John's Journal...

Get Your Gobbler with a Bow with Phillip Vanderpool

Blinds and Calls

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Phillip Vanderpool has been hunting turkeys with a bow for the last 15 years. So far in the 2009 season he’s taken one gobbler with his bow and took four gobblers with his bow during the 2008 season. This week he’ll tell us his secrets for taking turkeys with a bow.

The third moClick to enlargest-important element to being able to take a turkey with a bow is to have some type of a blind. If I’m going to run and gun, then I’ll carry one of the Hunter’s Specialties’ portable and collapsible blinds, so I can to set it up anywhere. Another blind I like is the Hunter’s Specialties’ Backpacker, which also is easy to set-up, and you canadjust the height of it.

If you know where the turkeys should be and you want to set-up a blind where you feel confident turkeys will come to, like on the edge of a field or a route the turkeys take every day, then I’d suggest using the Hunter’s Specialties’ Boiler Room ground blind. The Boiler Room blind is a total-concealment blind. It’s also a great blind to hunt from in the rain because it will keep you dry and comfortable, and you’ll be able to hunt from inside more efficiently under those conditions. When we are videotaping turkeys, we often use the BoileClick to enlarger Room blind, because it can fit two people in it comfortably. I also try and set-up my blind in a shady area with the sun coming from behind me. I believe the shade conceals a blind better than a blind that’s set-up in the open sun.

The fourth most-important aspect to successfully taking turkeys with a bow is to use Click to enlargea hands-free turkey call, like a diaphragm mouth call. I’ll often use a Turkey Grenade, the new Ring Zone Friction Call or a box call like the Beard Collector to get the turkey to come to the blind. But when the gobbler is in close, and I want to manipulate him to take a shot, I want my hands free. Then I can call to the bird, even when I’m at full draw. I may need to just cluck and purr to get him to take one more step or turn to the left or the right to get the shot I’m trying to take. Or, the gobbler may be a little out of range, and I may need to call to him some more to get him to move closer. Too, the gobbler may be walking, and I’ll need to call to him to make him stop. I really believe that knowing how to use a mouth diaphragm call is critical to getting the best shot you can get on a bow.

To learn more about Hunter’s Specialties top-quality calls and blinds, visit

Tomorrow: Hiding and Shooting

Check back each day this week for more about "Get Your Gobbler with a Bow with Phillip Vanderpool"

Day 1: Why I Bowhunt Turkeys
Day 2: Blinds and Calls
Day 3: Hiding and Shooting
Day 4: Broadheads and Recovering the Bird
Day 5: When to Draw and Why to Practice


Entry 506, Day 2