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#902803 - 09/26/08 12:32 PM The Mastering of Snow Trapping
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
My major bug in life right now is to become a master SNOW TRAPPER at least in my own mind. I will be trapping Weasal, Red Fox, Grey Fox, Coyote. I got some great ideas on how to get started and if no one replyed to this topic I would still have a good starting point. But, I would love to here about your BEST WINTER TRAPPING SETS. I will be setting boxes for weasals, Fox and Coyotes will be using scent posts, circle sets and buried bait sets. LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW. Winter is my faverite time of the year and trapping gives me the oppertunity to be out in it all the time. Lets hear what you have to say out there trappers.

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#902821 - 09/26/08 12:47 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
swamphaunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/02/08
Loc: twig Minnesota
One thing i learned many years ago was that disturbed snow will harden and form a crust hard enough to allow a fox to walk right over the trap without firing it.
I learned to use a cedar shingle and toss the snow high up in the air and let it settle over your trap. this will cause the snow to remain powdery and not crust up.
Also you can put your trap in a cheap plastic bag to keep it from freezing down.
I like to perforate the bag a little to allow the trap to close faster.
If you havnt gathered your dry dirt supply yet for this winter its time to get on it also.Hope this helps you.

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#902834 - 09/26/08 01:00 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: swamphaunter]
ADC
Unregistered

Snares really come into their own with a snow fall where you can see just where the animals are going and just where to hang the snare.



As for sets with footholds in the snow I really only ever use one much and it may not be practical depending on how far north you are and the amount of snowfall you may get. What I do is clear out a big circle of snow maybe 6' across down to the ground and build a flat set with a big rock or clod as a backing. I usually use my stake driver to pound a hole under the edge of the backing for my lure/bait and a shot of fox urine on the rock.

~ADC~

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#902953 - 09/26/08 02:54 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: ]
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
Excellent, that is the kind of stuff I was hoping to hear. As far as using a shingle and throwing the snow up into the air. I read that you can use your sifter and hold it at chest height and sift the snow down over your set to keep it from packing tight on you. I am going to try the plastic bag trick and I am also going to try using crumpled up wax paper to keep the trap from freezing down. The Alaskan trappers ought to be able fill a novel on trapping in snow. Excellent keep them coming

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#902976 - 09/26/08 03:12 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
Freepop Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/09/07
Loc: South Central Michigan
I've never had any luck sifting snow. I just use dry dirt, let ma nature put a dusting on it and hope it doesn't thaw then freeze.
_________________________
Born to hunt, forced to work - 52 y/o


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#902994 - 09/26/08 03:25 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: Freepop]
EduMan Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/06/07
Loc: SE Iowa
Snow is our favorite for running yote snares. We use the 4 wheeler and set the 4 wheeler tracks (set off the back).

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#902997 - 09/26/08 03:29 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: EduMan]
MNcooner Offline
trapper

Registered: 10/20/07
Loc: MN, just north of Sodom
Blak coyote has a great deep snow foothold set in the land trapping archives. Check it out.
_________________________
Devoted Grubstake disciple

Follower of the gnome


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#903251 - 09/26/08 06:42 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: MNcooner]
Drakej Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/24/07
Loc: Kanabec Cty, MN
When snow gets deep enough(6" or more) to get fox to walk their same tracks(especially across open areas) approach trail from one side. About a foot from one tracks dig into the snow, down and over under snow to near a track. Slide gently(so as not to cave in/disturb snow) set trap(inside light baggie)to where pan is right under and same depth as bottom of track. Have trap attached to grapple/clog with two feet or more of chain. Place grapple/clog in your footprints covering as you retreat. Wind protection help keep set good. Heavy new snow means remake in new trail. This set is quick after you have made a few. Mark loaction with a tall weed/branch or pace off from landmark. They can be tricky to relocate after heavy wind or snow. Works best on fox as they have they greatest tendency I've seen to walk their own tracks(often several times and it still looks like a single trail).
_________________________
I've learned enough thru the years to now know that I don't know enough.

