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Joined: 07/03/2006
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Your best 06 hunt

Well, which hunt was the hands down best last year for you? Mine would have to be the White Oak tom

I dont get to many days anymore to just go turkey hunt. Not complaining mind you, but it aint often I just grab my vest and gun and go try and kill a turkey. I went down to white oak, on no scouting and a general idea of where I figured the birds would be. Walking in I heard two toms start off the morning over on the neighbors. I knew there would be more further back so I just picked up the pace.

I came to the end of a long field and was looking down into Lynches River bottom. Awesome hardwood habitat with plenty of wet bays to roost over. I hit a call and 14-20 birds gobbled up and down the river. Bingo.

I am not really sure how many different toms I spoke to that morning, but after a substantial tug of war, they were coming. Three times in and three times out now they had made it around the last bay were on my oak flat and we were fixing to be head on without a doubt.

9 longbeards came out of the palmettos and several of them strutting and gobbling at 80 yards. I hammered them softly with some purrs followed by a soft cluck. they all gobbled. Four ran forward and they all looked golden to me so I put the 20 on the lead tom and let it rip. He went down, got up and took of running. I chased emptying my gun, cutting a flip, but finally grabbing him up.

I looked around, no one was there to see it all. He was was all mine. Would have been a great moment to catch on film. Not this morning just me and the gobblers on 400 acres of Lynches River bottom.

All in all I would conservatively estimate I heard 35-40 different toms and while I wasn't in perfect shape to call all of them in 9 did show.I watched the toms roll in strutting and chain gobblin for 15 to 20 minutes sixty to 80 yards out in a rare clearing in the river swamp. All the while more toms rolling in the distance. The gobbling was pretty much constant until I shot and went on afterwards as I walked out.

I used a variety of experience to kill them from walking into a property when you show up and the suns already rising, to short 75 yard gives and takes moving in and out of the swampbottom. It was a super chess game. I threw everything from Supreme pots to a custom made Orange wood and cherry boat paddle I borrowed from Bang Collins at them. They were very hot on the calls this morning and I had zero hen competition. The Talkin Dirty aluminum did most of the finish work .

redrider's picture
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Location: NE Kansas
Joined: 03/20/2006
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Your best 06 hunt

I really can't narrow down a favorite hunt from last year they were all memorable, a GREAT season!
1. First hunt started with taking my 6 year old son to witness his first turkey hunt. We had Tom's all around us and convinced one to fly down off roost right in front of us. We got to watch him strut and drum for quite a while before I took him.
2. Took my 18 yr. old nephew out for his first Turkey hunt. He had never shot a gun before so we spent the day before practicing and going over the basics. We got setup early and had birds all around us. It was fun watching the excitement build as those old Toms were sounding off from all directions. Had 3 jakes come out and he couldn't wait so he took his first bird.
3. My long time hunting buddy was having trouble getting the birds to come in for 2 -3 seasons(he tends to over call) so I had him go with me on a hunt out of the blind. We had birds coming in right after fly down. We had several Toms coming in from 100yds and he got a little excited and started calling non-stop to bring them in. I told him that wasn't the way to do it , told him to let me do the calling. Wasn't to long we had the birds coming back in. Jakes were heading right in and the Toms were holding back. He couldn't take it so he bagged a Jake.
4. My Mentor was next, he was having trouble finding the birds in MO and KS so I had to take him to my Honey Hole. It was getting to be late season and a little more difficult, but persistence paid off. After nearly 4 hours in the blind we had only seen a couple in the distance. We were deciding what we should do when I heard behind us the unmistakeable HUUMM, HUMMM, HUMMMM coming from behind us. We were in my Matrix blind so we closed up the open side of the blind and peeked out the opposite side. 10 yds from the blind were 2 BIG TOMS in Full strut. It took a little doing to get the blind and cameras situated but he ended up getting a double! It was nice to help pay him back for the endless tips he had taught me.
5. Helped my Sister take her first bird (had a lot of first this year). We were setup in the blind and had a big OLD Tom come in(we actually have named this bird and have had a hard time getting him over couple seasons) my sister was ready to shoot but I thought he needed to come in a little closer so I had her wait. Mistake Brick Wall,) He got spooked by a coyote behind us and evaded us. We ended up finding some more birds later in the day. We were on foot and had to belly crawl into a patch of tall grass to get into position. After a few calls we had them coming right to us. She shot one of the Toms and had her first Big smile
Actually had couple more successful hunts last year, but these were the most memorable Yes

