Conclusion: Young Bull, Old Bull

In this interactive feature, Editor Brian Lovett shares a scenario from his 20+ years of turkey hunting, asking "What would you do?"
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Brian Lovett
 
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Conclusion: Young Bull, Old Bull

Postby Brian Lovett » September 15th, 2010, 7:56 am

In "Decision Time," Editor Brian Lovett shares a scenario from his 20-plus years hunting turkeys. Each hinges on a critical decision. Post what choice you would have made, then see how things actually turned out.

Conclusion: Young Bull, Old Bull

I decided to take the fight to the gobbler -- straight up the incline. I charged up the hill and was soon gasping for air.

The bird continued gobbling, and lacking a better option, I went right at him. The bare hillside, rock outcroppings and pine needles here and there let me climb quietly, and within 10 minutes, I was whipped but 60 yards from the old buzzard. Well, I was 60 yards west of him, but probably another 20 below the lip of the ridge, so I wasn't going to find an ideal calling location. However, the bird was pretty fired up, so I figured one soft call might be all it took to entice him to peek over the ridge and give me a shot.

I propped up against a crooked cedar tree, leveled my gun up the hill and caught my breath. The turkey gobbled, so I exhaled, grabbed my slate and slowly etched out two soft clucks and two timid yelps.

I'd almost expected the bird to blow my hat off, so I wasn't ready for what happened next: nothing. The turkey didn't gobble. Actually, he never gobbled again. When I crawled to the lip 10 minutes later, the bird was gone.

Maybe the turkey would have wandered off no matter what I'd done. In hindsight, however, I probably should have taken the time to slip around the point to the logging road and find a better, more natural calling location near the tip of the bluff. Sure, there are times when you must hurry in turkey hunting, but finding the best setup usually isn't one of them.

I?had plenty of time to ponder that as I labored down that lofty Minnesota point. And by the time I?reached the bottom, the young bull felt awfully old.

What decision did you make?

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WillowRidgeCalls
 
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RE: Conclusion: Young Bull, Old Bull

Postby WillowRidgeCalls » September 15th, 2010, 5:48 pm

Well with that outcome leaves two questions unanswered?
1. Were you busted?
2. Did he leave because you changed your calling style from what had him fired up?

I'd probably bet on the 2nd?
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Bobbyparks
 
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RE: Conclusion: Young Bull, Old Bull

Postby Bobbyparks » September 17th, 2010, 1:32 pm

It's hard to know on one like this.

I'd have tried just what you did if I thought I had the chance

If you had left him and made the hike around and it didn't work you'd kick yourself for leaving him.

If you did what you did and it didn't pan out you kick yourself.

Next time it might work.

 
Seriously...we've killed a few birds out west doing just what you tried. We'd hear one while we're trolling and who ever was up would go after em and some of the climbs were brutal but the bird died on most of em...Granted they were Merriams
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