How To Scout Critical Indicator Rubs On Public Land

This is an exceptional way to scout great spots to hunt on public land! And the beauty is, it doesn’t take a long time to scout for these proven indicator rubs and scrapes. Here is how to scout and find your next public land hotspot…

*Check out a Packermaxx to help you get your deer hunting chores done!
Code WHS50

*All 19 of our 2024 WHS Pure Wildlife Blends are available for purchase right now! Check out our seed blend website….

*Would you like to make sure that you create an explosion of rubs and scrapes on your land? Then you should check out my books, seed, hunting and habitat design web classes, podcasts and hundreds of deer strategy articles:

I want to talk about three tips for Finding a really hot public land hunting Spot and uh I've used this over and over Again uh especially out in Pennsylvania Michigan where I've public land hunted For a long time uh both those States Last year was at 21st season hunting uh Pennsylvania on public land since 93 and I've hunted Michigan public land since The 90s so consistently last time was Two years ago with my son Jake I want to Talk about finding a spot and then also What you're looking for to actually Indicate that you should go in and uh And actually hunt that spot one of the Things you're looking from the air it's Different on private land you're trying To create diversity the cool thing about Public land there's not a lot of Diversity what that means is if you find Diversity then you're going to find Great deer herds Wildlife populations in General diversity what does that mean Well I I could be wrong but I believe uh Diversity is an old old wooden ship you Have lowland water you have certain type Of uh habitat if you have hardwood up Area hardwood Rolling Hills big giant Hardwoods even if it's on Flatland of Course a different type of habitat if You have areas that have been cut within Those Hardwoods different type of Habitat Upland cover where you've had Cuting maybe they got over brows coming

Back but now all a sudden you have Shrubs small conifers trees grasses Briers when you find that all coming Together you find a great spot to hunt Looking at an aerial photo when you look At Hunt wise this kind of cool because We can choose from several different Overlays for aerial photos one of them Will have a really high resolution and It'll show a lot of contrast between the Portions of habitat that are there if You give you an example you look at some Of the the May flyovers June flyovers We'll take aerial photos at that time The oak trees are the last ones to Leaf Out and a lot of times even though that Leaf will be green they might start out Red brownish to begin with before they Fully open up into a green mature Leaf So when you look at an aerial photo from A fly over like that you can pick out All the oak tops because that's the one Color that isn't green during that may Flyover those Oaks actually Leaf out After every other tree of course the Conifers are green you can see those Year round you're looking at that that's One thing you can tell yeah there's Oaks In this stand of Hardwoods you take it a Step further look at the big tops versus The little tops versus the scattered Tops scattered tops would be more like An Upland area and then you look at the Big smears of like there's River going

Through and you see well that's all tag Alter or that's all Conifer or that's Young Hardwoods versus old Hardwoods and If you look at a lot of those flyovers That are May time then you can say well That Is a great spot to hunt based on the Fact there's some good Acorn tops in That location and they're big and mature And they're probably dropping mass mass Crop and I'll even take it this is a Little secet secret we look for and I Won't even tell you where we've hunted When we use this but um we uh when we're Looking at Big public land areas that Have clear Cuts now they might have like Statel land a really good patch of Cuting over a large area T of thou tens Of thousands of Acres they might cut a Few thousand every year and they rotate That when you look at that the trails From the logging operation within those Cuting will appear bright white if They're New as that clearcut ages those Trails Become diminished to where they just Become faint lines between green patches Of Woods generally you want clearcuts that Are less than 5 years old so they still Have enough food and that browse is not Grown out of the reach of the deer they Can find cover anywhere out in these Public land areas what they can't find

As food so if that food is growing over Their over their height that they can Reach then they're not going to be there So young clearcuts are the name of the Game and those deer can sometimes be Nomadic in those areas meaning this hot Clearcut here we've seen before is not Hot the next year because they all move To a fresh clearcut 2 miles away and That can happen so that's added an added Complexity to all this so look for that Diversity there's not a lot of it and a Lot of times you can look at 10,000 Acres and you'll narrow it down to 10 15 Areas to to Scout and then what are you Looking for I'm looking for old Historical sign and this is a good Example look at this red cedar tree How it's been rubbed on this side to Where it's smooth and that's the side Face in the trail that makes sense you Come over Here you can see it was rubbed in this Location before but when you see this Almost carved out and there's no bark in This location it tells you it's been Rubbed not only for one year but Multiple years so I'm looking at area And I'm saying I want to see this Historical sign I want to see that There's a lot of rubs in the area so I'm Coming in here and even this spot in the Woods this red cedar Shag Bar kicker Young brush we have a big white oak

