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1.) Wester - 04/21/2015
First of all I would just like to apologize. I haven't signed in here in a LONG time. Between school, work, hunting and a girlfriend life has been pretty busy lately. BUT, finals are coming up and i'm done with my turkey hunt so i'll try to sign on at least once every few months here forward. Also, I shot this guy with my gun, not a bow.

So in Utah the turkey hunt is kind of different. You can only have 1 tag in the spring. If you want to hunt birds in April, you have to draw a special tag. Otherwise you can buy an uncapped OTC tag to hunt birds in May. I had a tag to hunt in May a few years ago, and got pretty close to a few birds but wasn't ever able to seal the deal. I put in for the April tag for 3 years, and finally drew it this year.

The first day I hunted I had a few hens within 25 yards, but no toms. I hunted all day and was constantly hearing gobbles and hens throughout the hills. I saw a jake in the evening but didn't want to wait 3 years to shoot a jake. Especially on my first day out! So I let him stroll on by.

I went out the next morning and got a hen and a jake decoy set up right before sunlight. I heard some turkey talk coming from my hard right about 10 minutes after shooting light began, I got on the box call and they responded pretty quickly. They sounded about 200 yards away, but I was hunting some pretty thick stuff so I couldn't see them. I wasn't in a blind, but simply had my back against a tree in full camo. I heard something crawling through the grass a little bit later to my left but near the decoys, and thought at first it could be a different turkey. I couldn't see it though, but I could see the grass moving so I knew it wasn't a turkey. I thought it could be a pheasant or something else. It popped out about 20 yards away, and turns out it was a skunk. It kept walking towards me. When it got to about 10-15 yards away I stood up, not wanting to get sprayed. It saw me, and ran towards me with it's tail up. I didn't want to shoot it because I knew that it would screw up my hunt. However, I really didn't want to get sprayed either. When it was about 5-10 yards away I decided to shoot it (my mind was going a thousand miles an hour) so I shot it, grabbed my pack and then ran upwind (towards the decoys) I was sitting there deciding what to do next (if that shot threw off my hunt or if I should just stick it out) I thought I was safe from the stench upwind, but about 10 seconds later the nastiest smell that ever hit my nostrils had me dry heaving. I grabbed the decoys and ran out of there. I went to another place I had seen birds when I was scouting about 1/2 a mile up the canyon.

I got set up there, and before I even got settled in I already heard gobbles behind me. I knew where they were and where they were going, so I left all of my stuff but my gun, binos, call and one decoy (the hen) and went towards a clearing I knew they'd hit. When I got set up there, I could see a jake on the hill but once again didn't want to pursue a jake this early in the hunt. Then the group that I heard came in but were too far out. I didn't want to call, fearing that they would see me or pick me up, and they didn't see (or pay any attention) to my decoy. Once they cleared that clearing, I raced to get in front of them to beat them to another clearing. This time I had put the decoy out, sat down and right when I sat I realized that I had only placed the decoy out about 10-15 yards away. I was about to sit up to hurry and move it out a little bit more, but a loud gobble made me sit down and shut up. About 2 mins later I could see 3 hens and a tom walking right into the clearing. The tom saw the decoy and RAN right towards it. I knew that I wasn't hidden too well, and I didn't want him or the hens to spot me so I took the first shot at him that I could without having another turkey or branches in the way. It was a 13 yard shot, and it dropped him instantly. No flapping or anything. The hens had no idea what was going on, and cautiously walked out of there. My bird flapped a little bit after awhile and that made the other turkeys finally realize what was up and leave pretty fast.

This was last Tuesday (I work 4-10's and a whacky work schedule). so I was by myself. It was hard to get a good picture, and by the time I had chased the turkeys up the hill I had a mile and a half hike back to the truck with all of my gear and a turkey. Those things are freaking heavy! He's my first turkey. It was so cool to see him run into the decoys!

The beard is about 8.5", so no giant by any means but i'm happy. I'm getting a fan mount done with the beard as well.
2.) Wester - 04/21/2015

3.) Swamp Fox - 04/21/2015
Good job!

I like the pics. Those fans are purty...
4.) Swamp Fox - 04/21/2015
These are handy. I use one when I'm biking in and out,


This also works well, or you can build your own:


Or a short piece of rope made into a loop and wrapped around a sturdy stick or wooden dowel forms a leg noose which is a lot easier than carrying the bird out legs-in-hand. Gerber used to make one with a finger-grooved plastic handle and a nylon (?) measuring tape that formed the loop. Damn handy.
5.) bluecat - 04/21/2015
Nice job Wester!
6.) Deerminator - 04/21/2015
7.) Wild Bob - 04/22/2015
Congrats! Good turkey hunt, and welcome back. :tu: