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Would you rather hunt from shore line or from an open water blind

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  • Would you rather hunt from shore line or from an open water blind

    Trying to utlilize my duck club for snows this year. I am in a great migration corridor as well as staging area for a major amount of snows. I can either hunt along the shoreline with a loafing/floating spread of socks and floaters or from my open water blind that we can put along the bank or 50 to 100 yards off the bank. The shoreline is only about 30 yards from timber is my main concern. I do not know if putting socks along the shoreline would be natural since it is so close to the old growth trees. But, my duck blind sticks out as well. I have seen snows along the shore when there are here, but most of the time they are out in the middle of the lake. The lake is 2000 acres and no one will be hunting any of it.

    The pic shows the spots I was thinking about hunting. The one in the water is our blind that is about 75 yards or so from shore. We did spend the day yesterday cutting some trees and buck brush off the point of this island yesterday. Hiding on the shoreline would be my other concerns.

    What would you guys do? I

  • #2
    Forgot to say, I would have about 400 snow/blue floaters and 1000 socks available to use. As well as a bunch of flyers and rotaries.


    • #3
      I don't have any experience with a setup like that but would rather be out in the water to be able to hunt the wind the right way and have the option for pass shooting.


      • #4
        The only wind that they would have a hard time getting to the spread would be a northeast. South and west we would be all good at either place. One way or another we are not going to be able to try it till at least the end of Feb with the weather as cold as it is. Completley different than last year for sure.


        • #5
          Going full bore on this set up this spring. Working this weekend with about 10 guys and a bobcat to remove the trees we have already cut as well as the small growth from the last few years. We will have about 100 yards of land cleared by the time we can hunt. Will get some good drone footage of the spread once the ice breaks loose.


          • #6
            Do you have access to the point on the right?


            • #7
              No we don't. We are however clearing all the little brush circled in picutre. That will leave about 100 yards by 60 yards of dry land before the taller old growth trees. Click image for larger version

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              • Cornstalks
                Cornstalks commented
                Editing a comment
                Looks like an experiment in the making. Best you can hope for is a lot of traffic coming to check it out however you set it up and make your own case from what you see.

            • #8
              Really have no idea on this, but I will say I was really hoping you went the open water route just so we can all hear how that goes. It's just done so very rarely that I don't think many will have much information to give you. The rarity of this kind of setup may give you a big edge for something the snows just never see. But I doubt it.

              My only experience with open water was setting up in the middle of a large reservoir one fairly calm sunny day nearly 40 years ago. However, I only had about 3 dozen Herter's snow floaters and given the water was 15-20 feet deep, it was pain enough to set them. A high school buddy and I laid in the bottom of our boat with a big gray canvas tarp over the whole thing. We had tied some white rags to the tarp. Would love to have had a drone back then to see how we looked from above, but I have a pretty good guess anyway. The snows that went straight into the middle of that lake every day for years, came to us on set wings that day. They came to within 300 yards and immediately rolled off and set down a quarter mile away. And that was that as every goose went to that spot. Thus my great open water experiment ended in failure! Never to be repeated.


              • #9
                If the birds do not act right, we will be pushing a blind out and running just floaters in the lake. We are torn on what to do, but like the ability to hunt off of shore that allows us to throw 1000 socks as well as the 600 floaters. But.......its snow geese so whatever takes the most amount of work is probably what will work best.


                • #10
                  Spent about 4 hours cutting and burning this morning. Had a brush hog attachment for our bobcat, man was that thing beastly! We now have about 150 yard by 100 yard clearing for a white land spread. Click image for larger version

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                  • Qac
                    Qac commented
                    Editing a comment
                    When you get your juicy spread all set up it looks like it should produce. I hunt some area that has trees/buck brush close by water and the birds don't seem to mind too much. If they see you though, game over, so take extra time to blend into your spread and I think you will be fine. Now if the eagles like sitting in the trees nearby then maybe you got some problems but hopefully not.


                • #11
                  Looks sweet!


                  • #12
                    Now we need to figure out how to set our spread. This will be strictly a load spread of about 1000 socks abd 500 floaters. We will be laying in whites along the waters edge mostly. For a loafing spread do you guys spread them out more than a feed field?


                    • River Ratt
                      River Ratt commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Family groups a relaxed look

                  • #13
                    Ok, thanks RR.


                    • River Ratt
                      River Ratt commented
                      Editing a comment
                      You’ll just have to see how the birds work a specific area and adjust to them.

                      If birds are working a specific spot but not finishing the way you want then open it up a little bit right there and see how it goes.
                      Being in white it’s easy to move yourselves around for the shot.

                      My rule is watch three different flocks work before I adjust anything and adjust one thing at a time.

                  • #14
                    Click image for larger version

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ID:	17795 Trying to get a hole but man 8 inches of ice with 10 inches of snow on top does not go quick. Got 2 ice eaters a trash pump and a big buldge pump running.


                    • #15
                      Shoreline set all the way. Gives you more options on what they want. Only time I’d want all water is if it’s hot outside(70+degrees daily). Pack the shore with decoys and floaters, then leave a gap and pack another line of decoys. Sit in the first group of decoys. Birds will work over the water but focus on that gap just behind you.