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-   -   Hunting season and hiking/backpacking (http://www.adkforum.com/showthread.php?t=27879)

wiiawiwb 10-25-2020 04:00 PM

Hunting season and hiking/backpacking
 
Now that hunting season has begun in the Adirondacks, I'm wondering whether it alters your hiking or backpacking adventures.

In years past, I've always kept to my normal schedule, and locations, of hiking and backpacking. I wear a blaze orange hat, fleece top, and covering for my backpack and should be easily seen from a distance. I do discontinue my off-trail
hiking as I'm concerned it might increase a chance of getting shot.

Does hunting season reduce, or end, your hiking or backpacking trips?

Wldrns 10-25-2020 04:20 PM

I make note of parking lots full of pickup trucks. I know the areas where hunting camps are on back roads. I exercise a little more care in exactly where I go and the kinds of noise I may make, either accidentally or on purpose, especially if I am going off trail to a bushwhacking destination. And of course I pay attention to what I wear and the colors I have on (never flip a white handkerchief). I was a hunter for many years myself, and I am cognizant that others out there may not have had the same degree of care and safety instruction that my father gave me as a youth when we were hunting together or the same I tried to impart to my son and I know that he carries on in the same tradition with his own sons and daughter.

chairrock 10-25-2020 06:09 PM

Hunting is safer than driving to a hiking trail, be polite and safe

DSettahr 10-25-2020 08:40 PM

Not really. I definitely take appropriate precautions (like Wldrns states) but I never really let it affect my outdoor recreation with regards to where I go. I've never been a hunter, but I've had a number of pleasant conversations with hunters that I've encountered (both on and off trail) over the years.

FWIW: Hunting season never really ends in the Adirondacks. There is the classical "big game season," which runs mid-September through early December every year. There's also the spring turkey season, which can see moderate levels of hunting pressure. But it's worth pointing out that there's always something in season in the ADKs, even if it's just red squirrels (which are legal to hunt year-round). So you could encounter hunters any time of the year.

Buckladd 10-26-2020 11:45 AM

As a public land hunter I've had my share of encounters with hikers, including just this past weekend when we were dragging a buck out on a state trail near Lake George. 30-40 years ago, anyone you saw in the woods during hunting season was a hunter, not today.

Most are pleasant conversations. I know we can look scary carrying a gun, sweating, wearing camo and being a little "ripe" after being in camp for a few days, but, our crew are all good people who would never discourage other recreationists from enjoying the woods. Once they seem to understand that I'm a hiker when it's not hunting season, they realize we have a lot in common. I share knowledge of other hikes in the area and I've often had hikers tell me where and when they've seen deer.

Kudos to those here who dress appropriately during hunting season, and don't forget Rover!. While there are exceptions, stat's show that most shooting incidents (not accidents) involving hunters are amongst themselves.

Bunchberry 10-26-2020 07:48 PM

I am a hiker. If it was up to me, hunting would be free with more tags. Less deer mean less ticks and Lymes disease which is better for me.

I would have an organized Thruway bow/rifle hunt one morning each year. Remote areas can use rifle otherwise bow. Everyone drives to their designated mile marker starting at 5 am. Non hunters get off at 4 AM. Close the whole system for 4 hours. Hunting starts at 6AM.

Justin 10-26-2020 09:12 PM

I too respect the big hunting season and will always wear orange, and will usually refrain from venturing off trail unless Iím deep within the Wilderness & a long way from a trailhead or private property.

Lucky13 10-27-2020 09:45 AM

I bought 2X large blaze orange vest a few years ago when I thought I would start again, and I can fit it over any combination of coats I wear. I'll wear that fishing in the Finger Lakes tributaries even if it is too bright for fishing. If I were going to the mountains, I'd be wearing it there as well. Lately I wear it when canoeing on motorized lakes, especially the Fulton Chain, as there have been recent incidents involving small boaters being run over by yahoos, as "couldn't see the canoe" is an unlikely excuse if part of it is flame orange!

tenderfoot 10-29-2020 12:09 PM

Quote:

always something in season
I am often called "Dear", occasionally "Turkey", rarely "Squirrel." So we take precautions in big game season. A BIG thanks to all the hunters - as mentioned above we recognize the importance of this.

So our precautions are:
  • Blaze orange hats
  • After reading this I may pick up vests.
  • We also usually end up focusing on High Peaks. AMR land, ADK Loj area - I think these areas are less used by deer and hunters.
  • I thought recently about bear bells too. Not concerned about the bruins but figure the jingling would alert hunters. Unless they have a tag for flying reindeer.

Would be great if the hunting season reduced some of the overuse.

