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Thread: Aberdeen or Watertown?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Posts
    10

    Default Aberdeen or Watertown?

    Booking hotel for Jan1-5 for a hunt only 3 of us and 1 maybe 2 dogs hunting all public land. Need to keep in mind that we will need smaller manageable acreage to cover adequately. Looking for opinions or experiences in either areas. I know this year will be different with all the rain and crops standing late in the season but any info will help. Wouldn’t mind the location of a honey hole either thanks in advance

  2. #2

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    In general farther west is better. I would recommend to go even farther west than Aberdeen. Late season should be great with crops coming out so late. Good luck.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    2,280

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    Quote Originally Posted by danimal View Post
    Booking hotel for Jan1-5 for a hunt only 3 of us and 1 maybe 2 dogs hunting all public land. Need to keep in mind that we will need smaller manageable acreage to cover adequately. Looking for opinions or experiences in either areas. I know this year will be different with all the rain and crops standing late in the season but any info will help. Wouldn’t mind the location of a honey hole either thanks in advance
    just so you know, internet scouting is frowned upon here......but good luck, lots of snow around.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Posts
    10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hunter94 View Post
    just so you know, internet scouting is frowned upon here......but good luck, lots of snow around.
    Sorry...didn’t mean to offend anyone,was half joking. Stupid newbie😵

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    856

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    I wouldn't worry about size of area to hunt , I`ll go into any size with my dogs, if the birds are there your dog(s) will find them.
    River - 3 yr old English Setter
    http://gundogcentral.com/view_pedigr...&generations=5
    Bella - 5 yr old Brittany
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    Ellie - 6 yr old Yellow Lab
    Jazi - 12/30/2005 -- 10/13/2017
    Kaci - 3/23/01 - -10/8/15

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    South Dakota / Arizona
    Posts
    6,127

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    Skip the Watertown area. I live there and the hunting around Watertown hasn't been very good for quite a few years. I lived in Aberdeen for over 30 years and it's much better hunting up there. Public spots are much more productive. However, Aberdeen just got about 16 inches of snow so you might want to monitor the weather.
    Janee's August Breeze - Bree
    7/6/2016
    http://gundogcentral.com/view_pedigr...&generations=5

    Godfather's Dakota Elle - Elle
    1X NSTRA Champion
    11/16/2008 - 11/22/2016
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Posts
    10

    Default

    Thanks guys,as the month winds down I would appreciate any more input on the weather conditions in and around Aberdeen

  8. #8

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    I was hoping to be hunting up around Aberdeen in a couple weeks, not sure now with that snow report, guess it will depend on how much more will be on its way between now and then.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    248

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    I would let the weather and snow depth dictate where you will go, with the option of keeping the entire state open. Not sure where you are traveling from, but if you are already traveling several hours, why not drive a couple more to get to a better area, whether pheasant number or weather related.

    For late season hunts like that, keep in mind a few safety things... I always travel with a shovel to dig myself out of a snowdrift. Tow straps. Fully charged cell phone. Food. Water (not frozen). Never leave the interstate or main highway area without a full tank of gas. You never know what can happen when you get stuck in a remote area and are 2 miles from the nearest farm and 15 miles from the nearest town.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Sioux Falls, SD
    Posts
    842

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    I’m not real familiar with public land in the Watertown or Aberdeen areas, and I don’t know the exact snow/ice conditions up there (I’m in Sioux Falls). But I’d want to get a good handle on those things if these 2 items are important: safety & seeing pheasants approximately in shotgun range. Here’s what I’m running into south of, say, Highway 14. I’m GUESSING that conditions in the Aberdeen/Watertown areas are similar.

    Pheasants can be in the cattail sloughs. By & large, people and dogs can’t. The ice/slush is terrible & now there’s so much snow on top of it, that I’m guessing even in early January, in many places, you STILL won’t be able to hunt cattails. This isn’t terribly uncommon, but this year, if you go through, you could be up to your neck.

    We’ve had enough snow & crappy weather that birds, especially roosters, are hanging out in trees/thickets near food much of the day (if they don’t have the safety of an unpicked corn or sorghum/milo field). Public land roosters, in most cases, are wise enough by now that the trees/thickets they choose AREN’T on public land. Then from 2:00-4:00 (in general) they’re out feeding & you can’t get to them. So for much of the day, most birds roosting on public ground…..aren’t on public ground. Again, not uncommon, but really frustrating since you can’t hunt the cattails toward sunset.

    If I was coming to hunt public land for a few days, I’d want to try to find a place that somehow managed to have decent ice. I’d also want to be in an area that had trees/thickets I could hunt (if not food plots), as well as have enough guys that I could effectively hunt them. As we know, trees & thickets present different challenges than a rooster in the cattails or grass.

    Long-winded, yet terribly insightful, right?
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

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