redrider's picture
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Location: NE Kansas
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Your best 06 hunt

Did no one else have a good season last year? Think
I'm starting to feel bad that mine was so GREAT Cry lol

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Location: Rochester WA.
Joined: 04/27/2005
Posts: 146
Your best 06 hunt

I had a great 06 year..... it is always fun no matter what we get...

My first bird was youth weekend a saturday and sunday april 9,10th. We were in south east Washington near the blue mountains.
Saturday morning my little cousin got her first turkey, and then later that evening i missed my first tom.. i shouldn't have shot but it was a split decision shot. After calling for about an hour my older cousin and i had gotten a tom and a hen to make their way over to us. The hen freaked and ran right at as and realized something was up ...when she was bout 15 yards away from me she flipped a 180 and started chirping and running back at the tom.. i knew they were going to but and the tom was about 50 yards out there... and i decided to give it a poke with my Remington 870 express magnum with the super full turkey choke. Luckily i missed and did not just wound the bird.....
so the next morning my cousin and i made our way out to the field where the tom had lit the night before.... when we set up we could here about 5 gobblers to our left about 50 yards in the tree...when they flew down there was about 20 birds. couple of toms and a some jakes and the rest hens...... we managed to call about 10 of the birds from about 100 yards away right to us.. i took my sight on the biggest tom with about a 6 inch beard.. and at about 30 yards dropped him.....so that was #1 for the year a Rio Grande.

my next bird came opening day 5 days later. We were now about 200 miles north in the north east corner of Washington. So opening morning.. my cousin and i split up on some birds we had scouted the night before.... my cousin is my partner in crime we do everything together.. he is 21 turning 22 in may and i am 15 turning 16 in july. well he went towards some birds gobbling in the distance and i decided to head towards a small draw.. where i had seen a strutter about 5pm the night before... i made my way over a small nob at the base of this draw.. and made about 3 good yelps with my mouth call. And i swear not 10 seconds later i saw a black blob gliding down the draw in front of me.... ITS A TURKEY!... and i thought it was going to land at the base of the draw ,and i was going to have to poke my head up and over to see what it was.....then all the sudden i saw the tips of wings about 15 yards in front of me and to my right... HE was landing right next to me....!!!!! I saw a blood red head...then he went into strut..... finally noticing me...he went out of strut i saw his beard and blasted him.... he flopped and rolled down the hill.. to the bottom .. i made my way down there waited until he was done with his spasms of flopping and tagged him.... i was done by 8 that morning...
So i had bird #2 a Merriam ...

