Turkey time!

May 14, 2009

Faith Outdoors


I have been chomping at the bit for weeks — actually, months — to go turkey hunting and the day finally arrived on Sunday, May 10. The opening day of my Minnesota season was on Mother’s Day, and it could have produced some tension, except I celebrated the day with my wife, Julie, on Friday when we went out for dinner. So, that left Sunday morning free.

I went down to Goodhue County with my brother, Paul, that day. We heard gobbles and saw a hen, but no toms. Monday was more of the same, until about 5:45 p.m., when I had three gobblers come in. One swung around to my right and I didn’t see him until after he saw me move and gave an alarm putt. Too bad. He was only about 20 yards away. I wasn’t able to get a shot off before he escaped.
No matter. About 5 to 10 minutes later, up popped another one about 40 yards in front of me. This time, I was able to get a shot off and bring the bird down. It was a thrill.
This morning, I took my son, Joe, out for our opening day in Wisconsin. Even though it was cloudy and windy, the birds were active. He hunted one farm and I hunted another a few miles away. I took a shot at 6:45 a.m. and missed. He did the same about 8 a.m. Then, just minutes after he missed, another bird came in and he made the shot this time. It was a beautiful bird, with a thick, 10-inch beard, and it weighed 25 pounds.
I wish I had gotten a second chance. I had other birds come in, but not close enough for a shot. Tomorrow, I’m taking my Dad, Ray, out to the spot where Joe got his bird. I hope things work out as well for Dad as they did for Joe. Stay tuned for the next report!
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About Dave Hrbacek

Staff photographer and writer for The Catholic Spirit. Also, avid outdoors enthusiast with a passion for hunting, fishing and photography. Married to Julie and have four children, three boys and a girl.

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