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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/19/2019 in all areas

  1. 15 points
  2. 14 points
    This bird out played us yesterday morning. We put him to bed last night and went at it again this morning. He was hot and gobbling. Flew down and few more calls sucked him in to Dylan. 20 yd shot. We have 3 more years with Dylan as a junior hunt. Get your kids out there.
  3. 13 points
    Took a small hike to check a camera one last time before the mother nature drops the heat hammer. This is a new spot so I wasn't sure what would show up.... no giants but, I was pleasantly surprised. Its probably worth keeping tabs on.... On the way out, I stumbled across these little treasures.. always makes it worth the walk Its going to be a long summer. Thanks for looking. Dave
  4. 12 points
    Rewind to early December of 2018. My phone rings and I get a call from Justin Watts, our regional director of the NWTF. He called to inform me that Draysen's entry into the NWTF's JAKE'S National Essay Contest had won, and that he and a chaperone would be going, all expenses paid, to the NWTF convention in Nashville and to El Dorado, Kansas in April where he would attend and participate in the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt/Competition. Rather than go on for paragraphs and paragraphs about all the lead-up, the convention, etc. (which I believe I posted about previously) I will jump to this past week. We got up about 2:00 AM this past Wednesday morning to head to the airport only to receive reports about potential problems with our Dallas connection on to Wichita. Fortunately, we were a little ahead of the worst weather, and despite some bumpy flights met up with Pat Post in Wichita just a little before noon. Pat and his wife Janet, the director of the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt, have been in volved with it for the past 32 of it's 33 years. Talk about great people!!! We had met and spent time with them while at the convention in Nashville, and enjoyed getting reacquainted on our drive to El Dorado. The Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt is a by invitation only event. It is largely made up of leaders of industry, celebrities, pro athletes, a handful of "hunting hero" vets, a few Kansas youth hunters, and of course our Draysen. Each of the 78 hunter participants is pre-paired up with a mentor-guide for the experience. Lucky for us, the JAKE'S essay winner gets one of the best, Melinda Duff. Melinda helps maintain a very special piece of property owned by the Raymond Criss family. Many people told us that this property may be one of the finest pieces of turkey property in all of Kansas. Having spent two days on it, I am inclined to agree. Sadly, the owner, Raymond, passed away in a tractor accident a few years ago. Raymond was one of the founders the Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt 33 years ago, and was a major part of the JAKE'S essay winners inclusion into the event. As a memorial, the family spread his ashes on the top of a hill in probably the most prime spot of their 400 acre property and have designated this as a spot to only ever be hunted by the JAKE'S winner. Not even family and friends are permitted to hunt to spot. I don't have the words to express how humbled and honored Draysen and I were to be there. The first afternoon was spent getting checked in, getting Draysen's licenses and tags, passing Melinda's shotgun shooting test she implemented a couple of years ago. She has a special name for the test, but I probably shouldn't mention it publicly 😉. During the shotgun test, we had a BIG Tom come into the field across the property line to watch us while strutting across the field. That really got the excitement going. We then had a get together social with all the other hunters. We finally we hit the sack about 10:00 PM exhausted, but super anxious. The next morning, Melinda picked us up about 3:45 AM. After a breif stop at headquarters for breakfast and sack lunches we were on our way. It was only a short 10 minute drive and 10-15 minute walk to the blind, but we ended up doing a circle or two around the hill as we fumbled through the dark. Once set up in the blind it wasn't long before we began to be treated to a pre-dawn gobble party. I've never before experienced so many gobbles coming from so many directions at the same time. It was incredible! Shortly after shooting light, the birds began to show themselves. First wad a big group of jakes to fed 10 yards right in front of our blind for what seemed forever (video below). We saw a couple of really nice Toms beyond the group of jakes and slightly down the hill. They were absolute shooters, but wouldn't commit to coming in. At one point one of the jakes began to sense something wasn't right, alerted the group, and the did a slow walk away. About 30 minutes later, they were back! This time the big boys trailing the group came in! Draysen lined up for an easy 10 yards shot waoted for a nearby jake to clear, pulled the trigger, and "click" but no "boom" (video below)! I had one job, properly load the shotgun, and I totally blew it! The shell wasn't fully chambered. By the time we cleared the shotgun, the birds had heard the click, and again had done a slow retreat. Would he get a third chance? Absolutely, and only 20-30 minutes later. This time the biggest Tom was in the lead. Draysen wasn't going to wait for him to get too close and get mixed up with all the rest of the birds preventing a clean shot, and took him with one clean solid shot at about 25 yards. Tag #1 filled! But rather