Before this season, I'd never called a bird in on my own. Dad always did the calling, and he was darn good at it. Opening weekend, I took my father in law and had 2 gobblers within 30 yards. He was set up for another bird, and when he adjusted on these, they spooked and ran.

Last weekend I was on my own at a buddy's farm. He told me to listen on the road for one to gobble on the roost, and he went on back in the farm. I blew my owl call and 2 gobbled close by. I walked and called 2 more times and thought I had a pretty good read on where they were. I set up my decoy and waited. I yelped with dad's favorite slate call, and they cut each other off gobbling. When I heard the first one fly down, I dropped the slate and got my 870 ready. Now I was left with my mouth call...what a joke! I'm not great at judging distance by the sound of a gobble, but I had set up 50 yards from their tree. The first bird had topped a shelf and was staring my decoy down, however he was blocked by a tree. The second bird flew down and about 60 seconds later, I let him have it. 9.25" beard, 7/8" spurs.

Yesterday I went to the same spot, except with the rain I set up on a field near where I shot the last one. This hunt was a little different as I didn't hear the first gobble. I had confidence they'd be in the plot with the rain, so I stuck it out. About an hour later, a hen appeared and fed toward me. I didn't see another bird with her so I wasn't exactly ready (you see where this is going.). When she got to 40 yards I saw another bird behind her in the field edge. I didn't know what it was until he ruffled his wet feathers and I saw that big beard bounce around. He wasn't in a hurry, but she got to about 10 yards and started putting. I said it's now or never, pulled up and shot him at 45 yards with wingmaster HD. He instantly dropped. 10.25" beard, 3/4" spurs.

I'd never killed more than one in a year, and with a two-bird limit, I'm done!
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