How deep is to deep?(Snow)

A Place to talk about hunting Bobcats, Lynx.
nmrookie
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How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby nmrookie » Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:00 pm

First off I want to say thanks to all you real deal bobcat hunters that share your wealth of knowledge with us rookies. I grew up around bird dogs in central Oklahoma in the 90's when the quail population was doing good(I hear it's coming back). My dad raised and trained GSP and Brittany Spaniels for a lot of my childhood and i've always loved watching a good dog hunt. Fast forward 15 yrs and I am now in my early thirties and live in northern NM. I went to a friends house about 2yrs ago to let him borrow some traps and I came home with a hound pup(bluetick x walker), and this is where my obsession began. 6 months later I was driving to Montana to pick up a good broke pup trainer and another 6 months later I was driving to Idaho to pick up another pup. I was blessed to find such a good dog to help me get my pups started and to teach me more than I could've ever learned on my own. My original thought was lion hunting but to many others out there doing the same thing and to many outfitters that have 10+ people running roads, you can't beat these guys to a runnable track. I've chased a few lions and I finally caught one in the rocks last week but other than that I've spent a lot of time driving past bobcat tracks to try and find lion tracks. I now know where I can go find plenty of lion tracks but being by myself in the rocks and huge sandstone ledges is nerve racking knowing I have a wife and son that want me to make it home.. No one else wants to run lions where I find tracks cause the lions usually win the race by jumping up and down ledges. My good dog is solid as can be and it has taken some time but within the past month my pups (one is almost 2yr the other is almost 1 yr) are really starting to put it all together. All that for this.... I know my dogs will catch a bobcat they have put a couple down holes or under rocks I couldn't get to but I know the cat was in there cause fresh snow usually doesn't lie. All three dogs treed one about a month ago in a hundred foot fir tree but my wife was with me and wouldn't let me climb the tree due to no cell service and she couldn't drag me back over the mountain if I fell and broke my neck lol, I never could locate him but I'm 99% sure he was up there. I can go 10 miles from home and easily cut a fresh cat track in fresh snow but they always beat me to the rocks. I can also drive 90 miles to big timber with a very healthy bobcat population but now I'm afraid the snow is too deep up there and I don't have a snow machine. Will the Bobcats come down the mountain when the snow gets deep or will they stay around there home range regardless of the deep snow. I would be hunting today but it is the wife's birthday, tomorrow and sunday is game on. Any info on Bobcats in deep snow is greatly appreciated. I've read this bobcat section ALOT in the past two years and I know twist and dhostetler and a lot of others can probly help me with this. I love a challenge and I love watching my dogs hunt that's why I'm chasing bobcats, no other reason. I have trapped plenty of cats it's not about the fur for me it's about the dogs and a challenge. Happy hunting! Russell
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby pegleg » Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:46 pm

Well I don't really know but there's six inches here today and its a catastrophe as far as I'm concerned .
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby mondomuttruner » Fri Jan 08, 2016 8:05 pm

For me 6 inches of snow is max. After that they don't move very much and don't give ya a very good run (run a hundred yds or so and tree or caught). Getting too old to trudge through snow...
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby al baldwin » Fri Jan 08, 2016 9:03 pm

I sure do not want to hunt in any snow if possible. However I have a little, 6 inches would be my max. Have a friend in central Oregon he tells me about hunting in three feet of powdered snow, waist deep in the drifts at night most of the time. Says that when the cats are easiest to catch. Al
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby mark » Fri Jan 08, 2016 9:04 pm

Im devastated!!!!!!! I had my Mondo pictured a lot tuffer n that. :D
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby Old dog » Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:02 pm

if I read the post right, you asked if the bobs move down out of the deep snow? I think it depends on the ability to find and catch food Russell. in some areas here they will migrate to lower elevations like on the snake and salmon river breaks. by the way,, did you put a picture of that pup up so I can see how he is developing body wise? if so, where did you post it. thanks and hope that helped answer your question.
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby dhostetler » Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:26 pm

In my country bobcats don't move much in deep snow which can be good and bad. It is harder to find tracks but if you do find tracks they are usually shorter cold trails. Around here our roads load up with snow it can be 3' on the road but off the road in the brush and heavier timber it may only be 6 to 12". Our bobcats usually hang out in the brushier creek bottems where the rabbits are at which is also where the roads are. My country in NW Montana is a lot different then where twist is at everything is timbered, while twist has has a lot more open country. Generally when I jump a bobcat he runs downhill or sidehill.

