Wednesday, April 27, 2011


I will say one thing: the trip went by wayyy too fast. I feel like so much went by in such  short period of time, and now I’m back in New Jersey. It kind of feels like it was all a dream (a good one!).

Neither Mike nor I got a turkey, but we got some awesome footage of turkeys, a pheasant, some ducks and some other random stuff. We came so close to getting a turkey nearly every day that it was a little frustrating.

A few days in Kansas, where our first morning I froze my butt off. It was about 35 degrees but the wind cut right through my clothes. It was so windy that it took several tries for us to get our ground blind set up without it blowing away. We were only in the blind a few minutes when we heard birds gobbling, then a tom turkey came in at about 60 yards and walked right past us, staying at the same distance so we couldn’t get a shot. twenty minutes later we had some Jakes come in at about 40 yards or so. At the last minute Mike decided to try to shoot one but they spooked and left before he could get off a shot.

Several other close calls in the next few days, then we left for Nebraska. The first morning it was pouring rain so we ended up going out a little later, and had three gobblers at 40 yards, but out of sight. The second morning we snuck into the woods while it was still dark out and set up our ground blind. A few minutes after we were situated, a loud gobble made me almost fall off my chair in the blind. Turned out there were two gobblers roosted about 10 feet from our blind. They continued to gobble until it was light out, then they flew down in the opposite direction and disappeared.

We had several other close calls in Nebraska, before deciding to make the 3 hour trip back to Kansas to try again. Two hunters from Wisconsin who were also hunting with Woodland guides had killed three birds while we were in Kansas, and our guide Dave killed one that morning. Maybe our luck would turn.

It was our last morning in Kansas and we set up our ground blind in the same spot we had it the first morning. It wasn’t long before a hen came in, and then left, not paying any mind to our decoys. A few minutes later we had three huge toms come in. If we had been gun hunting we could have shot all three of them. They were all within shooting distance, all three puffed up and strutting. Mike pulled his bow back and held it at full draw while the first Tom made his way in front of our blind.

But, we had a situation. The window of the blind wasn’t open far enough for Mike to shoot where the turkey had stopped. The turkey needed to take a few more steps to the right…which of course he refused to do. He stayed in the same spot, less than 20 yards in front of our blind, just strutting for about five minutes. Then, the hen returned and all three gobblers turned and left.

All I can say is that luck was not with us on our trip. But, I cant remember a time when I have ever had more fun that I have on that trip. Despite the fact that we didn’t kill our turkeys, I had an amazing time and a lot of memories were made.  I got to see Rio, Osceola, and Merriams turkeys for the first time, got to hunt Florida Kansas and Nebraska all for the first time, met some awesome people, got to visit the Ross archery shop and shoot their women’s bow…and have been dating Mike since the trip to Florida :). Really, how could I not be happy???

I spent Easter in Ohio with Mike and his family, and we went out turkey hunting, but luck still wasn’t with us. Now I’m back in NJ for a while, and thinking about getting my NJ turkey tags for this year so it will give me something to do until I go back to work and/or return to Ohio…turkey season isn’t over yet!!!

One more random piece of information for all the girls who read my blog…I bought the She Safari C2 camo for this turkey season, and though I love how it fits, and it’s very comfortable and works great for walking a lot, its LOUD. The fabric just doesn’t work for walking quietly through the woods, or moving in a ground blind, which made it frustrating for me. Just thought I’d throw that out there for any of you who might be thinking of buying it!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


I'm having the time of my life on this trip!!!

I made it to ohio in 5 and a half hours...not too bad considering my gps said it would take 6 hours and fifteen minutes, and I ran into a bad storm in West Virginia. It was a pretty good ride. The good thing was, the rain held off in NJ and PA and the mountians and scenery were beautiful. On the bad side, I hate going through those tunnels through the mountains, they make me feel claustrophobic. And the fact that I felt like my ex should be in the truck with me. Fortunately he was not.

Mike, his dad Terry and I flew into Florida early that Tuesday, got settled in at the lodge at Woodland Guides Outdoors, and got everything ready to hunt the next morning. We got up at five every morning and I have to say I was pretty darn tired by the end of the week...though it was partly my own fault since we stayed up late every night.

We were pretty excited to get in the woods since just the week before three people hunting the property we were going to be hunting had all shot turkeys on the first day.