than going to get the bird, we decided to sit tight and work on a double. There were way to many birds still in the area. It about 45 minutes later a new group of 3 big Tom's were spotted and on their way. As the lead bird approached, he began strutting and heading for Draysen's first bird. Draysen had pre-determined to memorialize this trip by getting a bird mounted if he got a good one, and his first bird was awesome! So he didn't want to allow this second Tom to beat up on the first and took his shot before the second bird got the chance. "Boom", second tag filled. As we celebrate, the other two Toms that came in with his second bird, being the bullies that Toms are, came and started beating up on their downed buddy. We also wanted to keep this second bird in good shape and tried to shoosh them off, but they weren't having it, and lingered for another 10 minutes until we started to get out of the blind. Even then, they only went another 50 yards down they hill. But at that point they had cleared the JAKE essay winner hunting only area. Melinda had her own tags, so we encouraged her to go after them. Eventually we convinced her. Only a few minutes later, a third bird was down. Draysen's first bird had 10.5" beard, a really nice long spur on one leg, and slightly rubbed down spur on the second. The second bird had a 9.75" beard but huge sharp 1.25" spurs. We headed for competition weigh in, measurements, and lunch. The Kansas Governor's One Shot takes amazing care of their guests! While we ate lunch they completely plucked and processed Draysen's second bird to look like a grocery store cleaned whole turkey (we froze the first whole for taxidermy), and put it in camo soft sided cooler for him on dry ice to take home. That afternoon we got a good nap and headed in for the evening banquet and auction. For that night's auction master turkey caller Preston Pittman had brought 20 custom box calls. Preston was there guiding the hunting heros. With his tags filled, Draysen got the opportunity to play the part of guide the following morning to help Melinda fill her second tag. We sat the edge of a recently planted corn filled and again were treated to a symphony of pre-dawn gobbles in the full moon light. Our blind was almost directly below the roost trees. So in the low light of the morning, we watched an estimated 50-60 birds fly down and work their was across the field in front of us. It was a scene we will never forget. The many Tom's were all hened up and didn't seem interested in our calls as they strutted hundreds of yards across the field in front of us, but just out of range. Once they were all out of sight we determined our best opportunity would be to set up a couple of hen decoys and try to call a Tom back when his hens left to lay eggs. While I was dozing off, Draysen and Melinda spotted a lone gobbler about 500 yards across the field. Game on! With a little coaching Draysen called this gobbler clear across the field to about 200 yards. Then a hen showed up that got his attention. So Draysen shifted gears and called in the hen with him cutting the distance. About the time the hen was about 5-10 yards from us, she began to sense something was up and alerted the Tom. He stopped dead in his tracks, puffed up, but wouldn't come any closer, but he had already come to close. A great 40 yard shot from Melinda and our hunt was over. More banquets, auctions, thank yous, and farewells that night. Draysen didn't win the top gun contest for biggest bird, but was given a beautiful rifle from the C.O.O of the NWTF who said some very nice thing about Draysen to the crowd. We then returned to our hotel packed up and went to bed. It is now the following morning. We are now at the Wichita airport and have a long wait for his flight, hence the long write up. This has been an experience of a lifetime for Draysen and me. So many great people did so many great things to make this great experience happen including: Mark and Kathy Nixon who kead out local East Valley Toms NWTF chapter. Janet and Pat Post of the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt. Mark Elliot who foot the bill for the trips. Melinda Duff, Draysen's mentor and guide. Mom, (my wife) who had to stay home with the siblings. So many more, sorry I can't begin to name them all. I know the write up was long, hope you enjoyed it, the videos, and pictures.
  5. 11 points
    I just returned from a grand adventure Campeche, Mexico and it was a fantastic experience! The deep southrn portion of Mexico is totally different from the north.. very different vibe, quite different foods, etc. Oh yea, and loads of turkeys! I was able to take a great Ocellated gobbler the very first morning. The birds would hit the ground about 6:10am and start singing all morning til about 9am. They were also responding to the calls readily both in the morning and the evening. We hunted them classic style off the ground as well as Campeche style by slinging hammocks off the forest floor about 12-15 ft up. That was a new one for me! Very cool way to get off the bare forest floor and out of the turkey’s insane ability to spot you. We saw loads of grey brocket deer sign but just ran out of time to try for a buck. But I’ll be back next spring! Found a few jaguar tracks too. The Ocellated turkey makes 4/6 for me on my way towards the Grand/Royal/World slams with me heading to Vermont and New Hampshire next week to try for a New England Eastern doubler header/double stater! Definitely looking forward to try and get that number 5 gobbler next weekend! Muchas gracias to mi amigo in Campeche for setting everything up for me. What a great time!