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#903280 - 09/26/08 07:03 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: Drakej]
Asa Lenon Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Loc: Gulliver, Michigan
I have been trapping deep snow for nearly 60 years. I was taught by a master at snow trapping, my Dad made his entire living trapping deep snow during the depression years. There are seven sets my Dad taught me but the most simple set for fox, coyote and bobcat is the scent post set, either a natural made scent post or one that is planted where one wants it to be most conspicuous. Here is an excerpt from one of my Dad's 1950's free trapping tips booklets;

WINTER & DEEP SNOW TRAPPING
Trapping where snowfall is light, one may dig the trap beds and holes before the ground becomes frozen. Bed traps in dry leaves or needles. Sand that has been collected and well dried throughout the summer or in an oven is used to cover the set. Trap line anti-freeze such as plain pickling salt, calcium chloride, wax or glycerin may be mixed into the sand to prevent freezing if the sand should get wet from rain or thaw. Buckwheat hulls or peat moss may also be used as a freeze-proof trap covering and are available from many trapping supply dealers.
Deep snow trapping is much more difficult for the novice trapper. Here is a simple snow set that has proven most successful. Locate a scent post already established by the animal or find a suitable location for establishing one. A bundle of natural grass or weeds four to six inches in diameter and two feet long tied together with other grass or a clean brown cord is recommended for establishing a winter scent post. Pick a location for the set using the preceding preparation instructions. Approach as near as possible to the set location from behind a tree, stump, or whatever may hide your tracks when possible, and proceed directly to the spot chosen. Be sure to have everything you will need to construct the set along with you so tracking back and forth will not be necessary. Plant the bundle of grass or weeds firmly into the snow so the wind will not blow it over. Sprinkle plain urine or for best results Lenonís Fox Natureís Call #3 or Coyote Natureís Call #3 lure on the bundle of grass. Place lure on side of grass where you anticipate the animalís approach and a few more drops directly on top of the grass bundle so the breeze can carry the odor more effectively. Pack the snow down thoroughly to give the trap a solid foundation. If in an evergreen area, place a layer of small evergreen boughs on the packed snow to bed the trap on. Cover the trap with waxed paper that has been crushed to prevent it being so noisy if the animal should step on the jaw first. Crushing the paper also reduces the chance of the wind drifting the snow from the set. If evergreen is not available for bedding, wrap the entire trap loosely in crushed waxed paper. A size larger trap is recommended for winter sets as a catch can still be made through several inches of additional snowfall. Traps must be equipped with grapple hooks and additional chain for snow trapping. When the trap is placed the right distance from the post, in the position where you anticipate the animal approach and two inches lower than the surrounding snow, you are ready to cover the set. Simply throw the chain and grapple hook out into the snow where it can sink out of sight. Reach in back of you and scoop up snow with a snow spoon (will describe). Hold the snow at least three feet above the trap and carefully sift snow over the trap until all is level and natural. Snow should be sifted from three or more feet up in the air to allow it to gather air as it falls, otherwise it may freeze hard over the trap. Back away slowly while smoothing out all tracks with the snow spoon. Stop every few feet to throw snow up and over all tracks and disturbances. Tracks and disturbances should be covered for at least fifty feet or until hidden by some object.
No lure or urine is ever added to an already established natural scent post when one of these is selected to construct a set. This may spook a fox or coyote that comes there on a regular basis. A few professional trappers have learned to make sets at established scent posts by using a long ten or twelve foot pole. A paddle is at the end of the pole to hold and position the trap and used to pack the trap bed. The trap is placed at the post without having to come in any closer, avoiding tracks and human odor right at the set. This does increase oneís catch but is not an easy task for the novice trapper, so I will not explain it in depth at this time.

MAKING A SNOW SPOON
A snow spoon is a very handy and successful tool that is well worthwhile making. One can brush out tracks fairly well using a four foot tree limb that is curved at the end like a hockey stick; but the snow spoon has many advantages. To make the snow spoon, select a piece of soft wood such as cedar, cottonwood, or basswood two feet long and one foot wide. Cut an eight inch long spoon handle on the block of wood and checker it so it will not be slippery to handle. Cut out the balance exactly the shape of a spoon, rounded and smooth on the bottom and hollowed on the top. When completed, the spoon length should be about sixteen inches, width twelve inches, and an eight inch handle. Heat the finished spoon in an oven until very hot and then paint with smoking hot trap wax. Waxing prevents it from becoming wet and from snow sticking to it. When you smooth out your tracks and throw snow up and over the smoothed area with this handy tool, there will not be a sign of your having been there.
Herb Lenon

A more modern tool I use in lieu of carving out a snow spoon is a large teflon frying pan. The bottom of the pan is smooth and rounded off for brushing out tracks, the teflon interior keeps snow from sticking to the pan while throwing snow high into the air and of course it already has a handle.

