*For a complete guide to this year's rut, make sure to check out previous Midwest Whitetail Rut forecasts, as well as my entire 2015 forecast AND important Pre Rut tactics:
"Critical Pre Rut Strategies"
"The 2015 Whitetail Rut Prediction"
"October 12th Weekly Midwest Whitetail Rut Forecast"
"October 19th Weekly Midwest Whitetail Rut Forecast"
Are you ready for a Pre Rut Midwest Whitetail Rut forecast based on proven strategies, that you can actually take to the field during the week of October 27th to November 2nd? Then you have come to the right place. This week's forecast centers directly on the beginning of the Pre Rut in most northern Whitetail settings. Locations like where I hunt in Southern OH may still be a week away, but for solid Pre Rut hunting, now is the time to take advantage of!
*Check out the above bucks that have fallen to these same Midwest Whitetail Rut cold weather predictions, just during the past week!For a complete guide to hunting during the rollercoaster of opportunity created by the cold weather fronts, make sure to check out "Whitetail Cold Front Hunting Strategies".
Who can take advantage of incredible Pre Rut hunting opportunities?
1. Those that have great Fall habitat, including both cover AND food.
2. Those hunters who have been experiencing mature buck movements during and close to shooting hours, already this season.
*Unfortunately if you need to rely on long-distance cruising giants, the Pre Rut may not be for you, because those long distant wanderings typically only take place during the Peak rut, which is still several days away in many areas, and up to a week to 10 days away in others.
For several years on this site, and even in my books, I have detailed how hunting the various cold fronts that travel through the season can pay huge rewards. This is a method I have been using literally, since the early 90s; at a time when my best weather source was deciphering the local conditions from a marine radio forecast in MI's thumb area. Several years ago I created a 45 day weather forecast, which eventually led to a 30 day forecast last year. Now this year...I hope you enjoy this forecast, by the week!
This Midwest Whitetail Rut forecast is about predicting the weekly high value days for you to make sure that you are sitting in a tree stand for. High Value Sits are greatly outnumbered by poor to moderate value days, so it pays to be tuned in to both the weather, and this rut forecast to make sure that you don't miss out on some incredible mature buck opportunities!
October 27th: Your Weekly Midwest Whitetail Rut Forecast
This most likely will not look exactly like your weather forecast because I chose the major, Midwestern city of Ann Arbor, MI (Go Blue!) for a central example of this week's prediction. If you are West of Ann Arbor by 200 miles or more than your High Value Sit forecast will be a 1/2 day or more Earlier than predicted. If you are 200 miles or more East of Ann Arbor, then your High Value Sit forecast will be a 1/2 day or more Later than predicted. The key is to be able to plug in your own conclusions based on The Set Up, The Drop, and The Calm as predicted in the forecast for your area. However in this week's forecast, check out the following summary:
*Thursday the 29th looks potentially like an outstanding Pre Rut day, with one exception. Sure, mature bucks move during the wind, but if they can help it they don't. And why would they? They can't hear as well, scent as well and many deer are hunkered down. However if you can find a stand location on the lee side (sheltered/protected/quiet) of the ridge, or downwind side of the habitat, you may find a huge number of deer concentrated into a small, protected location. Look for these areas when the skies clear and Northwesterly winds are heavy, and the level of your potential success could be extremely high.
*Friday the 30th looks like another top 10 days to be in the whitetail woods, and it could go down as one of the best -if not best- days of the entire season.
*Tuesday the 3rd is an odd day! The temps will be slightly increasing, but the pressure will be high, the conditions fairly calm and deer will welcome this particular low stress weather day.
*As always there will be a handful of good to fair days to be in the woods, but don't forget that just 1 high value "can't miss" day is typically worth more than the rest of the lower value days during the week, combined.
*The Moon will offer a quality, low impact influence over whitetail feeding times, with the start of the New Moon phase taking place early in the week. Expect feeding times to be early during the afternoon and evening hours due to dark skies during the early hours of the night. Without the influence of a full moon, typical early morning mature buck movements will take place from daybreak to the hours of mid morning. You can expect very little mid-day movements during this moon phase, with the exception of feeding on natural food sources of mast or high quality native browse, directly adjacent to mature buck bedding areas.
Sit Timing: October 27th Midwest Whitetail Rut Forecast
Unless the conditions are cool all day and I am in a stand located between food and multiple bedding areas, I will not take an all day sit during this period. Make sure not to miss several hours away from a food source during the morning, and the last hour or two near a food source during the evening. This is not a period of long distance cruising, so sitting all day in 1 stand locations could place you in a poor position to harvest a mature buck during over 1/2 of the day.
