Location: 2G Susquehannock State Forest
Weather: Temperature 51 degrees, Slight Wind from the south east, Partly Sunny
Hunter - Trey Barnett Caller – Matt Leber
We were at our location and placing our decoy trio at 5:30. It was a beautiful morning despite the forecast for rain. We set up in a clump of pines in the middle of a food plot. Sometime after 6 I catch movement across the field. A coyote is making his way down the edge of the food plot. I whisper “Trey Coyote” at that moment it stopped in its tracks looking our way. I lip squeaked and it ran to about 35 yards away again stopping in his tracks. Trey was positioned the opposite way and no shot was possible. We sat until just after 7. Not hearing anything except a distant gobbler we decided to move. On the way to the truck we had a conversation with a hen that never did show herself. Maybe a nearby police siren scared her off? We hit a few of our usual listening spots but didn’t hear anything. I received a text from our friend Brandon. He was out scouting and put us onto a bird he heard that was hot. We arrived at the location and parked a few hundred yards from where we thought would be a good place to enter and climb to a set up location. While walking down the road I pointed out to Trey the strut marks on the dirt road. I had a good feeling. We climbed to a good location, found a big tree and settled in. We sat and just listened, letting the woods settle down and hoping one would sound off on its own. It did. This one was on the opposite side of the road. I yelped hoping to get a response. We did. There were two toms on the opposite side of the road and two from our side. One on our side was close. I yelped and then cut on my South Penn Slate while at the same time yelping on my HS Strut Cutting 2.5. They all loved it. A 5th gobbler from the opposite side also joined in. The closest gobbler was the one. I could tell he was coming closer. I sat quietly for awhile. When one of the other gobblers hammered I decide to take the closest birds temperature. I cut and he hammered - close!. I then noticed the 870 moving back and forth. I whispered “do you see him?” Trey said he did but didn’t see a beard. Just then the bird came into my view as well. When the bird got behind a tree I cut one last time. He reciprocated with a booming gobble. Finishing his gobble as he came back into view I saw his beard and whispered “kill him when you can”. I no sooner finished my sentence and the 870 roared. The bird dropped immediately. Trey’s first gobbler. As we were filling out the tag the rain came - perfect timing. It was a beautiful morning that a little rain couldn’t change. A trip to Keeners store revealed the birds weight was 18 ¼ pounds. His beard was 8 ½ “ with ¾” spurs. I’m sure many would agree there is no greater place or feeling than being in the Susquehannock State Forest during turkey season with a loved one.
At the hunt location
The walk out
Back at camp
Trey and Pap
One happy youth hunter
This boy was eating good. He was loaded with beech and who knows what else. Packed full.