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Discussion in 'Turkey Hunting' started by flatheaddundee, Nov 13, 2005.
I just been dreamin bout those spring gobblers again. Anybody got any good turkey stories?
well this isnt a real great story or anything but last years opening day was pretty cool. we were set up on an edge of a field before light and it was real foggy that day so when the sun came up we could only see 50 feet anywhere. well we could here the turkeys flying down but we couldnt see them land. so we waited and eventually you could see them coming through the fog and it was awesome, just imagine a group of vocal jakes coming through the fog, it was awesome. then another group of jakes came and they started fighting 10 ft away from us. what made it awesome was the fog, it was so thick it was crazy. i did shoot one but not that morning, but it was cool, i love that field, i shot my first bird from it. it was something i just thought was cool. the turkeys looked like ghosts coming through.
Nice story, I had one that was pretty neat.
A buddy of mine who lives up in the panhandle and I were out walking the Mesquite and Cactus all day not seeing a darn thing. We would stop for a while and call, but nothing was moving. When we started to head back to the truck we crossed an open area. I was just lookin at the ground and all of the sudden my buddy dropped, so I followed. All we had to cover us was a bit of scrub about 2ft tall. I looked up the hill and there were 4 Toms running our way because of a car that had passed up near the road. We croutched down behind the weeds, stuck out in the middle of the field. My buddy started to call, and they started to move our way from about 100yds away. Two of them split off, but the other ones came our direction. My buddy called them within 15ft of us before we took our shots. We were so exposed that he had said he wanted to wait to raise the guns until the birds were right on top of us, and thats what we did. We both raised at the same time, and I took the one on the left, and he took the one on the right. It was the first time I had ever hunted with that buddy of mine, and after calling them within 15ft of us, out in the open, he has stayed my Turkey Guide!
Any story where you get a bearded bird is a GREAT story fellows lol. I got one too- I had been hunting every weekend of the season last year and I had connected on 2 birds and they were 9 to 9 1/2 inchers but it was the last weekend of the season and it was raining so i decided to head to a big pasture, and I had been there for about ten minutes when I decided to get in a better viewpoint of the field (I'm more of the run and gun type haha) so I was in a brushline when I spotted 2 hens in the middle of the field and and I was like where in the hell did they come from, and no sooner than those thoughts left my mind they were on the run back to a field edge about 500 yards away. I circled them and when I was right at the corner of the field about 100 yards from where I thought they were a gobble ratteled my teeth from what sounded like 50 yards but I couldn't see the field because I was in a small dip at the edge. So I started clucking and yelping softly and then I saw a little gray head of a hen pop up over the ridge and it went by and then 2 more very soft yelps and a blue and red head popped up and started walking I had an open lane about 50 yards away and I knew I had to take the shot because this was my only chance. I was laid behind a log with my gun over it and he stopped and started to turn around and I threw 2 more extrememly soft clucks and he was back in line and went into my lane which was barely open enough to shoot through... and BAM the shot went and I looked and I saw one of the best sites in the world a gobbler flopping around on the ground! I ran to my bird and measured it with my leatherman.. 11 inch beard and 1 1/2 spurs. It was a great hunt in bad weather. But I never let my bad weather stop me and I never will! I am a turkey hunter for life and always have been. The turkey is king of the woods in my book!
