Just got back in off the next to last leg of the Turkey Season. Spent 3 days in OK, 2 days in KY and 4 in Missouri (thanks to the floods).
OK-- Met up with more old Army buddies and went hard for two days in the blind. Day 1 we struck a bird while hiding in some round bales. He scurried into the dekes, never presented a shot to my buddy with his bow and when he tried to make a hasty exit I ensured there would be no witnesses. Double bearded RIO-- this made two birds for the season and 4 beards. Day 2 we returned to that spot with Mike's daughter and her great grandfather's shotgun. In a repeat of Day 1 the bird strutted in and she dropped him at 30 yards!! Her first bird ever and certainly not her last. This little girl was TOUGH- temps that morning were in the low 40s and she was soaked from the dew when we crossed the field. Day 3-- Saw 22 birds on public land but couldn't work the flock in. On the walk back to the truck 3 Jakes squirted across the path in front of my truck and I opted to leave my 1500 intact so they got a pass. Oh we also slammed some monster 2lb+ crappie!
KY-- I drove all day to KY and hunted for a day with my old duck/goose hunting buddy. It was a slow morning but we struck a bird about 1030. Long story short we had to belly crawl down an old hedgerow as the bird hung up in the middle of a field. Once we closed the distance he came over the crest but refused to come any further. My buddy slipped as far up as he could but the result was a swing and a miss. The next day I had to head to Missouri but I squeezed a quick public land hunt in with two other hunting buddies. Nothing seen that morning but most likely because we were cutting up in the blind. I was supposed to leave at 11am for a 6hr drive but we struck a bird at 1030 and worked him for nearly 45 min. He circled completely around and slipped up within 40 yards of Tim, who had been doing the calling. Without his turkey slayer in hand he only got to briefly enjoy the show before that wise old Eastern slipped on out.
MO-- Made the drive Sunday to Missouri and got in right before I-44 was closed because of a washout. I was hunting with another Army buddy who was itching to scratch out his first ever turkey. Monday was a bust because of 30mph winds but we saw a few hens. Tuesday we got up earlier and got into the thick of things quickly. We heard 4 birds that morning and worked one who got picked off by hens and up the hill he went. A large bird was still in the field gobbling his head off so we low crawled, snuck across the creek and stayed below the bank. Mind you-- at this time the creek was ankle deep. The bird hammered back at us and came towards the creek bed. Knowing that birds had been hanging up I opted to flip out a jake fan and when he caught sight through the weeds he sprint in to 20 yards and got dumped!!! When we got to him he had a Triple colored beard. Even a 30 year DNR employee we were with had never seen anything like it-- if you have ideas please let me know!! Wednesday we slipped back across the creek and set out our blind and dekes. It was raining but once the thunder closed in we high tailed it down to low ground and out of the open.... leaving our blind and everything but our guns. An hour later (after the storm)when we tried to cross back the creek had risen nearly 4 feet and it was obvious we weren't going to be crossing back any time soon. The submerged rock I'm pointing at in the pic was 4ft tall when the creek was down. We headed out for another blind on the farm and did our best to make things happen with a tail fan and a little ingenuity. No dice, but after nearly 12 hours I was able to retrieve our gear and head home the next morning.
One more hunt in TX and then my season is over; needless to say it's been an adventure!!