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The 4x4 Grand Slammer of 2004
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Hunt For The Merriam's
(Hunts compliments of Double K Guide Service)

Doug Crabtree Gets the First Merriam's
First Merriam's hunt - After his Texas Rio hunt Doug drove to Pierre, South Dakota and bought his license. He arrived at Double K Guide Service in Gregory, SD at 4:45pm. 
Guide Don Wing met Doug and they went to an area where Wing had located Merriam's. Doug set his Double Bull blind up at 6:15 and started calling. 
Hens yelped and one came to the blind. Other hens joined it and two fought, charging and beating each other with their wings. 
During the commotion Doug saw 3 gobblers approach, he took a picture of some of the birds in front of him and then got his bow. When the gobblers were at 12 yards Doug drew. 
His arrow hit the bottom of the waddles and the longbeard collapsed. It was 6:50pm. The gobbler weighed 19 lbs. with a 9" beard and 1 1/8" spurs. 

Day 1 - the rest of us arrive at Dave Keiser's Double K Guide Service
Fred Lutger, Tony Dukes and I rolled into Gregory, South Dakota at 9:00 pm and met Dave Keiser at his Double K Guide Service. We had been in contact by cell phone andDave is ready to take us wild turkey hunting in the morning.

Day 2 - A Triple Header

Early AM - Dave Keiser took Tony Dukes and Fred Lutger hunting and I went with Charlie. We grabbed a cup of coffee and drove to his Wild Wings property. I set my green Double Bull blind up on the edge of a 90 yard wide field on a hill. Daylight trickled in and I heard distant gobbles.
A lone turkey's silhouette appeared at the top of the hill. Others followed. I took pictures as 27 turkeys walked downhill and ducked under a fence at the uphill boundary of the field, on the opposite side from me. 
When I saw some red heads I clucked softly. 4 gobblers separated from the group and with a little Knight & Hale slate call coaxing put on a show right in front of me.
Across the field 3 big longbeards strutted and did their thing with the hens at hand. 
I  took some super pictures. Here are the highlights.

Day 2 - Triple Header, I get lucky ... first!

Morning - One of the unique things about Dave Keiser's area is the rolling hills and prairie grass. You can see a long way. Charlie was 1,000 yard away and saw the birds leave and also could see that nothing was in sight. He drove to me to go to a different area. First we took a 5 minute bread and drove into Gregory for coffee to go. We returned to Charlie's place right away.
Wild turkeys were in a field across from Charlie's and walking towards his gravel, farm road. Two big longbeards strutted in a group of hens and jakes We turned onto the farm road, the left side was prairie and the right was woods. When we turned a curve we passed a perpendicular, side lane through the trees. Charlie told me the birds used it regularly. He zipped ahead, stopped, and hid his pickup. 
We ran back to the side lane. Gobbles were getting close, the birds were coming on the gravel road -- we were 65 yards down the lane. The Double Bull blind only takes seconds to set up, and, with loud gobbles ringing in my ears, I think I set a new record. Charlie returned to the truck.
Gobbles were getting louder every minute. A jake turned into the side lane and walked right to me.
But the other birds continued down the gravel, farm road, it was 65 yards away.
The jake stepped into the woods, going to the other birds. I called but it didn't turn the gobblers. I heard Charlie begin calling from somewhere further down the lane.
But the gobblers were occupied, strutting for the hens and jakes. I waited. The gobbles continued but the hens and jakes left the road and walked into the prairie.
I had to do something -- and I had an idea.
Inside the blind, I picked up my bow and Double Bull chair and then grabbed the top hub of the blind with my other hand, and lifted the blind a foot and walked ti 30 yards down the lane.
When I set it down I peeped through a window and, through the dried grass and limbs, I saw the back of a fan. Had they seen me?
No! They were too busy doing turkey stuff.
And now, due to the curve n the road, I was only 20 yards from them. Close, but they would have to come back to the lane for me to get a shot.
I grabbed my new camera and focused on the gobblers.
The gobblers co-operated nicely and I got some Merriam's eye candy. For some reason the gobblers stayed on the road. A loud, raspy voiced hen returned to the road, yelping continuously. I got it's pic yelping at the gobblers. More hens returned and the gobblers showed off big.
Then the yakety hen started walking -- toward the lane! 
I took it's pic when it was in the clear. This was a good thing. My guess was the gobblers would follow.
They did, and painfully slow, strutting and posturing all the way.

 The first gobbler entered the clear spot, I took it's pic, and it turned to the other gobbler and they did some sort of goofy looking bowing thing. Then one of the gobblers walked into the clear. I couldn't resist one last pic.