1. High Priority Evening Doe Sits
Do all that you can to find high quality, brushy funnels that allow you to observe high volume doe family group afternoon movements to food. Make sure that you aren't sitting too deep into the woods, because the closer to dark the day passes, the more likely that nearly every deer in the woods has already gravitated towards the highly social, afternoon food source locations. Taking an "all day" sit may sound like a bold idea, but if you are near food you could be missing some outstanding opportunities during the first 1/2 of the day, and if you are near bedding you may be less likely to see a buck as the afternoon progresses towards the end of legal shooting hours. Think bedding areas movement during the morning, and travels to food sources during the evening.
2. Morning Bedding Opportunities
Between bedding areas, on the way to bedding areas, or downwind of high quality bedding areas, are all stand locations that I will take advantage of during the entire week. If you have a mature buck residing in a bedding area that you can set adjacent too, expect his morning range to increase from well less than an acre, to 5-10 acres or more. Although I wouldn't expect a buck from the neighbor's land to cruise by from a mile away, a great funnel located within 100-200 yards of a suspected mature buck bedding areas could yield fairly predictable success!
3. Does Mid Day Matter?
For me, the answer would be a pretty quick "No". During this period of time I expect up to 4 hours of high quality action during the morning, and up to 2 hours during the evening. However during the middle of the day, unless I expect my neighbor's pressure to move deer my way or there is a Full Moon rising during the evening, I prefer to save my "middle of the day" time for closer to the first week of November.
*Make sure to stay tuned though, because when and where you should time your sits during the coming weeks will be changing drastically! It pays to place a priority on quality morning hunts, because unlike the periods of the early season and October lull, this is when you will experience the high liklihood of morning cruising madness; the time is now!
Critical Weekly Midwest Whitetail Rut Forecast Details
Make sure to also apply the priority of sits when weighing your decision to take the woods, or not. As the season progresses, the value of the most highly predicted days to be in the woods will increase substantially to the days of the annual whitetail rut. Here is how I personally place a priority on any upcoming sits:
1. From Pre to Post, nothing beats the RUT
2. The first week to 10 days of the bow season are often a missed, but extremely high value time to hit the whitetail woods, especially for the well-prepared hunter.
3. Although the dreaded "October Lull" is largely hunter induced, this period of time still falls behind the early season and especially the rut, when it comes to consistent mature buck harvest opportunities.
High Value sit days are few and far between because there are 3 Variables that need to take place in order for you to find proven success: The Set Up, The Drop, and The Calm
Midwest Whitetail Rut Forecast Necessities
Without these 3 critical variables taking place, than your trip to the woods will most likely be just another day. However when these 3 variables take place, the potential sits that are created for you are worth more than the rest of the sits during the week, combined.
1. The Set Up
Without the actual set up for the best days to be in the woods, there would not actually be any High Value days to predict.
Warm weather, stormy weather, and any set of consistently poor conditions all serve to set up an incredible day to be in the woods. The longer the set up, the better. I have experienced that the value of each day of set up increases, up through 5 days. What that means is that a 1 day "set up", isn't much of a set up at all. However when a high quality day is set up by 3-4 days or more, the conditions have been created for a potential can't miss day to be in the woods.
2. The Drop
Folks, it doesn't matter if it is September, October or November; if you see a 10 degree temperature drop or more, make sure that you head to the woods! Although I really start to take notice of at least a 5 degree temp drop, I prefer at least an 8-10 degree change in the forecast. The more extreme the conditions during the front (high winds, thunder, heavy rain) along with the larger the temperature change, the higher the value of the potential sits, when the conditions calm.
3. The Calm
The first high pressure cool and clear day that you can recognize following the front, make sure to hit the woods! Keep in mind that predicting a high value sit goes well beyond focusing merely on high pressure conditions. Without the The Set Up and The Drop, a good “high pressure day”, is just another day in the woods.
By learning to apply these proven cold front techniques to your midwest whitetail rut hunting efforts the entire season, you will be well prepared for the mature buck opportunities created during the entire whitetail rut! Learn to apply these prediction values to your own regions forecast, for the ultimate level of mature buck success. Follow this rotating Midwest whitetail rut forecast each week, as we ride the rollercoaster of high and low value sit opportunities, while using examples of various major cities across the region.