Here is the long winded version of my two friends and my hunt from this weekend. Well so my two friends and I knew that it was going to be a tough weekend for turkey hunting near Detroit Lakes due to the wind and rain/snow but we had pretty high hopes. After doing research on locating turkeys in high wind we felt pretty good. So two of us get up there Friday afternoon and get geared up and probably walk a couple of hundred yards into the trees and down through some pasture land and across a fence when we see some hens feeding off to side about 200 yards or so. I snuck up to the top of a small ridge and glassed them and noticed that none were toms so we chose to keep working our way South and keep our eyes out for toms. We felt very good at this point because we were able to locate the turkeys in the low areas of the woods within 30 minutes or so. We soured the rest of the area and then doubled back on those hens to see if we could get closer and they ended up busting us and running across a field. We counted 6 turkeys but we could not follow as they were on property that I did not have permission to hunt. We ended up heading to another field and woods that we have access to and as we are walking that way I say to my buddy that we should see turkeys there since the farmer just got done planting that afternoon. By this time it is about 5:30 or so. We come along trail on the edge of the field and as we crest a small hill we see a tom in full strut with a couple of ladies. I drop my decoy bag on the ground and then tell my buddy to set up while I poke a hen decoy above the hill in hopes of getting him to come in. Unfortunately he and the remaining turkey are gone into the woods. I have my buddy set up near the location where we saw them and in my moment of not thinking clearly forget my decoy bag and walk in the woods to a point that has been very good to me in the past. So as I settle in I do some light calling and 20 minutes later there he is and he is by himself and looking for the hens he was with. I slowly grab my rangefinder and range him at 60 yards. I am now cussing under my breath for forgetting the decoys and they more than likely would have coaxed him in to range. That was pretty much the end of the first day. We plan to hunt the same area the next morning with my other buddy that came in late Friday night. We set up Saturday night and here some gobbling but the wind starts kicking up and we cannot get him to come closer. Saturday was a tough day as the winds were stronger than Friday. The weather said that the winds were 30-40 with gusts of 50-60. We saw 2 turkeys heading into the low area we saw them at Friday so we immediately get ahead of them and have a guy on each side of this small valley with a decoy in the middle in attempts to create an ambush. After an hour we cannot figure out where they went so we go back to our designated meet up point and we see 2 turkeys 300 yards away, confirmed by Google Earth, and as we are slowly walking towards the fence line to get a better look they walk into the trees. Their eye sight continues to amaze me. 300 yards and they are in the field while we are walking in the trees and they still spot us. We ended up setting up in the same location we saw turkeys at Friday night and after a while I hear a shot gun blast and then a couple of seconds later 2 more blasts. I assume that my friend got one. I find out later that is was a coyote. The landowners were very happy that we shot the coyote. Sunday morning the weather was worse than the previous days with a temperature of about 25-30 and howling 30+ mph winds out of the Northwest and 1-2 inches snow on the ground. After about an hour and a half at a location that was recommended to us we pull the plug and head home to see the families. In retrospect I am not sure what I would have done differently except bring the decoy bag with me Friday night and kill that gobbler. The weather up there today is winds around 15 mph and temperatures near 50, GRRRRRR!!! My father in law has already seen about 4 toms around the house and one really big one.
One of the few good things is that we have access to over 1200 acres of very good turkey hunting land and we are learning how to better hunt turkeys every year so that way when our kids are old enough we should be pretty darn effective turkey hunters.
I have 10 more days before I can go to Wisconsin and try to some sort of redemption.
If anyone has any suggestions/tips/ideas/criticism on things that I could have done differntly please let me know as I am scratching my head on what I should have done.
A very frustrated Dewey.
"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will." --Mahatma Gandhi
"Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat."--F. Scott Fitzgerald, American writer