4 Things To NOT Do On Turkey Season Opening Day
Today was the first day of turkey season here in New Hampshire, and I hunted before work. I was not successful, but I am still hopeful. I heard at least two gobblers and I'm happy with the site that I'll be able to hunt. A good friend of ours who lives near where I work has some great land. Lots of pines, grass, a big field, and a brook - I feel good about my chances that at some point a turkey will walk my way!
Like any shooting sport, I always analyze how things went after I'm done. Today, I made a few mistakes that I'm going to try not to repeat tomorrow. Live and learn! I like this quote from Josh Honeycutt at Bowhunting.com:
I also like this quote, attributed to The Duke (and oft repeated by my dad):
So, in my efforts to become a better, wiser, less stupid turkey hunter, here are the four things I will try NOT to do on future days of turkey season:
Try to figure out how to set up a borrowed blind. Short story: I did eventually figure it out… After sitting in it half-collapsed while two different gobblers were sounding off, out of sight, in front of and behind me! Wish I'd gotten a picture. Imagine the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree of ground blinds and you're getting close.
Forget the decoy in the blind when placing stakes. When I got the decoy and came back to the place I thought I'd put the stake, I couldn’t find it! I kept searching, and then it hit me. (Pun intended.)
Over-call. I’ve read this before, heard it on podcasts, and discussed it with coworkers. But I still got over-excited and called back too much to the gobblers lurking across the stream from me. At some point, it's no longer believable to the turkeys. Next time I will practice more patience!
Eat something new the day before. This one's a classic, and it's the reason I ended my hunt this morning when I did. I knew this principle from shooting matches – never do anything new or unusual the day before a match, especially as it relates to food. Yet somehow yesterday when I made a healthy lunch that included apples and peanut butter as a snack, I totally forgot that sage advice. This morning I had a rumbly tummy and that did not help me at all with that whole patience thing.
Despite the fact that I messed up this morning, I know that I'll learn and improve over time. I will be back at it tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that... Unless, of course, I get a bird.