View Full Version : Road Hunting, What is it???
05-29-2001, 12:42 PM
I hear so much about stopping road hunting and being P.O.(upset) by people driving by them on 4 wheelers and P.U's(trucks) and how we should all get out and walk...Are the supposed to be painted lines or signs where we all must leave our vehicles? ###Should there be no shooting from abandoned or closed(temp. or permenent) roads(remember, they are still roads) ? ###No shooting at game animals seen from a road for 24 hrs(sort of like they do in Alaska with aircraft)? ### No spotting scope or binocular use from a road? (still a form of hunting). ###No stopping or looking at Game from a road if a weapon is present? ###No spotting scope use from the hood of a vehicle? ###...A question was asked on the old board about seeing a small 3 pt while driving out of the woods 1/2 hr before sunset on the last day of season. ### It asked, "what would you do?" ###Not one person said "pass it up, you're road hunting. ### How many times have you seen a Covey of Chukar, quiail or even a bunch of Dove while driving around and stopped and hunted them? ###Aren't you road hunting? ### ###What makes some of you think that driving down an old beat up dirt road or any other type for that matter during hunting season, means one is road hunting? ### My opinion would be shooting fm or on a vehicle or along an established road,or shooting across a road would qualify as road hunting. ###Not driving to an isolated area and coming across game and then chasing it on foot. ###How about you? ###From what I've read it sounds like there are some out there that want us all to start at some imaginary line. ###Or worse yet, get tired of the hassle and quit hunting altogether.....Hronk
05-29-2001, 01:30 PM
I won't criticize anyone for their choice of hunting methods, as long as it's legal. ###My understanding is that shooting from a vehicle, or from or across a public road in is illegal in CA. ###As long as you get out of the vehicle, and get off the road, it's legal. ###On private property, I believe you can shoot from vehicles, and certainly from private roads.
(Edited by shooter44 at 1:31 pm on May 29, 2001)
05-29-2001, 02:48 PM
Road hunting to me is driving along the road and shooting from your vech & or shooting across your hood. or from the back of a truck!!! None of that should be permited.. But I've seen it done...
05-29-2001, 02:59 PM
Ok, I have to open my mouth on this one. Hronk, I see no problem with seeing a buck, flock, herd or whatever from your vehicle, stopping, getting out and heading out to stalk, flush or chase it.
I do get real heartburn from some of the other things I have been witness to. People sitting in the trucks, scoping the area ahead of where I am stalking hoping to shoot something I kick up. Stopping and shooting out the window of their truck at something they see while their are other people in the field and on the road. Spotting me sitting on a hillside glassing another hillside and riding an ATV up to me to ask me if I have seen anything. Cutting and knocking down barriors so that they can get their vehicles into restricted areas. And I won't go on.
When someone does stuff like this with total disregard for other hunters, landowners and game laws, I have a problem with it. Sorry for the rant, this is a touchy one for me.
05-29-2001, 03:31 PM
Big Dog. ###I agree fully what you have mentioned is either illegal unethical or just plain idiotic. ###I guess what I am refering to is the post on the Sierras where more than one person said ..close the roads, I hate road hunters....I know what you have said happens. ###So we close all these roads because of something that has happened to a friend of a friend, or even to one of us. ###Reread some of the posts on the "Eastern Sierra in trouble" and it is scary. ###The "I don't do it that way so close it attitude" is very prevailent in a minority of the Fly Fishing community and look what power they are wielding. ###I would hate to see it here...And I'm just a lowly Bowhunter.....hronk
05-29-2001, 03:35 PM
I agree with your fears. Somewhere, somehow we need to find a middle ground. Too bad there isn't an idiot test given before handing out licenses. haha
E A Hunt
05-29-2001, 04:01 PM
Idiot test ??? Where was I ?
I kinda like guys that drive around all day. Keeps the deer moving.
As far as birds. I'll drive till i find them and then start walking. No problem there.
two years ago at grey lodge I drove for about 3 hours all around that place untill i kicked up a fat doe. Then I stalked her for about 20 minutes and bang. freezer full.
