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2024/2025 Squirrel Hunting Thread...........

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I would wholeheartedly endorse Joe Woods barrel coning tools, especially in the .32 caliber. Those tiny balls are so easy to drop while reaching for the short starter. Especially when your hands are cold. No problem after coning, simply place the patch over the barrel, and press the tiny .310 ball into the barrel, no short starter needed, and certainly just as accurate. Love this Crockett
That coning tool certainly worked well on my squirrel rifle. I do, however, use a loading block while hunting. Still makes it easier to start.

I hope to cone the muzzle of my GPR as well. I do not like having to use a short starter.
 
They're ghost squirrels, I tell ya.

Now that I got Mr. "C" squared away, I took it to the woods this morning. Off of my 4-Wheeler at 0658, saw the first squirrel off to my left at 0702. Just as I was about to put the sneak on that one, something caught my eye to my right. It was closer to the first one so I tried to put the sneak on it instead. However, it vanished fast like. Looked back towards the first one and it too, was gone. Then about that time, I got a quick look at another one to my right but farther down a little ways. About the time I was considering how to ease my way over towards it, he gone!

After all of that, I stood pretty much in the same place for about 20 minutes but did not see the vanishing squirrels again. It's so thick in these woods this year that the lower and smaller trees blocks the view up in the taller trees. I was darn lucky to see what I did. I could occasionally her some leaves and branches moving, as well as due dripping from them, but just could not see anything due to the thick lower trees. The best one could do under those conditions is to get a glimpse of some leaves and limbs moving through a very few small openings in the smaller trees.

Decided to ease my way uphill a little and didn't see another squirrel. The wind began to blow at 0841. This was absolutely what I did not need. In fact, it flat out ruined it.

Continuing on, I kept on scanning the sky, the sides of trees and the ground all around me. I thought surely the squirrels would move to the ground as the wind became stronger, but it was not to be.

I told myself, Okay, ETipp, time to formulate a new plane of action. So, I slowly headed back in the direction I came in from. At 0854 after I walked back down hill a short ways, my knee was telling me that I needed to sit down for a few minutes. Found a large flat limestone boulder to sit on and just watched and wished I could see a squirrel under those conditions.

I sat on that boulder looking around and at 0905 I looked over and, I'll be darn, a squirrel was on a tree limb about 20 yards away and, as my luck often has it, was heading directly towards me. There was a tree between the two of us and the squirrel jumped up onto the side of another tree but disappeared behind the tree blocking the view. I said to myself "It's now or never, ETipp. So, I grabbed Mr. C and in one motion, raised it up while cocking it, pushing up the peep, and setting the set trigger. Held and held but no squirrel came into view. What the heck? Finally after about maybe 1 minute the squirrel moved into view over on the side of the tree and stopped facing head up. It was about a 15 yard shot Mr. Jim K style....sitting down. I said to myself "I'll be darn, I can do this". Only one other time was I able to shoot that thing while sitting down and actually hit a squirrel.

I sat there for a few minutes motionless while looking around. No more squirrels so I wiped out the bore, reloaded slowly and quietly, then walked over and picked up my squirrel. I noticed right away that it was a boar with fairly large inflamed reproduction organs.

Easing my way around more I saw two more squirrels in a pine tree that acted as if they might have been in the beginning stages of mating. They were chasing each other but not too aggressively. Round and round the tree they went but in a slower fashion. They just wouldn't sit still long enough to get a good aim at them. Finally, they too, disappeared just like the others. I saw one more squirrel across the road on the side of a tree and it disappeared as well.

The wind continued to pick up to the point of no hope noticing any squirrels up in the trees, if there were any. So, time for another plan of action and change of scenery. There simply was no hope of hanging around that area any longer.

Trying my best to find places where the wind wasn't, I moved to the other side of the mountain. After reaching some mature woods that are open to where I could see a long ways, I sat for a few minutes on a log. Not a thing to be found. Moved upslope and made my way around for a while and finally called it quits for the day. I saw, I think, 8 squirrels total for the day and got one of those.

I am still puzzled that on this hunt, with the wind picking up and all, why I did not see the first squirrel on the ground anywhere the entire morning. Not even on the ride back to my truck and trailer, not on the roads and not in what few yards there are on the way home. Yesterday, after I got done shooting Mr. C, there were squirrels on the ground around my house, even in the rain later on, but not the first one to be seen today on the ground anywhere.

Indeed, spring squirrel season is tough here. This year is tougher than last year. That's the way it goes, I reckon.

After arriving home and cleaning Mr. C then cleaning my only squirrel for the day, this ole boy has already reloaded my squirrel rifle and plan on going to another squirrel hood in the morning. This time it will be somewhere I have never hunted or been to.
Nice write up Ed.
Glad you were able Mr "C" back to your likings. I wish ya would of been able to pop one of them ghost squirrels.
Good luck at your new hunting spot.
Glad your shot ya squirrel. 21 days til season opens here, I've requested that day off, so far it's ago. I'll been doing some more shooting this weekend.

Take care buddy.
 
TDM
It's ETipps fault, that I bought my Crockett Rifle. All his fault. So ya just might as well getcha one.

I blame the Forum for getting me it to shooting PRBs and Flintlock...

I know I should show some responsibility, but I blame them..
There is still a little feral kid in all of us ey Fred?!
 
