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!!!