The next morning, we set up in that same plot we started in, and got there to hear nothing going around were we were. I was still very much in the dumps after the morning the day before, but we sat down and tried to listen for anything close. The gobbles all seemed to be in a different location in the preserve, and one across the road that was on his property. After about 15 minutes, the gobbling stopped, except the one across the road. We decided to make a move, just like yesterday. We got back to the cabin, and grabbed the stuff. Not 50 yards away from the cabin gobblers lit up, in the same place we shot the day before, which is about 75 yards from the cabin. They were close, and getting closer. We put all our stuff down, got the blind out and ready, and climbed in. The birds gobbled hard at the calls, and kept getting closer. They got to his yard, and had a nice line right to the decoys. All this is happening right behind us, but not within sight. Listening as they come closer, what a rush! They hung out in his yard for a bit, and then meandered off away from us. We were perplexed, and I was bummed again! We got out looked at that perfect line to the decoys, only to see I parked right in the way, and they never saw the decoys, and had a heck of an obstacle to get around.
We moved the blind into the pines where they had traveled through and set up shop to wait. My buddy, being tagged out went back to the cabin (all 40 yards away) and went to sleep. About an hour and a half later, gobbles started getting closer, then further, then closer. All of a sudden I saw a red head coming across the food plot in my direction. He got the the edge of the pines and went into full strut. 2 steps, strut, 3 steps strut. He did the dance all the way to 20 yards. I was ready the whole time, and tried to decide to shoot, or wait. He had one last branch to clear before he was open at 20 yards, and he turned and walked off. I was baffled. I could have shot him, but thought I had time, and wanted to wait for a good shot. So, he was gone, he left me hanging for whatever reason, and I was done. I packed my stuff up and went back to the cabin after 20 minutes of trying to coax him back.
We went and did some deer stand stuff, cut some trees, and scouted his place for the fall. After that we came back and were on the couch to nap, dozing off, when GOBBLE. It sounded so close we both jumped. Out the window, 20 yards away was 2 nice gobblers in his yard, just hanging out. I kicked myself for not being out there. We just watched them mill around as my bow sat outside, and my buddy sat tagged out. They left, and I was beat, bummed, and spent. I took a nap. When I got up 20 minutes later I went outside and heard gobbling but I was done. I had decided earlier to be done for the day so I could enjoy the scenery and just hang out at the cabin. As I stood there I saw a hen across the pond in front of the cabin. She came to the edge, and flew across, landing fully in the water. I thought then " You can't kill them from the couch," and went and got my stuff on.
I had a few hours to set up shop in the blind and see what happens before it got dark, so I got my stuff and headed out. As I was leaving, my buddy said there were gobblers across the fence were we had been setting up, so walk slow and careful. I was on my way, and there in 5 minutes. I had to turn the blind and set up decoys, but was settled in before 5, but barely. There was gobbles across the fence for sure, and so I called and got an immediate answer. After a couple minutes I called and got an answer, but further away. I was bummed, yet again. These birds had me and weren't coming in. After a few more distant gobbles I cut my box call as loud as I could and a bird lit up in a different direction, and then again, and closer. He kept gobbling here and there, and I just listened with my bow ready. All of a sudden I could see him through some trees. I saw his head pop up, and then he went behind some trees. After a minute or two a gobble rang out across the fence again, and it sounded like he was gone. I set my bow down and got ready to call gain, when all of a sudden he popped out from behind the tree and started paralleling the plot. He got to a trail in the woods, stepped in the food plot and started pecking the ground. After a few snacks or whatever, he picked his head up, strutted, and started walking towards the decoys. As he closed the distance, I got my bow, and started to draw. (Side note: I forgot my gloves at the cabin so I was bare white handed through all of this.) So I drew down and he pegged me for a split second. He caught up mid step and then went back to coming in. As I raised my front hand to aim, the bird was at the jake decoy. He saw my hand come up and turned and started putting away. I put the pin on this back and let loose. The arrow went in right above the tail and he flopped, and ran about 15 yards and tipped over. I was ecstatic. That was intense, fast, and so cool! My buddy came over after I texted I got one, and we took some pictures.
The bird is in the submission thread for size, but it was a unreal 2 days of turkey hunting. I decided this will be my first, and only turkey with a bow for a while. It is a challenge yes, one I am glad I accomplished. I got this bird 6 years to the day I got my first bird. That being said, bow hunting them is ridiculously hard. To move on anything is a difficult task. I got luck and had a great guide and a great place to do it at, but it was tough. With my life, with three kids, a family, a job, and constant business I am hanging the bow for turkeys for a while. It is just as fun with a gun to me, and I like to eat turkey, not tag. No complaints here from this guy either if that is what it sounds like, just a learned observation.
Ah well, it was a great time, and I hope to do it again soon. It is also really nice to be part of the team that actually contributes for once!
Thanks and good luck!