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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With the turkey hunt draws underway I thought I would post my 2007 turkey hunt.

What do you guys think of the turkey tag increases?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Turkey or wilderness elk hunt?
The next several days would decide the out come. Utah doesn't have a lot of turkey hunting opportunity compared to other states but I finally drew the coveted tag.
This is the first hunt I have ever drawn in Utah. So to say the least I was very excited! I wanted to try and introduce my two daughters Lindsay and Makenzie to hunting so I thought this would be the best way. I had been applying for this tag when my oldest daughter Lindsay was just born and it took me 6 years. My family and I took a few Sundays and tried knocking on doors introducing ourselves and trying to get permission from the great citizens of Utah to hunt on private property. Each had there own reasons and said No! Having never seen a tom turkey on the unit I drew I became a little worried. I asked for some advice on the internet and received a few responses which I followed up on. I also took the whole hunt off from work including two days for scouting.

I started off on Saturday on the south end of Nebo Mountain and on the first morning found the first sign of turkeys in the form of scat and tracks along a road. I than practiced my calls and called in a hen and four desperate hunters on their second to last day of their hunt. So before I got shot I left and made my way south east to Manti, than to Gunnison, up to Levan and finally back to Nebo. I checked here and there and up every canyon I could find looking for sign. I ended up at a water hole later in the day and called in my first tom. Thinking this is two easy, all of the other hunters that I had talked too earlier in the day which had first season tags that hadn't been successful must not have hunted hard enough. "This was my first mistake of many to come. It was going to be easy and other hunters hadn't hunted hare enough."

Sunday I contacted a friend of mine named Brandon Waranski which took some time and showed me a few other areas I hadn't scouted. We called in multiple birds including a huge bird with a 10" beard to 30 yards. Thinking this is a slam dunk I went home popped in a turkey video and drifted to sleep with the anxiety of a kid on Christmas Eve.
Lindsay and I both woke up at 3:30 am and loaded up the truck and met a friend of mine on the mountain. As I walked to my first of many setups I tried a couple of owl hoots that worked when I was with Brandon but didn't work this morning. We set up a double bull blind and a few decoys and waited for morning. I thought as we waited in silence why haven't we heard any gobbles where have these birds gone. We decided to move locations. My friend which will remain name less said he needed to make a phone call to his wife at 6:00 am in the morning for what ever reason. While he was on the phone my daughter asks daddy are we going to still go turkey hunting. That's when all hell broke loose my buddy runs out of the blind. Apparently he never asked permission and was playing hooky from work without the ball and chains consent. He took the blind and left us on the side of the hill wondering what in the hell just happened.

We continued on our way. It was a rainy wet morning the worms were all over the trail and my daughter had to save every one by throwing them in the weeds. As the setup count added up and the miles added up we finally got a response at 2:00 pm from a hen which I mimicked and then received my daughter's first response from a gobbler. It was a hundred yards off and closing quick. Knowing I had to make an adjustment I asked my daughter to stay in the shade near my decoys. I than moved about 8 yards to a better location for the shot. As the birds closed the distance I heard a little voice begin to sing. It was Lindsay and the turkeys didn't want any part of it and quickly vacated. "Mistake number two." I used this as a learning tool and explained to Lindsay that when hunting you have to be very quiet or the animals won't come in. I also learned if you put your kids in your lap there attention span is a little longer. She is a very quick learner and was almost silent the rest of the day. We took naps, snack breaks, lunch, and had some of the best one on one time I have ever had with my daughter. I was shocked that Lindsay was having as much fun as I was.



Not wanting to burn my little girl out with my hard hunting style I elected not to take her out of school and turn the odds in my favor. Well Tue, Wed, and Thursday all came and went with me going to bed around 10:00 pm and getting up a 3:30 to 4:00 am. The turkey hunt was turning out to be more like a full blown wilderness elk hunt. I really packed in the miles. I had birds come to my calls one to two times a day without giving me a shot. I wasn't even being selective anymore I was actually getting desperate I would have taken any bird at this point, that would just show its head for freaking two seconds for a shot.

The birds were so call shy from all of the hunters in the area I decided to go in deeper farther like always. I had to come up with a better solution I decided to use a mountain bike and hit the trail even earlier in the morning to take me farther than any other hunter. I put on a head lamp at started out thinking this is it I have finally beat these other hunters and will have first crack at the birds as soon as they hit the ground. "Mistake number three." Well ten turns into my bike ride along a stream I ducked a branch but forgot about the shotgun poking up, it hit the branch and almost ripped me off the bike I crotched myself on the bars and slid down the bank and almost into the water. I ended up pushing the bike the rest of the day.

