Now is the time we need to be making sure we are ready to head out when turkey season opens this coming spring.
Clean your firearms, tune your calls, wash your hunting clothes, check your boots, and make sure your backpack has the things in it to make an enjoyable hunt. Nothing is as heart breaking as to hike a mile or more into the mountains, sit down to cool off, and realize you have not brought any water to drink. That makes for a tough day of hunting.
Some of the things I try to always carry in my backpack — and people ask me all the time what I carry — is at least one knife, extra face mask, gloves, and three different kinds of calls: a box call, which is my favorite, a slate call, and a glass call. After all these years of hunting, I still don’t feel like I can use a mouth call well enough to fool the old long beards.
In my backpack I have my range finder, and binoculars. Note: if you use a shotgun with a scope, never use your shotgun scope as binoculars. The only time you need to put your shotgun to your shoulder is when you are ready to hammer down on your target.
I never go into the woods without my ThermaCELL (they are life savers), water and a Power Bar. I also carry hand warmers, paper towels, and turkey decoys. I use the blow up decoys. They look real, and are easy to carry. They are getting more expensive every year, so if I find a sale on turkey decoys I buy a few extra.
I also carry some camouflage bandanas to wipe the sweat. Never use a white, blue or red anything, as that is the color of an old tom’s head and those colors may get you shot.
When hunting out west or some other place that I am not used to hunting, my GPS is always at my side, with fresh batteries and an extra set. I also make sure my saw and hand trimmers are with me to cut away any brush.
You may ask: Why do you carry that much stuff? My answer is short, but true. Better to have something and not need it, as to need it and not have it.