Tips for Desert Mule Deer/West Texas Mule Deer

Arminho

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Jun 3, 2020
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This will be my first season chasing mule deer in West Texas on 7500 acres along the Rio Grande. No roads, just washouts. Pretty rough country and I'm looking forward to the experience. I've brought out some water already (2 250gal IBC water tanks) connected to water troughs with a Little Giant float valve. 3 cameras have been placed as well during my first scouting trip. Will be heading back in early August to bring more water and see if there is any activity. On my scouting trip, I saw plenty of mule deer droppings, lots of canyons, etc. Have a couple of good glassing lookouts marked.

Can anyone suggest some good reading material specific to hunting west texas mule deer/desert mule deer? Anyone have any specific tips to that part of the state/country? Hunting pressure on this piece of property is pretty low, just Aoudad hunting on one corner of the property I believe.
 

effinnewb

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Jul 26, 2020
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Never hunted that area, but have been Hiking in it some. I know that the wildlife will be heavily patterned to the consistent water sources especially in times of drought. Near the grand river may be the best place to hunt as opposed to artificial water sources. Sounds like a cool place though! I’ll be watching for some pics! I’m no help on literature either...
 
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Arminho

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Just got back from a little scouting trip and to fill up some water tanks. It's quite green all over the ranch and has been raining quite a bit. Game cameras showed only javelina, bobcats, and foxes. Will hopefully go scout again early September. It's looking like 2-3 miles hike in...
 

FLAK

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:cool:
Thats a lot of land.
Might need a partner.
Bet there's some Aoudad there somewhere.
 
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Arminho

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Jun 3, 2020
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Getting ready for two long weekends hunting and the temperatures should be cold. 20s in the early mornings, with high of upper 40s low 50s.

I actually managed to get a couple of bucks on camera near my water sources which is good news. One looks thick. Planning on just hiking to elevation before sunrise and sitting all day with tripod, bino, and spotter.






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Arminho

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Ignore the time stamp, here’s the thick boi



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Ndbowhunter

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May 24, 2016
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I hunted down there before

stay patient. Glass, don’t blow them out. Hopefully the weather turns crap and you can use it to your advantage
 
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Arminho

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Will do. My only concern is hiking into the glassing spots. A couple are within a mile of camp, but two are about 4.5 miles east of camp, and the campsite is on the western edge of the property. Aka I'll have to be hiking through the entire property between 4:30-6:45am leaving god knows what kind of scent. Hoping it's early enough. Don't know how else I'd get to the spots though, I don't want to use an ATV to go all the way across the property that early.
 
Joined
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Location
New Mexico
Will do. My only concern is hiking into the glassing spots. A couple are within a mile of camp, but two are about 4.5 miles east of camp, and the campsite is on the western edge of the property. Aka I'll have to be hiking through the entire property between 4:30-6:45am leaving god knows what kind of scent. Hoping it's early enough. Don't know how else I'd get to the spots though, I don't want to use an ATV to go all the way across the property that early.
Don't worry about leaving your scent hiking through in the morning, if it were an issue then no western hunter would ever kill anything. When the sun starts coming up, pay attention to thermals and what that does to your scent when planning a stalk. Best of luck, sounds like a fun hunt.
 
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New Mexico
Also, pay attention to your north and south facing slopes. Mule deer will move into the sun at first light to warm up so start your glassing there. Usually opposite in the afternoon depending on temps, they will likely move into shade for cover and bedding.
 
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Arminho

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Also, pay attention to your north and south facing slopes. Mule deer will move into the sun at first light to warm up so start your glassing there. Usually opposite in the afternoon depending on temps, they will likely move into shade for cover and bedding.

Wonderful advice, thank you.


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Kountry Biscuit

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Jan 5, 2021
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How did your hunts turn out this past year? See a lot of deer or minimal? I’ve hunted out in the Marathon/Alpine area for the last 20 years. It is beautiful country in its own right.
 
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Arminho

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How did your hunts turn out this past year? See a lot of deer or minimal? I’ve hunted out in the Marathon/Alpine area for the last 20 years. It is beautiful country in its own right.

How did your hunts turn out this past year? See a lot of deer or minimal? I’ve hunted out in the Marathon/Alpine area for the last 20 years. It is beautiful country in its own right.

I had a wonderful time but saw one doe only. I stayed up pretty high and glassed over the valley and the neighboring mountain range but no bucks. Went 3 long weekends (thurs-Monday) in a row. I saw more Auodad than I expected (40+) and a ton of javelina. Still had a good time but I think it’s just a lower deer density Closer to the rio grande. Either that or my eyes were crap and I suck at hunting

Here are some pics. I got up and hiked 1.5hrs each morning to get up to elevation. It made the sunrise worth it.







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Kountry Biscuit

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The deer numbers are down all over west texas. Some are saying the aoudad and elk populations are driving them down. We have not seen great buck numbers for some years. Still enjoyable to go out there and experience it though. Great pictures. Here are some from our ranch this hunting season. IMG_7958.JPG IMG_7962.jpg IMG_7980.jpg 02E137AF-7887-43A9-A7DE-69D513352B1F.JPG
 
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Arminho

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The deer numbers are down all over west texas. Some are saying the aoudad and elk populations are driving them down. We have not seen great buck numbers for some years. Still enjoyable to go out there and experience it though. Great pictures. Here are some from our ranch this hunting season. View attachment 255080 View attachment 255082 View attachment 255084 View attachment 255078
Beautiful pictures. Where are yall located? I have a friend about 55 miles ENE of me around the Fort Davis mountains, and they have a ton of elk and much better mule deer population.
 

Kountry Biscuit

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We lease a couple ranches around Marathon, TX. The elk population has taken off in the last couple of years. The aoudad numbers have been steadily rising as well. The deer population has maintained over the last couple of years, but I think it was down this year slightly. Some ranches do a better job of managing the herds than others so I think it probably varies.
 
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