I had already range findered the tree in the above pic as 25 yards. The big Tom was strutted up so I had to be extra careful. I drew and put my top pin on the gobbler, between the legs and then up, above the forward leg.
I released.
Down on the spot.
The other birds ran to the downed gobbler. The jakes pecked him. I swapped my bow for my camera and got two pics.
And then Charlie took my picture. 

The gobbler weighed 25 pounds and had a 10 1'4" beard and 1 1/4" very sharp, spurs. What a super morning. Life is good.

Day 2 - Triple Header, Fred's Turn In The pit
Dave Keiser took Fred Lutger to a field where he had set up a Double Bull blind the night before. There were trellises to Fred's left and right and before daylight he heard gobbles from both directions. 
At good light the birds flew down across the field in front of Fred. They were moving his way. Two gobblers were strutting and when they got closer Fred saw 2 longbeards, several jakes and 10 hens. They main group passed close but the longbeards kept their distance.
The birds disappeared. At 8:30 Fred heard one bird gobble at the treeline to his right. Fred yelped at it. The gobbler answered enthusiastically and started coming.
Fred had the blind's windows closed on the right side, one was open so he could shoot when a gobbler approached the decoys.
Fred heard the gobbler spitting and drumming behind the blind. Through the horizontal Pro Staff window Fred saw a longbeard in full strut, advancing toward the decoys. 
Because he could follow the gobblers progress through the horizontal window Fred knew when to draw, and did it just before the big Tom entered the open shooting window.
Spitting & drumming in full strut the gobbler walked right to the decoys. Fred's arrow hit and the Tom staggered. It ran 30 yards and stopped. Fred shot him again.
It ran  into a creek bottom. Fred followed it.
The gobbler was in the creek bed. Fred walked to it, it was still alive and Fred dove on it, grabbing it by the secondary tail feathers -- and pulled out a handful (notice it in the picture below). Fred grabbed the longbeard again, by a foot and the head.
Fred carried it back to the blind, it was 9:05. 
Dave was going to pick him up at 11:00 so Fred got back in the blind with his video camera. He called in 5 more gobblers during the next 2 hours and got some excellent video footage for his TV Show.

This is Fred Lutger's 3rd out of the 4 necessary for his Grand Slam.

Tony Dukes Completes the Triple Header
Dave Keiser did the run and gun with Tony Dukes. By 9:00 they had worked 4 groups of turkey and had 3 sets of gobblers in. The 3rd was the charm. 
They saw a gobbler on the edge of a cedar wind row and went 300 yards past it and set up the Double Bull blind. Dave called and got an immediate gobble.
Dave videoed the gobbler--he is videoing hunts for Double Bull Archery's new video--as it came in on a strutting trot. Dave called all the way and the Tom gobbled and strutted to 15 yards. Dave was filming and calling in the window Tony needed to shoot out of. They switched positions.
Tony got the arrow off in tight quarters. The gobbler collapsed on the spot.
Dave shouted, "That was awesome, what did you shoot him with?"
Tony grinned, "My Rocky Mountain Assassin."
Dave answered, "They'll love this footage at Double Bull."
Tony replied, "Yea Brooks eat you heart out."
They recovered the gobbler and picked up Fred and his gobbler (see below). When they arrived in camp I had my gobbler also. (see below.) Three in one morning, a Tripple Header! 

Back at camp Tony told me, "It was great hunting with Dave Keiser, this was my most fun turkey hunt ever."

Sponsors For The 2004 4x4 Grand Slammer
Our 4x4 Grand Slammer with the bow created excitement with several manufacturers and they stepped up to the plate to sponsor the event.

SPONSORS
- BowTech - bows
- Knight & Hale - turkey calls
- Barrie Archery - Rocky
  Mountain broadheads
- Timberline Archery - bowsights
- MyTopo.com - maps
- Double Bull - blinds
- Carter Enterprises releases
- Pro-Ears hearing
  enhancement & protection
- Fine-Line Archery peep
  sights & bowquivers
- Montana Decoys - decoys
- EASTON Archery - arrows
- Freddie Bear Sports
  Assorted bowhunting gear
- KBA Knives custom knives
- Sticks N' Limbs camouflage

OUTFITTERS:
- Wulff Cedar Creek Ranch - Rio Grandes
- Florida Wildlife Unlimited - Osceolas
- Possum's Trading Post - Missouri Easterns
- Double K Guide Service Merriam's
- Fred Lutger's Wilderness Hunts Illinois
- Wells Creek Outfitters Easterns

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To Contact the Outfitter
For This Hunt::

Double K Guide Service
211 Von Seggern St Gregory, SD 57533

Phone: 605-835-8658
Email:
dave@doublekguides.com
Web:
DoubleKGuides.com

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