• Wisconsin Deer Hunting at Turtle Creek

    Welcome to the heart of deer country, located only 90 minutes from the Twin Cities. We're whitetail deer outfitters in western Wisconsin, offering free range deer hunting. Whether you prefer archery or rifle season, we invite you to deer hunt Wisconsin whitetail with us.
    In the hills of western Wisconsin, at the northern edge of the Driftless Area, you'll find rolling hills, tangled creek bottoms, and agricultural buck habitat.
    We are a small outfitter, taking in a limited amount of hunters, keeping our quality high, so get your name on our list early.

 

Its interesting to follow a buck via trail camera, and see how often a particular deer will show up. We are the home range for certain bucks, while others pass through or just visit periodically. This buck was consistently on trail cam from early in the year until late October. Then he disappeared for 2-3 weeks. I figured he was chasing doe off the property, was taken by another hunter, or just wasn’t hitting the trail cam locations any more. Then he returned shortly before rifle season. On opening morning of rifle, he presented himself in the open. Pretty crazy really, since I believe there was only one daylight trail cam of him all fall. You never know when that trophy buck will pop out of nowhere.

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I know that you, I, and Turtle Creek Outfitters are all about deer hunting…….but hey, its spring and the Brookies are in. Besides our usual spring, deer stand work, the Toms are gobbling and the trout are in. I just had to post this impressionistic Brook Trout photo, plus a few more taken with the phone. Its incredible what great photos can be captured with a phone.

Brook Trout are the only native trout in much of the eastern USA. They require the coldest and cleanest oxygenated water of all midwest trout species, which usually includes Rainbows and Browns around here. Turtle Creek is generally a class 2 stream, however, we have class 1, spring fed tributaries that feed into Turtle Creek, therefore Turtle Creek is a class 1 stream in certain sections on our property.

Enjoy Spring!Brook Trout

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The licking branch, the bulletin board, the communications center. Social media. Call it what you will, but the primary licking branch is one of the areas in the woods that are used year round, and one of the most important locations for a hunter to know.

I collected the following series of trail cam photos in 2015. In this collection the deer aren’t just working the licking branch, but they are mostly standing at the licking branch site. Spotted fawns, does and bucks all use these sites. The primary licking branch sites are used year round, other sites seem to be active only in autumn.

In select photos the single licking branch is visible, yet the bucks are standing tall, reaching high for the brush, far above the licking branch. Guess these bucks wish to leave their scent as high as possible, leaving a sign for other deer who’s the boss now.

I hope you enjoy this collection of trail cam photos. Just another look into life in the woods.

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In 2014, Greg’s first year at TCO, he did not shoot a buck. However, he did see many bucks and plenty of daily action. So he decided to return in 2015.

Opening day, 7:30 a.m. All is well as Greg watches a small buck feeding 150 yards out. Then, at the edge of the woods, still in the shadows, he spots another buck. No need for the binoculars this time around. The buck finally exits the dark woods and walks into the open, past the smaller buck. This buck is not interested in feeding. He continues walking, faster, then faster, in the open. Greg can see the buck easily, but there is light brush in the way. The buck stops for some reason and looks back to the smaller buck. Luckily enough, he stopped where there was a clear shot at 110 yards. Boom! That’s all.

Patience.

I had to congratulate Greg on being patient, waiting for this trophy to clear the brush and taking the perfect shot. Not only for his patience this year, this shot, but all of last year too. He could have gotten antsy and shot a smaller buck in 2014, but he didn’t. This year his patience paid off.

Rifle: Savage 300 Win Mag Bolt Action. Scope, Luepold 4.5 – 14. You need a scope of this size to be accurate here. You can expect potential of 200-300 yards, sometimes more.

I prefer hunters with bolt action rifles. This is the perfect example of why. To me, a hunter using a bolt action, like Greg, is more patient, and will take one accurate shot instead of letting lead fly and hoping for the best.

By the way, at TCO, we don’t start archery hunting until the end of October. We then hunt until the week before rifle season, rest the land and start over on the opener of rifle.

This buck had been trail cams numerous times for several years. He was a regular. Although, I don’t believe anybody had ever spotted him while hunting. This year he vanished from trail cams for 3 weeks, during the peak of the rut. I was thinking he wouldn’t return, or had been shot, then, thankfully he returned.

The last photo shows Greg indicating to the trail camera that he shot a 10. Happy! Very happy. He’s smiling inside.

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Ethan scored his first buck ever, his first time hunting at Turtle Creek Outfitters. As you all know, sometimes it just happens that way.

Ethan’s Uncle has been hunting at Turtle Creek Outfitters for a number of years, previously coming alone. This year he brought his nephew along. I believe it was their second day in stand. Ethan was hunting a new stand on the island. It was late October, the rut seemed to be waiting for the starting whistle, temps in the 60’s, light breeze, blue sky, no deer around. (By the way, some hunters might say the rut never did start in 2015) Ethan and Uncle were texting about the slow day, chatting about coming in. It seemed more like summer to them, than autumn, deer hunting weather.  Uncle left his stand and was walking toward Ethan when he gets a text, “I just shot one”. Wow! Uncle was literally a minute or two from busting that chance!

Ethan, in stand, heard something to his left. He turns and sees this buck thrashing the brush about 40 yards away. Its thick in there. Ethan grunts. No response. Thrashing continues. Grunt again, nothing. He grunts a couple more times. The buck never acknowledged the grunts….but eventually the buck continues on the trail which leads right by Ethan, then stops with his vitals covered by a tree at 12 yards. Ethan draws, shoots to the back side, barely missing the tree. A few hundred yards later, they find him dead, laying right on an ATV trail.

Congrats Ethan!

We hadn’t seen this buck very much. I’ve added a couple trail cam photos below. On the profile, first photo, he looks like more than a 2 1/2, but when you look at the final two images, he appears bigger and older with a rounded nose. Probably 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 years, but on the second, straight on photo, he looks even older. I really don’t know.

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