Spring Turkey Youth Hunt PA 2018

Spring Turkey Youth Hunt PA 2018

Kevin Mennett

April 30th, 2018


Pennsylvania youth spring turkey season opened Saturday April 21st.    Cory and I decided to split up and hunt different properties.  Cory and his son headed to a small farm that we’ve had success in, in years past.  I took fellow RidgeRunner Ben Wright and his son to our lease.  Cory and I both had fantastic  mornings but neither of us could seal the deal.

Cory and his son Brayden arrived at the farm a little bit late.  They set their decoys and quickly put up the blind.  Shortly after, Cory could make out the silhouettes of roosted turkeys not far from the blind.  The birds had flown up higher on the ridge than normal and Cory and Brayden unknowingly set up too close.  The birds responded to Cory’s calls, but flew down and went the opposite way.   Turkeys 1, RidgeRunners 0.

He and Brayden decided to sit tight and see what the morning would bring.  They didn’t have to wait too long as numerous gobblers began responding to Cory’s calls.  He had a field full of birds, unfortunately; they were all on the far end of the field.  All Cory and Brayden could do is watch.  Turkeys 2 RidgeRunners 0.

My day started off pretty slow.  Ben, his boy Hunter, and I got to the lease and set up shortly before sunrise.  I quickly set the decoys and positioned myself above Ben and Hunter.  I sent out a few soft tree calls and was greeted by . . . silence.  I expected the birds to be roosted below us on a bench they usually use.  I called sparingly over the next hour and a half but  the only gobbles I heard were off in the distance.  I received a text from Ben saying Hunter was getting cold and anxious.  I asked him to give it 10 more minutes.  I heard the hens just as Ben was standing up.  I quickly motioned him to sit back down.  I spent the next five minutes in a calling war with the hens.  They were getting closer when I heard a deer crashing through the brush.  The deer spooked the birds in the opposite direction.  Turkeys 3 RidgeRunners 0.

Not ready to give up, we made our way to another field farther back in the lease.  We bumped a small flock that didn’t seem too spooked.  I was convinced that if we could get above and in front of them, I could call them in.  So we we quickly circled to cut them off.  I sent Ben and Hunter 30 yards ahead of me to try and pull the birds passed them.  I waited a few minutes to allow things to settle.  My first yelp was immediately answered by 3 gobblers!  It wasn’t long before I could hear the birds coming through the leaves.  I watched as 2 of the birds (one of which was one of the bigger birds I’ve ever seen) appeared 25 yards in front of me.  I kept waiting for Hunter to shot, but instead of the shot, I heard the worst sound a turkey hunter can hear; a put.  Hunter had moved his gun slightly to take aim and the old bird busted him.  Turkey 4, RidgeRunners 0.

I managed to call the two jakes back, but the contour of the hill kept the birds safe.  All I could do as they walked by me at 20 feet was sit still and hope we didn’t spook them too bad.  Turkey 5, RidgeRunners 0.

Hunter was excited but frustrated (welcome to turkey hunting young man).  We will attempt to take a few points back this coming weekend!

Until then,


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