MULE DEER ARE NOT DUMB – Why they’ve earned a reputation as dimwits I’m not sure, but a notch-eared buck with a gray face and hanging belly is every bit as crafty as a similarly adorned whitetail. Young bucks and does in lightly hunted regions are assuredly easy to kill. However, if your heart is set on an impressive specimen, hunt with the same craft and dedication you’d apply to a burly whitetail in the big woods of Michigan or you’ll likely travel home empty-handed.
A creature of the plains, foothills and high peaks, perhaps no mammal is more biologically suited to thrive in the diverse habitats of the West than the mule deer. But that doesn’t make them easy to hunt. These days, a mature mule deer buck taken on public land probably speaks more loudly of a hunter’s skill (or luck) than the average six-point bull elk or a full-curl bighorn ram.