DSettahr 10-29-2020 01:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tenderfoot (Post 283884)
  • We also usually end up focusing on High Peaks. AMR land, ADK Loj area - I think these areas are less used by deer and hunters.

There were multiple groups of bear hunters camped at Lake Colden earlier this hunting season. I think that with the shenanigans that went down regarding nuisance bear activity earlier this summer, they thought it would be a good place to try their luck.

Somewhat ironically, every group of bear hunters came well prepared with their bear canisters. Now if only the hiking crowd could do as well as the hunters in that regard...


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Wldrns 10-29-2020 01:47 PM

Ironically (but not seriously) they may have had better luck finding bears if they camped like too many hikers do with unprotected open food containers.

WBB 10-29-2020 03:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Wldrns (Post 283888)
Ironically (but not seriously) they may have had better luck finding bears if they camped like too many hikers do with unprotected open food containers.

It's illegal to hunt over bait. :):):)

Lucky13 10-30-2020 02:09 PM

I remember Gary Lee, in a year like this with no berries and a low mast crop, saying that a hunter who wanted to score a bear could do worse than cooking a half pound of bacon for breakfast, and then sitting 100 yards downwind after breakfast!

hikingandwildex 10-31-2020 04:01 AM

Aside from wearing bright orange clothing, I limit my off-trail travel and visitation to places with high concentration of hunters such as state forests and multiple use areas (especially around sunrise and sunset). Not only for my own sake, but also for the hunters who wouldn't be too thrilled with me scaring away game by trampling through the wilderness.

Buckladd 10-31-2020 06:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lucky13 (Post 283892)
I remember Gary Lee, in a year like this with no berries and a low mast crop!

This is a good acorn year in locations. It's raining them on both sides of Lake George. We saw two bears last week. One guy, who hasn't hunted with us in a few years, let one go by 20 yards from him thinking our gang wasn't interested in a bear. My cousin missed one later that day, perhaps the same bear.

As for hiker clothing, its not so much what to wear, but what not to. Avoid black, white, brown and gray and you s/b fine. Not that a little orange or highway yellow hurts.

Neil 10-31-2020 08:12 AM

While bushwhacking in hunting season I have carried an FRS family radio and left it open on channel 5, which is what most people use. I was on my way out of the Sawtooth Range a couple hours before sunset with about a mile of whacking to go. (near Alford Mtn.)
I heard two hunters talking softly. Something like this: "I'm going to circle around the big spruce and come towards you on the west slope."

I realized they were coming in crystal-clear so I keyed my mic: "hiker coming through, what is your position"?
Hunter:"Are you in need of assistance?" Then, "see any deer?" Me: no but I heard a bear higher up on Sawtooth 2".

Once we all knew where everyone was I felt safe to continue. I was wearing blaze orange.

Earlier that same morning the Averyville parking lot was full of pickups. I headed out pre-dawn and wore two headlamps. The one facing backwards I set to blinking and as I walked down the Pine Pond Road I turned my head slowly side to side like a lighthouse beacon.

Wldrns 10-31-2020 08:12 AM

My father always cautioned against wearing white and brown, and especially not ever to flip out a white handkerchief, as it looks very much like the tail of a departing white tail deer. blaze orange was not commonly worn in the 60's, so it was always something red, like my red wool jacket (that I still have, though it fits tight now).
I had an uncle who wore a full blaze orange jump suit, something we had never seen before (or since). We thought he looked ridiculous, but he was certainly very visible from a long way off.

Mallard1100 10-31-2020 09:07 PM

It was already stated above but statistics do show you have a higher chance of getting killed or injured in a car wreck driving to your hiking location then being shot by a hunter. I am a hunter and not a hiker although much of what I have done in the Adks is more “hiking” with a Rifle then hunting at times. Haha. No need to worry about us we are sharing and enjoying the resource just like you. Both sides have something to offer. I met a hiker years ago deep in the Siamese wilderness who was a wealth of information and extremely friendly. He told me so much about game in the area that to this day I regret not writing down his contact information. He could not believe we were at this location and the feeling was mutual. It felt good to see a friendly face. Where some blaze orange and have at it. We are all not as different as you may believe. We all strongly believe that preserving the land and resource is paramount. The only difference is you carry trekking poles while I may carry a rifle. Enjoy the season.

Buckladd 11-01-2020 06:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Neil (Post 283898)
While bushwhacking in hunting season I have carried an FRS family radio and left it open on channel 5, which is what most people use.

If you have a scan function on your radio you can hear all channels. However, there are sub channels too, and that is what we use.

Woodly 11-02-2020 06:24 PM

Deer are wearing orange now?
Nice young buck.

