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Old 04-11-2022, 06:07 PM   #1
JimD
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Default Have you hunted La Sal Del Rey or Laguna Atoscosa NWR?

We had a couple of good posts going on a hunt this year on the Teniente NWR for deer and other exotics.

Would you post up about your experiences on these two refuges or any of the National Refuges in Lower South Texas for deer or other Exotic Mammals?

Most people that draw do not have a clue on how to hunt or what to do on these areas. We hunted Nilgia and they are as hard to hunt as any animal that I have ever hunted. They may be easy on the utubes and hunting shows where you get a cold beer and ride around in the truck then get out and stalk your bull and shoot on a private ranch.

I hunted 3.5 days and saw 7 Nilgai and your best bet is hunting piles of poop since unless pushed poop in the same place most of the time. Most walking and stalking does not work other than to spook the animals which a lot of hunters spent the whole time walking all the fire roads. It did not help hunting.

You figure that these refuges are hunted non stop October bow hunting and gun hunting till the January and February serious gun hunts with bird watching and turkey and quail hunting.

WE would walk an area looking find some out of the way poop and with the 4 days of rain and north wind very little intrusion into an area pushed the animals out similar to Axis in the hill country where they do not like cold weather Nilgai do not like cold either and were bedded up to boot.

We will probably never draw out again so please share your experiences.

As far as I know there were 4 cows killed from 4 people on our hunt of 15 guys. I was lucky and got one shot hunkered in the brush. They are like cleaning a medium elk if you have killed one before.

Rule of thumb is a cow Nilgai will fill a 120 qt cooler at ~300+ POUNDS AND A BULL TWO 120 coolers. You will also need a cart to get your animal out most of the time.

Post up. JimD
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Old 04-11-2022, 07:25 PM   #2
Huntindad
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Lots of write ups about Laguna Atascoscia properties. I've been reviewing them as I plan on being back down there.
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Old 04-11-2022, 10:08 PM   #3
txoutdoorsman24
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Have hunted both refuges. LANWR 3 times with a bow only, Teniente with a bow and La Sal Del Rey in February with a rifle. LANWR is more challenging without a doubt but I have killed there as well as La Sal Del Rey. Nice 130s 8pt at LANWR, small 3pt at Teniente and a 3 nilgai at la sal del Rey. My hunting style was different each time as each place is built differently. Still hunting LANWR is the way to go and walking/stalking was key to both other places.
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Old 04-12-2022, 05:27 PM   #4
HighwayHunter
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Hunted Laguna two years ago on the bow hunt. Went with two buddies, we were second bow hunt of the year. Temps hit mid 90ís at the end of November and movement was pretty freaking slow. Still saw several Nilgai and deer but couldnít ever close the distance or I set up on the wrong path and they never got close enough. Definitely recommend a bike (we walked like idiots), hunt poop piles and donít over look good spots by the road. Majority of the animals I saw were within 5 minutes of major roads. First day of the hunt I saw a cow nilgai with her baby. I was set up in a marsh area tucked into the brush no more than 400 yards from the road that runs North through the refuge. All of the hunters moved into the refuge on bikes and animals poured out into surrounding private property


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Old 04-22-2022, 11:55 AM   #5
Darkarcher159
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IMHO nilgai on the LANWR is the hardest toughest bowhunt on public ground you can find in Texas. Many people go unprepared for the miles they may have to put in and then getting an animal out of there. This ain't no whitetail hunt!!!!
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Old 04-23-2022, 10:49 AM   #6
Mr. Public
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkarcher159 View Post
IMHO nilgai on the LANWR is the hardest toughest bowhunt on public ground you can find in Texas. Many people go unprepared for the miles they may have to put in and then getting an animal out of there. This ain't no whitetail hunt!!!!

I second this. Statistical harvest data proves its ultimate difficulty in hunters being successful. It is also my favorite place to bow hunt. Canít wait to get back there, hopefully this year. LANWR creates better bow hunters. Preparation, planning, practice with gear, having multiple back up plans, timing & efficiency, solid partners, and South Texas woodsman-ship are all important and necessary for a hunt at LANWR.


Dan Infalt shared this today:

ď10 percenters...
All the money in the world ain't enough to buy you inner strength. Drive and get it done attitude is either in you, or its not. Some people dive into the nasty with a smile. Some just hang there head and go home. There are probably a lot of people that won't understand that statement but Im betting about 10% will...Ē

This is exactly my sentiments about hunting the refuge.


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Old 05-22-2022, 10:55 PM   #7
RGV Hunter
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I have hunted the Atascosa and El Teniente for over twenty years. I gotta say that in my opinion the Atascosa is easier now because some of the roads have caliche and you can use an ebike. The ebike is a game changer but you still need to know where to go.

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Last edited by RGV Hunter; 05-22-2022 at 11:25 PM.
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Old 05-23-2022, 01:19 PM   #8
Odwraca
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I have hunted Laguna 3x and managed 1x Bull Nilgai, 1x Doe, 1x Buck. Really a great place to hunt, but you have to hunt smart and think about where animals are getting pushed to/from.
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Old 05-23-2022, 08:17 PM   #9
Kirby86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Public View Post

Dan Infalt shared this today:

ď10 percenters...
All the money in the world ain't enough to buy you inner strength. Drive and get it done attitude is either in you, or its not. Some people dive into the nasty with a smile. Some just hang there head and go home. There are probably a lot of people that won't understand that statement but Im betting about 10% will...Ē

This is exactly my sentiments about hunting the refuge.


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^^^^^^^^^^^ This.

I hunted it with the same mindset I would have if I were going into a backcountry hunt. E-scouting was the same.

In the 5 day hunt down there (plus the scouting day) I put in 60 miles on my E-bike. One thing I noticed was that most people didn't range far from their bikes. Part of that is because it's thick, and the other part is having to be off the refuge shortly after legal sunset.

I was getting anywhere between 1-2 miles away from my bike. Without the E-bike, packing out a nilgai would've been awful.

The button buck I shot I was able to fit in my pack quartered out, but had I found either of the cows I arrowed and never found, I would've had my hands full. The terrain on some parts of the refuge is deceptively uneven, and its real easy to roll an ankle.

If you have ever elk hunted or hunted out west in general, physical preparation is just as big as mental. Don't underestimate the place, even if you have an E-bike because you still gotta get it there!
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Old 05-23-2022, 09:23 PM   #10
Kirby86
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One other thing I forgot to mentionÖ I had my peep move on me during that hunt. Dragging your bow through all that crap, and then the abuse it took riding on my bike, idk how it happened but it changed how I tie my peep in.

I use bloodline waxless material which is super slick, so I think thatís why it moved. But I canít move it with a pair of pliers now without damaging the string!
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