By Nathan Smith
It was two hours before sundown on the next to last day of Tennessee’s 2005 turkey season. I set up on a ridgetop, hoping to find where the turkeys were roosting so I could hunt there the next morning. I called, and a gobbler answered on the next ridge about 1 1/2 miles away.
A herd of cows was about 50 yards in front of me, so I didn’t think I’d call a tom all the way in. There were also a couple of fencerows and a creek between the birds and me.
I called for about 15 more minutes, and the gobbler went silent. I waited a few minutes and called again. Nothing.
Every time I’d yelp, a cow would look at me. About 30 minutes went by without a gobble. Then I heard a gobble about 20 yards behind the cow.
About five minutes passed. The cow walked behind the tom, “herding” him closer to me. I pulled the trigger when there was no chance of collecting beefsteak as well as turkey breast.
The gobbler had 1 1/4-inch spurs and a 11 1/2-inch beard. It was my best and most fun turkey hunt ever.