going South. I waited until it was out of sight and got out and snuck out into the field and placed the caller and quickly scampered back to a hay rack to hide by. I started with a few howls with no response. I waited 15 minutes and it finally answered back. I sat there for another 10 minutes before I see it walking towards me but its out there a good 5-600 yards.it closed the distance in no hurry to around 360 yards but then sat down and just started toward me. I waited for another 5 minutes and did a few more howls. It just sat there. Then it starts pouncing at mice under the snow then sits back down. I did a few more howls but I could tell this thing wasn't going to come any closer. I could see it in my scope but not real well. I had to shut off my red dot because it was blocking out the animal. It started moving off to the South again so I waited for it to stop and touched one off. I heard the Wump of the hit and it went down. I could still see it moving around so I shot and heard it hit again. This time it stayed down. #16 was down. I left that spot for an old reliable. I walked in to a field from the East with the wind at my back. The coyotes usually come from the South or West so I put the caller South of me and climbed a hill to the North of it about 70 yards away. There was a block of woods to the West of me but they usually have come from the field south of it. My scent should stay to the North of that. I called off and on for 50 minutes or so with no responses. I was thinking about wrapping it up when I see two little black dots moving around in the field SW of me. They appeared to be getting closer as they were moving in no hurry to the SE which was going to make it real hard for them to scent me unless they cut all the way back to the North. I waited until they were about as far SW of me as I wanted before I could possibly lose sight of them behind a hill then let out a couple howls. They stopped and stood there for a while then slowly started working North. I let them close the distance to what I thought was around 250 yards or so and they hung up. I waited as long as I could before they started to get a little antsy and drew down on one and touched one off. I heard the Wump and it went down in its tracks. The other one bugged out and again I thought it was over 350 yards when it stopped an thought possibly I could get it to come closer but it took off. Ended up with no shot but it headed West barking and howling, so tonight I'm heading a mile West and going back after him. It ended up being only a 164 yard shot. Seems I've been off by at around 100 yards on my night time range estimations lately. That one made my total for the year at 17 and with Mitch's 3 gets us to 20 with plenty of time to get more. Now I think I've got this year up to date. Hopefully this won't be the last. Rob
  9. Went out earlier in the week and had a little luck. First set I called in one that handcuffed me. It popped out 50 yards from me on my left and I had a heck of a time twisting for the offhand shot. I would have waited for it to take a couple more steps but I could feel the wind starting to hit the right side of my face and wasn't sure how long I had. Ended up hitting it but had to take a running offhand shot as it was crossing some bare spots and missed. 2nd set I was sitting on the north side of some machinery and had put on distress for a short time when a pack lit up to the West about 500 yards away. I sat quietly for 15 minutes and then howled once. They answered back. 5 minutes later I see one crossing the field from left to right. It gets straight out from me and he gets a 25 grain pill and down it goes. PD goes off and I see two more come out of the woods and are racing each other to the caller. If I would have had the shotgun with I should of had them both. I ended up with another small male but the third outran the 17 Rem. #13 and 14. The next night I talked Mitchell into going out with me for a couple sets.We set up in the open on the South side of a field in some corn stubble with the caller to the North of us. I made the mistake of sitting about 15 yards East of him. I started the caller and immediately had an answer. We sat there for a 20 minutes and had a couple cars go by. I called again and 10'minutes later I see two heading West across the field about 600'yards out. I let Mitch know and he says there's. Three. They were out there a while but slowly start our way. We're talking to each other as they come in and Mitch keeps asking me if I'm on one as he's ready to shoot and I'm trying to figure out which coyote on the left he's trying to shoot. The one on far left looks to be out there 200 yards. We argue back and forth and eventually they're right on top of the caller. I'm on one but one crosses in front of mine so I get on that one, it stops and I shoot before we count down. Mine drops and Mitch takes two quick shots as he wasn't ready yet. Totally screwed it up for him. I still feel bad today as he hasn't had many chances to get out this year and his dad gets a happy trigger finger. either way #15 for me is down and with Mitchell's 3 gets us to 18 for the year plus two trapping. Rob
  10. Minky, I've skun a few of them earlier in the year but the majority get combed out and put in chest freezers and taken in whole. The local buyers have only been paying about $5 more for green un stretched furs around here and it takes me about 25 minutes to skin a coyote and it ain't worth the extra $5! Rob
