Chasing Spring: First Toms of 2011

To officially start my 2011 turkey season I headed down to Florida to chase big Osceola toms.

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Last weekend Chasing Spring embarked on its first turkey hunt of the 2011 season, and as you can see it was an overwhelming success. I flew down to Florida to hunt some wily Osceolas with the boys from Outdoor Life and CJ Davis from Nikon. Here’s our crew from left to right: Stephen Mitchell, Eric Zinczenko, CJ Davis, Greg Gatto, me and Brian Lisankie.
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On the job, just another day in the office. CJ Davis from Nikon and I hunted together to get some gobblers on camera. We did, and you can see the footage from his entire hunt here.
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CJ Davis patiently scanning the area for any sign of an approaching gobbler during one of our many video camera set ups.
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Mosquitos are at a premium so ThermaCell is very effective and a life saver in the Florida swamps.
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Capturing the morning as it unfolds. This is my early-morning camera set up between the roost and the orange groves.
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South Florida is a unique and special place, we were hunting very close to the Everglades.
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It didn’t take long for CJ to connect on this nice tom.
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Limb hanger! Florida’s true Osceola has the longest spurs of any of the sub species of wild turkeys.
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When you can hang a gobbler on a limb with his spurs you know, that against all odds, you have succeeded in taking an old mature Osceola swamp Ghost.
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Here’s me, CJ Davis and Brian Lisankie with CJ’s a long-spurred south Florida gobbler.
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But we weren’t done yet. Here’s the ready room, a huge screened-in porch that worked well as our guys prepared for the morning hunt.
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Stephen Mitchell puts the finishing touches on a natural blind for our evening hunt.
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Long hours on camera require lots of water and a few snacks …
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Luckily we had more to eat than canned sausage. Greg Gatto of Outdoor Life is a great camp cook and is shown here with one of his many dinner creations.
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Greg also took a nice bird.
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OL Publisher Eric Zinczenko took his gobbler with stick and string.
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Scopes for turkey hunting? Yep, this Nikon Turkey Pro did the job.
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One of the best parts about hunting is talking it over and reliving the moment. It was a great hunt and everyone tagged out on a turkey. It was the perfect way to kick off Chasing Spring 2011.

To officially start my 2011 turkey season I headed down to Florida to chase big Osceola toms.