The first morning in the blind with Mike using a bow, me a shotgun, we saw several turkeys out of range, and some cows and water buffalo. Terry and our guide Dave also saw some turkeys but no shots.

The day we moved the blind and again almost got a Tom to come in close enough for a shot. By the third morning we had it figured out where he was going to come out so set up two different blinds, one for Mike and I and one for Terry and Dave. Mike and I had barely got settled in our blind when we heard a shot. Sure enough, a few seconds later we got a text message with a picture of Terry with his turkey!!!

That night we sat in a blind on another piece of property to turkey hunt. We had hog hunted the past few nights, but had no shots.

I actually can't remember if we saw a hen that night or night, I feel like I have a bad memory since it wasn't even a week ago!!!

I do remember clearly what happened the next morning!!!

Mike and I got situated in our blind, him with his Ross bow and me with a shotgun and running the camera. It was still pretty dark so I ended up falling asleep for an hour or so until the sun started coming up.

Then, Mike decided to take a nap and I started playing around on facebook. I was pretty engrossed in my phone for awhile!!! Then for some reason I glanced up and saw movement in the palmettos in front of the blind. Sure enough there was a hen headed our way. By the time I reached over and woke Mike up I had caught sight of a Tom making his way up behind the hen.

Bow ready and camera running we watched as the turkeys made their way closer and closer to the blind. At about 40 yards they stopped in the middle of the path that ran past our blind...and then turned and walked in the other direction.

That was a little disappointing. We had one day left to hunt before we flew back to ohio.

The next morning we set up in the same spot, the same turkey came in and yet again he turned away at the last minute, though this time he stayed nearly completely out of sight so even with a gun we had no shot.

That night we tried moving in on some jakes in one of the fields, only to have them scared away but a couple of kids trespassing.

Though it doesn't seem like we had much luck, we sure had a lot of fun!!! We went to a Lee Brice concert, ate good food, got a tan, and hunted every day. Doesn't get better than that!!!

I'm super excited to see how our trip to Kansas and Nebraska work out!!!

Woodland Guides Outdoors
Phone: 352-302-0604


Friday, April 1, 2011

Two Days!!!

Well, only two days left before I leave this little New Jersey town and start the six hour drive to Ohio. I'm so excited that I'm getting butterflies in my stomach thinking about it. Or maybe that's from nervousness that I might get lost on the way??? Luckily my blackberry comes with several free GPS apps, three of which I downloaded this week, just to be safe.

This morning I woke up to a fresh blanket of snow covering everything. A few hours ago it changed to rain, but I'm more than ready for the warm weather in Florida!!!

I finally started packing. I've been putting it off for days, but yesterday I realized I might want to get on it since I'm leaving on Monday!!! I decided to start with my hunting stuff, since I figured that should be fairly easy and only take a few minutes: fold it all up, stuff it in the bag and be done with it. A half hour later I was sitting on the floor in my bedroom trying to decide how many pairs of camo pants I should bring and how was I going to fit it all in the bag??? I'd forgotten what a complicated process packing hunting clothing is for me. Usually I look at all of my camo and wish I had more to choose from. When I'm getting ready to go somewhere I realize I have to choose between various sets of camo, and it suddenly seems like I have too much to choose from.

I finally managed to decide on what camo to bring, and took a break to sew a rip in my favorite Realtree Girl pants, a result of crossing a barbed wire fence in missouri this past November.

Next step in packing was to pack my 12 gauge Benelli Nova and my Hoyt. I unearthed my bow case, which was still covered in Missouri dust, and made sure my bow, arrows, broadheads, release, armguard, and quiver were all safely inside and locked in. I had a slight problem with my shotgun since the barrel was too long to fit in the case. I ended up taking the turkey choke tube out, which shortened it nearly two inches.

My cameras and batteries, chargers, tripod, laptop, etc are safely packed. I started packing everyday clothing, but I'm sure its going to be an ongoing process until the day I actually leave. Luckily I made myself a checklist, which I'm sure I will need. Who knew packing could be so complicated??? Or maybe its just me???

I should probably be finishing up packing right now instead of laying in bed writing this blog on my blackberry. I could have written this three times over if I was on a real computer I'm sure. But I figure I better get used to it so I can update my blog from the road!!!

Hopefully by the middle of next week I'll be able to post some pictures of me with some dead creatures that I've killed in Florida!!! Then on to Kansas and Nebraska :)