ill get some pics up in the next day or two

I live in Washington and we have 3 species the Eastern's can be fund west of the cascades and they are the hardest to get, because they are so few in numbers..Due to the weather in western Washington the chicks have a hard time surviving their first year.....but there are enough to hunt...the Rio's and merriums are found east of the cascades.. YOu can harvest 3 birds a year 2 on the east side and 1 on the west.. so essentially you can get 1 of each species, and if you do that in the same year it is called the single season turkey slam.....you can also get a multi season slam... well i had gotten my merrium and rio, and all i needed was my eastern.... Now i live very close to eastern area... and we have our spots and i was by myself. and i hiked into a nice area off a quad trail, and i had a single tom gobbling at me.. it was the morning and i had split up from my uncle.... i gave a couple soft yelps on my slate call and he gobbled back i didn't want to over call so i would wait until he gobble a couple of times... the way i was set up i had my back to a tree with bushes on both sides of me and my decoy out off the grassed over road in front of me.. after about 20 min with no response... i thought he just walked away.. and left me..so i very slowly stood up and over hes about 4 foot high bushes saw a hen about 15 feet away from me.. with her back to me.. i very slowly sat back down heart beating 100MPH.. i waited and waited gave a couple soft calls.. and i had herd the hen walk off. About 20 min later.. i was just about to get up again when i had the most heart wrenching gobble of my life... that had to be not 10 yards away from me... but behind me and the surrounding bushes.. i dint know what to do .. should i stand up and jump around hoping to be quick enough to get a shot off... or should i sit and wait....Trying to think i decided he was looking for my call and my decoy.. so i sat there purred very softly and waited.... and he never came around..... i had several other encounters that season but nothing worked out so i was bout 10 yards shy of my single season slam..... and being 14 then i thought for sure i would have been the youngest kid to do it... but ill not know...

My life is hunting that is all i want to do.. I want to either be a guide when i am older. or have a job associated with animals like that.. maybe a game warden and help try and protect the sport in which i love so much....whether it be deer, pheasant, elk, goose and duck, or turkey! I am hopefully going to Alaska this summer to be a deck and and hopefully get my resume started with guiding.

This season is going to be difficult for me because i play high school baseball and i m Varsity(we got 2nd in state last year)... but i was injured half way through the season, but i could still hunt.. this year i am recovered, and i am going to have less time to hunt turkeys..but i am only in high school once.....

well thanks for reading sorry for my grammar. I cant spell that good and i was in a hurry to type.... because i am haded out to do some afternoon scouting..

later!
Cody

redrider's picture
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Location: NE Kansas
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Your best 06 hunt

Awesome Season Thumbs up

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Joined: 07/03/2006
Posts: 232
Your best 06 hunt

Sounds like an incredibly good time to me! Great accounting of it as well, I enjoyed reading it.

On the guide thing, its a life of perks but very little cash. I'll go ahead and tell you that right up front. You would do well to spend a summer apprenticing at a big game lodge and learning the ropes of pack trips, camp set up, client relations, and of course basic guiding skills. It will greatly expand your appeal to outfitters later on.

All that said, youd be better off to finish college, get a good paying job with lots of vacation and hunt as much as you can. You will spend far more time hunting for certain. Myself I enjoy introducing people to the outdoors and teaching them. I think I was born to be a hunting guide of some sort cause since i was 10 its all I really wanted to do. But its come with alot of hardship and alot of missed days in the field with my own kids and friends.

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Location: Rochester WA.
Joined: 04/27/2005
Posts: 146
Your best 06 hunt

I understand what you are saying and i have talked to other guides who have said the same thing. I have talked to some who say it is the best job in the world introducing people to the outdoors, and always being outside. I have also talked to many Ex- guides who say it is horrible. That it isn't worth it, the pay sucks, the people you guide are stuck up rich snobs, and that you have to do everything but pull the trigger. I love hunting and also want to make sure that other people can experience it to. Another thing was i want to make sure that this life style lives on and my children( thats a long time away) can enjoy hunting/fishing. That is why part of me has seriously considered game warden. My best friends dad is a lieutenant in the Washington department of Fish and Wildlife. And i have done several career reports for middle and high school on it and think i would really like it. I have all the paperwork to apply ..lol..... and i know all the requirements... so my plan after high school as of right now has been... to go to WSU for my bachelor's in game management. Then i was thinking about going to COAGS ( a guide school) after that, get my outfitting license, and for my Earlie 20's try out guiding, and after a couple of years. go back and be a game warden....
that has been my idea.. but ii might skip COAGS and just go to the WDFW.
but i still have 2 years left in high school to figure out where i want to send my life. And if i am not introducing people to the outdoors, protecting the outdoors, then i defiantly want to be hunting. And i know that i defiantly don't want to be a desk jokey, though there is nothing wrong with that, but i couldn't stand it. I guess the people that sit in cubical s just have more guts than i d..lol..
No matter what i do i will try and help to see that hunting/fishing live on by being a member and supporting such organizations as HUNTFAIRCHASE NWTF, RMEF, Pheasants forever,so on and so forth..

