Woodsman Guide: Best Places to Hunt During Winter
Hunting is an activity you can enjoy all year round. Although the animals and best places to hunt change, there are always opportunities somewhere in the country, whatever your preferred method of hunting.
Best Places to Hunt Rabbits and Hares
You can find cottontail rabbit across the state of Utah. This a good option for amateur hunters, as the terrain where the rabbits live is easy to hunt in and you only need basic equipment. The best places to hunt are anywhere with dry, brushy washes or with rocky outcroppings. Cottontail rabbits are more common in hills than flatlands, as they need broken terrain to hide. You can often find them under rocks and brush and sometimes in burrows.
Although the bird-hunting season has already finished in Minnesota by winter, the rabbit and hare season is just getting started. A top option in Minnesota is the snowshoe hare, as you can hunt these animals on public lands. Plus, with no underground burrows, they are easy to roust.
Best Places to Hunt Deer
Normally, the best places to hunt deer in the winter are the Western states. However, the tough winter last year has left a shortage of deer in Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Idaho, and Oregon. Luckily, if you’re a deer hunter, you still have options.
Deer is one of the most popular animals to hunt in New Jersey, particularly in the winter. January is even better than December, as, in addition to muzzleloader, firearm, and shotgun seasons, there is also bow season.
Best Places to Hunt Grouse
Utah is home to dusky and ruffed forest grouse. You can hunt the birds at any time of the day, as they spend most of their time on the ground. However, you are most likely to be successful if you hunt when the grouse are feeding in the early morning. If you are hunting with a dog, you can also be successful at mid-morning, by which time there will be ample scent on the ground.
Michigan is one of the best places to hunt grouse in the U.S. Whereas small-game hunting has become less available over the years, grouse still prevails in the state. The main reason for this is because Michigan has a huge amount of forest land. Especially useful is the successional forest land, where the edge habitat is sought after by grouse.
Best Places to Hunt Migratory Birds
Its long coastline makes New Jersey a top spot for hunting migratory birds. Depending on the month and region, you may be able to find Canada goose, brant, and various breeds of duck.
Plan your winter hunting trip to one of these best places to hunt to increase your chances of a good season. Make sure you arrive prepared with warm clothes, waterproof boots, and plenty of water and snacks as well as your hunting gear.
- Caroline Mayou