Ranking Your Hunting Success │ The Importance of Reflecting on Successes of a Turkey Hunting Season

Reflecting on Past Successes Will Help You Next Turkey Hunting Season By Chris McLeland, HardCore-Brands.com Contributor Often times we do our best as hard core sportsmen to stay on top of the current trends and techniques to help us be successful. While it is always important to continue to learn and improve your approach to the sport of hunting, many times all that is needed is to sit back and reflect upon the hunts of the previous season. You might be amazed at what you didn’t know you knew! This year was an absolute banner spring that spanned across two States and had both the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. We experienced all that Mother Nature had to offer, from warm conditions to unseasonably cool conditions and of course, intense rainfall. We experienced call shy turkeys, and turkeys that came in on a string. Despite some of the challenges, we still managed to pull the trigger on multiple gobblers, and managed to learn a lot along the way. Hard Core Its Not Easy Shirt Our 2015 spring turkey season started in Central Kansas during the opening week of shotgun season. We had already encountered our first challenge before we ever left the house when an unforeseen conflict shaved two days off of our trip, leaving us two days to try and fill four tags. So to say we were under the gun was an understatement. When we arrived in Kansas we were greeted with favorable weather conditions and a quick drive around a couple of our farms showed plenty of gobblers to chase. Things were looking up! Given our short time in the Sunflower State, we decided it was best to divide and conquer. The next morning found us both on different properties, with our backs against a tree. Despite the birds that we say the following evening, all that we encountered on both properties were tight lipped turkeys and three trespassers. After a quick “regroup” we wasted little time and hit the field. Given the trespassing situation, we made the decision to hit a different farm in the afternoon. To make matters worse, the once favorable forecast had made a drastic change, with severe weather moving in that evening. That evening found one gobbler taking a dirt nap thanks largely in part to our Realtree Max 5 and blind. One bird down, and three more to go, we were back after it hard and heavy the next morning. The next morning found us on the birds; however, the birds we were on couldn’t be any less interested in what we had to offer as they had plenty of willing females to go around. It was time to get back to our roots and make a turkey hunting game plan. Using the terrain to our advantage and taking our time, we were finally able to put ourselves in a position to have a chance. Ten minutes and little luck made all the difference and two more gobblers found a one-way ticket to turkey promise land. With one tag left to fill in our two day trip the weather began to turn. Based on the lack of turkey movement in the afternoon and compounded by the fact that we had very little time to scout, we had to use what information we had to make a decision on what to do next. We elected to make a move to an area that has been known be a loafing area for birds in the past. Other than a gut feeling, we had very little to go on. After roughly an hour, the first wave of thunderstorms made their way to us. Being roughly two miles from the truck, we elected to stay put and get wet. That would turn out to be the best decision we could make. Shortly after the first wave of storms passed and with thunder and lightning in the background we closed out our 2015 Kansas turkey season by punching a tag on what would turn out to be the largest turkey of the trip. Turkey Hunting | Hard Core BrandsIn looking back on this hunt, we were forced to make some decisions based on very little information, using historical knowledge of the areas and little “gut” instinct. After we returned home and was able to share the story of our trip with family and friends we began to realize that we learned quite a lot about good ole’ fashioned turkey hunting while on this trip, and the fact that we were successful only helped to increase our confidence as we moved into the Missouri season.Sometimes as hunters, we get caught up in the fact that we were successful that we neglect to think about what lead us to our success. So the next time you wrap a tag around that long beard and head to coffee shop to share the tail, don’t forget to think about the things that happened and the decisions that you made to help you pull the trigger.