Also, I still have a few of the Herb Lenon Classic videos for sale. They are a one of a kind when it comes to the seven deep snow sets and techniques demonstrated in the video.
Asa

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#903295 - 09/26/08 07:15 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: Asa Lenon]
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
Wow, I think I just died and went to snow trappers heaven. Thats a big act to follow, but don't this stop you from posting more ideas on SNOW TRAPPING. The more ideas the better. I got layed off for the year because the concrete is flowing pretty slow around here and I will have the time really put all of your suggestions to work and see what works best for me. I will be looking forward to sharing my results during the trapping season. Ps I never thought that a trapping legend would answer my thread, Thank you.

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#903302 - 09/26/08 07:18 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
ecgreen Offline
trapper

Registered: 07/20/08
Loc: Grand Island, NY, USA
Great poat ASa!
_________________________


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#903309 - 09/26/08 07:24 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: ecgreen]
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
I like the idea of throwing he grapple in my tracks as I retreat. I just like the whole idea. I am definatly going to try this one , if for nothing else just to see if I can do it.

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#903346 - 09/26/08 07:54 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
My fox setup as far as traps is #2 Bridgers with 3 swivels and five foot of chain and a #5 Grapple. I set these up just for trapping in snow. I am also making them white with 1 quart oil based paint and one gallon of mineral spirits. I tried the water based stuff that you buy in the trapping stores and I am now stripping that off becaue it did not cover very well. Not only was it to thick. The rust would eat its way through it before it would dry. The chains would not even move freely any more. They looked like a brown spotted snow lepard. I hated it to say the least. If I am going to make something snow white, than I want it to look ike it is snow white, do you know what I mean.

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#903477 - 09/26/08 09:38 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
Drakej Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/24/07
Loc: Kanabec Cty, MN
Coloring your traps for deep snow trapping is probably not necessary from the animals visual point of view, but I found that whitening them helps considerablly with melt thru(trap becoming exsposed or cover snow crusting) caused by solar heating of the trap. Bright sun can penetrate a couple of inches of snow and heat up a blackened trap. Waxed paper helps prevent this but clear plastic doesn't. I experimented with white wash,paint, white wax(worked OK) but than I found 200 trap sized plastic bags in opaque white at a surplus store. They work great. Only got a few left.
_________________________
I've learned enough thru the years to now know that I don't know enough.

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#903480 - 09/26/08 09:41 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: Drakej]
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
What are you going to do when you run out of the bags.

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#903496 - 09/26/08 09:51 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
ADC
Unregistered

Since your avoiding commenting on the snares I'm going to show you another one, see if I can convince you. grin



Very simply drive along a draw or fence line and they will follow your tire tracks. I have up to 3 snares per track and space them 50' or so apart. Just walk in the tracks bac a few feet behind the truck so your tracks aren't seen in the snow.

A closer look reviels the second snare in the left tire track...



Convinced? LOL grin

~ADC~

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#903517 - 09/26/08 10:06 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: ]
Asa Lenon Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Loc: Gulliver, Michigan
Snares aren't practical here in Michigan ADC. They can be used only during January and February on private property only. There is also so many requirements that it really limits thier usage . All of the places like cedar swamps where canines and cats reside here in the snow months are seldom private property but rather public state land. Asa


Edited by Asa Lenon (09/27/08 07:15 AM)

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#903521 - 09/26/08 10:08 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: ]
carcajouhunter Offline
trapper

Registered: 09/15/08
Loc: Southeast, MN
Most definitely, What a sweet idea. I just wish I did not spend all my money already before this season. I will have to wait until I get some catches and sell some furs, or I will be living in my trapping shed do you get my drift. Let me spell it out for you W I F E. Awesome pictures I would have never thought of that. It doesn't get any simpler than that now does it. My hat is off to you sir. Is there any thing special you need to do to the snare before you set it. I have never snared before thats why never mentioned it in my to do list for this year. The picture speaks a thousand words doesn't it, Thanks smirk

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#903524 - 09/26/08 10:14 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: carcajouhunter]
DFronek Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/25/06
Loc: N.e.WI. 45

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#903536 - 09/26/08 10:23 PM Re: The Mastering of Snow Trapping [Re: DFronek]
ADC
Unregistered

I hear you Asa, your state has probably the worst snare regulations of any of the states that allow snaring.

carcajouhunter - I dip my snares in formula one trap coat. Its a water based dip if you're not familiar. One light coat is all it takes and they are ready to set as soon as it drys in an hour or so. You are up there by Rally Hess he can set you up with top of the line snares, and pick his brain on how to use them if you get a chance. If you want it I'll PM you some more info on my style of snaring and preping them and such, shoot me a PM if you do.

Great post you linked to Blak! One of the best I've seen on here. I hope you've made a copy of that on the archives forum in my signature.

~ADC~

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