Well here are some pictures,not all 06 season not all turkey lol...

Top left me and first turkey 13....Top right This is my hunting family from left to right.. Uncle, me, my little cousin, my older sousin(partner in crime)this was youth pheasant 06.... bottom leftpicture my second bird in 06 season(story above.....bottom middle pic my second deer 13........bottom right pheasants when i was 13( it was cold.!

Here is the only picture from my first bird in the 06 season... (story above)
this is the only one that semi turned out....

Since we are on the subject here is my first gobbler... i was 13.. my faveriot pic this is where i killed him and short story.... early morning. my older cousin and iI set up looking about 60 yards over this flat ground..(where i am standing) then it went down hill..the turkeys were roosting in trees on the side of the hill ( in pic) they flew down we called and about 10 came up and over the edge this tom in full strut..he never went out of strut... for about 10 min i held my gun up at my shoulder waiting for the tom to come about 20 yards closer...slowly he made his way towards us... and i pulled the trigger getting my first bird a rio Grande with a 9 inch beard and 11/4. inch spurs..!

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Joined: 07/03/2006
Posts: 232
Your best 06 hunt

Very nice birds and great photo journal of them. You have a very nice way of presenting your hunts in words and media. You might consider that when you make your career choices as well.

I promise you not all clients are rich snobs that need the trigger pulled for them. I have guided at upper end lodges to basic camps and while not ever client is a winner by any means some of my finest friends have been met in hunting camps. Many of them began as clients.

The job definately isn't for everyone, you have to have a passion for letting someone else see what thrills you so much about the outdoors. Very few of my friends can understand how it is I can go through 90% of my turkey season in five or six states never even carrying a gun. Plain and simple, I get more personal satisfaction turning people into turkey hunters than turkey hunting for myself. Probably isn't the best tact for job security but over the years I have developed a long list of friends that used to be clients. Many killed their first toms with me and some are guides themselves today.

I see alot of myself in your posts. 7th grade carreer project I based mine on being a Game Warden. The imaginary home I purchased, a log cabin kit. The vehicle a Blazer k-5. My imaginary pets a black lab and a German Shorthair. Those were my greatest dreams in life at the time and short of being an LEO I pretty much accomplished all those goals plus had a wonderfull family grow up around me.

At age 18 I was headed to guide school myself and my plans were intterupted by a lovely lady that I am still married to today, and a soon to be born son. I eventually made it to guiding but had to put 15 years in as a carpenter while moonlighting as a guide and hunter wherever and whenever I could. It was a tough row to hoe let me tell ya. The ground is still pretty hard to break.LOL

Heres the scary part about that career project, the wages for Game Wardens havent gone up much if any and that was 30 years ago. It is also a career of passion. Nothing wrong with that and I'll be the first to tell life isnt all about money. But it is a nescessity espescially if you plan on having children and a family.

You definately have some talent in your writing and your hunting skills and if youre up for the task of a life that sometimes leaves little material success, you will probably excel at it like I have. Best of luck to you and by all means have a great spring turkey season.

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Location: Rochester WA.
Joined: 04/27/2005
Posts: 146
Your best 06 hunt

Thanks for the comments..

Thank you hatracked I really appreciate your advice. I understand and know that money is not The #1 reason to get a job. For me and i want a job that i am passionate for.. a job that i want and love to do... Although like you said i need money to support a family if i have one..Which i plan on eventually, but i want to have a stable, healthy job first... The good thing about game warden is it is a state job and has benefits. The pay is horrible, but it depends on your rank and the longer you work there, the higher the rank, the higher the pay...Thanks again!!!

Good luck this SEASON !!! to all

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