JimVroman 12-14-2020 04:47 PM

Hikers generally stay on the trails, unless they're bushwhacking, in that case, it's best to wear blaze orange during the hunting season. Backcountry hunters use the trails to access remote areas. Those folks use the trails for easy access, not hunting.

EagleCrag 12-14-2020 09:10 PM

As a hunter, it bothers me that hikers are afraid of getting shot during hunting season. The vast preponderance of hunters are safe hunters and don't shoot if they aren't certain their target is a deer. Look at it this way, if hunters thought there was a chance they might get shot, most would not be in the field. The fact that hunters are carrying guns don't make them any less a target than a hiker yet hundreds of thousands take to the woods each year. Wearing some blaze orange is a good precaution and hikers, in my opinion, should feel comfortable hiking anywhere during hunting season, I'm also of the opinion that Adirondack hunters are safer than downstate where the ratio of "nimrods" is probably much higher. Hunter education requirements for hunters has been effective at reducing hunting accidents.

wiiawiwb 11-04-2021 09:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Neil (Post 283898)
While bushwhacking in hunting season I have carried an FRS family radio and left it open on channel 5, which is what most people use. I was on my way out of the Sawtooth Range a couple hours before sunset with about a mile of whacking to go. (near Alford Mtn.)
I heard two hunters talking softly. Something like this: "I'm going to circle around the big spruce and come towards you on the west slope."

I realized they were coming in crystal-clear so I keyed my mic: "hiker coming through, what is your position"?
Hunter:"Are you in need of assistance?" Then, "see any deer?" Me: no but I heard a bear higher up on Sawtooth 2".

Once we all knew where everyone was I felt safe to continue. I was wearing blaze orange.

I think that is a very good idea. I'll start bringing my Midland with me so I can monitor discussions.

Buckladd 11-06-2021 07:51 PM

Twice, so far this season, I've been in observance of a state hiking trail while hunting. One day I counted 13 hikers in 30 min, and only two were wearing clothing that I would consider logical for hunting season. I'm not saying hikers should have to wear blaze orange (or pink), but I'd be happy just to see them not wear black, white, gray or brown clothing.

wiiawiwb 11-07-2021 09:30 AM

I don't know why the light wasn't going off with those 11 hikers. Nowadays, I wear a blaze orange hat or vest and I have a 2nd vest I sprawl onto the front of the backpack (the back of me) so someone can see me from the front or back.

We all hope that a hunter wouldn't mistake them for a deer even if they were wearing camo or brown but that can happen. No reason to tempt fate when blaze orange is cheap and readily available.

Zach 11-07-2021 10:48 AM

My winter coat is black, it's one of those heavy duty nylon things that only comes in that color but never wears out. I do wear a red hat with it, so that might help a bit. Also all the boots I own are either black or brown. I can see the importance of not wearing only those colors, but not to wear them at all could be a challenge.

montcalm 11-07-2021 11:09 AM

You can wear black and brown. Heck you can wear camo. But if you do you need a blaze color over top - one of those thin vests and an orange hat is best.

I usually just wear a red hat, but I don't really go out all that much where hunters are during gun season for deer. I do this as much to not disturb them as to not get shot.

I have been out in late deer season - maybe muzzleloader and had hunters be quite rude to me though in the Adirondacks. I was on trail and not doing anything stupid, but I think they were upset to see anyone.

St.Regis 11-07-2021 05:42 PM

Those hunters that got upset with you were out of line...I'm a hunter, but understand that the woods on public land are shared with the non-hunting community. I always assume there are other people in the woods. If you're a hunter and don't want to see other people on hiking trails (on public land), get away from those trails. Ethics and common sense go a long way. It's a two way street, but when you have a gun, you have to always be cautious and know your target and beyond

montcalm 11-07-2021 06:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by St.Regis (Post 287632)
Those hunters that got upset with you were out of line..

I think it was a NIMBY situation. And shoulder season tends to be pretty quiet so I can understand their frustration. They weren't the only wieners I've run into on a trail - they come in all shapes and creeds.

TCD 11-07-2021 06:41 PM

Agree with the above. I don't hunt, but I hike and bushwhack a lot, all year round.

Much of my travel is in the High Peaks region, which makes it easy. In the High Peaks, there are areas where most of the hikers are, and very few hunters. Then there are other areas where it's mostly hunters. But there is a pretty good separation that minimizes any conflict.

Sometimes I will be bushwhacking in Hammond Pond, or Van der Whacker. There, I expect more hunters. Like Montcalm, I don't want to barge into a hunter's area and spoil the hunt. I recognize that I have all year to visit these places, but the hunters only have a narrow season.

Of course I wear my orange. But also, if I get to a place, and I see a bunch of "obviously hunter" vehicles, I have a back up plan and I go somewhere else.

The woods is big; there's plenty of room for all of us.


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