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  1. #1
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    DIY mule deer archery hunt

    Hi folks, I'm a student and have always been a big bow hunter but school has a way of getting in the way. Anyhow, I'm looking to do a backpacking hunt in nebraska for mule deer (non-resident archery) and was hoping for some direction. I have no expectations of a trophy or even success but I would appreciate some guidance to a place with animals with a fair chance. It's a big investment for me so I want to do my homework. Thank You! Any posts, messages, or emails are very welcome.

  2. #2
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    Also I'm sorry if this is the wrong thread, i just found this resource. Please redirect me if I goofed up

  3. #3
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    Do you already have the tag? I've never hunted Nebraska so can't give you much help. I researched something similar a few years ago and I thought the Nebraska website had some solid maps available. Might start there.

  4. #4
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    Bluesky, when are you planning on hunting? Any particular area you are looking at? Game and Parks does have some great maps showing walk in hunting areas and public ground.
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  5. #5
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    Thanks guys, I was looking at mckelvie near the start of the archery season.

  6. #6
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    I haven't ever hunted there, just drove through a few times so not able to help you any. Pretty area and I'm sure you wil be able to locate some deer easily.
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  7. #7
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    Thank you for the replies. I like working for my game so I'm interested in areas that I can hike in 5-10 miles. I'm looking for an experience with some buddies. Not interested in a pay to play hunt

  8. #8
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    Welcome Bluesky: I'm from Nebraska and have hunted the Sandhills hard since 2010 (rifle only no bow hunting). Love the Sandhills, my uncle had a ranch and we spent many summers there.

    I hunt only public land and have spent many hours/days at McKelvie and the Valentine Refuge. Disease hit that area hard a few years ago. Hunting the Sandhills can be difficult. These two public areas are sectioned out in pastures via barbed wire fence, and local ranchers lease the land and run cattle in the spring / summer months. Each pasture has at least one windmill and stock tank. That means hundreds of water sources for deer. And food is everywhere...meaning the deer can be anywhere.

    There are many whitetails in the area, but they tend to stick in the lower areas near lakes and what little timber there is. The Muleys tend to hang up in the hills...again, they can be anywhere. It's kind of like finding a needle in a haystack.

    In the six seasons I have hunted rifle season I tagged exactly one Muley buck, last year. I have a cousin who lives in Valentine and for me, deer hunting is more about the Sandhills experience than it is about tagging out. I will be going back this November, and concentrate my efforts at the Valentine Refuge.

    Be prepared to walk and walk, and when you are tired and haven't seen any deer or signs, walk some more. Remember, no vehicles allowed, so you will have to pack out your game.

    Here is a picture I took at Valentine National Wildlife Refuge two years ago. 300-400 yard shots are pretty common during rifle season. Killing a Sandhills deer with a bow would be quite an accomplishment.

    Good luck and PM me if you have more questions. Daubs

    Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #9
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    Thank you very much for your response, I will message you as I get farther along in the process of preparing. That picture is beautiful. Have a great day

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    How's your research coming along?
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