Right here there's grasses and briers Right down here you can see there's a Lot of diversity in this Location it doesn't matter if it's flat Or Hillside country you're just looking For that diversity then you come down to Here this is another complimentary rub To this Area and I'm looking at That not only does it have that old rub On this Side but it's been freshly rubbed and This one's almost carved out you look at This tree it's like a bow here it's been Rubbed a lot so I'm looking at that Historical Sign I can think of a you think of an Old rub down in uh up in the up Michigan You see these shavings obviously you Know it's from last year but I'm Thinking of rub out in the swamps in the Up and Michigan it's on an old jackpine And when there's been a fresh rub on That jackpine and there's not a lot of Rubs up there when you get around a bait Pile a lot of rubs but when you're out In the middle of the the uh Wilderness Area and you find a rub it means Something and it might mean they've only Rubbed it once a year you know rubs Don't get that often I apologize for Cutting in the video I'll try to keep This 20 seconds or less but we're Thinking about planting and so is

Lincoln at Packer Max and right now he Doesn't offer very many deals it's $50 Off check out the code whhs 50 it's in The link in the description try them Great product check it out you won't be Sorry you know rubs don't get that often But when you see a historical Rob and I Go out to that jackpine out in the Middle of nowhere and I see it's been Hit that year then it indicates that There's a mature bu in the area so Imagine you find those 10 12 areas six Or seven of those areas out of 10,000 Acres so we're talking a big area miles Apart you have that historical sign you Done your homework you found the Diversity you can see those pinch points That go through that diversity and might Be a bench system on a hill it might be Where a corner of a big Big Swamp meets Hard woods inside corner almost like an A field you're hunting there and There'll be an ex of movement so you've Identified those areas of diversity from The aerial photo you've gone in you Verified historical sign and the third Step how do you know when to hunt it or If to hunt it I call it an indicator you Look for indicator sign indicator rubs Indicator scrapes you find those Perennial scrapes in those locations we Have little Islands out in the up and Michigan where we hunt we have Oak Flats In area is in Pennsylvania where we hunt

Not every year do those areas have rubs Even though they're great places to hunt There's been one area in Michigan on Public land where he shot 148 in eight Point out on public land beautiful older Mature Buck but that was when there were Good indicator scrapes and indicator Rubs in that same area but when they're Not there there's typically not a buck There it's not indicating that there's Actually a buck in that location so you Can really speed SC out these areas you Look for Diversity that can be done before you Ever go out to an area you take one Weekend on a Saturday you hit all those 10 12 locations or a Saturday and a Sunday it might be that it's 10 hours Away from home you go down there yep Half of these areas have old historical Sign on it and they should if you found That diversity then you go back let's Say you're hunting opening day of muzzle Loer or opening day of uh gun season or Opening day or right before the rut go In there and check out each one of those Areas maybe a windy day a rainy day look For indicator rubs an indicator scrapes Being open and that's where you know Where to hunt that's what I did in Pennsylvania for many years used to be The season would open on the Monday After Thanksgiving so that means Saturday we'd get out there Sunday we'd

Walk around sometimes 10 to 12 miles in One day look at those areas of Indication find the indicator rubs and Scrapes in those areas if they're open Consider hunting there and then I basic It on what's the size of the rub you can Tell this one right here it broke right Over but this size rub alone doesn't Make me want to hunt it when I see these Giant rubs like these really big rubs Like this and they've been carved Out along with these broken ones there's A few more up the hill over here then That's telling me hey there's a big buck In this area and that's how I narrow it Down and then at least put yourself in Position you should already have access Entrance exit routes to that area Different potential stand locations Based on wind figured out that's just a Matter of Plug and Play you just go in There there's indicator rubs and scrapes Open and you hunt pretty easy to do on Public land that's a really good way and Then you look at it like maybe this is Uh you're going to hunt there for a week And you can get pretty invasive and Aggressive well this is uh outside of a Bedding area this is in a funnel between Bedding and food start saying well I Might want to the later in the week I Want get to get closer for that bedding Area because they're getting to the food Source late you start to get aggressive

However if you found these pinch points And funnels between bedding areas along And uh food sources alongside a bedding Area maybe it pays even a little bit Better you're going to hunt this several Different times over the course of a Season to come in with the right access Right entrance right exit have your Predetermined stand location Possibilities and then you come in and Hunt and uh hunt with the right wind Chip Away out through the season Actually manage The Hunt of that area as Opposed to just going in and exhausting It there's a difference between Management and exhausting an area Exhausting area you're going only hunt Here for several days for that year go In and hit it hard but if you actually Have to manage it and Hunt that area Over two or 3month period Then you Actually take your time you're patient Actually look at the lay of the land Make sure you're not spooking deer and Get in there and and chip away at it You'll eventually get that buck that's Making that sign big difference between Between just going in wandering around Spooking all the deer you actually have Predetermined locations and then when You're going to even check and see if These are open I'm going directly to This area I'm looking from above with The binoculars 80 100 yards away

Probably public L you might be look at It 200 yards away say yep I see broken Branches I see rubs open you don't even Have to walk in here you already know Your approach you've already approached From the right wind like you're actually Coming in Hunt get out of there hunt the Next day whatever day opening day that Weekend and have a good crun so again Just repeat real quick look at that Diversity from above Identify a certain number of areas you Got to go check out understand those Funnels make sure they're away from People they're in those interior areas Go in and verify find which areas have Historical sign and then come back look For those indicator rubs and scrapes and Then go in and have a great hunt

error: Content is protected !!