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bae501

Ripley

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We're in for the 2nd weekend. Our party has grown to 8, mostly from Little Falls, my home town. We get in every other year on average, should be a good year, lots of deer. Of course Ripleys all about big bucks, not numbers.

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I've always avoided applying for the Ripley hunt because four years in the Navy taught my to avoid lines and crowds like the plague. Part of the lure of bowhunting is the solitude and lack of crowding. Are the big bucks in Camp Ripley big enough and numerous enough to put up with all the people? How crowded does it get?

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It gets crowded, no doubt about it. And with no chance to prescout, all you can go on is past experience, which makes it tougher for the newcomer. But I/we have seen some of the biggest bucks we've ever seen in there, yet to bag one though. I liken it to an opening day thing; not the conditions we want, but excitment for sure, and excellent potential. I have the whole season for solitde.

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When I was up there for annual training this year I saw a few big bucks. They were indeed trophies. It would not suprise me any if the next #1 pope and young buck comes from Ripley. That is just my opinion. It would be a good place to bring a beginning bowhunter that wants to get a shot at a doe.

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Do you know if Adam is staying in the camping area on Fri. and Sat. night? Brian (the guy that was with me at Red Lake) myself, and my brother in law are going up and staying at Ripley in a camper.
When are you going to give it a try? There aren't too many places were you will see 25 - 30 deer in one day and some are real bruisers. The day before the hunt is a lot of fun. If the weather is OK it's like a cross between the first day at deer camp and a tail gating party.

Nels

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I am getting fired up for this weekend. I read that they harvested 199 deer last week...11 more than last years 1st hunt. People I talked to that hunted said that they saw lots of deer. Of the 199 deer registered there were nine bucks over 200, all with big antler growth. The heaviest deer was a 14 point that went 237 pounds. How would you like to drag that horse out of the woods?
Anyone else hunting Ripley this weekend?

Nels

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Nels, Adam was talking about going up the day before too. Keep and eye on this thread, I will tell him to get ahold of you.

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I cant wait for the ripley hunts. I do not take part in the hunt, but I do , kinda.
I live across the river from ripley and when the hunts start, alot of deer cross the river onto my property and onto the property next door. I see anywhere from 20 to 30 deer every night. I got myself a nice 8 pt this year that swam over from camp. Thanks to all the hunters that pushed all the deer over to me.
Happy Hunting
Duck

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I have hunted ripley a few times and did get a decent 8 pointer a few trips back. I hear about all these people claiming to see 20-30 deer per day but I have yet to run into anyone up there that has seen that many. Don't get me wrong as I believe this is a great place to hunt, I am just curoius where people are seeing all these deer. We hunt about two thirds of the way up on the east end along the river and the most I have ever seen in a day is 6 deer. Just wondering if some areas have more of a deer population than others. Thanks

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Rocky, we hunt just a ways above you, in the NE corner above Pusan (?) road. I guess we usually see more deer than you, sometimes as many as 20-30/day, but not always. We've also hunted on the far west bundary below Normandy and saw pretty good numbers over there, but I think we see more now. This year was uneventful; had a few new guys squeeze one of our best spots. Unfortunatly unavoidable in Ripley, oh well. 4 of us and no onesaw a bruiser, although one guy jus missed getting a shot at a really nice, wide 8 pointer. Maybe next year...

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We hunt way up on the north end, in the oaks. Last year I saw 27 deer by 2 PM the first day. This year I saw 4 and I hunted the same tree. The area that I hunt is on a ridge of mature oaks so I can see quite a ways. This year I noticed less people hunting up there and fewer acorns which may account for the difference.
Myself and the other two guys hunting with me were hunting bucks and only saw one which was too far for a good shot so we came home scoreless.

Nels

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Nels, sounds like we're hunting close to the same area. How close to the river are you? We're just off the end of a long ridge on the south side of the road. All oaks and fairly open.

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Traveler- You are probably just a 1/4 mile north of us on the same ridge. The ridge I am on doen't go along the river but rather north and south. At the bottom of the ridge is a road and a grass field.
How did you guys do? Did you see much?
We are moving further south next time because we haven't seen very many bucks the last three years.

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