Kansas Run

Thinking about a trip to Kansas hunting 5 days January 9 to 15. Thinking Wakeeney to Jetmore. Never hunted that area, but all around it in previous years. Curious whether those counties received snow/rain? Been to south dakota twice, but would like to get the 3 setters out again. The benefits of being retired and the princess still working. Lol. Read the brood surveys results and my expectations are realistic. Any thoughts on weather conditions or my choice of destination. PM if you like.
Thank you, wish I could move out that way...
 

KsHusker

Active member
Thinking about a trip to Kansas hunting 5 days January 9 to 15. Thinking Wakeeney to Jetmore. Never hunted that area, but all around it in previous years. Curious whether those counties received snow/rain? Been to south dakota twice, but would like to get the 3 setters out again. The benefits of being retired and the princess still working. Lol. Read the brood surveys results and my expectations are realistic. Any thoughts on weather conditions or my choice of destination. PM if you like.
Thank you, wish I could move out that way...
Dont know where you live Birdhunter6 - but it's KS -- Christmas day it was near 70 here -- Friday it was 50s or 60s - Friday Night/Saturday morning it got into single digits and last night (Sat night) it went negative) -- 2 days from now it is supposed to be 50s then Wednesday maybe single digits again.

KS weather is crazier than several classrooms full of 1st graders on an unlimited supply of candy right now- Pack for all the weather and have layers and even plan to stay or leave early or longer depending on what storm rolls in. We're now paying for the mild start to winter and fall we've had. You'll be fine - just plan on more time to catch good weather days or maybe you'll get lucky.


You can look on weather.com or wunderground.com or other sites to see if they got snow -- more reliable than the accounts you get online.
 
I'm located 2 hours southeast of st louis in the land of Illinazi, aka peoples republic of chitcago. I live 6 hours south of that mess on the ky border.
 
I just got out to the Colby area (1hr west of Wakeeny) and we have around 2-4 inches of snow on the ground here but that should melt soon as the highs are going to be 40+ the next couple of days including close to 60 early next week. The Wakeeny/Hays area has around the same amount of snow currently. They got some snow last weekend then about another inch a couple of days ago.
 
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JSMITH

Member
Father in law hunted between Dodge and Jetmore on opener- 10 guys and 6 dogs on all private land- Got 4 pheasant and a quail. Haven’t heard anything about N of Jetmore.
 

COWAN

Active member
I just got out to the Colby area (1hr west of Wakeeny) and we have around 2-4 inches of snow on the ground here but that should melt soon as the highs are going to be 40+ the next couple of days including close to 60 early next week. The Wakeeny/Hays area has around the same amount of snow currently. They got some snow last weekend then about another inch a couple of days ago.
Let us know how you do. I used to hunt that area, but I haven't for the last 4 years.
 
Will be on the road tmrrw at 630. Don't have high expectations, but I always enjoy hunting the wide-open expanse of the prairies. The 3 setters will certainly enjoy themselves. Hunted south dakota in October and November. Since I retired, the goal is to get the dogs out hunting 40 days a year. And bring expose my newest addition who is 12 months old to birds. Plan to hunt 5 days barring any blizzards or other mishaps. Will report on return.
 
Let us know how you do. I used to hunt that area, but I haven't for the last 4 years.
I ended up getting 5 over 3 days which is pretty typical. I just started hunting 3 years ago and almost always hunt solo with a dog on a mixture of private land and WIHA. I'll usually kick up a couple single/doubles and typically flush about 1 group of 5 birds a day(sometimes out of range).

I did see the largest flush I have ever seen out there in my limited experience this time. Its a WIHA honey hole of corn with a weedy draw in the middle that connects to a large CRP field that is plastered with No Hunting signs and full of pheasants. I usually get at least a bird out of there and have flushed 5/10 out of a certain choke point... my buddy was with me so I put him in the prime position then moved in to flush the birds for him.

This was our first hunt of the day and he was anxious and shot way to soon on the first bird which caused even more to flush..he missed his second shot and since he decided to be nostalgic and use his grandpa's old double barrel instead of his benelli he sat there and tried to reload as about 20-25 birds flew directly over him and into the no hunting CRP. :ROFLMAO:
 

BritChaser

Well-known member
not a good season in KS. best is to focus on quail imho
 
Hunted Graham, Rooks, Trego, Gove, Ness and Hodgeman counties Jan 10 - 14.

Shot 6 Roosters and 2 quail on whias. Didn't miss a pheasant, however never fired a shot on days 3,4, and 5.

Walked approximately 8.5 to 10.5 miles daily rotating 3 setters regularly.

Pheasant densities are very low, i suspect due to the severe drought. My expectations were low, but I thought my success would be better.

