Tracks in the Woods

We took the kids out to undisclosed location on Tuesday for some exploring and rim-fire goodness.  Been meaning to scout some tracks and take pictures for DanielS so we can plan an excursion that hopefully bolsters our food supplies.

Now, I’m a city kid that is still learning about all this outdoors stuff.  I like camping and hiking and exploring the woods and all, but I’m no where near an expert in such things.  Seriously, growing up, my parents idea of camping was to rent a cabin in a national park.  We were roughing it because we didn’t have cable.  Yes, they brought a television.

I’ve still never been hunting.  I really want to.  Bambi is tasty. But no, I’ve never looked in her big brown eyes and sent lead through her heart.  Can I do it?  I think so.  But I’m not going to know until I’ve got her in my sights.

So anyway, tracks. We’ve got pig

Lots of pig

Some kind of big cat

And????

What on Earth is that? There were several, this one was just the clearest. Here’s another pic.

Any ideas?  That’s my foot in the picture.  I’m wearing a ladies size 8 shoe. That print is the size of my head.  I really don’t think anyone is out there bouncing around on their head that far back in the woods (I had kind of  lost my bearings at this point and had lead the group out farther than I realized. We made it back just fine though.). Besides, I’ve never seen anyone with toes on their heads.  It’s not bear country, but I suppose it would not be completely outside the realm of possibilities.

I’m at a loss, but I know many of you have spent a lot more time in the woods than I have.  Surely someone has seen some oddball track like that one, right? I’d appreciate any and all suggestions there.

And this post has gotten long, so I’ll put the shooty stuff in another post.

15 thoughts on “Tracks in the Woods”

  1. Something that big, it’s hard to see in the picture, but do you have bears up there? The top pic looks like both deer and pigs (deer on top, pig on bottom). Deer are usually pointy at the front and pigs are kind of rounded.

    What you said about not knowing until you have them in your sights is so very true. I was a professional guide for a while and it’s very important to understand that if you don’t want to do it, you should stop at any point you don’t feel comfortable. Don’t force it. Taking an animal is really a very serious and personal decision. Good luck with it!

  2. I’m having to look at the pictures small, since they won’t open larger for me for some reason. They don’t appear to be tracks. Rather, it looks like something dug the earth out based on what looks like loose earth near each depression.

    Wrong shape for armadillo. Those are about that depth but pointy at one end. My guess would be hog rooting, but they generally root up larger areas rather than individual little holes like that – so I’m not totally confident. Often an area that has been “search” by hogs will look like someone came through with a rototiller.

  3. Just a side note, the pigs if they are wild, are usually very lean (for pigs).

    Expect a good ham or two, lots of chops, tenderloin etc, but not much on the bacon side. Just not enough fat.

    That said if its an open invite for hog hunting, I want in 🙂 I have a scoped 5 shot SKS that sends the 154 grain soft points quite nicely

  4. I’d agree with AmbulanceDriver on the first pic, that looks like deer at the top of the pic (not a hunter, but been camping in deer country down in South Georgia a lot while growing up). As for the holes, I’d say it was either a very determined armadillo (pigs cause a lot more destruction) who just HAD to have that grub, or…about 100 yards away from y’all, there was some practical joker hiding in the scrub snickering to himself as he watched a bunch of city kids try to figure out his metal-detecting holes.

  5. I have about 20-30 holes in about a 150 square foot area just like that from an armadillo in ground cover very much like that.
    When the dirt is wet and there is thicker ground cover the holes are less regularly shaped.

  6. It can’t have been a skunk ape. Jennifer’s pictures are in focus.

    Next weer’d will be telling us that helicopters aren’t all black (under the paint).

    MORE meds? But I took them yesterdaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!

  7. The top pix looks like the tracks of the deer that likes to bed down in what’s left of the wife’s garden.

    Second may be Felis Concolor, catamount, cougar, puma, whatever you want to call ’em, tracks. I hear there are quite a few in the Sans Bois.

    Third looks like a boars track in very soft dirt.

    Bottom looks like the little armored one is thinking of dining on worms and grubs that have come to the top after a rain. A little drier and armadillo excavations are usually more teardrop shaped.

    Stranger

  8. Friend’s family has a farm outside Elk City, had a chance to hunt there a couple of years ago. They’ve got a female cougar who’s had a couple of litters over the last few years; didn’t get to see them but found tracks around a water hole: one set of BIG kitty tracks and two sets of small.

    I’ve known people who shot every wild pig they could find, most just left there; there’s so many, as you say, and doing so much damage they’re just trying to reduce numbers. Now, a nice fat one they would bring back.

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