Mountain lion season so far

The mountain lion season kicked off the first of January and SDGFP is already reporting 9 lions (4 females) have been taken.

Remember the season statewide season runs Jan. 1 to March 31 or when 45 lions have been taken or when 30 females have been taken.

No lions have been taken from Custer State Park so far.

If you are hunting and want text updates on the number of lions taken Text “SDGFP lion” to 368638 and GFP will send them out to you.

Here is the rundown on the lions that have been taken so far from South Dakota Game Fish and Parks.

Mt Lion # Date of Harvest Sex Estimated Age Weight Location of Harvest
SW-1 1/1/2011 M 3-4 127 Custer
SW-2 1/1/2011 M 6 148 Custer
SW-3 1/2/2011 M 3 105 Pennington
SW-4 1/2/2011 F 5-6 90 Pennington
SW-5 1/2/2011 F 3 85 Pennington
SW-6 1/2/2011 M 7 147 Lawrence
SW-7 1/2/2011 F 2 81 Custer
SW-8 1/4/2011 F 5-6 97 Custer
SW-9 1/4/2011 M 1 58 Pennington

My Hunting Year in Review

I may have spent more days hunting in 2010 than any other year. From a spring bear hunt in Montana through waterfowl and pheasant season to a elk hunt in the hills it has been a great, and successful hunting year for me. 

Bear Hunting

My 2010 hunting season really started in May when I traveled with my dad outside Thompson Falls Montana to take in a spring bear hunting. This wasn’t your sit above bait bear hunt.  Hiking over 10 miles a day along logging trails, drainage ditches and hillsides this was hard work but in the end it was worth it.  The second to last day I took this mature brown phase black bear and I couldn’t be happier.  One side note.  Bear ham is delicious. 

Montana, as I said in my last post with the Black Hills, should be on every hunters bucket list.  Whether you are hunting, elk, bear, deer or fly fishing along one of it’s blue ribbon rivers it’s a wild place that anyone who loves the outdoors would enjoy. 

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Goose Hunting

When SD GFP upped the early goose hunting limit to 8 this year I knew there was possibility for some great hunts and that is exactly what we had.  Whether it was with Luke, My dad and brother, or Father in law and brother in law we never got skunked when we went out this year.  My most successful day was hunting over a small dugout the geese were using to rest after feeding.

 

 

Duck Hunting

Luke and I spent a lot of days this year duck hunting and we had some great times. I estimate I bagged around 80 ducks this year by myself and I know Luke exceeded that number. Whether flooded corn, sloughs, picked corn or big water if Luke and I had a day off together during the season we were probably out in the field trying to shoot ducks.

Deer Hunting

I didn’t get to deer hunt as much as I would have liked but it was no ones fault other than my own.  I have yet to fill my archery tag and I have doubt that I will.  After passing on some small bucks on my days spent on the stand rifle season was here before I knew it.  I took a respectable buck on the opening weekend. He tastes delicious. 

 

Pheasant Hunting

Pheasant hunting since I can remember has been good.  We took large numbers of birds throughout the season, but perhaps more important than shooting birds is the time I get to spend with my family, great memories are made stomping through the fields every year.

I can only hope my 2011 season is as successful both in game taken and memories made as this year was.

Hunting Elk in the Snow

When my dad, brother and I drew cow elk tags on the second draw for the northern unit of the Black Hills I was pretty excited at the thought of a freezer full delicious steaks and burger.  Mother nature, however had different plans. 

Heavy snows just before Thanksgiving had moved most of the elk out of our unit and to lower elevations by the time the December season rolled around.  Cutting tracks was difficult, as we hiked several miles from the road through knee deep or higher snow only to find old tracks.  On the last day of our hunt we finally found some fresh tracks unfortunately so did the other 10 hunters in that area.  Hiking deep into the woods following fresh tracks we heard a shot ring out over the next ridge sealing our fate of getting an elk by pushing the elk herd deeper into the forest and out of reach for that day.

For me, time spent in the hills is never wasted.  Even though we didn’t bag an elk spending time hiking the same trails I did when I was younger is reward enough.  Hiking miles through snow filled pine forests that open to calm untouched meadows provides a peace that is hard to match.

The variety  and abundance of wild game in the hills is simply astounding.  Every night, after a day of hunting, we would drive to the flats to glass. Watching hundreds of mule and whitetail deer come out of the hills to feed.  Flocks of a hundred turkeys could been seen making there way towards the forest to roost for the night. 

If you enjoy hunting or the outdoors, try for a tag in the Black Hills.  Get out of your truck, out of a tree stand and hike.  Get deep into the forest before first light and glass a ridgeline or better yet listen to the sound of a huge bull bugling through a valley. Fill your tag or not you won’t be disappointed.

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