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April 13: Dave Reisner & John O'Dell

On April 11th, Dave and I left for our yearly trip to South Dakota. He had high hopes of a great hunt as the nasty weather that was hitting the Midwest was supposed to move through, and we were expecting a high pressure system while we were hunting. Also, in talking with our rancher, he said the turkeys were doing really well, and that he was seeing 30-50 turkeys a day with several longbeards in the group.

After driving for 12 hours through blowing snow and ice, we finally arrived in South Dakota. We had just enough time to sleep for about an hour and then head out for the mornings hunt. It was still very windy as we were setting up the Ameristep blind, but that didn't dampen our high hopes. Right before first light, right on queue, the turkeys started to gobble. Pretty soon Dave and I were covered up with turkeys. I was up to bat first, and I was able to harvest a nice longbeard at about 25 yards with my PSE XForce. Then Dave was up to bat next, and he was able to harvest his first ever spring turkey with a bow. He shot him right off the top of a hen that the gobbler was going to breed. Then Dave shot his second spring turkey with his PSE XForce at 3 yards. After he shot the turkey another gobbler proceeded to beat up on his fallen buddy. I decided to try to stalk up on him, and well, just say that I came really close. Day one came to a close with three birds down all with our PSE bows.

The next day dawned bright and clear and found Dave and I once again in our Ameristep blind. It was one of those perfect mornings where the turkeys were just tearing it up. We filmed some awesome roost footage, and I just knew I was only minutes away from harvesting another tom as he came strutting into our decoy spread. Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans. Hours later I still had not harvested my turkey so it was time to get mobile, and I swapped out my bow for a shotgun. After several hours, we had worked ourselves into position of the birds that we were on earlier in the morning. After my first series of calls, we had the whole flock coming our way. All of a sudden, another gobbler entered stage left at 15 yards, and I concluded our 2008 South Dakota hunt. Moments later two other gobblers showed up and decided to sort out who was boss. We were able to film one of the best gobbler fights I have ever seen for the next 15 minutes. It was awesome!! What a way to cap off our incredible hunt in South Dakota!