First Days in Nebraska Turkey Camp

By Brodie SwisherApril 21, 20171 Comment

I’ve spent the last couple days in a Nebraska turkey camp chasing the abundance of birds that call this place home. Nebraska is always a fun stop for any turkey hunter. The birds here gobble their heads off and seem to be in every chunk of woods you come across. I spent the first couple days here tagging along with one of the local landowners. He had a couple money spots for catching turkeys flying off the roost so I rode along to film his hunt.

turkeys on skyline

Turkey hunting in Nebraska is hard to beat.

We hiked in really early the first morning to slip in under a few birds that were roosted just 25 yards from where we sat. We knew we had some rain coming our way and would likely get wet, but we had no idea that we’d sit through the nastiest thunder and lightning storm I’ve ever hunted through. We prayed for safety and rode it out. And sure enough, right after the storm passed through, the gobbler flew over our head and hit the ground just 30 yards away. He wasn’t on the ground 30 seconds before the landowner gave him a turkey load to the head and finished the deal. Then, when another bird in the area wouldn’t learn to keep his mouth shut, the landowner offered his shotgun and told me to go get him. I came to bowhunt, but I couldn’t resist the chance. Plus, I had additional turkey tags for chasing other birds with my bow. We had two birds in the back of the truck by 7:30am.

turkeys in truck

Wet birds and soggy gear in the back of the truck on the first morning.

The next morning found us at another roost tree that was holding 8 longbeards and another dozen jakes and hens. The landowner had a shooter that was up to bat and I’d play backup with my bow. I was a little skeptical at the mention of 8 longboards being on the roost in this one spot, but as soon as the action began to unfold, I was a believer. It was the most incredible flydown I’ve yet to witness. Another bird was killed shortly after flydown, but the rest of the birds stayed beyond bow range offering me no follow up shot.

turkey flydown

I’ve seen some cool flydowns over the years, but this one topped them all, no doubt.

I spent the rest of the afternoon scouting some properties on my own and setting up ground blinds for my bow hunts in the following days. I got on one gobbler and a handful of jakes throughout the afternoon, but nothing materialized in the way of a shot opportunity.

I setup in a ground blind this morning hoping to catch some players returning to strut in an alfalfa field they had been in the previous day. The first bird gobbled at 5:58am kicking off what would be 30 minutes of non-stop gobbling from what sounded like 6-8 birds. By the way they sounded and were carrying on, I was afraid they might all be jakes. And when they finally popped out in the field to investigate my calls, the notion was confirmed. They were big, ornery, punk jakes, that probably needed killing. But today they got a free pass.

jakes in the field in Nebraska turkey camp

Despite being in bow range, these jakes got a free pass this morning.

I’m gonna head back out to try and make a mid-day sit as soon as I’m done peckin’ on this blog post. Hopefully a few longbeards are hanging out somewhere close by.

Brodie Swisher
Brodie Swisher is a world champion game caller, outdoor writer, seminar speaker and Editor for Brodie and his family live in the Kentucky Lake area of west Tennessee.
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