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Grouse 2022

  • Reef Whooligan
    Participant
    Posts: 1610
    #2150070

    I went for 1.5 hours Saturday morning and both of my honey hole spots had grouse feathers in the entrance and no birds which is super rare there. I’ve never seen anyone go to either spot before so that sucks. A third spot I flushed a couple but couldn’t see them through the trees. Wasn’t great and I guess I need to find some new spots.

    On my own property, where I don’t hunt grouse, I almost ran one over driving home and had one fly across my hood when I left the next morning. Had two sitting on a trail visible from the cabin when I let the dogs out in the morning and flushed a couple more checking trail cams. They better hope public land starts panning out or they’re going to lose their sanctuary status lol

    Reef Whooligan
    Participant
    Posts: 1610
    #2150071

    Yeah, like you guys have said pheasants its harder to do, but I have been successful most times. Sure makes light work of it for sure.

    Pretty much always works for me with pheasants but I think you have to go slow and steady to give things time to pull apart.

    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2150154

    Only did a short outing on Sun. One grouse flush. Deer ticks were definitely out.

    I hit a spot Friday that was loaded with them (small wood ticks) yet others were not. Definitely spotty.

    steelslinger71
    Participant
    Posts: 101
    #2150159

    You guys that are putting your finger in the breastbone and pulling the neck before you do that put the bird breast down and take your knife and turn it sideways and cut just under the shoulder blades all the way to the neck. Flip the bird over and put your finger in the breastbone opening hold the neck down with your left hand and pull the breast up. Easy peasy and you will be holding a super clean breast in your right hand. Takes hardly any force at all with the shoulder blades cut. Works on any upland game bird.

    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2150163

    You guys that are putting your finger in the breastbone and pulling the neck before you do that put the bird breast down and take your knife and turn it sideways and cut just under the shoulder blades all the way to the neck. Flip the bird over and put your finger in the breastbone opening hold the neck down with your left hand and pull the breast up. Easy peasy and you will be holding a super clean breast in your right hand. Takes hardly any force at all with the shoulder blades cut. Works on any upland game bird.

    Do the wings stay attached to the breast?

    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3233
    #2150179

    Got out this weekend with my son for a short hunt. He shot a shotgun for the first time so that was exciting. That was just shooting at a can he’s still carrying his BB gun in the woods.

    As for the hunt, flushed 6 birds in about an hour, only saw 3 of them briefly, no shots fired. Still really thick foliage where I hunt. Dog was loaded with deer ticks. Should be good in a week or two with some leaves coming down.

    steelslinger71
    Participant
    Posts: 101
    #2150186

    Yep the wings will still be attached to the breast.

    ganderpike
    Participant
    Alexandria
    Posts: 511
    #2150198

    Definitely jealous of you folks who live in the Range with all those grouse. The table fare and wing shooting is tough to beat.

    Got my MN prairie chicken this weekend, saw 7, killed 1. Good dog work, lots of miles. 3rd time chasing them, been successful the last couple times.

    Annual Vermilion grouse trip coming up soon along with a Sharptail trip in NW MN. Hope some leaves fall soon!

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    Gitchi Gummi
    Participant
    Posts: 1204
    #2150267

    Photo dump from a couple outings so far. Not too bad for an old swamp collie

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    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2150276

    Jesus, you’re slaying them. Im guessing that Golden is 12?

    Gitchi Gummi
    Participant
    Posts: 1204
    #2150294

    She actually just turned 9, believe it or not. Shes got a very gray face for how old she is.

    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2150348

    She actually just turned 9, believe it or not. Shes got a very gray face for how old she is.

    That’s great. My last Golden hunted until around 10 then made 15.

    Gitchi Gummi
    Participant
    Posts: 1204
    #2150349

    That’s awesome – that’s a great run with a golden. Do you have another one now?

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 7857
    #2150355

    Not too bad for an old swamp collie

    That’s more grouse than I’ve harvested in the past decade. I’m seriously impressed by hunters who consistently put those things in the bag. I got the pheasant thing down pretty well, but the grouse…not so much.

    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2150475

    That’s awesome – that’s a great run with a golden. Do you have another one now?

    Yes. My current one is 2. She has the tools but having a tough time settling her down. Not enough field time so it’s taking longer than it could. Still relying on my 11 Yo pointer.

