Turkey Hunting: To Sit or Git (Page 2)
There are two main schools of turkey hunting styles—”sit-n-call” and “run-n-gun.” But great hunters learn how to use both tactics.
February 03, 2010
Well, smiling Mr. Sumpter didn’t tell me the milo field was bigger than my hometown. For three days in this shotgun-only country I tried every trick in the book, including calling, crawling, decoying, “Fred Flintstoning” under a ground blind, ambushing and even the controversial walk-behind-a-decoy-and-look-like-an-idiot technique. (Don’t try this on public land!) The turkeys weren’t buying any of it, and even my buddy Tack Robinson, who was reared in a nest of wild turkeys from childbirth, couldn’t talk one out of its life. It became an obsession; me vs. these wretched field-lubbing turkeys, and they were definitely winning. But then, like it’d been sent straight from the gobbler gods, Tom’s advice rang in my head.
The following day I abandoned the field and set out to find some easier birds. Nearing noon I finally struck one up, cut the distance immediately then set up to call. It was classic combination tactics except for one detail: The gobbler had no desire to be a movie star. So I did what every dynamic hunter would do: I made my partner, Joe White, who is a better caller than me, do the calling. The huge gobbler finally came in as textbook as you can imagine, and Tom would be proud to learn that I didn’t miss this time. (You can watch it on “Browning’s The Best There Is” if you wish.) And I learned that I’m not even close to the best there is, nor will I ever master turkey hunting. In fact the opposite is true: Turkey hunting masters me, and that’s why I, too, remain hopelessly addicted.