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#6913905 - 10/09/17 09:23 AM Hunting River Bottoms
Ryan06 Offline
Light Foot

Registered: 02/11/17
Posts: 18
Loc: Wichita Falls
How do you guys do it? This may be a really simple answer, but I am new to deer hunting(well I've never killed one at least). This year I finally have time to hunt like I want, but no funds for a lease. So I will be hunting public lands which are largely river bottoms in my area.

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#6913917 - 10/09/17 09:34 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
SapperTitan Online   content
Taking Requests

Registered: 11/17/10
Posts: 22074
Loc: Killeen/Ft Hood, TX
Try and find a pinch point or where deer are crossing the stream or creek whatever. Can be hard to work the wind in the bottoms so try not to get too close to where you expect the deer to cross.
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#6913964 - 10/09/17 09:51 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
hook_n_line Offline
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 01/20/12
Posts: 4337
Look for trails on shelves. If there are open areas near the bottom look for trails just a few yards inside the tree lines. Find the acorns and you'll find the deer. I used to love hunting river bottoms. My favorite spots were where the main river might have a smaller creek or branch on it with shallow water or swamp area.
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#6914082 - 10/09/17 11:26 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Texas Dan Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 07/28/08
Posts: 12227
River bottoms are known for big bucks.

If you can find white oaks with acorns, you will find deer eating them. There is nothing deer like more than white oak acorns. They are truly like ice cream to them.

Look for small places along creeks where the banks are not as steep on both sides, and the water is not as deep, making it easier for deer to cross them. Deer, and especially older bucks, are lazy creatures and travel along routes that offer the least effort. It's why saddles along ridges make good stand sites since it means a shorter climb for deer wanting to cross over the ridge.
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Spring, Texas

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#6914125 - 10/09/17 11:50 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Ryan06 Offline
Light Foot

Registered: 02/11/17
Posts: 18
Loc: Wichita Falls
Those are helpful tips! Thanks. rifle season can't come soon enough. My lack of skills is enhanced with bow season

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#6914144 - 10/09/17 12:02 PM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
DPirates80 Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 10/17/16
Posts: 1283
Travel up those creeks and look for some oak flats(small to large area of oak trees dropping acorns). Everytime I hunted national forest. I would find more tracks and signs in oak flats that are close to the main travel creeks(where the deer traveled down to main lake).

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#6915136 - 10/10/17 01:08 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Brian C. Online   content
Woodsman

Registered: 11/14/14
Posts: 207
Loc: Location
Proximity to cedar thickets can help. Deer in North Texas like to bed up in cedar thickets. Try to find trails from those thickets to oaks and play the wind. Pinch points in river bottoms are hot spots but common knowledge on public stands.


Edited by Brian C. (10/10/17 01:09 AM)
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#6915307 - 10/10/17 07:41 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Drogers6771 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/01/17
Posts: 151
Loc: Huntsville
Spent my first 10 years of hunting in the Sam Houston Natl Forest scouting out creek bottoms and looking for white oak groves. They gotta have food and water so find those oak groves. Scout yourself some deer trails and find where they are bedding which is usually a small clearing within a dense thicket, and hunt their paths between bedding areas and food/water sources.

Scrapes are handy for finding an area that is holding a dominant buck. Don't trust rubs, as bucks usually make rubs on the outside perimeter of their range.

If the woods are thick then you're gonna do best to find a "funnel". Deer always take the path of least resistance, so a logging road along the side of a thicket and an easy spot to cross a creek are a couple good spots to check for.

Good luck buddy! I had a lot of great times walking the woods with my pops, learning patterns and habits that a lot of these box blind shooters never had to bother themselves with. We couldn't bait, and we could leave a stand in the woods for more than a weekend so you really gotta read the sign!

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#6915462 - 10/10/17 09:41 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
cameron00 Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 01/08/09
Posts: 8678
Loc: Texas
My old place was entirely bottom land, and it had (generally) much larger deer than the rest of the county. Bottom areas are typically very nutrient-dense.

Figure out when the rut is first and foremost. The best tool you can have is the doe bringing the bucks into you when they're completely mindless. The bucks will also keep the does from freaking out because they're so annoyed by the pressure they're getting from the men that they won't have as much time to worry about some slightly off smell.

Then invest is some camo and find a trafficked area. Look for scrapes, rubs, etc. I killed a buck just sitting under a big tree last year and saw 3-4 I would have shot but didn't have clear views of the deer with all the trees in the way. Suckers were running all over the place looking for tail.

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#6915524 - 10/10/17 10:29 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Erathkid Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 15296
Loc: Dollas,Taxes Bluff Dale Tx
All good advice above. SMZs (streamside management zones) usually have an open understory. You can see quite a way. Find a pinoak flat that's producing and back up to a large tree. Carry a bipod or shooting sticks. I used to do this on the Neches bottoms. It works


Edited by Erathkid (10/10/17 10:31 AM)
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#6915628 - 10/10/17 12:11 PM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Ryan06 Offline
Light Foot

Registered: 02/11/17
Posts: 18
Loc: Wichita Falls
Thanks for the advice guys. Not every forum is this receptive to newbies. I have my new popup blind and new leupold on my 270 both ready to rock. This will be my year! Plenty of trees in the areas Ive been looking into. I'll post any success after I have some venison heart and backstrap

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#6915776 - 10/10/17 02:59 PM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Erathkid Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 15296
Loc: Dollas,Taxes Bluff Dale Tx
up
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Life is too short, as is. Don't chance it.
Don't text and drive.

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#6916143 - 10/10/17 08:55 PM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Brian C. Online   content
Woodsman

Registered: 11/14/14
Posts: 207
Loc: Location
Good luck
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God Bless Texas!!! Godspeed our Military!

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#6916401 - 10/11/17 06:54 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
nak Online   sleepy
Pro Tracker

Registered: 08/26/12
Posts: 1105
Loc: DFW
Good luck


Small Oxbows lakes in the riverbottom have been good to me, especially where the true river banks are high and steep.
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#6916559 - 10/11/17 09:06 AM Re: Hunting River Bottoms [Re: Ryan06]
Drogers6771 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/01/17
Posts: 151
Loc: Huntsville
Originally Posted By: Ryan06
Thanks for the advice guys. Not every forum is this receptive to newbies. I have my new popup blind and new leupold on my 270 both ready to rock. This will be my year! Plenty of trees in the areas Ive been looking into. I'll post any success after I have some venison heart and backstrap


cheers

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