If You  want access  to member only forums on FM, You will need to Sign-in or  Sign-Up now .

    This box will disappear once you are signed in as a member.


    You know what we all love...

    When you enchant people, you fill them with delight and yourself in return. Have Fun!!!

Sign in to follow this  

how do you do your drives?

Recommended Posts


This is something that I always find interesting is how other parties do their deer drives. In our area most of the parties are pretty good sized & in a two day season, the majority of them do quite a bit of driving. How do those of you guys who do drives do it?

This is what we do generally. We stand sit until 10 or sometimes 11 opening day. Then we get together verify what's been shot by the party so far & usually get those deer tagged & hung up in the shed. Naturally plenty of snacking & BSing & relaying of the "story" takes place around the pickups.

We'll than make drives until anywhere from 1-3 depending on results, weather conditions, etc. We make a few drives of pieces of ground so familiar & traditional that everybody looks forward to "the hotspot" , "the tamaracks", "the swamp drive", "the big swamp drive", etc. The guys who've shot deer off their morning stands are automatically "volunteered" to drive, unless the other hunters prefer to drive, their choice. Stander spots are pretty much known to everyone for each drive, but are clarified for anyone who doesn't know & that's where the posters will be until ALL drivers come out. The drivers coordinate & stay in visual & often vocal contact, but we drive pretty slow & quiet, the only yelling you'll hear is "slow down, we're not lined up" or "Deer!", along with the direction it's headed. We have a great time doing this & have killed countless deer this way. In years when it's really windy & the deer don't want to move this still works. Many of our deer our still killed by the drivers, as certain woods they just like to lay until you get on top of them & then cut back through the drivers. This makes for careful decisions on when it's safe to shoot & when it isn't & fast shooting when it is okay. There's something fun about seeing your buddy shoot a deer or him getting to see you shoot one. That doesn't generally happen stand hunting.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

We hunt big woods with no real defined "escape routes" so traditional drives are not real effective. What we prefer to do is use small 2 or 3 man drives--if you can even call them that.

One method uses two hunters. The lead guy will begin walking very slowly, quartering into the wind. The trail guy follows behind just close enough to keep visual contact (anywhere from 50 to 200 yards, depending on the type of cover) and downwind of the lead hunter. Sometimes the lead gets a shot at a standing or bedded deer; but, more often than not, the lead hunter will jump a deer and not even know it. The deer will circle downwind to scent the hunter and run right into the trailing hunter. The deer is usually so focused on the lead hunter they don't even notice the trail hunter. Needless to say, safety is critically important with hunters this distance apart. Just make sure that shots are taken at angles that cannot travel towards the other hunter.

Another method is to have 3 guys start in deer stands about 1/4 to 1/2 mile apart. It is predetermined which hunter will leave their stand and move to one of the other hunter's stand--making a little push to him or her. When hunter #1 gets to hunter #2 they take that stand and hunter #2 then pushes to hunter #3 and so on. It is amazing to see how many times the hunter who just made the push will get into the stand and have a deer sneaking from the new driver. Once again, use your head about where you aim and shoot, considering time and distance in relation to your partners.

With either of these drives it is fun to check the routes of the drivers after the drive and check for tracks in the snow for deer that were shot, seen, or missed completely. You can learn a lot about how deer detect and avoid hunters on the move. One last observation (sorry for the long post)--you wouldn't believe how many deer I walk right past and never see. AND, it seems like more times than not, the deer that hold the tightest are mature bucks.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I hunt in the open prairies of North Dakota and we will complete lots of drives during the season. Initially we will scout for active feeding and bedding areas. Areas with sunflowers still standing or recently cut are greatly preferred. We will then look nearby for bedding areas, in N.D.'s case it will most likely be a CRP field within a mile of the food source. When we start a drive we will never have more than 4 of us. We always stay within sight of each others and ALWAYS in a straight line. One person will also be on the highest ground at all times within that line so when someone dissappears behind a hill we can still coordinate the others efforts and maintain a straight line. We always walk slowly stopping at intervals, turning around and backtracking, following various deer trails, deer sign... etc. Deer get nervous when you stop or start backtracking. If you follow a straight line and you are not walking directly at them, in many cases they will hold tight. In one instance a few years back I saw a buck bed down on the edge of a swamp in the CRP field we were pushing. I was giving dad hand signals and which way to walk. I saw the buck the entire time in my binoculars and he was crawling on the ground on his knees staying behind dad at all times. After about 5 minutes of walking within 3 steps of the buck on a few occasions he finally jumped when dad stopped and stood there for about 30 seconds. He finally got spooked and decided he wanted out of there. Many times when we are completing a push we will be walking at least 4 sections at a time... yep... where we hunt there aren't a lot of roads so 4 sections together are not uncommon. We will make a big loop around the most promising areas. Always make sure to push changes in contours, various color transitions, windy hilltops, sunny hilltops, sloughs, rock piles...etc. Also, the biggest bucks are generally on the most visible portions of the valleys where they have excellent line of sight and good wind conditions to bring scent by them if something is downwind of them. Last year over 3 days I walked 34 miles so I make sure I am in shape before I start deer hunting. I do a lot of stand hunting with a bow but I have to say that deer drives in open prairies are very difficult since the deer will jump 200-400 yards from you. You are tired from all the walking, a deer running full open, a nice strong N.D. cross wind, a .243-06 in hand... man it just can't be beat. I'm looking forward to the gun opener. I would also say that honing your accuracy and knowing what your rifle is capable of are the biggest keys to deer drives in open prairies. It's amazing with tons of practice how instinctive shooting at running game can be. I also shoot about 2000 rounds per year through various rifles to make sure I stay on top of my accuracy. Long distance prairie dog hunting was actually the key for me to shoot accurately consistantly.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Our drives are typically 2-3 pushers and 1 or 2 standers, depending on which area we are pushing. More or less something to do during the mid-day. Yep, our party isn't very big so big drives are out of the question. We honestly try to push woods that we feasibly can't push effectively and probably walk right on by deer. Deer we shoot on drives are for the most part 'bonus' deer. A very good percentage of our deer are shot on stand.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