The amount of CRP conversion to cropland is disappointing. One afternoon I drove to 29 whias in Southern Trego and Gove counties that were converted to cropland. Estimate the acreage conversion was close to 5,000 acres.

Feel like KFWP needs to include a new theme in the whia atlas legend to include cropland. Failure to do so is disingenuous at best. Nearly all of the converted grassland whias converted to cropland wouldn't support a pheasant. The lack of grassland and brood habitats in the vicinity just wouldn't sustain a population.

I understand the plight of landowners electing to convert CRP contracts as they expire or arent renewed by USDA to cropland in favor of a higher financial return.

Talked to a KDWP wildlife biologist who was less than enthusiastic when I asked him questions about brood survey results and habitat conditions. Sure glad I made 2 trips to South Dakota in October and November.

Hunted Kansas many times in the past and always enjoyed myself. However, not sure I will return there next year.

Attached are photos of my setters. Feel bad that my season is over till next October. Hunted them nearly 35 days this fall.
 

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KSBrittman

Active member
The Kansas Wildlife and Parks sure like to make it sound better than it is to attract your out of state dollars .
It’s disheartening to see all the CRP to crop conversion , This another Upland Legacy lost . We will still have pheasants and Quail but less quality habitat means less birds .

KDWPT said our numbers were very similar to last year ,My actual experience with dogs and boots on the ground I would say our pheasant population down 25 to 40 percent .
 

KansasGsp

Active member
I would agree that it's down 25 to 40 percent. This season has been my worst season in 25 years of chasing birds. I try to get out every weekend for day trips, usually try different areas and none have been very good. Used to see 75-100 pheasants a day on average, now seeing 25-30 is good. It's heading in the wrong direction and it's depressing. We're loosing so much habitat across the state is sickening.
 

Nick

Active member
Got out this weekend. Hunted WIHA and private. Shot 3 (should've had 4) on Saturday. Saw around 20 birds total. Hunted until noon yesterday and didn't see a bird. Didn't see any quail, but saw a group of around 70 antelope on Saturday and a group of around 30 yesterday.
 

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hunter94

Well-known member
not hunting Kansas this season, i saw this coming, Kansas is pretty much done until CRP comes back, if ever.
will stick with SD and IA next time around, KS. was so good years ago.
 

cokid

Member
Guess I just got lucky. I made two solo 3-day trips to KS this year, and came back with 8 birds each time (plus only 2 quail, but I only hunt them when I run into them). That included a daily limit once on each trip. It helped that I was shooting what is for me, lights-out, only missed maybe 4-5 opportunities. I've only hunted KS the last 4 years after my handful of honey holes in CO started drying up. It has seemed about the same to me over that time. I had several 10-20 bird flushes this year, and one monster 50-75 bird flush. All on WIHA. Anyway, I can't say I'm disappointed, though I'm sure it was much better a decade ago - kinda wish I had "headed east" a bit sooner! This is all on the western 1/3 of the state, the furthest east I've been is Hwy 283.
 
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Nick

Active member
I've hunted pheasants in Kansas for a little over 40 years (first trip was when I was 12). Definitely isn't and probably never will be like the "good ol' days", but I still enjoy getting out. I had a great time last weekend. Can't complain at all about Saturday. Without a miss I would've had a limit. Got good dog work and to me it's fun being out there. It's a nice change of pace. I do plan to make one trip to South Dakota next year, and I may give IA a try. Have never hunted there.
 

cokid

Member
Guess I just got lucky. I made two solo 3-day trips to KS this year, and came back with 8 birds each time (plus only 2 quail, but I only hunt them when I run into them). That included a daily limit once on each trip. It helped that I was shooting what is for me, lights-out, only missed maybe 4-5 opportunities. I've only hunted KS the last 4 years after my handful of honey holes in CO started drying up. It has seemed about the same to me over that time. I had several 10-20 bird flushes this year, and one monster 50-75 bird flush. All on WIHA. Anyway, I can't say I'm disappointed, though I'm sure it was much better a decade ago - kinda wish I had "headed east" a bit sooner! This is all on the western 1/3 of the state, the furthest east I've been is Hwy 283.
Amidst all the doom and gloom here, I just wanted to add a semi-positive report! Sitting here wondering if I could squeeze in one more end of season trip next weekend now that it's cooled down and there is snow on the ground (or used to be), but a long list of home projects is probably not going to allow for that.
 

Nick

Active member
Amidst all the doom and gloom here, I just wanted to add a semi-positive report! Sitting here wondering if I could squeeze in one more end of season trip next weekend now that it's cooled down and there is snow on the ground (or used to be), but a long list of home projects is probably not going to allow for that.
I'll be out one last time the final weekend.
 
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