Nebraska – Day 3 – Oh No
By Robert Hoague
Apr 5, 2008 – 6:57:45 AM
The coldest day yet. Snow on the ground and more falling. We left the farm house half an hour early and drove to the far north side of the property. We speculated that finding the ground blind now that it was covered with snow would not be easy, especially since we were not familiar with the area anyway. However, we dumb lucked right to it and were ready and waiting before daylight.
A few gobbles sounded to the east and west and from across the river from us. Three hours passed, every minute a tad bit colder than the last. We didn’t see a single turkey or get any working. At 10:15 a hot meal at noon was an appealing thought and we decided to return to the farm house — at 11:00.
Four minutes later Fred said he heard a faint yelp over the hill ahead of us and he made a series of calls on the slate.
Bingo! A group of turkeys came out of the trees on the hill and hurried to our decoys.
After a brief stay they moved on. They were all hens.
We passed on the hot noon meal and held tight. At 11:33 we had a replay of the earlier turkey visit as a second group of hens came in to Fred’s calling and investigated the decoys.
This group had several bearded hens.
When 1:30 came we were once again thinking about returning to the farm house — but we committed to waiting 15 more minutes.
Minutes later a faint gobble sounded. Both of us called but the gobblers didn’t answer.
At 1:55 they came over the top of the hill — 3 longbeards.
They approached our decoys and stopped 40 yards from them. Then they circled to the right. I drew when they got in range but frozen weeds and terrain obstructions kept me from releasing an arrow.
The gobblers walked past us on the right.
They stopped behind us. But in a few minutes two of them came into view close to the right side of the blind. I was on the right side so, although I could see them I could not shoot unless they moved out in front f us.
But they were still intrigued by the decoys and they shortly walked into view on our left. That was a good thing, I could shoot almost anywhere to the left.
I pulled my new BowTech 82nd Airborne back into the stops, anxious to see it do its stuff.
Rats … the gobblers clumped up as they walked, slowly, eyeing the decoys. Finally one took a lead and I didn’t wait anything else to go wrong, I put my pin on the gobblers vitals and released and saw my arrow make a solid hit.
My gobbler rushed ahead and stopped and the other two joined it. The three Toms began walking off together. But my gobbler slowed, unable to keep up. I held high and took a 40 yard shot, and went high. I took another shot and aimed dead on, and went low.
The three gobblers went behind a couple of trees. Only two came out.
The two walked into some nearby cedars and disappeared. I glassed and saw my gobbler laying in the brush by the two trees.
Now, the issue was to wait or not to wait. Personally, I’ve had better luck not waiting so we eased out of the blind and quietly approached the bird. It saw us and went 5 yards and stopped behind some brush.
“There he is,” Fred said and pointed to the gobbler.
I skulked ahead and when I saw the gobbler I drew. It saw me.
And did what I didn’t want him to do … he flew. Directly into a nearby stand of cedar trees. We shoved our way in, looking everywhere. In 30 yards we came to a fence and a trail that ran along it. Fred went right I went left.
In 6 steps I saw a bunch of blood in the snow.
I called Fred and we followed a good blood trail for another 30 yards.
The gobbler lay in the middle of a tangle of cedar limbs. Quickly, I found a small opening that I could get an arrow through and dropped to my knees to make the shot. It was gonna take a flat shooting bow to zip through all the limbs withour deflecting on any. The 82nd Airborne spit the arrow out through the softball sized opening and the arrow hit the gobbler perfectly.
This was my first gobbler of the 2008 Spring Online Bowhunt. A magnificent Nebraska Merriam’s.
When we came out of the cedars our host Mr. T was there on his 4-wheeler. We took pictures and returned to the farm house. Mr T had us another place to hunt this afternoon.
BowTech 82nd Airborne – with an out of the box arrow speed of 247 this is one of the fastest bows made today. But that’s not all, this BowTech speed demon is smooth and accurate. This year I wanted to shoot a speed bow and BowTech helped me do just that. My initial hit on the gobbler was not the best, I like it better when I tip the bird over right away But that is not always the case. And I’d just as soon the turkey didn’t fly after the shot.
But it did fly. However, not very far. And a generous blood trail in the snow let us know the hit was lethal and the trail led right to the gobbler.
Additional Items: Grim Reaper RazorCut broadhead with an inch and 3/4 cut, Trophy Ridge fiber optic bowsight, Maximn Hunter camouflage arrows with yellow zebra Blazer vanes and solid yellow Flex-Fletch vanes, a Jim Fletcher Fletch-Hook release, 6-arrow Kwikee Kwiver and Whisker Biscuit arrow rest. And the Tree Apron that carried my calls, flashlight and other non-bow rela ted gear.