We hunt a 50 acre piece with three guys. There are a few main escape routes and we will cover two of the more likely areas based on wind direction.

The two standers are set up by 6:15. The remaining guy will start still hunting about 7am. If any deer move, they usually come slowly, watching their back trail. This usually lasts until about 9 am.

After that, we leave the pushing alone and just watch perimeters. The adjacent properties seem to be pushed after 10am, and that is when deer from other areas come sneaking in.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I used to hunt a lot in Ottertail County. We did a lot of drives out there on small patches of woods and corn fields. I always thought the party leaders set the drives up wrong. We always had drivers carrying weapons, and the posters were out a ways in the middle of surrounding fields. I always thought this was dangerous because you rely on a hunter judgment for safety.

My thought was it would have been better to only allow drivers to carry a pistol, and to have the posters set up on the wood/cornfield edges. This would ensure the posters are not shooting back into the woods. It would also mean better shots for the posters. I have never seen a deer exit the woods at the speed they can gain 50 yards out into a field.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  


  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Jmnhunter
      i did find out i have that same one on my 2016 and found the specs, max draw is 1625 during their "desert" test; from stuff I've found on my champion generator's website I cant tell if it'll work or not as they stated some will...
    • paceman
      I took a couple of guys from church out last night. They fish about once every couple years. I didn't think they would have the patience for walleye fishing so we went after pannies. Caught a couple of sunnies right away. For me they were small but these guys were just pumped to catch 7-8 inch sunnies! Fished for them a bit until we had about 15 in the live well. They wanted to clean them so I was fine with that. I then took them to one of my crappie spots. Not sure if they have ever caught a crappie before, right away I caught a small 9 inch one and of the guys was kind of upset I through it back. A minute later he hooks into a 13". Pretty sure most of North Becker county heard him hooting, hollering! I was laughing so hard! It is always blast taking out folks that love fish but don't fish very often. That to me is just strange. Especially around here with tons of lakes and great fishing. It wasn't fast and furious but still a solid  bite. Took about an hour to catch our 30 fish limit of great eaters. Most in the 11-12" range. I found them scattered along the weeds in 9-12', simple plastic with a twister tail or a paddle tail. It always super fun taking out fishing newbies. Pretty sure FB was full of their pictures last night!
    • skyking
      Was up last week on Kab and it seemed that your bait depended on where you were fishing. Some areas leeches did good, but others minnows were the go to. We lindy rigged the entire trip and on days when wind was gusty we did pretty good shallower with minnows in 13 to 20 ft....then some areas we were doing better with leeches 16 to 32 ft. No wind was like the dead sea.
    • Mike89
      catch and eat the crawfish too!!!
    • Uncle Boney
      I can second A Warrior.  Jumbo leeches for Walleye.  Northern were more interested in minnows and crawlers.
    • Harry Goodliffe
      A Carp Anglers Group Fishing social will be on June 23rd in Coon Rapids. If you enter the park from the Coon Rapids side (Egret Blvd), take a left from the parking lot and drive towards the picnic shelters. Take a right at the first stop sign and park in the lot. We will be fishing in the stretch or river behind the picnic shelter/playground. Start time can be before 7am and you can fish into the evening if you want. There will be medals for the 3 largest fish captured.
    • Gone Out Fishin
      Thanks for lots of good info guys.  Sounds like if I do things right I can have fish for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I'll try fishing that reef for some evening walleye. Bobber fish for some sunnies in the weeds.  @delcecchi, I catch enough Walleye in the summer that I really don't want to ask. I won't shy away from a bite. I'll check that little bay for crappies.  @vermilionfox, Wow that is a lot of location data. My PROP thanks you for the rock info!  Merry Go Round? I have another question regarding the Rusty Crawfish... are they a problem on the west side of the lake too? Bloody mini lobsters. I remember spending lots of time using orange for bass and walleye since they were a major food source. Been years since I've done that.  Gone Out Fishin
    • Parmer
      I don't think you will be able to run it on that generator. I have a yamaha 2000 and I have not tried it yet but from everything I have read you need 2800 watts to start the AC. All the 2018 ice castle fish houses are coleman mach 3 plus AC I think. 
    • BigVwalters
      The fishing was pretty decent over the weekend.  Walleyes were biting on rigs with leeches or crawlers. Caught 12 between Friday and Saturday with with 4 nice slotters.   Biggest being a 24".   
    • Borch
      Star Island in Cass Lake has remote, boat in primitive camping as well.