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2018 #2 – Mark Udelhofen

by | Sep 25, 2019 | 2018 Tethrd Ten

SADDLE: Tethrd Mantis
LOCATION: Wisconsin

2018 came with many new changes for me. I decided to go all in on saddle hunting. I had been a mobile hunter with climbing sticks and a XOP hang on stand since 2016 when I decided to give up our 400 acres of private land and hunt all public. I was looking for a faster, quieter, lighter, and more mobile options and saddle hunting was it.

I had a few goals for the 2018 Wisconsin Public Land Rut trip. The first was to hunt a new parcel of public land that I’d never hunted and be successful. The second was to hunt that parcel and try and not see or be disturbed by another hunter the entire time.

I picked this particular parcel for two reasons, it was large and it was hard to get to. It had great terrain features with creek bottoms, ridges, and ag fields that were on top of neighboring parcels. It was a long 1.5-mile hike in each morning and then out each evening. I hiked in with my heavy clothes hanging on my Tenzing pack and changed out of my light cloths every morning about 150 yards from my tree to keep me dry and warm to allow for all-day sits. Going in blind I glassed on a ridge top and overlooked a valley below the first morning. Shortly after I spotted a doe with two bucks. I doubled back downwind and got set up. I hunted that section of timber for 7 straight days in a saddle dark to dark. On the 7th morning, November 9th, it was snowing and I arrowed a nice 3-year-old 10 pt out of my Mantis Saddle.

It was a successful rut trip on a few different counts. I didn’t see a single hunter all 7 days which allowed for great all day action, I was able to hunt a new parcel with many mature bucks, and I did it all in a saddle which made it easier, lighter, quieter. Overall the Saddle allowed for access in this hard to reach the remote area of SC Wisconsin.