Was I road hunting ? ### heck yes I was 102 degrees out and a million skeeters flying around. If I ever get drawn again for G. Lodge I'll do the same thing. Up in C 3 near my other house I never drive though. I kinda hang a few hundred yards from the road and hope the trucks push the out.
05-29-2001, 04:32 PM
But that is the point that we pointed out that makes the difference. You did get out of you truck and stalk the deer. I guess we need a definition. Maybe road hunting vs vehicle shooting.
05-29-2001, 06:29 PM
I have a feeling I'm one of those folks Hronk is talking about, so I reckon I'll take a stab at this road hunting discussion too. ###Besides, it's a really hot topic for me on a lot of levels, and one I can't really do much about.
First of all, you can look in the DFG regs to see exactly what illegal road hunting is. ###Basically it's shooting from or across the right of way of a public road. ###Public roads include most of those dirt roads and trails that cross our public lands. ###Roads don't have to be paved.
This is a law that is seldom enforced, due in large part to the simple fact that we don't have nearly enough game wardens and rangers to adequately patrol the roaded areas. ###Seems like I remember a statistic about having about one warden to every 200 miles or something like that... ###I'm bad with numbers so someone is welcome to correct me if they know the actual stat. ###
But I don't think there's much argument that none of us agrees with illegal road hunting.. sure as hell none of us would admit it. ###So anecdotes about the "Texas Trolling Towers" and folks rolling down the window to shoot from the heated (or air conditioned) cab of a pickup are pointless in this discussion. ###I think we all agree that those actions are wrong.
Then you get the folks like Big Dog mentioned (and I've seen it too... way too many times)... the inconsiderate and idiotic... as well as the plain lazy. ###
In my favorite part of the B zones, I watch them daily, driving along the roads with glasses and a rifle in the seat... or with someone glassing from the bed. ###(By the letter of law, as long as there's not actually a round in the chamber, your gun is not "Loaded" while you're cruising around out there...so this is still legal.) ###When something is spotted, someone often jumps out and puts the scope on it. ###I can't count the times I've looked up into the glassy one-eyed stare of a rifle scope at 250 yards as some yo-yo tried to put horns on my head. ###
I've also watched, way too many times for my taste, as these "hunters" locate game and start shooting at insane ranges. ###In the 1999 season, I witnessed a 1000 yard shot. ###There were about three hundred yards of good cover that guy could have used to get closer to his deer. ###I know, because I was down in it. ###The only reason I could see for taking that shot from the road (just far enough off of it to be legal, based on where I found his shell casing), was pure laziness.
In this case, the shooter got his deer with a supremely lucky hit that severed the deer's front leg, just below the knee. ###How many similar shots are going off all over this state, with less spectacular results? ###How many wounded deer are disappearing into the manzanita because they were too far away for a clean kill or for tracking? ###
How many "hunters" don't even bother to track a deer that ran off after a 500 or 1000 yard shot? ###I've watched these yahoos shoot, stand there discussing the shot for a minute, then get back in the truck and drive away without ever bothering to go and check for sign. ###You want something to feed the antis... there's something they can really sink their teeth into. ###
On a most basic level, I usually try really hard not to cast judgement on people who are at least respectful of the law and safety. ###I also prefer to see some respect for the game, but I recognize that's really a philosophical stance that isn't really defensible. ###Once you leave the realm of the legal, then you're floundering in dangerous waters no matter where you stand. ###
At any rate, when I think of road hunters, the first ones I think of are the flat-out law breakers. ###I see them every season, almost every weekend... so no one needs tell me they're not out there. ###The second thing I think of are the ones who at least bother to get out of the vehicle and shoot from a legal spot, but take insane shots and seldom (if ever) follow up. ###
Is "Spot and Stalk" road hunting? ###That's some of that wavery ground. ###Some people think that the guy I mentioned with the 1000 yard shot was engaging in spot and stalk because he got out of the truck. ###I think it requires a little more effort than that to be ethical... but defining ethics is really a personal call. ###
In big country, I suppose there's nothing wrong with covering a lot of territory until you find game, then getting in there and working for it. ###Personally, I'd rather find a smaller piece of good territory, scout it and learn it, then hunt it hard. ###But, and here's where it gets tricky... if I'm driving down the mountain and see a deer down in the canyon, I'll not lie to you. ###I'll get out, get close enough for a good shot, and take it. ###I don't think I'd blame anyone for that...and I believe that anyone who says he wouldn't take that opportunity is full of bs.