  6. 11 points
    We didn't have a lot of hope this year due to my wife tearing her mcl and ACL 2 weeks before the hunt. After a miss on the first stand, we regrouped and moved about 500yds up the mountain. The box call brought this guy in strutting. He paused at 65yds and she let him have it. We were done before 630am.
  7. 11 points
    Went out this morning with both of my boys for the youth turkey hunt. We heard the first gobble at 5:30 am and about 300 yards away. We quickly cut the distance to about 100 yards. The Tom wouldn’t stop gobbling from the roost. Once he flew down he made his way straight towards us and our decoys. After a few minutes he came out of the junipers and Jacob took a shot at 25-yards and putting his first turkey down
  8. 10 points
    I am excited today as I got to spend some time in the pen with my new pup. "Clover" is a German wire-haired pointer like Rica was. I sense that good times, adventures and quail hunts lie ahead. The pups are five weeks old today, so it will be another three before the home schooling begins.
  9. 10 points
    Just got back from a Turkey hunt today. Fishing was pretty good to me.
  10. 10 points
    We got lucky and turned one up yesterday. It was my sons first time shed hunting. Completely made his and my day, he was tired and riding on my shoulders back to the truck when we found it. Quiet ride home
  11. 9 points
    I had a unit 1 tag yesterday. in the morn had a bird roosted thought it would be a sure thing. Got there 1 hour early set up a decoy that I normally don't do, Bird is hollering away on the roost. Comes down and goes other way. . I followed and chased and headed off. We played till 9;30 ,Got a few of his hens to come in but he would stay 100 yards out consistantly. We went up and down hills over a creek zig zag . was an educated bird ,One of the toughest I ever had. Finally he quit talking and game over. He kicked my butt. I was sore mid day.Afternoon got windy I just slept against a tree hoping one would come thru . Nothin. Half our before dark I decided to move and try to roost a bird for next day. Tried about 5 spots ,nothing. Then at the last place I went where I heard one the night before , One blasts off hundred yards out. I thaught thats my play for tommorow as it is getting dark. I got off the road and much to my surprize He's closing distance. I grab the gun ,get set up and sure as heck He keeps coming. At 35 yards boom ,1 shot with # 4 pheasant shot he was down . Still legal shooting lite ,but getting dark I didn't think he would come . It was 7: 10 or 7 :15 PM. So easy and it made up for all the hard work in the morning I did. Talked to 7 guys from 2 other camps and nobody killed. I feel this was a lucky one, but it came from being persistant and not giving up and working till last minute of day. Never give up hang in there. I have allways hunted birds all day. Killed a couple Mid day and as many at nite as in the Morn. But the Morn is the funnest I think. The rest of the day is working it. Pics to come in an hour ,gotta go get more ice rite now. Finally ahunting story from me instead of Bullcrap. LOL..........BOB!
  12. 9 points
    Went out to hang some trail cameras and do a little shed hunting with my son and found this nice dead head.
  13. 9 points
    My son went on his first turkey hunt today with a tag in his pocket. We heard a gobble right after the sun came up this morning. We had only been walking about 25 mins an called twice. We put out the decoy and got set up. He came in great but circled us the last 75 yards and got above us. We tried to reposition but the sun was right in our face and we couldn’t see. We kept quiet as he gobbled and passed around us, trying not to move. After a few minutes we backed out and moved up higher to the bench above us. I set out the decoy again and we set up above it. I let out a few yelps and 2 different birds sounded off. Within 10 mins my son says he see’s him. The Tom spots the decoy and starts running in. He breaks into a strut 30 yards from us. I hear the click of the guns safety as he goes behind a tree. I’m trying to video the best I can but I can’t control my shaking. The strutter catches movement as the shotgun gets shouldered and sticks his head up. He starts to turn away and I cluck to stop him. BOOM !!! The bird drops and starts kicking. We high five, shake hands and hug. It all happened so fast we are still smiles while hanging out in camp. a special thanks to Ammon at little creek calls. He makes great sounding calls, at least this bird thought so.
