Saturday, May 07, 2011

Made it out anyway

By Mac Arnold
MAHFS editor

A little action is better than no action.

After hemming and hawing on whether I should go out Friday -- amid intermittent showers and light rain -- I decided on the short trek by my house in St. Clair County where I can be set up in nearly 10 minutes.

Of course, that is if I'm in mid-season form, which I'm not at the moment.

The house spot has been relatively quiet the past few seasons.

Four or five years ago, it was hot. Real hot. Then the coyotes moved in.

Still, gobbles can be heard every once and awhile. And the other day in the field about 300 yards from where I usually go, I saw a pretty big bird making the rounds.

After an hour of calling without success at the first sit on the edge of the river, I moved over to a second spot higher up on the ridge.

Sure enough, I heard turkey sounds, but not the gobbling kind.

I challenged the hen's calls in hopes of maybe luring in a tom within earshot -- a technique that worked nicely in Michigan's 2008 spring season -- but she ended up walking off without a companion.

It did help me practice with the mouth call and trying to replicate her sounds so I'll be ready to make the right ones when it matters most.


On a side note, I wanted to say that though half of my hunts this season so far have been with the recurve, I could just as easily bag one with the shotgun.

I didn't want to give the wrong impression that I am a traditional-only guy -- which there's nothing wrong with -- but I like being successful with all the different hunting methods, so the instrument I use from one day to the next can change with what I feel like doing on that given day.

The bottom line for the season is putting a nice-sized bearded turkey down.

(Go to to see a tom my buddy Tom shot in West Virginia this season.)


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