On May 21st, 2009 my brother, Josh, and a close friend, Logan, went out turkey hunting in St. Croix county Wisconsin. I was joining the two on the hunt as a cameraman. It was the opening morning of the 6th season and it was looking good. While driving out to the woods we had the radio on and we heard a couple inspiring songs to get our hopes up for the hunt. Two songs that were played included “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey and “Bright sunshiny day” by Jimmy Cliff. There were two others, and I am not joking about this, that were high-spirited songs too. I don’t know their titles, but I do know that that is really weird to hear those songs before a hunt at 4:15 in the morning.
Our hunt started out really good hearing the turkeys 60 yards behind us. They gobbled all morning and got us really excited. They flew down pretty late in the morning, but also away from us. We were determined to get them so we got up and repositioned. We ended up kicking out three hens from the roost, which was awkward because it was like 6:30 and they usually don’t stay in the roost until then. We decided to play it safe and move to a really sweet spot to sit and wait for the rest of the morning.
We got to the spot and settled on some comfortable trees. We didn’t hear anything but distant gobbles, so we decided to pick up after 3 hours of intense waiting. We didn’t know what to do with our remaining time so we drove around to see if we could spot a tom in any fields.
We got in the car and drove around the area where we can hunt. This area consists of many different smaller pieces that link together to form a good property. As soon as we got to the first field, we noticed a tom with three hens. It was ridiculous how our luck was at that point. I told Josh and Logan that I would stalk it and get my turkey for the season and then video tape them the rest of the season. I was going to stalk it so I knew if I got it we wouldn’t get great footage. The woods were thick and brushy, especially at the fence line where they were.
We got out of the car and went in a big loop behind the turkeys. We saw a deer at the wood line and it ran off. We got into the woods and hauled as quick and quiet as possible. We got to the area of the woods were you could see in the field and spotted the tom. I told Josh and Logan to stay back in the woods and let me crawl up there myself. They both gave me the thumbs up, so I began. I was trying to sneak way up to the field so I was trying to be as quiet as humanly possible. I crawled over two fallen trees and over countless breakable twigs. I made it out to the field without a turkey noticing at all.
They were 50 yards out there at first and straight in front of me. They slowly worked to my left and I thought I wouldn’t get a shot. I slowly tried to get down to the tall hay where I could conceal myself enough to get closer. I didn’t get far before this hen spotted me. She picked her head up and kept watch me. She stood there for about 5 minutes it seemed, then she put her head down below the field horizon. I started to crawl again and she poked her head up again.
I was frustrated because she did that over and over. Eventually all of them were by her and doing the same. I kept as still as I could and it ended up they decided I was nothing apparently, so they walked closer. The hens got an easy thirty yards down the fence line. The tom stayed in the field a minute longer then decided to follow closer.
He got 36 yards away and I thought, “Here goes nothing!” I pulled the trigger and he instantly collapsed out of my vision in the tall hay. I got up and looked back at Josh and Logan. I had crawled 30 yards through some of the thickest brush ever, over two fallen trees, over countless breakable twigs, and over a low fence all for a turkey. I was proud to put in such an intense stalk and still manage to kill the tom. I ran up to the beautiful tom and was thrilled to have such a magnificent creature at my feet. It had a 10 and a half-inch beard, three quarter inch spurs, and weighed around 19 lbs. I was amazed at how light it was, but it was a very gorgeous bird and I was glad to harvest it.
We didn’t get great footage like I thought, but we took plenty pictures. It was a lot of fun to have my brother and a friend be along and witness the whole thing. It turned out to be a “bright sunshiny day”.
Logan ended up getting a tom on the last day of the season and my brother didn’t get anything sadly. We put in a lot of time and got 5 turkeys this year with 3 people. I hope every one else had good luck this season and I would like to hear some stories.