Woods and Waters An outdoor blog by John McCoy

Bad weather is putting W.Va. deer hunters behind

Mountain State hunters are 'weathering' a poor whitetail season
Mountain State hunters are ‘weathering’ a poor whitetail season

By now, West Virginia’s deer hunters must be shaking their heads.

Weather for the state’s whitetail seasons has hovered somewhere between rotten and atrocious. Wildlife officials haven’t yet collected and counted game-check tags, but when they do, expect the tally to turn out equally rotten and atrocious.

Paul Johansen, assistant wildlife chief for the Division of Natural Resources, said heavy rains on the second day of the buck firearm season and snow on the third day has hunters playing catch-up.

“The first three days of the season are historically when the bulk of the buck and antlerless-deer harvests take place,” he said. “We had nice weather on opening day, but after that it got bad in a hurry.”

Many hunters head home after three days to celebrate Thanksgiving with their families. After that, weather on the season’s two Saturdays usually determines how many more deer get killed. This year’s weather was far from good enough to bring hunters out in droves.

And now the muzzleloader season has started with snow on the ground, rain in the air, flooding in rivers and streams, and more snow on the way.

Can’t a hunter catch a break around here?