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Thread: Planning SD trip, will be our first

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    1,880

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    i think the big issue will be finding cover to hunt. even roadside ditches will be cut and baled too.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Posts
    2

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    From what the USDA drought monitor showed, the drought is focused in the central to North West part of the state leaving the eastern third dry to normal.

    Don't let this talk change your mind go you won't regret it. Take a rifle if pheasant hunting is going good prairie dogs and varmints are always an option. Deer are options also if there are leftover tags, regardless you will have fun and experience relaxation like never before if you truly like hunting the great outdoors. I come from a town of 20000 plus which is to big for me. You don't get that there, big towns might be 1000 residents and that's few and far between.

  3. #13

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    Roosterbuck, I think you have gotten some really solid advice from everyone. The drought may affect the bird numbers, but I have learned not to worry about negative reports. You guys will have the trip of a life time regardless of how many birds you see or bag. The open land and beautiful scenery is half the trip to me. I am a non-resident that makes the pilgrimage from Florida every year to hunt for a week or so. My first year making the trip was in 2013 and it was that year that SD game and fish released the brood report in late August that said they expected a 64% decrease in the bird numbers from the previous year. We almost cancelled our trip because of the report. Fortunately we continued with our plans that year and had a great time. Because of that first trip, I fell in love with pheasant hunting and the state of South Dakota. I bought my first pointer when I got home and I have made the trip every year since. We have moved around to different areas every year and we have hunted a mix of private and public land. I guess you could consider all of my previous trips "scouting trips", but they have all been successful. All of our hunts have been fair chase wild birds. We have consistently done well every year despite moving around. Like others have said, if you want to find birds look for good cover, with food and water nearby. Search the public land atlas and drive around putting eyes on the pieces that you think look promising. I would not tell you to hunt in a mowed ditch but, I am always amazed at the places a rooster can hide. I have found them in short grass, tall grass, no grass, fence lines, tree lines, next to a barn, in a mowed ditch, next to a rock, you name it and they may be hiding there. Just when you think the hunt is over, one will flush out of the most unlikely place. I have learned to stay ready all the way back to my truck. With all of that being said I think you will have a wonderful time regardless of the bird numbers. For the most part I have found the people of South Dakota to be friendly and hospitable. Don't be afraid to talk to people and ask questions. Happy hunting!

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