Toads today, tracking snow tomorrow

Last week’s column on bipolar weather couldn't have been written at a better time. From 60 degrees to 11 inches of snow in just over 24 hours. We hunters have been cursed by the weather gods the past few seasons.

Imagine my surprise to see a toad hopping up to me in late November. That was a neat sight to see, but one that warns you of poor hunting conditions. It was so hot that I had to break out the bow season clothing again. I remember wishing for cooler temps and some snow. My wish came true much sooner than expected. The snow started falling around 10 a.m. on Tuesday, and by dark had accumulated at least nine inches. This would have gotten me excited, had there not been wind gusts up to 20 miles per hour. Wind-blown snow in the face definitely isn't one of my favorite conditions to hunt. . This lasted a couple days, then it finally broke. We were now starting to experience weather conducive to daytime deer movement, and things seemed to be looking up.

With a fresh coat of snow, hunters were finally able to see where the deer have been moving most heavily. I look forward to such conditions after a long warm spell. When it is hot out and the deer aren't moving, it's easy to think there are none around. After a fresh layer of snow has fallen, you see the truth. Many deer have been moving, just not many during daylight hours. It may take up to a week of cold and snow to break the nocturnal travel pattern. Just as things were getting better, Jack Frost gets the boot again. When situations like these happen, a change in strategy may be your only hope.

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