So when I speak of road hunters, I'm speaking with a certain level of duplicity. ###On the one hand, I'm talking about the scofflaws who really shoot from the vehicle. ###On the other, I'm talking about the guys too lazy to get down on the trail..guys who would rather scope and shoot from within a few feet of their vehicle. ###The former is wrong without question. ###The latter is really a matter of choice... no matter how anyone else, including myself, thinks of it. ###And that's what makes this argument so potentially incendiary.
As far as relating this to the discussion of roadless areas... road hunters are the least of the reasons I feel the way I do about closing roads. ###I'll only add that I never said to close "ALL" roads, in part because the people who do choose to "road hunt" still should have the opportunity to do so. ###Not to mention that there are some people who have no alternative for access into the wilds...the handicapped and the aged. ###
05-30-2001, 08:35 AM
Speckmisser, your key words you will get out and get close !! Seeing game from the road then going after it is ok.. Your not standing there shooting it from your truck.. Or taking them 1000 yard + shots from the side of the road.. Some people call walking the road, road hunting.. But when walking you still have to go in after your game..
05-30-2001, 01:52 PM
Hello Hronk, how have you been? ###I personally believe road hunting is not so much as "hunting" from a open road way but more in the lines as others have said, shooting from the vehicle or road way. 1. it is illegal 2. it is unethical. The only time I and the DFG feels it is warranted is for the disabled.But, lets all look at the "bright" side!! ###There are now several of the Robo Deer' out and about, it will weed out the legal and ethical, then when these individuals are in court it builds the county fish and game commission coffers. We all know that in any form of "activity" there will always be those using short cuts. As long as the majority of us don't, then when confronted with a situation as posted in others above, we can at least let those people know that we as other hunters won't tolerate such abuses, we have their discription, vehicle license number etc. and have no qualms about reporting the act. When we as a whole monitor our own ranks, and we all expect this, then and only then will the majority "fall" in line. But, there will always be the true "outcasts" and these are the ones to report. Good subject, let's everyone know we are all on the same playing field and have the same rules. 'til next time, keep 'em sharp, Chuck
05-31-2001, 01:02 AM
In our Hunter Ed. Classes we teach that a "road" is any "way" open to vehicles, be it dirt roads, logging roads or whatever. We also ask the class the "what do you think and what would you do" question. You'd be surprised at the answers we get.
You'd also be suprised at some of the statements made in these areas by some of the parent that accompany their youngsters to our classes. Make your hair stand on end!!! It's kinda embarrasing to have to correct them in the presence of their youngsters but we have a job to do and we do it. More than once, during a break, I've had to ask a parent to keep his opinions to himself.
Chuck, is your offer still open for a copy of the robo deer tape for use in our classes. I'm sorry, I just forgot to contact you after you made the offer on the old Calif Hunting and Fishing forum.
06-01-2001, 01:38 PM
Jerry!!! Sure you can have a copy of the "Robo" tape, In fact we are going to give you a great price, only $399.99!!! ###HAHAHA! not really ###E me directly or call me or Joe and we'll get you set up, take care, Chuck
06-05-2001, 03:02 AM
I have a hunting buddy that has a disabled permit so he can shoot from his vehicle. ###Where we hunted was well patroled by DFG. ###I've watched him get daught shooting from his truck ###and get a big ticket. ###You should see the wardens face when he hands it back along with his disabled permit. ###I've watched him do this twice.
At that point in time, you better make sure your stuff is right. ###After we stop laughing, the warden checked everything, even the vehicle and atv tags and sticker. ###
Two different wardens, and they both took a look at everything.
Game wardens do not like being the butt of jokes.....
