At its foundation, spring turkey hunting isn’t a “high tech” pursuit. You do your scouting; you try to figure out the birds’ general patterns. You practice calling to get good enough to sound reasonably like a turkey. You shoot a few shells to learn the effective range with your gun, load, and skill. And once you’re finally in the woods, you wear the right clothes … and sit still … so the tom you’re after will come within your lethal range.
Yet in every step of your pursuit, there’s gear designed to up your odds of success IF you put it to the right use. Let’s look at what’s new this spring to help you out-maneuver a tom turkey or two:
1. Primos Double Bull SurroundView Hunting Ground Blind
Click here to find the Primos Double Bull SurroundView 360 Ground Blind - about $499.99
Click here to find the Primos Double Bull SurroundView 270 Ground Blind - about $399.99
Click here to find the Primos Double Bull SurroundView Stake Out Ground Blind - about $99.99
Available this spring will be the brand new Primos Double Bull SurroundView hunting blinds. Dubbed as the “blinds without a blind spot” they are constructed with exclusive one-way see-through fabric walls that let hunters inside see out, but prevent game outside from seeing in. The 360, 270, and 180 designations denote whether four, three, or two of the blind walls include the see-through fabric. They’re built around the patented Double Bull hub system for easy and solid set-up. It comes with a limited lifetime warranty.
2. Federal Premium Grand Slam Turkey Loads
Click here to find the Federal Grand Slam Turkey Loads at Cabela's - about $12.00 - $17.00
The Grand Slam Turkey Load has been around for quite a while, but with the original FliteControl wad, they didn’t provide optimal performance from some styles of choke tubes, especially those with porting. The new Grand Slam 12 and 20 gauge shotshells utilize the FliteControl Flex wad that works in all chokes and copper-plated lead shot sizes 4, 5, and 6. A portion of the proceeds of each box (of 10) sold goes to the efforts of the National Wild Turkey Federation.
3. Federal Premium Heavyweight TSS Turkey Loads
Click here to find the Federal Premium Heavyweight TSS Turkey Loads at Cabela's - about $37.99 (per 5 rounds)
It’s the struggle in achieving the “perfect” turkey load – how do you deliver pellets heavy enough to retain sufficient kinetic energy to maximum ranges, yet make the pellets small enough to maximize the number of vital zone pellet strikes? Well, the new answer is Federal Premium Heavyweight TSS Turkey Loads. Loaded with either #7 or #9 (yes, you read that right #9 shot for turkey hunting!) Tungsten Super Shot, there are as many as 900 pellets in a 12 gauge load. Yet, because of the material’s density, a #9 TSS pellet provides similar ballistic performance to a #5 lead pellet. Heavyweight TSS Turkey Loads are available in 3 ½-inch and 3-inch 12 gauge, 3-inch 20 gauge, and 3-inch .410. Loads in 12 and 20 gauge use Federal’s FliteControl Flex wad for use with any style of choke.
4. Federal 3rd Degree Turkey Shotshells - 12 Gauge
Click here to find Federal 3rd Degree Turkey Shotshells at Bass Pro Shops - about $17.99 - $19.99
The 3rd Degree Loads, introduced last year, now feature #7 TSS shot. The principal of 3rd Degree is a three-stage payload layered for optimal performance. Each shell is loaded with 20 percent #6 FliteStoper pellets for forgiving close range patterns, 40 percent #5 copper-plated lead for lethal performance at mid-range, and 40 percent Heavyweight TSS for extra-dense, extra-hard-hitting patterns at 40 yards plus. Available in 3 ½-inch and 3-inch 12 gauge and 3-inch 20 gauge, 3rd Degree shotshells feature the FliteControl Flex wad to work in all styles of choke tubes.
5. Cabela's Tactical Tat'r 2 Turkey Vest for Men
Click here to find Cabela's Tactical Tat'r 2 Turkey Vest for Men - about $99.99
The Cabela's Men's Tactical Tat'r 2 Turkey Vest for Men incorporates all the refinements you asked for, from a cooler, increased-airflow back panel to a larger, expandable game bag. Wide, padded adjustable shoulder straps distribute weight evenly and prevent back and shoulder fatigue. Sit back and you'll instantly feel the new Couch Cushion back that utilizes raised, closed-cell, foam-padded mesh panels on pressure points to support your back. Individual mesh back panels also allow air to circulate between your back and the vest. A second flip-down mesh pocket stores extra batteries or incidentals. Another vertical, zip Cordura nylon-bottomed side pocket makes a perfect holder for pruning shears. An enlarged, attached, lined, bloodproof game bag with adjustable capacity can hold decoys. The game bag has 2 quick-release buckles at the top for easy access. This Cabela's turkey hunting vest comes with a blaze-orange patch that snaps on and off for safety when traveling in the woods.
6. Nikon P-Tactical Spur Gun Sight
Click here to find the Nikon P-Tactical Spur Reflex Gun Sight - about $219.99
Initially designed for tactical use, everything about the Nikon P-Tactical Spur makes it an excellent choice for the turkey hunter considering a reflex sight for a shotgun. The sight is tiny, weighing barely over one ounce – half the weight of one shell! Despite the diminutive size, it offers a full range of features including a 3 MOA dot with 10 levels of brightness. Extra wide field of view, 1x optics, unlimited eye relief, and Nikon’s TRUCOLOR coating are all part of the package. What puts many serious hunters off of reflex sights is the thought a battery will be dead when you most need it. The Spur boasts 15,000 hour of run time on a single battery!
7. Flexton Lil' Double Turkey Mouth Call
Click here to find the Flextone Lil' Double Turkey Call at Cabela's - about $4.99
Flextone’s Lil’ line of turkey mouth calls are built for women, kids, or anyone with a smaller pallet. One size does not fit all when it comes to mouth calls. Flextone's Small-Frame Lil' Double Diaphragm Turkey Call fits small palates with a compact size that maximizes calling control. No more trimming, folding, and discomfort. The two .003" reeds deliver the versatility to create a full range of realistic hen turkey sounds when used by both expert and amateur callers. Create higher pitches with more tongue pressure and lower notes with less pressure. Flutter your tongue across the reeds for a purr.
8. Avian-X Trophy Tom Taxidermy Decoy Mount
Click here to find the Avian-X Trophy Tom Taxidermy Decoy Mount - about $79.99
Talk about serving double-duty? Use the Avian-X Trophy Tom as a mounting system and wall display for the dried tail and beard of your trophy tom when there’s no room or budget for a full-bird mount. Then, come next hunting season, take it down and attach it on the included mounting stake to take it to the field to help lure in the next memory in the making. Includes mount, carry handle, and collapsible stake. Super realistic relief and painting.
9. Dave Smith Decoys Mating Motion Pair Turkey Decoy Set
Click here to find the Dave Smith Decoys Mating Motion Pair Turkey Decoy Set at Bass Pro Shops - about $299.99
The only thing more realistic than Dave Smith Decoys are … real, live birds. This pair of decoys (one submissive hen and one mating jake) are built with DSD’s A.C.E. technology that creates decoys with perfect memory and unbelievable durability. A.C.E. is far superior to polyethylene which has long been the standard for portable decoys. A.C.E. works in extreme temps and holds paint far longer, too! The DSD mating motion pair incorporates a unique, but simple hand motion system giving the hunter total control. The slight motion it imparts proves to drive a territorial tom into rage … and bring him running.
Watch Video by Dave Smith Decoys: Mating Motion Pair accurately mimics a jake trying to mate a hen