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My son was fortunate enough to be drawn for a mule deer youth hunt at Big Bend Ranch. Unfortunately, they only have from Saturday lunch through Sunday to hunt. I've hunted whitetails all my life but never mule deer. Tips from anyone experienced in hunting west Texas would be appreciated - like where do they like to bed down, do they stay in cover if its windy, etc? We plan on hunting all day until he's either succesful or we have to leave. And has anyone here ever hunted on Big Bend Ranch?

Thanks in advance.
 

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I have hunted the Trans Pecos area South of Sanderson for 20+ years. Early and late are the best times if it is sunny, which it is most of the time there. They lay down on the hill sides when it is warm and in the bottoms of the canyons when it is cold. Take good binoculars, glass a lot across canyons to the other side hills. You can find them bedded, but the stalk is tough, they are almost always bedded looking down hill and into the wind and coming from the top you can't see them. Also take a good rifle, I hunt with both a .270 and 7MM, either or one similar will work. The trick is practicing shooting 300+ yards, which you will probably have to do. I sight my rifles in 3" high at 100 yds, puts them pretty close to zero at 300 yds. Also, a good shooting stick helps tremendously as do brush pants, snake chaps and boots, etc. I am leaving Sat morning to go. Will be there all the next week. PM me if you want to talk more.
 

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Make sure you bring GOOD binoculars, 10X minimum. Get high, glass a lot.
 

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Muledeer are very hard to spot, for someone that has not spent much time hunting them in west texas. Even very experienced hunters from other parts of the state can spend hours in good muledeer country without seeing much. I find my best bucks about 2/3s of the way up the mountains. They move better the last week of the season because of the rut and can be hunted all day long. During the middle of the day they will sometimes go to water or will be bedded down on the top third of the mountains. The country is big out there causing most new hunters to want to move way to fast, do not look for the whole deer go slow enough to see a nose, part of an antler, or white rump patch. I have sent good whitetail hunters through areas that would take me a full day to hunt and they have come back in a few hours saying there are no deer there, only to go back with me and have many deer pointed out to them. I had a new muledeer hunter with me one time and told him to watch one side of the road and I would watch the other. He would quickly glance out at the side of a mountain and then look back to the road. I asked him why he wasn't looking for deer, he said he looked and didn't see anything, I told him they were hard to see and he needed to look closer. He continued to take a quick glance out the window and the start watching the road, I told him he would not see many muledeer like that and he told me that he had looked at the whole mountainside. I looked out my side of the truck and saw a bedded muledeer buck. I stopped the truck, without saying anything except that I needed a beer. We got out, walked to the back of the truck, and we opened a few drinks. I told him there was a nice buck bedded down on my side of the truck and told him to see if he could find it. He took out his binoculars and scanned the country side while I drank my drink. After about ten minutes he told me there was not deer there, I told there was one with it's front shoulders, neck and horns visiable. He looked a while longer. I told him it was with in 100 yards, nothing, told him it was with in 50 yards of him still nothing, I walked over to him and pointed to the buck bedded down about 40 yards away and it still took awhile for him to see it. He was amaised. Do not expect them to run once they are bedded and go real slow, and do not look for the whole deer.
 

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Highball !!!!
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very good advise from all.....I would add to concentrate on the drainages . ever been Quail hunting??? the mule deer like to hold their ground and flush just like a quail ....good luck on the hunt,and enjoy the snow...off to rio frio
 

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Highball !!!!
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hydra sport...did you ever hunt the rock ravine,south of Sanderson,or the high lonesome ranch????
 

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We pass the rock ravine on 5 mile road on the way to our place. We are about another 15 miles deeper than rock ravine. The road gets REAL bad.

hydra sport...did you ever hunt the rock ravine,south of Sanderson,or the high lonesome ranch????
 

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Highball !!!!
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too bad Mrs Morgan died.....36,000 acres Inherited by a perfect sshole (a distant realative)who dont know one thing about the outdoors,or we'd still be going out there...all he knew back then was $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$...theres no telling who owns it now,saw parts of it on the net for sale.......rio
 

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Yea TP&W makes it a real pleasant experience, if you hunt THEIR land.....
They dont really want you to get anything, they're just trying to show all the other states that have excellant public land opportunities that we can do that to....
500,000 acres and they give a hole 10 permits a year....how did we get so lucky.
Good Luck to yall.....
 

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My son was fortunate enough to be drawn for a mule deer youth hunt at Big Bend Ranch. Unfortunately, they only have from Saturday lunch through Sunday to hunt. I've hunted whitetails all my life but never mule deer. Tips from anyone experienced in hunting west Texas would be appreciated - like where do they like to bed down, do they stay in cover if its windy, etc? We plan on hunting all day until he's either succesful or we have to leave. And has anyone here ever hunted on Big Bend Ranch?

Thanks in advance.
There are folks that live on that ranch that will guide you for a price.
Look in the book and get the number and call them to set it up.
Its 500,000 acres, you may need some help.
 
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