Spring Turkey Season 2014 was nothing short of AMAZING!
I was fortunate enough to take a total of 5 birds & meet a true turkey legend along the way! Please follow along with me as I take you on my most adventurous season to date!
I am on the quest for a grand slam! Therefore the pressure was on this season. I had 3 of the 4 species of birds booked for this season & plan on going for the 4th next year. For those of you who do not know, The Grand Slam is obtaining the following species of turkeys: Merriam, Osceola, Rio & Eastern. Due to a busy schedule, I was only able to chase 3 out of the 4 species this year. Thankfully I was successful on every single hunt! Now that we have an idea about my goal for this year, let’s dive into my Spring Turkey Extravaganza!
I started out my season by heading to Florida to obtain the coveted Osceola. I chose to hunt with Dave Huston of Huston’s Outdoor Adventures. Dave is a very knowledgeable guide. Our first morning we set up & were anticipating catching one coming down off the roost. We were set up on an old cattle farm. Unfortunately, the birds decided to go in the opposite direction, but hey…. it is HUNTING. We attempted a spot & stalk, yet were unsuccessful. We reconvened & came up with a new plan for the evening hunt. We set up in our Spider Hunting Gear Blind & waited for several hours, calling very little, being extremely patient. It paid off. We had an Osceola come running in & I shot him on the move. OSCEOLA DOWN!
Next up, we headed back to my home state of Tennessee. I was determined to get the first Eastern of the season on my own! I have a blind set up out back & knew the birds would be there, I just had to put in my time. I grabbed my Cypress Bottom Game call. I called very little, the birds responded. In comes the first Eastern with a hen. I patiently waited until he was within range, made a quick call, he lifted his head & BOOM. EASTERN DOWN! I firmly believe in being self sufficient. I took him back home, skinned him with my GRITS Custom Turkey Knife & cooked him up for dinner. Kill it, skin it, grill it, eat it – that’s my motto. This wasn’t my only Eastern. I had guests in town. Russ Adams of Public Land Junkies brought his two sons & father down to turkey hunt with us. I had the pleasure of taking Kraig Adams into the blind with me. Kraig spotted a nice tom walking in from the woods to my right. This joker came literally right in front of the blind. I had to stand up to shot & BOOM, shoot him I did. 2nd Eastern of the season DOWN. I want to thank Kraig Adams for sharing this experience with me.
My next adventure was in my quest for a Rio. My family and I headed to meet Jay Decker of Gunn & Hook in Texas. Jay & Campbell Decker showed us the farm & got us set up in a fine location. My husband and I didn’t have any luck the first night while we were spotting and stalking. However, the next morning we woke up with a determination like no other. We were going to put in the time, sit it out & wait for a tom to cross our path. We sat for approximately 4 hours prior to hearing a tom. My husband used his Cypress Bottom Game Call & called that tom right in. He was ON THE MOVE, booking it & we couldn’t get him to stop. I had to shoot him on the run. One shot. Dead bird. RIO DOWN!!! I truly had no idea what I had taken until I walked up on him. This Rio was a dinosaur. I used my Gobbler Gauge & his beard measured 11 3/4 inches!!!! A true giant. I was really choked up over this kill & cried like a baby. Emotions while hunting can be hard to contain. I am thankful to God for allowing me to take such amazing creatures.
I have a new show airing on The Hunt Channel called “Cross Hairs With: Kris & Clay Hair”. It premieres on July 2, 2014 @ 7:30 PM (central time) on 266 DISH Network. As a result we were invited to be celebrity guests at The Hunting Corner along with Eddie Salter The Turkey Man & Mike Miller The Turkey Killer. It was amazing spending time in camp with two legends. Eddie Salter spent numerous hours with me, teaching me his techniques on calling in big birds. It was truly an honor. Hunting isn’t always about the kill, it is about the camaraderie amongst fellow hunters. Opening morning I went to the blind with Chef D. Wouldn’t you know it, @ 6:45 AM we had a BIG tom fly across the river and come straight into our decoy. BOOM! 3rd Eastern down for the season! As much as I love my fellow hunters at camp, I was the only one to get a bird that day & the only girl….. Felt good to positively represent us lady hunters! This time will always remain so special to me as I received so much insight from Mike & Eddie. I was truly blessed to meet them & share camp with such fine hunters.
In summation, I was blessed and fortunate enough to take 5 birds this season & I have knocked off 3 out of the 4 species needed for my grand slam. Next year, I will be on the quest for a Merriam to make a dream come true & successfully harvest an: Eastern, Rio, Merriam & Osceola! Hunt hard. Believe in yourself & you can do anything you set your mind to!
Peace, Love & Gobblers,
Huntress Kristi Lynn Hair