Nice write up Ed.
Glad you were able Mr "C" back to your likings. I wish ya would of been able to pop one of them ghost squirrels.
Good luck at your new hunting spot.
Glad your shot ya squirrel. 21 days til season opens here, I've requested that day off, so far it's ago. I'll been doing some more shooting this weekend.

Take care buddy.

Thanks, Fred. Accuweather is showing a little less winds today and, if they are correct, the wind direction should be a little more favorable. Yesterday, they lied. The winds were gusting to 16 MPH and from a different direction than forecasted. Ya know, I can and do squirrel hunt in the heat, high humidity, cold, fog and rain, but wind is a game stopper. This is especially true this time of year when its so thick in the woods, when its so difficult to see up into the canopy and when the squirrels remain up in the trees. During those situations, I depend highly upon my ears but the wind precludes that. About the only thing a squirrel hunter has to go off of is to hope he can get a glance of a squirrel up through what few holes there are in the smaller and shorter trees above that serves as a secondary type canopy.

Yesterday baffled me. I covered a fair amount of woods and I still do not know why I didn't see the first squirrel on the ground. It is what it is I reckon. Sometimes its difficult to decipher those furry little fellas.

I'm hoping that I didn't miss the bulk of squirrel mating season this year. The sole squirrel I got yesterday did have inflamed reproduction organs to some degree so it is my hopes that its about to happen. Also, as I have said, I did see two other squirrels that were acting as if they were in the beginning of mating.

With a couple of doctor appointments, its looking like I'm down to only 8 days remaining total before spring season closes. That does not include more possible bad weather. I best stay in the woods as much as possible. I'm not big on evening hunts but I may give it a try, considering the short time remaining.

Today, if things are slow like yesterday, I plan on trying out the squirrel call Tom sent me. I found myself wishing I had brought it along yesterday, and it might have made a difference.
 
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Here's a taunting pic... from my trail cam where I put out Big Tine mix... In PA, no season until mid-September. I've had as many as 11 in a single frame, along with Cardinals, Blue Jays, Doves, rabbits and even deer at the same time. A hen turkey frequents now and then as well, The raccoons clean up the left overs.
how-many-squirrels.jpg
 
Here's a taunting pic... from my trail cam where I put out Big Tine mix... In PA, no season until mid-September. I've had as many as 11 in a single frame, along with Cardinals, Blue Jays, Doves, rabbits and even deer at the same time. A hen turkey frequents now and then as well, The raccoons clean up the left overs. View attachment 326662
That’s cool.

I just got back from another morning hunt. Let’s just say that I might as well be hunting unicorns. I went to 3 different locations and saw a total of one squirrel. Wind picked up early and became stronger as time progressed. Not the first squirrel to be seen on the ground, again.
 
That’s cool.

I just got back from another morning hunt. Let’s just say that I might as well be hunting unicorns. I went to 3 different locations and saw a total of one squirrel. Wind picked up early and became stronger as time progressed. Not the first squirrel to be seen on the ground, a
Im guessing spring season is like winter season. Maybe see em maybe not. Methinks the best time to see squirrels is when you are deer hunting in fall🤣. Still beats watching TV buddy👍
 
That’s cool.

I just got back from another morning hunt. Let’s just say that I might as well be hunting unicorns. I went to 3 different locations and saw a total of one squirrel. Wind picked up early and became stronger as time progressed. Not the first squirrel to be seen on the ground, again.
I think the word got out that you fine tuned Mr. "C" and they hiding from you.
 
I could feel the eyes upon me. They were barking like crazy. I think in squirrel talk it translated to "hurry up pal!"
 

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So this morning I decided to check into finding a .315 RB mold. I was surprised to find there is none to be had. One place, Tanner Molds, makes them but there is no sprue cutting plate. As small as those .32 caliber RB are, I'm not willing to deal with that.

This didn't settle so well with me. I do like the option of casting my own projectiles. Therefore, a little more thought went into this.

I dug into my toy box of supplies and came up with a few more different components to experiment with. Due to needing to switch out the rear blade sight and reinstall my peep sight, that meant I need to shoot some more to verify accuracy. It happened to hit dead on from 25 yards with the peep and .315 RB.

Still not liking the idea of having to purchase .315 RB's, I tried some .310 RB and .020 patches. They were accurate but still too darn tight to deal with. So, I moved on.

I found some old .018" ticking I've had for over 20 years. They were .50 caliber precut OX Yoke, if memory serves me correctly. I cut them down to .32 caliber size, lubed them again with Mink Oil, and tried 20.0 grains of Swiss and a .310 RB. I had to bump the peep up a tad, and I actually went a little too far, but the group wasn't bad. Not great but certainly acceptable. As it is, I almost have to do a 6 O'clock hold but not quite. So, there was a little bit of vertical spread, but understandable. It started raining again so that was the end of shooting for the day. No time left for sight adjustment and more test shooting. I'm hoping to go squirrel hunting in the morning so I'll have to be mindful of a tad lower hold.

I actually think I'm going to squirrel hunt with this combination and see how it goes. At least I have a stock pile of .310 and .311 RB. So, yeah, no need in having to purchase any .315 at this time, which suits me fine.
Ed
Lee precision offers a .319 round ball mold if you would like to go a little bit bigger and try that for accuracy.
 

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