Here are a few that come to mind:What a hunt this was. I met up with a gal in Kansas to take her on her very first turkey hunt. I'd met her and her boyfriend at a gas station and they were all depressed over the season they'd had. I mentioned I'd be more than willing to help out and they said Really? I said not a problem and they said sure. We headed to a place they had been hunting and first call I made was answered with a gobble. They said you call that much to turkeys? I said most people don't, but I do!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!! We headed down the fence row and I said the bird sounded like he was in the bottom in the middle of the field. I asked what the terrain did and they said it cornered out in to the next patch of woods down yonder about 300 yards and the field just rolled like what I was seeing. Perfect. We hurried to the patch of woods and crawled up to the extreme point of the patch of woods. I got her into position and proceeded to hammer away at this love sick ol' tom. He was eating up everything I threw his way, double, triple and quadruple gobbling and I could tell he was coming at break-neck speed. I told her to be ready, 'cause he's going to be here any second. The field dropped off about 70 yards in front of us and I saw him pop up and immediately go into strut on top. I threw my calling behind me, changing the pitch of the yelps/cuts. It was all it took as he sprinted as fast as he could right at us!!!!!!!!!! I tried in vain to get him to stop, and finally had to stick my hand up or he'd have run right over us!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!! 7 yards and one shot later my 2005 turkey season came to a close. 21 lbs, 10 1/8" beard and needle sharp 1 5/8" spurs. The boyfriend and her hugged and she had her first longbeard ever!!!!!!!!! He had tried to get her a turkey for two weeks and in less than 10 minutes it was all over. They said they'd never knew you could call that loud and that much to turkeys!!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!! I laughed and said your turkey makes the 77th one I've seen die this year and alot of 'em died to aggressive calling. They thanked me and I said anytime, I'll be back out west again next year to do it again. Who would have thunk that I would meet someone at a gas station and call in a bird for them on the last day of the season, having never met the folks before in my life? LOL!!!!!!!!! What a FANTASTIC end to a near perfect turkey season. The funny thing is most of the turkeys I/we encountered this season didn't act right at all!!!!!!!!!! Weather had alot of them acting goofy!!!!!!!!!!! Well, Missouri Fall turkey season opened up yesterday and with a bang!!!!!!!!!! I had the privelage of taking out a 14 year old for his first fall turkey hunt. He was excited(after I had to wake him up at his parents house, they overslept)and eager to learn how to chase fall turkeys. Since we were going to be late getting to the woods, I told him we wouldn't be able to make it to my honey hole(where I've taken many opening day fall longbeards over the years). Instead, I opted for the place where I killed my spurred hen back in the fall of 2000. It is an old stage coach trail(Pony Express days)that goes along a ridge with plenty of tall oak trees for roosting. In the bottoms you will find a soybean field. On top of the ridge is an open hay pasture. I have harvested 4 fall longbeards in this area, missing several more with my bow and killed one and knew where they roosted from past experience(have had zero time to scout for fall turkeys this year due to 3 slipped discs in my neck, a serious catfishing addiction and filming duck/goose hunts). We headed into the woods and I stopped to tree yelp/cluck. Nothing. I kept it up and knew they had to be on the side of the ridge somewhere, but they just weren't answering. Finally I decided to kick it up a notch and get a little more aggressive with my yelping/cutting. This did the trick as a gobbler started dog yelping/cutting back. We headed to the gobbler and got within a 100 yards of them(them being the others that joined in once he got fired up). I did a flydown with a turkey wing and the closest bird answered back. I was hoping for a great gobbling morning, but the weather was ALOT warmer than usual for the fall turkey opener. So I did about 7 flydowns to simulate the flock had landed. This got two gobblers to do flydown cackles as pretty as any hen could make. About now I was cussing myself about my video camera(It is in the shop for repairs, having locked up on me filming a duck/goose hunt!!!!!!!!!!). The boy says I see three gobblers and they're strutting!