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TheMadCatter’s 2022 Adventure Thread

Started the day of strong with a capture midday! I made the tough decision to not collar this deer because it was smaller and underweight. It was a tough call, but, I stand by it!

Later tonight we decided to sit the dropnet and caught ourselves two more deer on a great double drop! The deer regulated temperature great and we worked them carefully and efficiently.

We ended up getting two recaptures! One from last year and one from this year. They don’t seem to mind getting caught more than once. We let the one deer go and the other from last year was worked up. We have collared both of her fawns from this year and now her (again)! We then had another single at another trap location.

I decided since the third trap wasn’t getting action to move it to a new location and we have lots of deer coming up and checking it out tonight. Crossing our fingers hoping they start to get more curious and feel comfortable going in!EE100358-6D1B-40F4-AB20-81DF8E7352C9.jpegCF8566D8-654C-4B68-B057-A38A1AB6BC28.jpeg6C4DDBFB-ABC1-4EC3-9ECD-6DE51C97F935.jpeg638FB6D6-E25A-4107-99CE-6BC8C891D714.jpeg
We caught yet another this morning, another doe. I decided to hit the gym and hit a solid 3.10 miles @ 20:45. That sub 20 mark is inching closer.


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We’ve been pretty busy reworking our system to adapt to all the birds, squirrels, and raccoons that are setting off our traps. It’s been just about impossible to go even a couple hours without it getting set off, but, we finally figured out the tension and caught a couple deer this morning. We caught our biggest (probably oldest) deer of the season a monster doe yesterday. We also got to see the albino, she looks gigantic compared to the other deer out in the fields.



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I had a fantastic day today! Walked 7.2 Miles and found a 159” dead head in one of our study areas and I’m able to keep it! Best part it was on public land!

We ended up catching a Buck tonight dropnetting and the mud, wasn’t all the fun, but, we got it done! I know the picture sucks my phone was covered in mud.

Now I have to brag a little...after a couple weeks of intense training and hard work I was able to break 20 minutes in my 5k for the first time in a couple years. I can’t wait to run this summer and see what I can really do in a road race!


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I ended up finding my first shed(s) of the year a great Illinois public land buck! Happy Valentine's Day to me!

It's been a slow last couple of days, but, we got it done last night in the cold! We're hoping to catch a couple more at this location tonight and crossing our fingers. We're almost done with our season and I'll be heading to Texas soon to guide turkey hunters and I'm still looking for a summer wildlife job, it's tough in the wildlife field!

Had a raccoon climb in the bed of the truck while we were waiting for deer, always a fun time. I haven't found any sheds, but, I found a GeoChache in the middle of the public land.


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Caught an absolute TOAD shed buck. He had over 6” pedicles on him, I’m positive he’ll be an absolute unit this fall. We also caught another doe this morning and I found a little 3pt shed after walking 7.2 miles.5BF24ED9-B3DC-4CCB-A0DE-83E073B7006D.jpeg


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I've been busy the last month doing my hunting research for this fall and getting everything ready for when clients show up this fall. I ended up applying for Oregon, California (Raffle, I'll apply for regular draw later if I don't draw anything), Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Arizona (Didn't draw Elk), Alaska (Didn't draw), Virginia, Kentucky, Maine, and I'll apply for Texas. I accepted a position doing Bighorn Sheep capture in Montana from April until September. I took a trip to Illinois to watch ISU play, we know how that went. Grabbed some bear bait in Wisconsin on the way back to Iowa for Idaho this year. Since I'm working in Montana I figured it would be beneficial to go back to my spots in Idaho to bait bear.

Took some time to shed hunt in Wyoming and picked up 48 total and logged 43 miles and spent a night in the backcountry tucked in tight with shed antlers. I'll be in Idaho here in the next week to find bait bears and then off to Montana for work. I might go turkey hunting in Montana if I can find some, I'm sure I'll have some free time or find it.