06-05-2001, 09:57 AM
The first year I bowhunted in d-8, I arrived 3 days before the opener to scout it out and hopefully come up with a stalk/ambush plan. i spotted a couple of nice bucks working an area. And by the way I spotted them from the road. It was now up to me to devise a plan that would put one in the meat locker. On opening morning I went out early, long before lite to set up. I was set up and from the area I was set in, I could hear and see the massses of headlites coming down the forestry road. What a nitemare. These guys, loaded in the cabs and beds of their pickup trucks, making more noise than a band of indians on the warpath. When I decided to get myself out of my cover, I saw guys on the road, running with arrow nocked, I asked if they had got a shot off. The reply was not yet, but we will. Now that is a very bad example of road hunting. I left the area and returned 2 weeks later. Didnt see any bucks and was going to go home. I decided to park my truck on the side of the (road) and glass a draw. In doing so, I spotted a deer down in the draw, my binocs are poor and I couldnt even tell if it had a rack. I spent, 2 hours creeping into the area where this deer was, wind in my favor. At twenty yards, a very nice 3x4 stood browsing on elderberry. Needless to say I launched an arrow and put meat in the freezer. To me that was road hunting as I know it, not the previous story I mentioned. I have never hunted the opener weekend since and won't.
Happy and safe hunting (road or otherwise)
06-05-2001, 10:41 AM
Your hunt sounded like a great example of both extremes. ###What you did sounds fine to me, and I wouldn't personally rank it as "road hunting". ###Maybe "road scouting"? ###
But those guys running up the road with arrows nocked and bouncing their trucks up and down the road all day...those are "road hunters" in my book. ###For better or worse, that's how I classify them. ###I try hard not to judge them for their choice of hunting technique, but it's tough. ###The best I can do is accord them a civil respect when I meet them. ###
I think the biggest reason I dislike the folks I consider "road hunters" at their most negative is the utter annoyance they cause me, personally, when they come clattering up and down the roads, then sit up on the ridgetop with spotting scopes yakking to one another as if nothing in the canyon can hear them. Big game hunting, to me, has never been a social occasion. ###Sure, back at camp after a day in the bush is a great time to crack one open and laugh and chat by the fire (or the lantern). ###But the hunt itself is a time of quiet and concentration of the senses. ###
I'll be the first to admit I hate the idea of working as hard as I do to get into a good hunting spot and then having some yahoo from up the canyon pull over and shoot at a deer right behind me without so much as breaking a sweat. ###If the shot was reasonable (range and safety) and legal, then there's nothing I can do but pout about it. ###I even helped a fellow track one, as much as it galled me to make his life any easier. ###I did let him drag it out by himself, though. ###
But when that kind of thing happens, I can't help feeling cheated... and wondering why I work so hard when I could be sitting up there on that road too, just like those guys, sipping a hot cup of coffee or an ice cold soda and kicking back on a comfortable seat with the AC or heater running.
What bothers me too, is the number of times a bunch of road hunters has stopped by my camp to "chat", and they climb out with beers in their hands and loaded guns on the seat. ###Not to mention the amount of trash I find on the ground where some of them stop to scope. ###I try hard not to cast further stereotypes, but these are things I see often...not just once in a while. ###Maybe a beer or two on a hot day won't fog your mind too much, but dammit...I'm down there in that canyon too, and don't care much for the buzz of bullets passing by my head. ###
So there ya go. ###That's why I feel, personally, the way I do about "road hunters". ###In my own opinion, what they're doing isn't hunting. ###But I recognize that it's my opinion, and as long as they're not breaking any laws they have as much right to carry on as I do. ###
06-05-2001, 09:09 PM
I'm from Missouri and we have an entirely different situation here, as far as hunting terrain. ###No Mountains or really, really, vast, remote forest so I guess this may be a different situation and not pertain to you out west guys
I hate Road Hunters and this is my definition and problems with Road Hunters here in Missouri:
1. ###A very popular method, especially during Turkey Season but very prevalent during Deer Season:
Driving around public roads surrounded by "Private Property" till game is spotted (or a gobbler heard) and then going after it, either by shooting from the vehicle (highly Illegal) or getting out and going after it, tresspassing - I quit hunting near any roads, even if I'm on private property, because of these so called "Hunters" ###I don't believe most of these guys even know where they are!
