In that frenetic first second after a gobbler fires back at your calls, where you sit down and set up may not seem that important—and obviously you have other things on your mind. Truth is, taking the time to pick the perfect playing field can mean the difference between calling that tom to your gun or having him hang up out of range. So before just plopping down at the base of the nearest tree so you can start your calling, keep in mind these five places that just aren’t worth a sit.
The Thick of It
Thick cover presents two problems. One, turkeys typically won’t venture into an area where their vision is compromised. Two, if you can’t see the turkey because of heavy brush, you can’t kill it. Better to remember the old adage “Cover behind makes the best blind” and keep the area in front of you open for the shot.
The Obstacle Course
You may think that you found a perfect spot, only to later discover that a fence, canyon, creek, or other obstacle was in between you and the turkey. Do a brief recon of the area you plan to hunt by studying maps or aerial photos, making note of any barrier that can stop a gobbling tom in his tracks.
The Non-Beaten Path
Draws, ridgetops, benches, and other travel corridors can pull a turkey past you out of gun range. Often, all you need to take is a few steps in either direction to get back on the turkey track and funnel that tom right into your lap.
The Dead Zone
Some fields and food plots are natural strut zones; others are just plain unappealing to birds. Put your time in scouting to learn where the birds want to be and set up accordingly.
The Cliff Hanger
In some areas, like on steep hillsides, it’s just plain impossible to kill a turkey sitting down. If you’ve struck a hot bird close, simply back yourself against a tree, shoulder your gun, and take the shot standing up when the tom gets within range. There is no rule that states you have to sit down to kill a turkey.