It is insane how busy you keep and how well organized you have to be to plan all this out and keep going. Always on the go.
Had to test the truck today to make sure my tires were good and no other issues in deep snow. Went into the Wyoming high elevation backcountry driving around, everything seems sound in the snow! Off to Idaho to pick up my bait permits in the morning. Gonna grab my Mountain Lion and Wolf tags while I’m at it since I have the free time.

After getting stuck in the snow a couple times, I was able to get one of my barrels in. Gotta see a couple Moose which is RARE and ZERO Wolf sign! Unbelievable! I’m so happy they killed 30 wolves in the area. There’s now Mountain Lions again, but, far and few between.

I hiked about 4 Miles into my FAVORITE bait site where I’ve killed most my bears...and they clear cut it. I couldn’t believe it! Went to my second spot about 1/2 mile off the road in a different spot and a lightening strike caught it all on fire last year and burned like 30 acres. So, I’m stuck scratching my head on where to put my other two barrels. I think I’m gonna try the clear cut area and hope for the best because I had over twenty different bears at the site in a month two years ago. The other spots I’ve found are too competitive as there bait tags every 200-300 yards from previous years.



No luck drawing my Colorado Sheep tag, but, I've been able to catch a couple sheep so far this year.

I’ve been out of service the last two weeks glassing up sheep and hiking around some of the gnarliest country! After a long week I spotted the first lamb of the season and caught it! Hopefully this young Ram grows into a big boy some day, but, the odds are stacked against him. We caught three total now!


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Sorry I haven't updated lately, I've been super busy and haven't been on my computer. But, this is what I've been up to...

May 11th, 2022 -

“I don’t have time”

I kept repeating that to myself and it became reality. Instead of “I have three hours after work.”

I took those three hours last night and lucked into a Bighorn Sheep skull, an Elk shed, and even got a 25 minute turkey hunt in on some public land. I called two Jakes into 15 yards from 500 yards out. They didn’t know what to think of the Eastern decoys! It’s been non-stop glassing sheep all day long in some crazy topography. I’m beat! I don’t say that very often, but, I’m worn out. But, I got a day off and I’m headed to Idaho now to check my Bear baits.


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May 12, 2022

Well, after the eventful day yesterday I had to keep the ball rolling! Killed a beautiful black bear in Idaho on my day off! Hiked to my baits and found out a couple of bears hit one of my baits. I went back in with another load of bait for my barrel and the bear was on the bait. I grabbed my camera and got setup really fast because I knew he’d wind me quick. I was lucky enough to get the camera up and smoke him with the Savage Arms 110 Ultralite 28 Nosler! Gotta love when a plan comes together! Got some morels to boot!

I just got back to the ranch (11:25pm) and got the creepiest feeling that I was being watched. I hung my meat outside to age (34-36 degrees out tonight 35 right now) and put my skull and hide in the freezer. Went back up stairs to grab my meat because something just didn’t feel right. I step out the door and go over to my meat and as soon as I leave the door a WOLF rounds the corner. Pretty sure we both wet ourselves and I hustle to go back inside. But, ended up getting a video of it! Couldn’t believe that a Wolf is that BRAVE! Closest encounter I’ve had with a wild Wolf in my life.

May 18th

Killed another bear and got lots of Sheep, same old stuff. Still have yet to kill a color phase, maybe some day!

May 20th

The snow just won’t give up! 21 degrees this morning on the mountain. Was a white out for most the day up top.

May 21st

Well, had a difficult day! Had to rock climb to the top of a peak to find a lamb that had succumbed to a crack in the rocks. It’s a sad reality that some of these lambs won’t make it, but, that’s what we’re trying to figure out...why they’re not making it. Took some time after work to look for Moose paddles and after hiking around a bit I ended up finding my first Montana Moose paddle and it’s a dandy!


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I might or might not have ran down the stairs to tell everybody in our Sheep Bunkhouse I drew a Sheep tag like it was Christmas Morning...


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