I Finally Got a Gobbler!
Well, I didn’t, but that was the subject of an email I received this morning from a good friend of mine, Rob Bean. I was so happy for Rob, his first turkey! Last fall he got his first deer, and now his first turkey, I wish I could have been there with him. In his email Rob told me that one of my recent articles gave him inspiration to get out this spring and go after a big bird. He said “It was a super cool experience for sure. And I owe it all to you. I wasn’t going to hunt this spring and then I read your post last week about not being able to be out for turkeys this season and so I didn’t have a good excuse but to keep on trying. Your blogs are always a great inspiration.” I’m glad I could provide some inspiration to Rob, hopefully I do the same for other readers.
I met Rob five years ago through work, he is an avid outdoorsman like me, and we always have a lot to talk about that is not related to work. Rob is really into paddling, either canoes, kayaks, or stand-up paddle boards, and he has taken some pretty amazing expeditions. He also likes to hike and mountain bike, you can read about all of his adventures at Headed Outside with Rob, click here to see his blog. Like me, Rob is also very much a family man, and he is doing his part to instill a love of the outdoors to the next generation of outdoorsmen and women by involving his kids.
While Rob had done a little bit of bird hunting back in 1993, he was not an avid hunter until a few years ago when his daughter said she wanted to shoot a turkey. Over a three year period and 4 or 5 seasons, Rob and his daughter pursued turkeys with great effort but no success, but he never gave up. During that time Rob also started getting into big game hunting, and as I mentioned before he harvested his first deer last fall with a bow. I won’t rewrite Rob’s adventure, but I remember when he called me that night after he shot his doe and asked for some advice on tracking her. You should read about that hunt on Rob’s blog, it is a good story.
I don’t know a lot of details yet about Rob’s turkey today, but I am anxious to hear all about it. I know he took the bird with a 12 gauge shotgun, and he said that he could hear the Tom gobbling a half mile away in the early morning, how exciting is that?! He also told me that after he got home he searched You Tube videos to figure out how to clean the bird and preserve the fan, he’s a resourceful guy.
After thinking back over the past five years that I have known Rob, I am committed to building on that relationship and getting together with Rob outside of work. We have so much in common, and I think there is a lot we can learn from each other. The only thing preventing that to this point is that we live an hour and a half away from each other, but that’s not a big deal when it comes to outdoor adventure. I am going to work on that with Rob.
And I have to say that Rob’s current series of articles on his blog titled “Hometown Hikes” is equally inspiring to me, especially given my current condition recovering from back surgery. Pretty much all I can do for the next three months is walk on fairly level ground, gradually building up on the distance. Right now the farthest I have walked since January 3rd is about 300 yards before I couldn’t do any more. But I am working on it every day, and there are plenty of places close to home where I can do just that and enjoy the outdoors at the same time.
One thing I want to say about Rob’s turkey today is that it is a perfect example of where perseverance pays off, something that all sportsmen should live and breathe. After several years of no success, Rob kept after his pursuit to bag a turkey, and his determination won in the end. With hunting and fishing, you have to have patience, be determined, put in the hours, and log the miles. As you can see from the smile on Rob’s face, it is definitely worth the effort. Congratulations Rob!