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Ground Zero: Ohio's Record Bucks

Ground Zero: Ohio's Record Bucks

Trophy Buckeye State whitetails thrive on public and private land alike. Here are the top spots open to all in Ohio’s top Boone & Crockett-producing counties.

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Check out this video to learn how to manage your small track of land to bag your trophy buck.

Adams County

Seven B&C-qualifying bucks shot in Adams County in the past five seasons have been entered into the club’s record books, and with abundant public hunting opportunities Adams is a go-to place for Ohio hunters seeking trophy racks. District Five Wildlife Management Supervisor Brett Beatty recommends a state forest, and public wildlife area and a preserve for whitetail hunters who want to sample what Adams County has to offer deer-wise this season.

Situated in the rugged, unglaciated hill country of south central Ohio, Brush Creek State Forest includes 13,502 non-contiguous acres in Adams, Pike and Scioto counties. As witnessed by Adam’s County’s tally of seven Booners, as compared to one for Scioto and four for Pike county since 2013, Adams 7,500 acres of state forest is where you want to hunt.

The forest is harvested on a selective basis and provides good habitat for deer and is in the vicinity of private agricultural lands planted in row crops, which help grow big whitetails. For Brush Creek State Forest maps and deer hunting details, contact the Forest Manager at (740) 493-2441 or visit forestry.ohiodnr.gov/brushcreek.

A special opportunity for a limited number of proactive deer hunters who want to hunt Adams County is offered annually on 2,400 acres of the Edge of Appalachia Preserve. Located south of St. Rt. 125, approximately seven miles east of West Union on Waggoner Riffle Road, the Preserve includes 16,000 acres administered jointly by the Cincinnati Museum Center and the Nature Conservancy.

The terrain is rough, heavily forested and mountainous, with steep hillsides and ravines. No ATVs are permitted, deer hunters must hike into the area, and a limited number of free permits are given out each season to maintain the quality hunting experience. Permits are issued on a first come, first serve basis, are available to the public and are good for deer hunting only for both the archery and deer gun seasons.

Permits are available in person only at the Edge of Appalachia Eulett Center located at 4274 Waggoner Riffle Road, West Union, 45693, Fridays only beginning each August. For more information call (937) 544-2880.

Massive Tranquility Wildlife Area “jumps out” as the most popular public deer hunting area in Adams County, according to Beatty. Spreading over some 4,500 acres of land “that simply looks like prime deer habitat” it’s no wonder. The biologist explained that the terrain is rolling with hardwood ridges and cedar thickets with 10 percent of the ground planted in row crops.

Tranquility Wildlife Area is located 16 miles south of Hillsboro on State Route 770. County Road 100 runs along the southern boundary of the area. Maps and deer hunting information is available from the District Five wildlife offices at (937) 372-9261 or at wildlife.ohiodnr.gov/tranquility.




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