    Gitchi Gummi
    Participant
    Posts: 1204
    #2151396

    Another good morning in the woods with my dog Finley. First sprucie of the year. Colder temps this weekend for sure. Found clover and berries in the crops of the birds I cleaned

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    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2151458

    Sweet. I hunted a little Sat morning and got 2. Too many other things to do over the weekend. Colors sure were nice up north.

    Bearcat89
    Participant
    North branch, mn
    Posts: 10303
    #2155782

    We didn’t shoot any. A few missed shots and a few that were gone before we could shoot. Buddy and I took the 2 11 year Olds out. Did 8 miles of thick stuff. Had a nice little fire and had hot dogs over it. All and all it was a beautiful day to be in the woods.
    The bucks are marking up everything right now. Lots of scrapes and rubs

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    ganderpike
    Participant
    Alexandria
    Posts: 511
    #2155829

    Brought my boat to Vermilion last October, fishing sucked. No boat this year, apparently fishing was great. At least the grouse hunting was great too. Walked 18 miles, killed 13 grouse. 38 flushes. Dry conditions didn’t help scenting.

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    beardly
    Participant
    Hastings, Mn
    Posts: 355
    #2155867

    Shot 2 spruce grouse. It has been years since our group has shot one. Definitely different meat and taste.

    Northcoast
    Participant
    Posts: 24
    #2156416

    My two teenage boys, one of their friends, our British lab and I had a great day on the Sunday of the MN school MEA break. 3 man limit. We hiked a good mile from any accessible atv trail and found lots of birds. My youngest (16) limited out with his .410 side by side. Was a great day.

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    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 7857
    #2156422

    Wow nice bundle of grouse there. Where about do you hunt?

    If I remember correctly wasn’t Sunday of MEA that really hot and super windy day? It was like 80 degrees and winds gusting to 40 mph, wasn’t it?

    Northcoast
    Participant
    Posts: 24
    #2156424

    Yeah it was warm, think we had low 60s. We hunt at our cabin on the north shore – cook county.

    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2156451

    Holy crap! That is a pile of Grouse!

    Northcoast
    Participant
    Posts: 24
    #2156481

    Yeah, best day we have ever had. We focused on the youth deer hunt Friday and Saturday, saw more moose and wolf sign than deer so we switched to birds, turned out to be the right call.

    Gitchi Gummi
    Participant
    Posts: 1204
    #2156514

    My two teenage boys, one of their friends, our British lab and I had a great day on the Sunday of the MN school MEA break. 3 man limit. We hiked a good mile from any accessible atv trail and found lots of birds. My youngest (16) limited out with his .410 side by side. Was a great day.

    nice work getting those boys (and you) on those birds! I’m sure they will remember that day for a long, long time.

    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3233
    #2156593

    Nice work boys. Some good grouse numbers this year which is awesome to see.

    Had a good day with my uncle last week. Flushed about 15, shot 6, plus a woodcock. Almost all the woodcock were gone with that early cold snap.

    Then went out a few days later with a buddy and flushed 9 or 10 but never got any good looks. At one point I knocked one down, and he was flapping in the leaves thought for sure we were on the board, only to have him get up and fly away again. One of the craziest things I’ve seen grouse hunting before.

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    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16542
    #2156632

    Ive seen the “get up and fly again” routine more than once. If they start walking calmly after coming down and are within range they get a load of 7.5’s in the noggin. IF I’m hunting without a dog of course. Im jealous. Sure with I could have hunted northern MN this year instead of my marginal ground in Wisconsin.
    At least I am shooting a lot of pheasants now but MAN I would like to hunt some thick Grouse!!

    tegg
    Participant
    Hudson, Wi/Aitkin Co
    Posts: 1450
    #2156641

    Scrolling thru the pics there are a number of different phases represented which is interesting to see.

    The hunting I’ve done so far has been represented by many flushes but very few shots. I’d say these have been the best numbers I’ve seen since the 80s. With some warmer days in there the biggest downside has been ticks.

    I know a lot of people on the forum aren’t big fans but I tried some woodcock on my new pellet grill and they’ve turned out great. Nothing fancy. Just a rub and time on the grill.

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