2. ###In the Nat'l Forest, during Turkey Season especially, I've seen guys on ATV's driving thru the woods, usually on old, dirt, logging roads, coming to a stop (but engine not even turned off, and "Calling" from the ATV, then continuing to the next ridge in 30 seconds and stopping again, etc....This "Hunting" taking place in prime time of the day and prime woods...no telling how many REAL hunters they messed up with this method
3. ###Guys just driving down any road, feint road or trail, in the Nat'l Forest, never getting out to "Hunt" at any time, just driving, driving, driving, hoping to spot game and getting a shot, going by true hunters time after time.....
Going after game from a vehicle is not my definition of Hunting. ###To me, Hunting is figuring out the animals habits or making a guess where he'll be at a certain time and watching that trail, watching my step, my smell, trying to see that nothing detects my presence. ###When I leave the area, I don't want anything to even know I was there.....
and I especially don't want some Road Hunter to drive by and mess up any "Real" Hunters
06-06-2001, 07:26 PM
Seems like a lot of discussion over something you can't change. ###I have hunted several states where ATV's are basically outlawed for off road use and still had them all over the place. ###As far as vehicles on the roads go, it is legal and I do not feel it affects my hunting a whole lot. ###I archery hunt from a tree stand as far away from the roads as I can get. ###Sometimes that is only a few hundred yards
(private timber company lands etc..) and the deer are not too stressed. ###I have more issues with the "real hunters" who are constantly hiking up and down my trails. ###Since ###they have as much right as I do to be there I just grit my teeth and bear it.
06-07-2001, 01:39 AM
Just out of curiosity, how successful is "road hunting" compared to, say, stalking, still hunting, ect.
When I was a deer hunter we would drive as far back in on a logging road as we could go to get away from the all nite parties in the campgrounds, set up camp and then still hunt a couple miles from camp.
Don't remember ever seeing deer from the road while driving in. I would think vehicles make too much noise.
06-07-2001, 08:53 AM
I guess you'd have to define "successful", Jerry. ###
Apparently it must be somewhat successful... At least where I hunt. ###In the last five years I've hunted there, I have seen at least one deer taken by the "road hunters" each year, and seen and heard countless shots. ###In that time, I've also found two does and a spike lying in the bottom of the canyons with bullet holes through their carcasses. ###Hard to see horns at long ranges.
When I talk to some of these guys, they tell me "it's the only way to get a deer in this country." ###Well, we all know that's B.S., but they do seem to get their share of shots. ###
The vehicle noise isn't as much an issue, in part because a lot of these guys are spotting deer down in canyons and then taking 200 - 500 yard shots. ###Ask them, they'll tell you so themselves. ###
As for the deer, I've seen them stand grazing while vehicles drove clattering by, 200 yards away. ###In high traffic areas I think they develop a sense of security...as long as the vehicle doesn't stop. ###They can hear the motor slow and idle, and they disappear post-haste. ###Interesting to watch, but aggravating when they're working their way toward your stand when the road hunters pull up. ###
My take is, if road hunting was completely futile, it wouldn't be as popular as it appears to be. ###
06-07-2001, 01:00 PM
A lot of spot and stalk bow hunters in this area use Spotting scopes from the hood or window of a vehicle to glass distant hillsides. Looking as far as a couple of miles away to find deer, watch where they are going and then where they bed. ###Then the spot possible approaches to get with in 30 yds for a clean shot. ###We are talking about mountainous sage filled areas with not very much growth over belly high. Once a sneak is started it can take as much as a couple of hrs to get into position. ###Many times the bedded Deer has moved. ###This is a very exciting and sporting way to hunt these bucks that depend on there sencss to survive. ###It's a whole different ball game than what some here have seen regarding to rifle hunters......hronk
06-07-2001, 01:25 PM
There is nothing in the world wrong with what you just described. ###Even if rifle hunters do the same thing, then they're at least hunting...working for the game. ###I think I said before, but personally, I feel like it shows some respect for the critters to get in there and work for them. ###Folks who aren't willing to exert a little effort beyond driving around, may as well drive out to a cow pasture and shoot Bossie. ###
But that's just me. ###Or maybe it isn't. ###
At any rate, I have the greatest respect for anyone who can get close enough to cleanly arrow a buck in this state... especially on public lands. ###
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