My spring turkey season started off rough in South Carolina last month, but it immediately improved after tagging a tough tom at Nebraska’s Winnebago Indian Reservation. However, both hunts presented less-than-ideal conditions with a mixture of henned-up gobblers and some birds still hanging out in winter flocks.
So, I had high hopes for a showdown with solitary strutters when I ventured to Kentucky with the guys from GrowingDeer.TV a week ago. It turned out to be the hunt of a lifetime.
During our 4 days of chasing gobblers at The Kentucky Proving Grounds, it became quite obvious that the intense land management efforts of Grant Woods and landowner Terry Hamby are paying off. The primary goal for the property is to shape a well-balanced deer herd and grow bucks to trophy potential. Read the blog post from my whitetail bowhunt there last fall and you’ll see that they’re making huge strides in the antler arena. But Terry’s also a turkey fanatic, and as luck would have it, a byproduct of managing for whitetails is often a thriving flock of turkeys.
Longbeards were strutting their stuff in full force last week. Collectively, we tagged six toms—none of which had spurs less than 1 inch long. Two of the birds had 1 3/8-inch spurs, while Terry collected a true limb-hanger sporting 1 5/8-inch hooks. With well beyond 100 years of turkey hunting experience in camp, nobody had ever seen that many long-spurred gobblers bite the dust in such short order.
Thankfully, you can watch four of the birds pose for the camera in the recent episode of GrowingDeer.TV. Check it out below, including a segment featuring yours truly and a deadly decoy beat-down.
Editor’s note: If you’re unable to view the video, click here.
What’s the longest set of spurs you’ve collected from a gobbler? Share your comments below!