It was dark, and cold, and I was huddled in the blind on top of a snow bank waiting for the first gobble. The weather was far from what it was a year ago this time but it sure was not going to stop me. It was opening morning of the 2013 South Dakota spring turkey season. The first week was archery only and after harvesting my first turkey last year with a shotgun I wasn't about to pass up a chance at taking one with my bow. I had been scouting this area for months now and knew that there were at least eight different toms that roosted in these trees. Due to the amount of snow many of the roads and other areas I'd like to hunt were inaccessible. I knew exactly where these birds were roosted and had the perfect plan to get a shot at them. We got setup and started calling softly. The silence was broken as a gobbler rang out and my heart began to race. Hearing a tom answer your calls is one of the most exciting things that can happen in the woods. It is still too dark for the turkeys to fly down but he continues to gobble at us. Finally the sun starts to come out and I can hear the turkeys start the fly down. We continue calling with no answer. I could hear multiple birds fly down and had thought that the tom went the other direction with his hens. It wasn't until later that weekend when I checked my trail camera that showed the turkeys were only thirty yards away, they were just unwilling to come closer.
Trail Camera Photos/Videos Compilation
With no luck setting up in the woods earlier that morning I decided we should setup watching the field. As we are driving up we caught something move in the field behind the trees. As soon as I stop the truck and get out we hear gobbling. By the time we got to where he was and setup he was gobbling further away in the trees and I thought he was gone. About 45 minutes later I can see a head over a small bump in the field about 100yds away. I had forgotten the binoculars in the truck and couldn't tell if it had a red head let alone a beard but I was hoping it did. We call out and sure enough it gobbles back! It didn't see the decoys at first but turned towards us and started heading our way at full strut. In what seemed like forever but was actually only fifteen minutes he made his way towards the decoys. I can feel my body start to shake from the excitement as he continues to walk towards the decoys in full strut. My heart is pounding but I've got my bow in hand and am ready to draw. I lose sight of him behind one of the closed windows in the blind. I put my bow up ready to draw as soon as I see him. He is eight yards from the decoys, I draw my bow and start to settle the pin on him. It's a tight shot through the side window so I wait at full draw for him to move enough so I can shoot through the next window. He circles behind the decoys, which are both hens, and goes from full strut to attacking one of the them. As soon as he landed he was facing directly at me and at 12yds I sent a Rage broad head right through the beard. He flops a few times and that is it! Unfortunately I didn't have my camcorder at the time so after photos will have to do.