Nebraska 2014: Now You See ‘Em, Now You Don’t

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My Longbeard led his attackers into the narrow strip of woods on the opposite side of the field, 65 yards away. I’ve seen this scenario on several turkey hunts, when myself or someone I was with, shot a gobbler and it was attacked by gobblers in the area. Even if it dropped on the spot they still frequently are attacked.

That was happening this morning.

The attack gobblers, now mostly jakes, were giving my gobbler a beating. I noted where they were so when we had the opportunity we could go and get him.


Then, Fred had the chance to shoot a big Longbeard and did the job. I videoed some rare video footage of the interaction of the two Longbeards and Fred’s DSD hen decoy.

After Fred’s episode we recovered his Longbeard and took pictures. Then we went to get mine.

We found a good blood trail that led through the corn stubble into the opposite woods. We found sign on the ground where he had gone down. But he was not there.

We checked the wood’s strip for either the gobbler or more blood and Fred found blood on a corn cob at the edge of the field where the field met the woods. The landowner can see the area where we hunted and when he checked for us with his binoculars he saw us walking around, so he drove down on his 4-wheeler.

He told us his wife was making breakfast for us and so we took a break and ate his wife’s fine home cooking.

After breakfast, on the way back to look for my gobbler, the landowner, Terry saw blood and found my gobbler 10 yards away, behind some stacked boards.



I accidentally left my winter jacket when I left for this trip and I didn’t think I’d need my winter boots. Wrong! This hunt began below freezing temperatures powered by 25-30 mph winds. Fortunately, I brought my ThermaCEL Heated insoles. They saved the day for my feet, I was plenty chilly everywhere else but my feet were comfortable.

My new Mathews Creed XS is short, only 28″ axle to axle, so it is perfect for hunting in ground blinds, It’s black with zero shine so it’s invisible inside the black blind. The bow features a Simplex Single Cam, Mathews unique Geo Grid Lock Riser, Parallel Limb Design, Reverse Assist Roller Guard, Harmonic Dampeners, Dead End String Stop Lite and a Zebra “Trophy” Bowstring. Creed XS is a great looking bow. And it shoots smooth very quiet.

Mouth Call: I used the Scott Ellis Signature Energy Series mouth call from Woodhaven Custom Calls. This is a call that can do it all and is very easy to blow and control. At the time I made my shot I had 6 other longbeards headed toward me. Scott is a winning competition caller and very successful turkey hunter, Scott Ellis is, among many other honors, a NWTF Grand National Head To Head Division Champion. Scott’s DVD “Mouth Call Magic” shares In-Depth Detail for using mouth calls for turkey hunting and calling and if you want to call better you should get this DVD.

BROADHEAD: I used the Dead Ringer Trauma and my hit was not the solid vital hit I wanted. But it got the job done. It gave us a good blood trail to follow and recover the gobbler. This broadhead can be set for a 2 1/2″ or 3 1/8″ inch cut. I had it at 3 1/2″ and it made a wide cut.

The arrow rest is the Mathews Ultra Rest HDX. This rest is a collaboration with Quality Archery Design (QAD). It is both a drop away and containment rest. It’s silent when you shoot.

The peep is a Jim Fletcher TruPeep Max Hunter, an aluminum peep sight with a 7/32″ hole, perfect for low light conditions or ground blind use. A safety-tie groove keeps the peep in place and it does not turn when I draw the bow. I also used another Jim Fletcher product, the Fletch Loop Release. It is perfect for string loop shooting and it is one of the best releases I’ve used.

The ArrowWeb CT™ bowquiver is for both expandable or fixed blade broadheads. I like the design of the the foam inside the hood. The slots are just right for 2, 3 or 4 blade broadheads. This quiver is very well thought out and I like it a lot.

My bowsight is from the Sure-Loc and the main thing I like about it is it has the brightest light for its fiber optic pins. This is a target sight but they make hunting ones and I’m getting one.

ARROWS: I used the new Maxima RED carbon arrows from Carbon Express. I fletched these arrows with bright yellow 2″ Opti Vanes and Goat Tuff glue. Both are top quality products made by Goat Tuff Products.

ALPEN BINOCULARS: I used the Alpen Wings #599 Binoculars. They are small and light weight. Here in Nebraska you can see many time more wild turkeys than most hunts. Good binoculars are necessary to check them out and ID the gobblers and longbeards. These binoculars are easy to hand hold. They’re good in low light in the morning and at the end of the day. Adjusting the Focus is quick and easy. They are a flat color that doesn’t shine and that is extra important when you hunt wild turkeys. Plus they are waterproof and fog proof which is a must have, especially on chilly, rainy days like we had on this hunt.


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