Cliffs and rocks are tough to run anything in.

Several years ago I treed a 34 lb. bobcat in a big cedar. I shot at him and missed him and he moved and it took me over an hour to find him again, shot again and he fell out into the creek staggering around. Of course not wanting another $50.00 hole I clubbed him knocking him out than drowned him in the creek. When I skinned him he had no bullet holes in him???
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby 1bludawg » Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:42 pm

It doesn't have to be that deep here and they'll move down out of the snow .
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby pegleg » Sat Jan 09, 2016 1:17 am

nmrookie
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby nmrookie » Sat Jan 09, 2016 3:03 am

Pegleg and dhostetler great stories, I never get tired of reading stuff like that. This bobcat section is by far the best on here.

I guess it makes sense they would stay up the mountain if they can still find a meal or move down where there's more rabbits and rodents if they had to. I was also wondering about there movement such as hunting and if they'll move around as much in 18" as they will in 6", thank you all for your replies. I guess I will find out how much they're moving tomorrow morning.

Skip, thanks for your input as well. That pup is kicking butt. Watched him on a lion track last Friday from a rock point as he was running through some semi open cedar and pinion. My broke dog was trailing on a track that was maybe an hour or so old(we had jumped the lion earlier in the day but he left the dogs on two ledges for about thirty minutes each time) Jett goes flying by her but was about 20 or more feet off the track on the down wind side. It was the first time I've seen him drift a track like that but I haven't had a whole lot of opportunities to get to watch him like that for a long distance. The lion got away but I was sure proud of all my dogs that day.
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nmrookie
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby nmrookie » Sat Jan 09, 2016 3:10 am

Skip, I'm really bad about taking time to get pictures but I will get some better pics of Jett tomorrow, hopefully of him treeing a cat. He really has been a fun dog to start and I'm fairly sure is going to make a cat dog. He hunts hard and is a smart dog.
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby dhostetler » Sat Jan 09, 2016 5:58 am

nmrookie
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby nmrookie » Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:02 pm

I guess I kinda answered my own question this weeknd. I didn't make it to the mountain I wanted to so I don't know what it was like but I'm sure the snow was bad deep. We had a good 18" or more in the high desert country where I live (juniper, piñon, sage, and sandstone) so I figured I better just stay out of the higher elevation.

Saturday morning I spent a good 2 hrs helping a deer hunter/city slicker(late archery season) get his F150, with highway tires out of a place he should've never been lol.. Can't leave a guy stuck cause I've been there too. Started cutting roads about 9 am and was around noon when we cut the first cat track but was headed straight towards a REALLY rocky sandstone canyon. Passed on that one. Within an hour we had cut at least 4 different cat tracks(zig zagging back and forth across the roads hunting) and all were within 5 miles of the first track. They all had a skiff of snow from that night before and I was hesitant to turn dogs out, I think I was afraid of having to go follow them in that deep snow. Finally a little after 1 pm I decided to try what I thought was the fresest looking track.
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby catdogs » Mon Jan 11, 2016 4:08 pm

Here, you will find bobcats up high in 3 feet of snow eating grouse and snowshoe hares and down in the creek bottoms where there is almost no snow eating cotton tails. Hope Diva is doing good!
Once you go black, you'll never go back! Duncan big game Black and Tans.
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Re: How deep is to deep?(Snow)

Postby nmrookie » Mon Jan 11, 2016 5:36 pm

Catdog,
Diva is doing great, couldn't have found a better dog to help get me started. She is an absolute pleasure to have around. She caught a lion on a rock ledge by herself about a week ago. My young dogs got left behind in the rocks and I don't know how she got through but she did and had the lion. On bobats she will dang sure warm up a cold cold trail, might take a while but she doesn't quit. She has ran quite a few into holes and rocks and treed one that I couldn't locate but we both knew that cat was up there. She is well cared for here in NM but I'm sure there are days she wishes she had a real houndsman to help her out a little. Hope all is well Montana!

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