Our New York bow season opened this weekend. I worked Saturday morning then headed to one of my favorite stands for the afternoon hunt. As I drove to my parking spot, I noticed a nice long bearded male turkey feeding along a thick pine grove I cross to get to my deer stand.
I thought I would try to stalk the bird, even though I knew the odds were stacked against my success. Turkey season had been open two weeks but I had not hunted yet. As I crept toward the gobbler, I ran into to three more long beards feeding in some high grass. I saw them before they saw me and was at full draw when their heads periscoped up, finally alert to the camo clad danger 25 yards away. Too late, my broadhead center punched the closest bird and he immediately flopped over. I was elated and about to run to claim my unexpected prize when his partner attacked his downed buddy. He was pecking and spurring my bird for all he was worth, and totally ignoring me. New York allows two fall birds and both can be shot on the same day. I quickly knocked another arrow and nailed the second bird right at the base of his wing. He went down like he was hit with a hammer.
Needless to say I was late getting to my deer stand and only saw a spike that evening. Sunday morning found me sitting a different area on a beautiful mountain side. I saw a buck off in the distance and grunted a few times. Soon three bucks were under my stand. A young eight pointer gave me a 15 yard broadside shot and my empty freezer was starting to fill up. Right after my shot, a fourth buck showed up. He was unique in that he had a heavy mass four point on one side, and a gnarled, very thick spike twisting out of the other side and running straight down the side of his face, he never gave me a shot, but I hope to have his picture posted here before the end of bow season. Not a bad start to the 2008 season. I really don’t hunt hard until November and the rut kicks in. I don’t want to burn out my stands, but I always try to get out for the opener
I’m sure glad I did. All this fun is within 25 miles of mid-town Manhattan, go figure.