After having one of the worst days (weather-wise) for our first day of hunting, I had a feeling that good things were in store for Tyler, his dad Bob and myself. I woke up and saw the moon shining in my windows. It would mean clear skies would be in our forcast for the day. I got the blind set up the night before. We would be out of the wind and over looking a large hayfield that the birds have been known to occupy throughout the day. The gobbling started at about 5:40 and lasted until after our hunt had ended. As it was getting light, more and more birds started in. It was hard to tell how many birds we where hereing, but we guessed there had to of been 6, probably more. It died down after about 45 minutes, but there were a few that continued off and on for the next two hours.
We stayed put and remained patient. It was after 8:00 when one of the gobblers started sounding closer and closer until all of a sudden a tom let out a gobble that startled everyone in the blind. He was close!
After a few minutes, the first head apeared over the knoll. A hen. Then the top of a strutting tom's fan apeared, and another fan, and another, and eventually 5 more hens. Tyler readied himself as we waited for the the first hen to lead the flock in closer. With such a large group it was very difficult to pick out a bird that didn't have another one directly beyond it. I was begining to think that the birds would move out of range before Tyler was going to be able to get a shot at one. So I let out a few yelps and it was just enough to get one of the toms to come back a few steps and offer a shot. I told Tyler to take him and at 30 yards he rolled him with his 20 gauge.
I jumped from my chair, with my calls flying everywhere, and ran out of the blind(on wobbly legs from adrenaline) and jumped on the bird flopping around in the field. Tyler was just a few steps behind me. We all exchanged high fives and hand shakes and snapped a few photos. The bird weighed 19 lbs, had a 9.5" AND a 4" beard, and had 1" spurs.
This was probably one of my most exciting hunts because I got to share something that I enjoy with two people that thought it would be fun to try something new. I have a feeling this won't be their last turkey hunt.