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I eased around the big tree to sneak a peak, and sure enough, they were showing off in all their glory to show who's boss. More aggressive yelping/cutting and the boy says their chasing each other back and forth!!!!!!!!!! I knew I had them in my hip pocket now, so I spit/drummed(one of the most deadly fall techniques I've learned over the years, next to gobbling)at them. They started fighting with each other and you could feel each time they bumped chests and slapped wings together. I did some fighting purrs and slapped a hen wing against the backside of the tree so they'd have to come investigating the noise. This got their attention and I spit/drummed at them again. That was all she wrote, as they came sprinting down the hill, I told the boy to get ready and spit/drummed again. After that, I gobbler yelped aggressively, changing my pitch from clear to super nasty raspy. This slowed them down to a stroll and they came into view. My little buddy couldn't shoot until they got directly in front of the gun barrel, which meant calling them from left to right, and they'd have to come towards us at 15 yards before passing in front(The boy was somewhat behind me). I aimed my calling back behind me. The first gobbler stepped into view at 30 yards and sported a 9" beard or so. The second sported the same and then came grandpa. I could see dandy spurs and what a beard!!!!!! At least 12" or so. The boy said shoot one if you can(yeah, right, like I'd mess up a little boys first fall turkey hunt? No way hozay!!!!!!!!!). When he said that, it was because instead of having the gun rested on his knee like I'd shown him plenty of times before, he had it held up on his own and he dropped the barrel from fatigue. That started the 2004 Missouri Fall turkey sprints and I proceeded to kill one heck of a large sapling!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!! My little bud shot and missed one flying and I popped off a going away shot and killed alot of foliage with that one. LOL!!!!!!!!!!! Dang it, foiled again. Oh well, after school it would be time for another go around. This time would pay off. We went back into the same area, knowing that the gobblers would be lonely. They all(all being about 15 that spooked off in different directions at the shots)would be coming back to roost. Long story short, they came in to light yelping/clucking and I killed mine 20+ lbs, 1 1/8" and 1 1/4" spurs with an 11 3/8" beard. My little buddies was a hen weighing 8+ lbs and she has 1/8" spurs(must be a genetic thing in this area). Most hens have little bumps where there spurs are, but these were developed. Another fine opening fall turkey season. God blessed me with another joyful ride to the check in station!!!!!!!!!!!!! Tagged longbeard number two this past Tuesday. 19 lbs 8 1/2" beard and 3/4" spurs. Didn't even get to hear one gobble this fall for the first time in years. Did get them to strut and show off and that makes for an awesome fall hunt. This second bird broke from the flock and came in to 25 yards. Another successful fall season ended yesterday with a kid missing a fine gobbler at a mere 8 steps. LOL!!!!!!!!!! He borrowed my 935 and of course it came with sights and he got nervous and didn't line them up properly. My hunters this fall ended up with 17 birds, 11 being gobblers/jakes. Not my best year ever, but it was alot of fun and the future looks bright here in Missouri. Saw more birds than any fall I've ever hunted. Tons of jakes. Come on Spring!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!! My brother and I decided to hunt the Nebraska National Forest on the next to last weekend of their season. We knew the birds would have been pressured hard, but that's what makes turkey hunting enjoyable for me. We drove all night after his shift to get there. We arrived a little early, so we decided to get a map of the area from somewhere. I had loaned ours out the previous year to a friend of mine so he would have an idea of where to go. Ended up putting him on gobblers exactly where I told him to stop and call their first day there. First stop they killed a double on gobblers, and the next stop they got a jake.That's always nice when the birds are still in the same general area from the prior year. Well, we couldn't find a map anywhere, so we decided to go off of memory and try to find the place. It was breaking daylight when we finally found it. So we changed into our camo and headed on one heck of a hike!!!!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!! There were 3 vehicles parked on the same area we'd be hunting, so we knew we'd have to get back in there to get away from the crowd. After about a 6 mile hike or so, we stopped and called. A bird gobbled some distance away. He didn't seemed real interested, so we ventured on, knowing that there had to be more birds and that this one was probably henned up. After another couple of miles, we found another bird gobbling. This one gobbled about every time I called and as we got within his comfort zone, I crow called. He gobbled. We eased closer to within a couple hundred yards and got him to gobble to it again. We found a nice pine to sit under about 100 or so yards from him. Pat said call to him again. I yelped as raspy as I could and nothing. I switched up my calling and made it alot clearer, more like a contest yelp, with cutting in front of it. He gobbled at this. We immediately sat down and I noticed the battery on my video camera was about to go dead!!!!!!!!!!! No!!!!!!!!!!!! Just as it was, Pat says, I see the gobbler and he's sprinting right at us!!!!!!!! I said wait until I get his dang battery changed!!!!!!!!!!!! So I fumbled with that, luckily he never spotted me, due to the pines that kept him from my view. Finally I got it changed and after a whole 13 seconds of footage, Pat shot his first Merriams of the trip, at about 20 yards. I should have held him off from killing him and got some more footage, gobbling strutting, etc., but after a 10+ Hour drive you take what you're dealt with. If it hadn't been for the battery going dead, I would have had some awesome footage of him sprinting towards us, but that's the breaks. I should have checked my battery before heading out that morning, but when you get in a hurry you forget things. The key to killing this turkey was getting back into an area where we no longer found any footprints. It butted up against private property, and after the kill we topped the hill and saw that this bird actually had to cross a fence from private property to get to us. The bird had 1/2" or so spurs, 8 1/2" beard and weighed 13 lbs. 12 oz.