Double bearded crossbow gobbler
Wow. Talk about going from the lowest of lows to the highest of highs. The first two weeks of the season have been extremely slow for me. Decent gobbling from the roost but little to none after hitting the ground. I never had a bird respond to my calling after fly down time. Called in 5 jakes on opening morning that came in silently. That was my only action the first two weeks during 5 hunts.
The third week had me locating a group of toms in a rather developed area of 2B that I secured permission to hunt. These birds appeared to have a set pattern so a plan was hatched. Do the really thick foilage from the early spring, bowhunting and filming my hunt, my set up was limited to a small mowed field.
Hit it hard before work and after work every day this week. Had multiple gobblers within 30 yards but closing the deal eluded me. The birds were tight lipped and barely responded to calls and/or decoys. I was frustrated. How can someone have gobblers consistantly within 30 yards and fail to fill a tag? One thing that turkey hunting with a bow has taught me is that success does not come easy. Add self filming on top of that and the challenge is great.
This morning started like the rest. In my blind at 5:15 waiting for the red birds to sing. By 6:15 I had not heard a gobble from the roost. Dejected, I called softly for an hour then movement caught my eye. A tom was angling past me staring hard at the decoys. No shot at 25 yards as he was over my left shoulder standing like a statue. Oh, I so wanted to be able to add some movement to the decoys. After a staredown, he continued on past and out of the field. A few soft yelps and clucks brought a thunderous gobble and I saw his white head coming back towards the decoys.
Camera on and recording, TenPoint Carbon Elite rested, gobbler facing me at 24 yards head on. He let out another gobble that cuased the tremors in my knees to worsen. Knowing that the base of the beard was my target, I settled the 20 yard crosshair a touch high and the Lumenok arced towards it chest.
The hollow thud of a hit came back to me as the gobbler spun and headed out of the field. Allowing myself to settle down and gather my thoughts, I took up the path of flight and soon found my prize just inside the weedline after a 30 yard sprint.
The American Broadhead Company Turkey Tearor and Easton Full Metal Jacket did their job. The arrow entered just right of the base of the beard angled down and back and the fletching was all the kept the arrow from passing through just above th ebase of the tail.
I didn't realize it at the time but this tom sported double beards. The first was 10 1/4 and the second was 3/1/4. He looked to be a two year old with 7/8 inch spurs and wieghed 18 pounds.
The only reason I got this bird was because I knew his core area and managed to get in and out of the blind without him ever knowing I was there. Calling the birds in from a distance has been a lesson in futility in my areas. Sooner or later, I felt I would get a shot at him if I just put in the time where he liked to be.
A super late season bird with a bow and one I am elated with. One tag left but I think I need a few days off to chill. :)It has been a grind. Enjoy the pics and best of luck to those still on the hunt.
post edited by dpms - 2012/05/18 09:55:09