Illinois Deer Hunting Review by Marc Warnke

This Illinois deer hunting trip was the best of my life.

As a western hunter, I can’t say that I look forward to tree stand hunts. This Illinois deer hunting season made me a believer. I sat all day every day for six total days of hunting and saw just under 50 bucks. It was a BLAST!

Doe bait

There is a doe bedded 34 yards from my stand. I’m using her as buck bait (she’s right off my finger). And, yes, it’s as cold and wet as it looks. It has rained on me for 5 hours straight. Thank God for Kryptek!

We were on a 9000-acre tract of land surrounding a coal-fired nuclear power plant secured by gates. Finally, a piece of ground in Illinois that can be truly managed. The bucks here are free roaming with plenty of exits off the property, but why would they leave? It’s a paradise.

As a western hunter, I can’t say that I look forward to tree stand hunts. This one made me a believer. I sat all day every day for six total days of hunting and saw just under 50 bucks. It was a BLAST!

Dandy Illinois Whitetail

Here’s a dandy that was taken in our group on the second day.

The outfitter does an excellent job managing his stands, with over 150 choices for the hunters that get to chase deer on this big buck paradise. I was in camp with 11 happy hunters who felt fortunate to be there. Of 11 hunters, 10 flung arrows at bucks over the 135 minimum. Many hunters passed bucks in the 140’s and 150’s because they had seen larger bucks from where they sat. The hunter who didn’t get a shot had physical limitations that didn’t allow him to sit all day or get into anything but a ladder stand.

Monster Illinois Whitetail

Holy crap, what a hog!

The biggest buck taken off the property while I was there went 202, and another deer pushing 200 was seen by another hunter. The bucks that were successfully shot and harvested averaged over 150, and my hunting partner shot and lost a deer that pushed 180. Another hunter missed a buck that would have also gone over 180.

KryptekI wore the Kryptek Aegis Extreme Weather System on my hunt and it ROCKED! I stayed quiet, warm, and dry on long days in the stand. Can’t say enough about it.

Nice buck that was taken by a hunter in my camp.

Nice buck that was taken by a hunter in my camp.

As you can imagine, I can’t wait to go back next year. The lodging and food were good but not crazy good. But who cares when you’re hunting a property like this one? Lastly, the guides were professional and accommodating for everyone, as I heard not one complaint.

I highly recommend this hunt, and if you’d like to learn more about it, feel free to call me at (208) 867-6675.

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PS. I was probably the second unluckiest hunter in camp. I had my shot at a 145-150 12-point buck on the fourth day and blew it by hitting him tight on the shoulder and losing him after a lot of hard searching. Learn more about this hunt.

Marc Warnke
(208) 867-6675

From a Facebook post: “Here’s a screen shot of the buck. I’m watching the footage and it looks like I hit pretty tight and caught a bit of the shoulder. Still got good penetration. So I still think he’s down but I’m nervous.”

Comments

  1. Natalie Rabel Orwig says

    The "hog" deer shown above was not harvested by the gentleman holding it. Also, the power plant is a coal plant but not nuclear.

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