Well my buddy Brandon gives me a call on Thursday night and says he will take me out and help me get my bird. I was extremely happy but hesitant because Brandon's wife had just had his first baby two days before, and was supposed to bring them home from the hospital later in the day. He assured me he had gotten permission and every thing was fine. Well Brandon is the man when it comes to locating turkey's he took me to an area where nobody had been. I could tell because we were the only tracks on the trail besides game animals. We were at least 5 miles in and a touch over 7000 feet. When we finally reached untouched, and uneducated gobblers! I shot the first bird we came onto which was gobbling and strutting hard facing the opposite direction. It didn't hear us coming as we snuck into position. Brandon gave a putt on a call to take the bird out of strut. While we were talking pictures the gobblers kept coming. So we played with them a little longer and ended up calling in two more birds to 20 yards which I ended up talking a little video of with my camera.

What a hard fun hunt, seven days to be exact. The only thing that would have made it better is my daughter sitting next to me. The turkey is 3 or 4 years old has a 7 to 8 inch beard, perfect tail, nearly 1" long spurs.

 

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Great story Scott. Those Nebo birds can be a tough bag for the later seasons. We like to call Turkey Hunting a "Poor Man's elk Hunt".

I like the new tag numbers. Lets see what kind of opportunity these flocks can sustain (the goal is over the counter tags). We Utahns need to get past the need to have 100% success on their hunts. High tag numbers will mean lower success, but you will get to hunt every year or two. I bet there will be plenty of hunters next Spring who have to relearn the way they hunt these Toms.

I still need to get you some moose meat.......

.
 

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They also eliminated the waiting period for turkeys right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
coyoteslayer
they did eliminat the turkey draw waiting period. Wow I can put in for the draw this year.

Packout is correct with as many hunters as there will be down there this year they could be extremely hard to hunt.

I cant wait to get back in the game!

good luck
 

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Great story as always scott. I ran into scott a couple of times down there trying to kill my first bird. Hopefully I will see you on the hill next year scott.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hey Ken! Are you stalking me? Ha Ha, First it was the front now it’s the turkey hunt! Maybe we need to collaborate on our recourses and save on the fuel cost. How is it going on your elk tag this year? Make it 5 for 5! I pretty much quit because of my cougar hunt.

Here is the story on how Ken and I met up on the hill after turkey.
The sun was barely coming up and I was way back in near a few turkeys I put to bed the night before. I could hear them coming. I sat my decoys out and hid behind a few pine trees. A few minutes later a hen showed up at 7 yards away with a gobbler only a few yards away from the hen I couldn’t move and couldn’t get a shot either. I than blinked and the hen took off leaving me with the turkey fever!

I heard a guy with a call coming my way so I packed up and headed up the hill. I kept making a few stands as I went and kept hearing this familiar call gaining on me. I finally made my last stand set up the decoys and began to call knowing it was my last stand before I would be overtaken by this hunter.

As the hunter snuck over the hill I was upset at first until I saw a familiar smile looking my way. Ken, his brother and I hunted a couple of days together and I seem to have all the luck I kept on seeing the birds and was unable to put it together. Ken probably would have sealed the deal but wasn’t seeing the birds. My last day of hunting was going to be with Brandon and it worked out for me. Ken did take a bird on the last hour of the last day of the hunt also. Both of us ended up turning a turkey hunt into a 7 day marathon like elk hunt and gained a respect for those birds. I think if the turkey hunting success rate is going to go down I am going to be in trouble. Cause those birds are smart!

On a side not seriouse about the colaboration idea Ken your a good egg!

Good luck everyone in the draw and hunt!
 

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Great informative post, nice pics.
 

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Packout wrote:

We Utahns need to get past the need to have 100% success on their hunts.
2 amens and a hell yeah for that statement. +49529
 

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The state was managing turkey permits based on a desired 60% success rate, just to clarify. But, I agree with the need to stop managing for extremely high success rates, this LIMITS opportunity for ALL hunters.
 

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swbuckmaster said:
On a side not seriouse about the colaboration idea Ken your a good egg!

Good luck everyone in the draw and hunt!
Sounds good to me scott. I need a buddy that can hit the hills with me a few more times throughout the year. I love hunting alone but a good hunting partner can make it great to. Lets work on that for next season. So how are the cougar hunts going. You should be over there right now I would hope with this new snow we have coming down.

Good luck with the kitty hunt
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I am going out tonight and will be coming back on Sunday. Do you want to go?
I hired a guide and he’s got 5 trucks cutting tracks for me in the morning.
 

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swbuckmaster said:
I am going out tonight and will be coming back on Sunday. Do you want to go?
I hired a guide and he's got 5 trucks cutting tracks for me in the morning.
Missed you last night, where were you?

Who did you hire?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I did hire! I hired elite outfitters it was one of the best hunts I have ever been on. I ended up getting a 3.5 year old tom weighing around 120-140 tom that is close to the min for score for p&y I have it as 13 9/16 have to wait the 60 days or so to find out if it will make it but it doesn’t matter to me. I will post something on it when I get the pictures from the guide. He is putting together a little video of my hunt.
 

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Congrats Scott, can't wait to see the pictures. Good year for you, got a very nice buck on the WF, a turkey, and now a kitty cat.
 
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