There’s More to it Than Just Hearing One Gobble

wild turkey

 

I love this time of year.  The anticipation that builds up before turkey season is better than Christmas.  I’ve been spending a lot of mornings in the woods the past couple weeks listening for birds and scouting out new hunting spots.  Around here the birds have broken up and I’ve seen several strutters on a few rainy evenings. [Read more…]

Printable Turkey Targets

turkeytarget57

 

If you need to, and haven’t already, pattern your turkey gun.  I made this target in photoshop this morning because I didn’t have any.  If you need a target, click the image, let the full size image load, then print the page.

Killing Turkeys on Small Plots of Land

turkeyfarmI’ve heard it more times than I care to admit.  “I’d love to turkey hunt that place, but it’s just not big enough.”  Believe it or not, killing turkeys on small patches of ground is not an impossible feat and sometimes it can be downright easy…if you have a solid plan of attack. [Read more…]

MAD MAX Turkey Blind

mad max blindI tend to pack pretty light in the turkey woods, especially back east where the hills can be straight up and down and extra weight is the enemy.  One thing I will carry, however, is the MAD MAX Turkey Blind from [Read more…]

Beating Cabin Fever: Winter Turkey Scouting

turkey tracks

Old man winter hasn’t quite let up on us here in western Pennsylvania, but that doesn’t mean you have to sit in the house.  Late February and early March happen to be my favorite time of the year to get in the woods and scout for turkeys.  As long as there isn’t snow blowing sideways, I’m outside. [Read more…]

8 Days Until Feathers Fly

takenI saw this on Facebook today and it reminded me that I leave for Alabama in 6 days and season starts in 8.  It can’t come fast enough.

 

Picking a Taxidermist That Doesn’t Suck

bad taxidermy

Imagine the disappointment of picking up your trophy of a lifetime and plunking down your hard earned cash only to take home a mount you aren’t completely satisfied with.  Maybe you’ve felt this before.  I know I have.  It is a terrible feeling and you’re really kind of put in a bad spot.  You can argue with the taxidermist for your money back or a re-mount but your relationship will probably be irreparably damaged and it is probably best to chalk it up to experience and move on.  A few small things to look for in a new taxidermist can save a lot of headache. [Read more…]

Recommended Reading: Tenth Legion by Tom Kelly

tenthlegionTurkey season is closing in fast and one good way to help pass the time between now and then is to read Tom Kelly’s classic, Tenth Legion.  It’s hands down the best book ever written on turkey hunting. [Read more…]

Little Call, Big Sound

wilper callWith turkey season fast approaching (32 days until Alabama opens) I got my turkey vest in order.  Over the years, I’ve pared down what I carry to reduce clutter and keep it simple.  One of my favorite calls I own not only takes up little space, it also is one of the sweetest sounding boxes I’ve ever heard.   [Read more…]

It’s all over

Dead WV Turkey

Today, when I got home from work, I started the daunting task of sorting and washing all of my turkey hunting clothes.  What’s worse than having to go through all this stuff and wash it for next year is the realization that this season is over.  I live for the spring gobbler season.  If I could do it every day all year, I would.  And though I knew the season was drawing to a close, the realization that I had to hang it up until next year didn’t set in until today.

As I went through the pockets, I found my Kansas license, a spent Federal hull, an SD card, a cigarette butt, and about 4 fistfuls of Kleenex.  These are random items that mean nothing, but in an instant they made me remember everything about Kansas and the turkey I shot the shell at.  I remember putting the SD card in my pocket for safe keeping and then forgetting where I put it.  I remembered finding a year old cigarette in my vest left from when I smoked and then smoking it in the dark, listening to a bird gobble in the distance.  And of course, using the Kleenex to attack the never ending snots that accompany cold mornings and spring time allergies.  A lot of times, by noon, I can’t remember what I ate for breakfast, but turkey season memories, no matter how minute,  are always seared in my mind.

I covered a lot of miles, hunted in several states, and burned up a serious amount of boot leather this year.  I got to hunt with old friends, and made some new ones.  I got the privilege to introduce new people to a sport I live and die by.  And I even killed several birds. Hunting every day for 2 months is hard on you mentally and physically.  It causes stress at work and places a strain on your marriage.  You neglect things that you otherwise wouldn’t, all in narrow pursuit of one of the greatest game animals of all time.  And its now I realize why I couldn’t do this year round.  I have a wife and job to get back to, and while I still wake up at 4am every day ready to lace my boots and take off for the mountains, that will fade.  I’ll eventually slide back to normalcy, but one thing you can count on, come 8 months from now, I’ll start getting rangy.  And it’s going to start all over again.