Spring Turkey: Scout Time!

With turkey season approaching rapidly it is about time we got situated with our patterning, blinds, cameras, and mental focus. Being able to sit and listen to what the woods is telling you is a vital part of being a successful hunter, which is why I spent the last couple weeks playing theHunter.

theHunter is an excellent way to get yourself use to listening for those subtle cues.

While some may say “You get your mind right by playing games” I will just simply reply with yes. This game has helped be turn into the hunter I am today, without the realistic animal behavior and realistic environments, it would have taken me years to get up to speed, but with the attention to detail of this game I can now pick out the yelp of a hen or a gobble out in the distance. This virtual experience will definitely help me out in the wild.

The Scout

On our first scouting trip of the season we headed out from home and ended up at one of the properties. As we pulled in from the road we scanned the fields looking for any possible signs of birds, any possible sign that would have been though had been washed away by the rain. Before heading into the woods Mike preformed a quick series of yelps and clucks from his slate, after that it was off into the woods we went.

A group of birds moving through the woods, what an amazing sight!

I had brought along my Quaker Boy Hurricane and the Thunderbird, these served well here in the woods with the echo to amplify the gobble of the Thunderbird. Combining the slate and the gobble we moved deeper in the woods, hearing nothing but silence. We approached the top of the hill and Mike proceeded to use the slate, when the first gobble rang out, our hearts began pounding louder than the Thunderbird had bellowed.

With the reinforcement from the gobbler we got into position, myself with the camera against a tree at the crest of the hill and Mike a little farther down the hill about 30 yards behind me. The birds responded heavily to the aggressive slating, within 10 minutes we saw a train of birds trotting quickly moving from left to right down toward to the valley.

As soon as we saw the birds moving across the wood line time seemed to just stand still, with camera in hand I attempted to stay steady, but that proved to be difficult once the birds crested the hill on my left. The bird was within 25 yards and was moving closer, every inch it moved I wish I had a bow with me, then within a blink of an eye it disappeared, it had spooked.

Seeing birds was our goal for this scouting trip and we had done it successfully and quickly. Thanks to my cousin Mike for putting us on birds and putting us on them fast we are now even more confident in our upcoming season.

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