Deer and Turkey Multi-tasking

I’ve drawn the first week in May for my turkey tag. The landscape is turning green as I look over my choice of camo clothes to select something to match. Rummaging through my “hunting” closet I pull out stuff I’ll need while chasing turkeys, and it seems strange to leave my portable treestand behind. The treestand was a fixture of the gear I carried with me from September to January last bow season while deer hunting. It’ll feel weird to be wearing the camo and toting a weapon without that stand on my back, I thought.

It’s time to get into a turkey hunting mindset of “runnin and gunnin gobblers”, at least for the next five days. Bow season for deer is four months away, surely I can put that out of my mind to concentrate on gobblers for now. I finish gathering up the remainder of my turkey hunting gear so I’ll be ready to go for opening day. Shortly after sundown I slip out to locate a gobbler on the roost, and get multiple responses to my owl call. Opening morning finds me set up within 125 yards of the gobblers I roosted nine hours ago. I make a little hen talk in the pre-dawn darkness and get gobbled at by three different toms. Oh boy, game on!  The toms kept talking without me having to call anymore so I kept quiet and waited for daylight, expecting them to fly down into my lap. About 20 minutes after first light the toms all flew down into my neighbors field and taunted me by gobbling every couple minutes. My calling to them was ignored and after a while they walked further away in the direction of a real hen.

I didn’t have permission to hunt there, and by now my neighbor, Ed would be on his way to work. I backed out of my position and drove to where Ed works to ask him if I could go after the toms on his place. After catching up with Ed I tell him the situation and ask if I can go after them on his property, he laughs and says, “sure, go get em, but why come all this way to ask? You don’t think I’d ask you permission if I saw a big buck on your place and you weren’t around, do you”?  I tried not to look shocked by his statement, after all, he did just give me the OK to turkey hunt his land. I bit my tongue, and managed to thank him, while thinking, Ed and I are going to have to have a talk, later.

So it’s back to the chase at Eds’ place and I’m trying to close the distance on the toms who are now in the woods, gobbling occasionally. Cautiously advancing, I carefully examine the woods ahead of me for a red, white or blue gobbler head. I don’t see any gobblers but I do get distracted by a buck rub on a ten inch diameter white pine. A short distance along my path another half dozen rubs appear on similar sized pines and by now I’ve forgotten about turkeys. Continuing on I discover large buck tracks, scrapes, and more rubs, it was all too much to ignore. Out of habit, I began looking for spots where I would have set up a tree stand but didn’t notice any sign of Ed having done so. Since this was hilly country I suspected the buck would be bedding higher in elevation so I started climbing uphill to see if I could locate his bedding area. Half way up the hill a gobble rang out, not far away, it reminded me of why I was in these woods and I quickly sat down at the base of a large ash tree. I made some hen talk on my box call and set it down. Resting my shotgun on my knees, I waited for a tom to show himself. After fifteen minutes I called again but got no gobbler to answer. I remained still and pondered the recent events, big buck sign found and turkeys still active had me thoroughly enjoying my morning hunt. I decided to wait another fifteen minutes before moving on. Sitting there I thought about how turkey hunting and deer scouting is the only multi-tasking I’ve ever been able to do. The combination has revealed some good deer hunting spots for me in the past, it’s no wonder why the more I turkey hunt the more I like it. Suddenly one thing became very clear, Ed and I would definitely have to have a talk. As I pondered how the talk might unfold, a blue head appeared from behind a deadfall, a minute later I was wrapping my tag around that gobblers’ leg.

1 Comment

  1. michael brezinski

    Hi Lee, remember me, great article, I thoroughly enjoy fooling longbeards,
    and can’t wait till next Wednesday, to take to the woods, and talk turkey.

    Reply

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