Outdoor Life Online Editor

First Longbeard
Although I’ve been hunting for more than 20 years, I had never taken the opportunity to hunt turkeys until this spring. I had watched several videos over the years and heard guys talking about their turkey-hunting adventures at our hunting club, but I still wasn’t confident I could call in a tom.

A week before the season, I looked on my nightstand and there was the April issue of OUTDOOR LIFE with a cover line that read “Tough Toms!” I picked up the magazine and read the article by Michael Hanback titled “Get Real!” with his 10 tips for tough birds.

Opening morning I slipped into the spot I had visualized while reading Hanback’s article and set up. After only 20 minutes, three gobblers started sounding off. Now all I had to do was get them close enough for a shot. I’m happy to say that I used tips 1, 2 and 6 to bag my first longbeard at 8:10 that morning! The turkey had a 91/2-inch beard and 7/8-inch spurs and weighed 20 pounds. Thanks for the help.

Via E-mail

Got It Down Pat
I have been subscribing to OUTDOOR LIFE since 1956 and I look forward to each issue with great expectation. When Pat McManus started writing your “Last Laugh” column, a whole new reading adventure opened up for me. I’ve since purchased all of his books and have laughed and commiserated with his plights. (My hunting partner even calls me Rancid and I call him Retch.)

Well, Pat’s latest story, “A Creek to Die For” [BRACKET “Last Laugh, June/July”], is magnificent. I knew something was up when there weren’t any footprints on the shore of Lou’s creek. Things went pretty much as things do until the three buddies spoke of the twisty road up by Canyon Creek. Then I knew I’d been had. Your story brought tears to my eyes when they saw Barney coming into camp.

I will be going to the bookstore soon to buy The Bear in the Attic. Thanks for bringing so much joy into my life!

J.R. Luzzadder
Portola, CA

The location photography in “Tackle Test 2002” [BRACKET “May”] was incorrectly credited. All location photos were shot by Bill Truslow. If you’d like to view more of Truslow’s work, visit www. truslowphoto.com.