Hunting conditions in the area should be favorable this weekend.

“There have been a lot of deer moving around,” said Donnie Mathes, a 29-year game warden on Fort Hood. “This weekend should be a lot better than last weekend. First of all, there will be a lot of land available on Fort Hood to hunt. Last weekend, with so much training going on, there wasn’t much area on Fort Hood to hunt. Fort Hood will have some areas open this weekend that haven’t been available in quite a long time.

“Secondly, the big bucks are still looking for those last does that may be available. The rut is coming to an end.”

Mathes said the weekend weather forecast, mild conditions with some rain on Sunday, is reason for optimism.

“Since we won’t be in that real cold period yet — where the deer only get up to eat — they’ll still be moving around,” Mathes said.

Mathes recommends the use of rattling antlers and grunt calls.

“We’re almost getting past the point of rattling antlers and grunt calls still being effective,” Mathes said. “But right now, they are still working. The term hunters use often is ‘cruising.’ And that’s what the bucks are doing right now, ‘cruising,’ looking for does.

“Sunday’s slight rain could also be helpful. Damp conditions also make deer move around more — they won’t lay down so much. In fact, they love to move around on misty days.”

Contact Allan Mandell at or 254-501-7566 and read his column at

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