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Cobb73

SE Minnesota Public Land Questions

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Cobb73

Has anybody ever hunted the public State Forest land by Rochester or East of there? I was wondering if it is worth the time to head over there a little later in the season to do some bow hunting. Are there the same regulations on stands as there is in WMA's?

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mlvaj

I hunt south and east of rochester. I've hunted SE MN for many years. It depends on which area you want to hunt. The Whitewater WMA has lots of potential for big deer as I've seen many good deer taken out of there. Same rule applys statewide for any WMA. There's over 200,000 acres of land to hunt in the Whitewater WMA. Also, there's many hunters that uses this area, which is why we moved down farther southeast. Lots of deer and it's in an intensive harvest zone, so we can tag up to 5 deer per person. Been hunting there for the past 10 yrs or so. It's all bluff country but it's where the big boys play. The area we hunt is not a WMA but it's state forest land. Our area don't have much pressure to deer hunting but too much pressure for small game hunting. We don't usually bow hunt until October when things calm down a bit just in time for pre-rut.

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96trigger

Pretty good bowhunting, but once the lead starts to fly, you might as well leave the bow, deer get real skittish in whitewater.

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Cobb73

I am assuming that state forests have a similar stand rule. I can't wait to try this out. I have bow hunted since I could pull one back in West - Central MN, but this is a new style of hunting for me. If I were to head to bluff country should I concentrate on travel routes, field edges (if there are any) or food sources? Again thanks for the help.

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mlvaj

Where we hunt, we normally hunt travel routes. There's not a lot of open fields and if there is, the deer leave the field early and show up late. We would hang our stand in between the food source and the bedding area. You gotta remember that the does uses the trail every single day. Same routine, life or death, they'll use it, and they'll still use it after you take one. Like I said, we've been hunting down there for years, so we know which route the deer will take. When the rut gets near, just sit tight and you'll see big boy following.

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TrophyEyes

Like someone previously said. There are big deer down there, but once slug season starts it sounds like a war zone and deer either hunker down or find a sanctuary. I would suggest knocking on some doors and getting permission on private land. Most farmers down there see deer as a nuisance and would be happy if someone took the time to remove some. We hunt a 200 acre plot and removed close to 50 deer in two years. The farmer was so happy he invited us back free of charge for the next 10 years. By the way we shoot a 150 class buck every year off that farm, but otherwise we shoot only does. Just ask nicely and offer to help out one day out of the year and you will have a place to hunt anytime you want.

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troutmaster

you really got to watch out on public land down here though, there's a certain group of hunters that will walk in where you are sitting and about 20 of them will come in and shoot everything in site, rabbits, deer, turkey, any kind of birds as well. i was actually shot at two years ago walking through the whitewater area. So just be careful, and if you do see those hunters walking in a large group, try to hide so they won't see you.

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TrophyEyes

Two years ago I had someone shoot my decoy down there during archery season. I think we are talking about the same "hunters". It can get rediculous. He walk right under my stand and let one fly. I flipped out, but the guy couldn't understand me. As you can tell, I speak english.

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