(digital scales)!!!!!!!!! This was the smallest adult gobbler I've ever witnessed.We spent the rest of the day driving around and looking at likely spots for the next morning, stopping to call every so often, with no results to show for our efforts. While we set up camp that afternoon, the local area manager for the conservation area stopped by to see how we did. He asked for a meat sample from Pat's turkey, so we gave him one and he was much obliged. We got to talking to him about some of the newer areas we saw located on the map and he told us about people hearing birds gobble and even gave us the direction they were heard gobbling. He also told us that two longbeards, with one of the two strutting, walked right by their office at around 10:30 that morning. We then asked if anyone was hunting back in that area, and he said yes, a fellow from Colorado was back in there, but was leaving this afternoon to head back for a graduation or something like that. Said he'd had a close encounter with a longbeard at 75 yards on a couple different occassions, but he wouldn't come any closer than that. We licked our chops, said thanks for the info and headed out for the evenings hunt. Pat had bought two tags for this trip, so he could legally harvest another bird. The very first call I made a gobbler hammered back to it. he wasn't very interested and only gobbled one other time. We got up to where he should have been and peeked up over the top. Pat says there he is about 75 yards away, as he got back down and told me to lower down. After getting the binoculars out to take a peek I looked back up with Pat doing the same, and no gobbler anywhere to be seen. Dang it, he must have spotted us. We decided to venture on and cover as much ground as we could before dark. I almost decided to head to the right at one spot, but figured I'd just head over a little ways and call down into one of the valleys, cause any gobbler within a mile would have responded. Nothing. We followed the trail along the ridge top and along the path started noticing less and less turkey sign, but did find a nice hen dusting area. We crossed another fence into the last section of the National Forest before private property according to the map. I would mention the number of the field we were in, but we'll be back next year. LOL!!!!!!! That's the good thing about the National Forest in Nebraska, they have it marked very well and you can find everything on the map fairly easily. Well, we ventured upon plenty of deer and coyote sign from here on out. Starting to doubt we'd see anything if we ventured much further, we decided we'd come this far(about 3 miles or so)we'd just stick it out and follow it to the end. All of a sudden the trail opened up into one pretty flat open mountain top with rolling hills. I said, there has to be a turkey here that wants to die and we got our game plan together before I called. We'd get up close to a little pine in case one gobbled so we could set up in a flash. I gave Pat the camera and had him film me calling. Thought I saw a turkey in the field, but it was just a pine. I gave one of my variances of my yelp with alot of tonal and pitch changes that will yank a gobble out of a stubborn gobbler. As I change the pitch, Pat said one gobbled. In one smooth motion he gave me the camera and we got a hen decoy out of my vest and I ran to the pine to set up, but because of the angle I'd be sitting and the grass height, we had to move about 30 more yards ahead. We covered that in no time and dove for cover. After getting situated and surveying our options, I said I'm going to call. The ridge top curved perfectly right to where Pat said the bird gobbled. So I could effectively hear if one gobbled, I decided to give a short yelp this time. obbbblllllllleeeeeeeeee ooooooobbbbbbbbbllllllllleeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!! Two birds gobbled. This carried on every single time I called for the next few minutes. I yelped and cutt real aggressive and threw the calling back behind me. This sealed the deal and before too long I said I see the birds coming through the pines. The ridge top curved around perfectly to where they would step out into sight along the trail that graced the mountaintop. This is going to be beautiful was all I could think about in my head. As the bird strutted up before going out of sight behind a pine about 125 yards away, I called a couple of times to capture some good strutting and gobbling footage of him. He was the top dog of the two and showed it in every way, from his strutting and gobbling, to his posturing that he showed the other bird as they came down the roadway. I wanted to call and make this gobbler put on a show all the way to the gun barrel, but my brother said not to call as they came our way, so I obliged(that doesn't happen very often!