I lived in northern Pennsylvania earlier in my life. While hunting in October, which is when the season was in, in those days, I noticed on October twenty-forth back in the hardwoods a scrape appear. Bow season would be over in four or five days, so I had little time to work on it. I hung a stand and hunted it steady for the rest of the season. I killed a nice four point buck the next to the last day, the best that this area had to offer.
The next year I started watching this same area around October twentieth; and on the night of the twenty-third the same scrape opened up again, and right where it was the year before. It was located right beside a wild grapevine and easy to remember its location. Thus, on the morning of the twenty-fourth the deer were there, again ready for action. rather uncanny to see it so exact with an animal that doesn’t have a Quartz calendar on his watch. I set up immediately and killed a nice five point the second night: again the best that this particular woods had to offer.
I did this for four years in a row, and each year the exact same scrape opened up within a day on each side of October the twenty-forth, thus, introducing me to the “eternal scrape”. Even when I killed the buck that had made the scrape another one took over the exact same spot the next year. I’m not going to address all the scientific facts of who made the scrape and why, the only important thing to a buck hunter is in which tree to hang a stand and when. With a buck mount on the wall he can die happy and ignorant of never knowing if Mable or George opened it first. I know lots of brilliant hunters who rarely kill a buck with their bow.
There are scrapes all over the woods starting in late October, and you can’t sit on all of them. My sons are always mad at me saying that any tree I climb into a buck will walk right under it. They even threatened to have me cremated when I die, and put my ashes under their tree for bait. Well, the truth is, I’ve sat up many trees that buck didn’t come to, in order to learn where to sit where they do come. Now my biggest problem is, the boys wanting to sit on a limb above me in my magic trees over the “eternal scrapes”.
You read much about the preliminary, primary, secondary and huckleberry scrapes. If I was hunting on a deer ranch and had five grand to buy my annual buck I would make up a better story than that one to go with it. In my opinion, out in the real woods in the real world of wild deer, there are just scrapes. One is better than the other for several reasons. Take away those reasons, and the “eternal scrape” will disappear. That is what finally happened to the one I mentioned in the beginning. As time went on they clear-cut the woods I was in and the scrape disappeared. I hunt in a different state, and have several ‘eternal scrapes” which I hunt each year. A couple of them have disappeared over the last few years for the exact same reason…..
Owned by: David Bickish