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Turkeys, deer andmore are within two hours of North Carolina’s capital

1 SANDHILLS GOBBLERS Amid the longleaf pines and sandy topsoil, turkeys have become a common sight and a sought-after trophy. The game lands encompass nearly 58,000 acres.

2 UWHARRIE WHITETAILS Though North Carolina deer can’t claim trophy racks like Texas or Kentucky bucks, Uwharrie is still a good place to chase a bruiser.

3 CROATAN DUCKS Tucked away in the deep woods are plenty of swamps, creeks and small lakes that hold good numbers of wood ducks and mallards.

4 ROANOKE STRIPERS Providing the river level doesn’t get too high, the striper run in May on the Roanoke can be epic. Spawning brutes run up the river hitting almost any bait they see.

5 CAPE FEAR SHAD Before the stripers show up on the Roanoke, the shad arrive in the Cape Fear River. The legendary waterway fills with the small fish by early spring. Anglers cast shad darts from shore.

6 HOLLY SHELTER BUCKS Much of the terrain of the 70,000-acre game lands is either bog, swamp or river bottom, perfect for hiding deer.

7 PEE DEE CATFISH Many Southern rivers have deep holes that fill with monster catfish. The Pee Dee is no exception. The boat ramp on a summer night is full of empty trailers as anglers seek big blues.

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