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Double smoked Gobbler

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Buckskinn

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I've been hoping for the opportunity for smoked turkey breast this spring and step one of the process has been completed!

The morning started off sitting on a knoll at the edge of a hardwood parcel overlooking a greening pasture, quickly hearing a distant gobble at daybreak. Generally, I start with soft clucking early in the morning, but this bird was several hundred yards away, so I started loud, aggressive yelping and got a response with several gobbles/yelps back and forth then silence. Figured he likely flew down with close by hens. About 10 minutes later he pops out 70 yards from me with a hen, bummer as she led him away.

20 minutes later I have 7 bucks right on top of me, some as close as 15 yards, wind was good and got to watch them feed on the fresh pasture grass for quite a while.
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Things were quiet for a while after the deer left when finally, I heard a distant yelp, so I responded getting myself into a very vocal shouting match between this hen and myself. This went on for about 10 minutes with her slowly working towards me bringing whoever may have been tagging along. A couple minutes later a thunderous gobble erupts to the left of me scaring the bajesus out of me, not 30 yards from me over the knoll, then I see the tips of a fan, he's close and hot! Fowler up and ready, I hit some light purrs and gobble, yelp, gobble. I watch the fan slide further from me as he shows himself to me 45 yards, easy open shot for a modern 12 ga. Unfortunately, another hen enters the party, 80 yards straight away from me drawing his attention and direction, both sliding away.

Figuring I lost my chance, I relaxed a little enjoying what had just happened and looking forward to the rest of the hunt when that was rudely interrupted by a strutting tom that came from same direction but at 25 yards, to boot there was another a couple yards behind which was obviously larger than his buddy. I waited for the second bird to come out of strut and pre-smoked him. If I would have had another tag and shot,,, easily 2 birds in hand as the other birds could not figure out what was going on and stuck around for several minutes finally wondering off. I didn't want to spook him as my kids have tags for upcoming seasons.

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One of the most enjoyable turkey hunts I've ever had and on to step two of smoked turkey breast!
 
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Nothing like having an animal pop up where you didn’t expect it to get the blood flowing!! Congratulations on an excellent hunt and bird!
 

hanshi

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The story was exciting and you finally scored; what's better than that? I had a very similar experience years ago but mine ended up with him finally disappearing with his haram. For an hour or so this one did the same thing. I'd call him close and he would go back and that went on for a while. He'd come so close I readied the gun and was sure I'd see him any second. It was back and forth with him taking the trophy.
 

Buckskinn

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The story was exciting and you finally scored; what's better than that? I had a very similar experience years ago but mine ended up with him finally disappearing with his haram. For an hour or so this one did the same thing. I'd call him close and he would go back and that went on for a while. He'd come so close I readied the gun and was sure I'd see him any second. It was back and forth with him taking the trophy.

I've had those experiences also with turkeys. But that's what makes it exciting, not knowing what the heck those darn birds are going to do next...
 

Buckskinn

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Completed the final stage of the double smoke, this time with apple wood instead of gunpowder. I tried something new for the dark meat, I found a Confit recipe and gave that a whirl. Recipe called for cooking in duck fat which I did not have, so used bear lard.

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The smoked breast was excellent, and the confit might be the best bird I've ever eaten... Not sure which I like better.
 

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