  14. 7 points
    The HoolaBoola Dance celebrating springSaw this guy crossing Turkey Creek
  15. 7 points
    Looking for elk found some mulies. This past Easter weekend. Two matching sets.
  16. 7 points
    I just don’t worry about them. Come across them all the time too. They usually want less to do with you than you do with them. Most of them get a free pass, but when i come across a hyper aggressive one they usually get taken out of the gene pool.
  17. 6 points
    I thought I'd share another project of mine. Mostly done in my garage/wanna be shop. I wanted this to be as cheap as possible so I could keep the boss happy! Remington 700 223 SPS Greyboe stock Tally Rings Leupold VX-R 4-12×50 Here is the beginning. As you can see here the action port was a little long and the butt pad needs to be fitted. Opened up the barrel channel free float the barrel. Bedded and built up the elongated ejection port. While that was curing gave the rifle a good needed cleaning as it was a used rifle. After curing, shaped butt pad, and sanded down action area to match the contour of the stock. Sent stock over to Applied Hydrographics(here locally) and had it dipped in black multi-cam. While waiting for the stock to be finished, I bedded and lapped Talley rings, sorry no photos for that. Mounted scope and put it all together after retrieving the stock. Here is the finnished product! I plan on shooting Hornady 53 grain V-max bullets in front of CFE 223, I have a ladder/velocity/pressure test loaded and will fallow up after the shooting is done, and will share my next step in the load development process. For you expert reloaders out there please chime in as reloading is a never ending learning curve. Thanks for looking and whatever input you can add.
  18. 6 points
    well, as expected, the river was running big and fishing wasn't very good. ended up catching enough catfish for a couple of good fish fries but the bass bite was non existent. The water was running too hard to control your bait. as soon as I'd cast, my bait would wash 50' downstream. the water clarity wasn't terrible. 2-3 more weeks and it should be good. I did see 3 coues bucks, one of which was probably pushing 100", and they were all still packing antlers. seems a little late
  19. 6 points
    San Carlos bird 21 pounds, 10.5 inch beard, tough hunt called in several but had accuracy problems missed several. My son's hunt was his 6th consecutive tag in a certain unit and he is 6 for 6. He also missed several birds this year, but was able to shoot this young bird. All of his shots where around 25 yards. The problem with some of the long range ammo we use is a very tight group at close range. Most of the toms were all alone and all of the hens we saw were by themselves. I believe they were on eggs already, or in the process. This great news for all you guys this week-end. What worked best for us was moving on toms several times. We found this made them believe we were a real hen on the move. There were several people up in the area calling toms,. They were calling for fun, but they were not hunting. ETA Not sure why the pictures are posting sideways?
  20. 6 points
    I haven’t missed a year in probably 20 years. End of april-mid may (give or take a week) on a normal year is usually a guarantee. I’ll be the guinea pig i guess. Worst case scenario, i get out of town and cell phone service for a few days
  21. 6 points
    I’m 50 years old. These attacks on our freedoms have commenced less than 10 years ago. This new, younger generation is the catalyst. Unfortunately, it’s your generation that’s ruined hunting. You guys can’t piss in the woods without posting a status update on Instagram! Hunting and the outdoors was so much better before social media. It was shared with only those people that were important to us and not every Tom, Dick and Harry on Instagram or Facebook! We’d go out, kill a few coyotes, sit around the campfire and talk about the fun. And that’d be it! Fast forward to today, and every second of every day HAS to be posted on Facebook or Instagram so you poor snowflakes can get some instant gratification or base your self-worth on others’ opinions. If guys would just go out, kill some coyotes and STFU, this wouldn’t be an issue. Sorry, but that’s the truth. Hunting here was so much better in the 70’s and 80’s and before the addiction to phones and social media that we see today.
  22. 5 points
    You have to go and find out the bite for us. But if it’s on fire don’t post it just message me..
  23. 5 points
  24. 5 points
  25. 5 points
    I have posted this before but this was basically my introduction to rattlesnakes.......down in the bootheel of New Mexico in what some would consider middle of nowhere nothing! My dad's ditch banks were clean from weeds, our house......clean from weeds all the way around! If you went off the main path you made sure you had a shovel in your hand! Lots of great memories and lots of PTSD memories about growing up there! We have had several encounters out in the boonies with rattlers, walk loud and carry a big stick!!!!