With the spring turkey season (May 1-31) rapidly approaching, now is the time to start getting all your gobblers in a row, so to speak. Unlike most other hunting activities, aside from waterfowling and maybe bowhunting, spring gobbler hunters are heavily gear oriented. Whether itís the assorted calls, decoys, camo gear and clothing they use, the inventory of a spring gobbler hunter makes most other forms of hunting pale by comparison.
Probably much of that gear hasnít been used or inspected since last spring, and its ability to perform adequately after a year of down time should never be taken for granted. And when a big tom lets loose with a close-by gobble is no time to discover some piece of gear isnít up to snuff.
Calls are the heart and soul of spring gobbler hunting, and they are the first gear item I turn my attention to. If they donít sound the way they should, they get replaced. Latex diaphragm mouth calls are usually the ones that fail first, but even friction-type calls donít last indefinitely. Humidity and wear and tear of use can cause them to deteriorate in both sound quality and volume. If, after cleaning and maintenance, youíre still not satisfied with how they sound, replace them. Good friction calls can last for many years, given proper care, but even they all will eventually wear out.
Howís your old camo clothing look? If you have something newer, compare its appearance with your older stuff. If the pattern has faded too much, a sharp-eyed gobbler might spot you just about the time youíre almost ready to drop him.