  11. #11 came after another fast set. I had went to this property earlier in the year but after the long walk in, the wind was wrong so I left. I went back with the wind in a favorable direction and a little warmer temp. I walked up on the West side of the corn stubble field and found an area that had a little dip to the South of me about 50 yards away with a hill tapering up to the South of that. The wind was from the South but very light. I turned on the caller very low and continued getting set when I looked up and see one comeing slowly down the hill directly South of me. It walked slowly to about 70 yards from me and stopped so I squeeezed off a shot and it dropped. Heavy male with a nice coat. I left that spot and hit another with no luck then headed for #3. I walked quite a ways in from the road and set up overlooking hayfield to the East and a corn stubble field to the South. I turned on the caller and did a little distress and then did some howls on my hand call. Nothing showed for almost an hour except about 6 cows that were very interested in me on the other side of the fence. I was getting ready to call it quits when I see one South of me, coming in along the field edge. I let her close the distance until she looked to be getting a little nervous and took the shot at 40 yards. Looked a little further that night. The next night I hit three spots with no takers and decided to try one last one before I went home. I had seen fox tracks crossing the road the past month or so near this property and thought the wind might just work this morning. I put the caller a little upwind of me with the hopes anything that came out would come out of the brush to the East of me and not the woods to my back. I called for only 15 minutes or so when I see him standing out there 70 yards East of me. The neibor had his yard lights on and it really helped having that little extra light( you could land a small plane out there with the lights he leaves on) I swung farther to the left to get on him but it must have seen me move and ran 5 yards and stopped again. That time he waited a little too long to leave and I dropped him. Hit it a little low but might be salvageable. Rob
  12. Gun/scope combo is pretty much whatever you have that you can shoot good. If you want to save the furs you'll probably need to go with a .17,.222,.223, .22-250 or 220 swift. Some guys use .243 for bucking the wind like say out West but the areas I'm hunting and the distances I'm shooting don't require that. I use snow camo but you can use whatever you have at night but if using darker clothing just set up close to some cover and you should blend in just fine. As far as scent, I don't think its possible to fool their nose. When they smell something that smells like a human they don't stick around long. Best bet is to hunt with the wind in your face or what I like is a crosswind so the animal has the opportunity to get downwind of the caller but they should never make it that far. If you have your eyes open! I'm sorry Mitchell. I couldn't help posting these pictures again from a few years ago. I promise to never show them again.
  13. I'd be happy with 6" of soft snow all year. The critters can move real well through it and it keeps the snowmobiles off the trails all night long. I've never tried setting up over bait. You can't place it and hunt over it where I'm at. I'd rather call them in anyway. Otherwise it'd be almost like deer hunting, sit on a trail and wait for one to come walking by. Getting bored with that. Got three more the last two nights so I'll try to catch up on the rest of the year this week. Rob
  14. We had our offroad awards banquet this past weekend in Little Falls and had a great time. Good friends and plenty of bench racing was done but can't wait until we can get back out there. Here's a couple pics from last summer. Early spring?
  15. I finally had a chance to do some hunting with Mitchell. He's been busy with the girlfriend and work and hadn't been out more than a couple times with me. We always have a great time and this was no different. We headed to a spot we hadn't hunted for two years, due to tall stubble two years ago and deep snow last year. The last time we hunted it we had three come in from the West and drop into a low spot that we didn't have a shot in. I told Mitch to head South of me and sit down along the fence line as soon as he found a spot that would let him cover that whole area. I was facing the field to the West. I looked south and couldn't see him but figured he had it covered. I started the call and played several sequences with no response. After 50 minutes I hear something behind me I turn on the caller and hear some running. I'm trying to look over my left shoulder when I hear Mitch shoot, I keep calling for a few minutes and go collect the caller. I walk over to where he was and see him down walking through the draw. After a 80 yard tracking job we recover his dog. Another disappointing runner from the 55 gr VMAX, his shots look good right behind the shoulder but keep getting runners. So we wrap up the pictures and head down the road to another spot. The moon was going down and figured we had one more set so we walked into a plowed field which is really flat with no chance to get any elevation advantage and set up together on the West side of the field. I started the caller and after 5 minutes Mitch says there's one to the left. I'm looking but can't see a thing, he starts getting into position and I still can't see anything. He shoots and then says it's down. We get up and go retrieve his coyote. It's 50 yards away and dropped at the shot. His VMAX blew a big hole in the far shoulder. I need to reload him some new rounds, those things are not working well on these things. Rob
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