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For The Double Grand Slam Bowhunt.
For The: Florida Osceola | Rio
Grande | Merriam's | Eastern
We Used | Doug Crabtree's Grand
Slam Hunt | Double K Guide
2: The Merriam's Wild Turkey
13: Arrival Day: We began seeing Merriam's 70 miles from South
Dakota. As you see here these two jakes were good enough to let Doug (Crabtree)
sneak up on them with the camera. (Bigger
Pic) We saw lots more. Sunday evening we arrived at Dave Keiser's Double
K Guide Service. Dave guides bowhunters exclusively. The terrain is
a combination of rolling prairie and wooded canyons and Doug assures me
there are "oodles and oodles of turkeys." We are meeting Brooks Robinson
and Keith Beam of
Bull Archery. (We have to buy our licenses in the morning and then
the hunt begins.)
We stayed in Wichita, KS
last night and this morning we stopped at Dick's Custom Archery where
I bought some red wraps and 5" red feathers & Snyper replacable blades.
The arrow I missed the Rio gobbler with has barbed feathers and I could
not see it clearly when I shot. The red will help.
April 14: Day #1
Two gobblers and Dave
Keiser & Brooks Johnson
Dave Keiser took Keith Beam
and Brooks Johnson of Double
Bull Archery and me to a field overlooking a canyon and we set up two
blinds. (Brooks was shooting, Keith videoed and tagged along to take
blind. Before daybreak we heard several gobblers. They flew down and
soon we saw a gobbler
with a hen on a distant hillside. A couiple of Toms came up to them
and the gobbler chased them away. Keith called at the
two Toms and they stopped. And then headed
our way. One bird moved out front and I
got a good pic. And a closer
pic of the Tom. A group of hens came out of the canyon, clucking away.
The Toms stopped just short of bow range and went after the hens. Here's
Beam in the blind talkin' turkey. You can see a long way up here in
South Dakota and we enjoyed seeing 9 other groups of turkeys on the hillsides
around us. Then we got in Dave's truck and we drove and glassed for gobblers.
We set up twice without any results. The 3rd time was better. We walked
down into a deep canyon and set up in a small opening. Here are Dave
Keiser and Brooks Johnson placing their decoys. Here
is the terrain and the blind. Then we all scattered for 100 yards and
hen called to make it sound like a bunch of turkeys.
A longbeard strolled up
behind the blind Keith and I were in and gobbled several times. (Too close
to risk a picture.) The bird drummed and spit and then left. It didn't
seen Brook's decoys because our blind was in the way. Two other Toms came
but the same scenario played again.
After that we returned to
camp for lunch.
Doug Crabtree was there,
he had gone to the capital to get our hunting licenses. We went to a farm
and set up near the biggest collection of turkey tracks you can imagine.
At roosting time we glassed dozens of gobblers flying up in some cotton
wood trees. We will be back there tomorrow.
Day #2: Morning Hunt -
Keiser took Doug and me to AJ's. We set up on a high spot in a field adjacent
to a canyon. At first light we heard lots of gobbling and hen talk in the
canyon. When the birds flew down they walked 1,000 yards to the North of
us and we watched 100 or so birds on the far hill for two hours. Dave picked
us up and we went to another area .
#2: Run & Gun (Without the gun)
Dave Keiser picked Doug
Crabtree and I up. He said we were going to "Run and gun." First we went
to the "Goose Pit" area and Dave drove the ridges above the canyons. Soon
we glassed several gobblers in a creek bottom and Dave zipped ahead of
the turkeys and we set in a cut corn field on the edge of the woods. Doug
began calling. A gobbler responded at once and soon a Merriam's longbeard
walked out of the woods in full strut. He advanced to about 35 yards and
then he saw our decoys. TO
Keith Beam (of Double
Bull Archery) and I set up on the edge of the field near the strip
of woods and large trees where Doug and I roosted the turkeys yesterday.
Keith used a separate Double Bull blind to video. In no time we began seeing
Merriam's. Keith was using a slate call and doing a fine job and the birds
made their move toward the source of the calls. To
The First Toms
2, Afternoon Continued:
After missing the Tom I
felt a little rough. I didn't know it yet but I was only a few minutes
shy of spending one of the best hours of my entire bowhunting life.
Wild turkeys began coming
from all directions and I totally enjoyed watching and taking pictures
of these beautiful Merriam's wild turkeys. The following link to the hunt
includes a link to the photo gallery of the highlights of the activity.
3: Doug Crabtree sat in his blind listening to the sounds of
dozens of gobblers coming from the canyons around him in the Sully Flats
area. The weather had turned bad during the night. At sunrise the temperature
was at freezing, the wind was gusting hard, and the sky looked threatening.
Sleet and rain began falling. Doug called and five Toms briskly came in
to the decoys (he got their pics). NEXT
Two Toms and Brooks Johnson
& Keith Beam
Beam and Brooks Johnson hunted at Egg Roll Canyon. They heard a gobble
and glassing the area. Six Toms were in the canyon. The hunters circled
ahead of the Toms and set their Double Bull blind up in an opening on a
high spot in the woods. They called and the Toms answered. Six jakes came
out of the woods and approached their hen and jake decoys. Brooks drew
his recurve but the birds ran to the decoys and passed through his shooting
window. Brooks dropped a 2nd window and made a 9 yard shot. The turkey
ran a few yards and gave out. The other birds ran to it and began pecking
it. Keith and Brooks switched places and Keith aimed carefully for a head
shot ... and made it. These two have harvested scores of wild turkeys but
this is their first "double" on wild turkeys. Here
is their picture.
In Search Of The Eastern
This bowhunt was tops. Doug
Crabtree and Terry Speakman team called in wild turkey gobblers, one after
the other. Doug Crabtree called in a longbeard almost a mile away and and
completed his Grand Slam. Pictures and hunt logs. TO: Eastern
In Search Of The Rio Grande
This bowhunt is still in
progress. Doug Crabtree drives 1,200 miles straight through and calls in
a big Rio longbeard. Pictures and hunt logs. TO: Rio
In Search Of The Florida Osceola
Doug Crabtree and I bowhunted
one of the Florida
Wildlife Unlimited wild turkey hunting camps near Zolfo Springs,
Florida. Pictures and hunt logs. TO: Osceola
Wild Turkey Bowhunt
& Timberline Archery Products - Accurate shooting, arrow after
arrow, depends on the bow's arrow rest and bowsight.
& Barrie Archery - A close look at how Alpine Archery's Fatal
Impact and SS Stealth Force and the Barrie Archery Snyper performed during
set up and on this hunt.
Sponsors For The
2003 Grand Slam
Our double Grand Slam with
the bow created excitement with several manufacturers and they stepped
up to the plate to sponsor the event. The sponsors are: Alpine
Archery (bows), Barrie
Archery (Rocky Mountain broadheads), Double
Bull (blinds), Knight & Hale
Game Calls, Pro Release (release
aids), EASTON Archery (arrows),
Hogg (bowsights), Fine-Line
Archery (peep sights & bowquivers), Bododle
(arrow rests), Timberline
Archery (bowsights), Knight &
Hale (turkey calls), Florida
Wildlife Unlimited, Double
K Guide Service and Freddie