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!)I noticed through the eye of the camera that the footage was jumping up and down!!!!!!!!!! Oh no, I thought to myself, this isn't the time for my camera to malfunction again!!!!!!!!! Not sure what it is, but it jumped about three times as they came down the roadway towards our position. Will have to get that looked into before duck/goose season. I adjusted my zoom to compensate for it, but decided I'd just zoom in tight until they got closer and then adjust to the strutter, which was obviously the better bird. Pat says I'm going to kill him, and I said wait, I want some more footage. I should have really made him sweat and let them get to about 5 yards before I let him kill him, but being left handed and all, I knew we needed to kill him before Pat had to shift left anymore. I said kill him, and Pat said, make him stop, so I called, he gobbled, Pat said the strutter? I said yes, and another Nebraska gobbler was down!!!!!!!! The other gobbler ran to the side of the road and wondered what the heck just happened. We got to within 10 yards or less of that bird before he decided to fly off. We did our post kill filming, I told Pat that one was for our Great Aunt Opal, who had passed away a couple of months earlier and Pat tried to talk me into buying a tag so he could film. I said no, we'll let someone else have some fun with them, we've done enough damage for the trip!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!! Almost too easy, but we had to put the miles on and earn the birds we got, but nothing comes easy with turkey hunting and it makes you appreciate them all that much more when you have to earn them like that. 18 lbs. 2 oz. 5/8" spurs and 8 1/2" main beard with 3 others about 3" or so long. This bird is getting mounted, not because it's a huge bird, but from the memories of the hunt. It truly is the very best Merriams hunt I've ever seen on video, and I have seen about everyone on the market today. What a spectacular hunt it was, too. I have watched it about 30 times now, and enjoy every second of it each time I view it. This season I was fortunate enough to have gotten 3/4 of a Slam on video for my brother. I think next season we'll try and get him the whole slam on video with the Osceola as well. Nothing like hunting with your family. Hopefully I can get my dad to hunt on video next year. I've only been able to get him duck hunting on video, and I think it would be neat to see his reaction to hunting with me. Our styles totally clash and I'd love nothing more than to call one in for him on our farm on video calling too loud and too much!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!! I pray the good Lord allows me to accomplish this, hopefully next season. I had been watching a flock of about 30 or so longbeards feed in a field near an old house on our farm for about 15 minutes before I couldn't take it anymore and decided to put the slip up to them, keeping the old house between me and the birds, belly crawling about 250 yards to get there. It was a cool winter morning and the Missouri bow season was about to come to a close for the year. Through the binoculars I could see one of them had a massive beard on him. After making my way to the old house, I slipped inside and got up to a window to keep tabs on the gobblers. They were about 50 yards out and feeding horizontally from me. I gave a few gobbler yelps and added some aggressive cutting with jake gobbles. Here comes the flock!!!!!!!!!!! Oh my, I thought to myself, I may just be able to fill my turkey tags in one day!!!!!!!!! The lead gobbler was looking for a fight and ready to show his dominance, and from the size of the bird, I could see why. When the flock was at about 25 yards, I drew and put the pin on the lead bird, and he went to flopping!!!!!!!!! Yes!!!!!!!!!! The other birds started fighting with each other and jumping on top of the downed monarch, while gobbling and strutting. I was so excited I could hardly keep my composure!!!!!!!!!! All of these birds chasing each other, gobbling, strutting, running from each other was so exciting to witness. I couldn't believe my eyes!!!!!!! I readied my pin on the next longbeard and proceeded to shoot under. I continued to miss my next 5 shots, hurrying each of them from all of the sheer excitement of what I was witnessing, until I only had one arrow left in my quiver!!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!! I knew I had to make this last one count and I couldn't believe they hadn't all spooked yet, but with a bow and arrow, that seems to happen when they don't see it coming. I waited this time until I was calmed down and made sure of my aim. The bird commenced to fly only a short distance before hitting the ground running. I know I hit that bird, I thought to myself. Sure enough, he expired after running about 50 yards. Two adult longbeards in one day with a bow!!!!!!!!! Awesome!!!!!!!!! The Monarch weighed 25 1/2lbs, had a 13 1/3" beard(longest to date)and had 1 1/2 and 1 3/8" spurs. The other bird had a 10 1/2" beard, weighed 22 lbs and had 1 1/4" spurs. What an exciting hunt this was. Just to see that many adult gobblers and witness them fighting, gobbling and strutting like that in the fall made that season one of the most memorable to date!!!!!! God bless.