Learn to Hunt event cold but funThe Gitchee Gumme Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation held its Learn to Hunt event April 3-5. The statewide youth hunt takes place this weekend, and the spring turkey opener is April 15.
By: The Superior Telegram, Superior Telegram
The Gitchee Gumme Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation held its Learn to Hunt event April 3-5. The statewide youth hunt takes place this weekend, and the spring turkey opener is April 15.
The Four Season’s Recreation Club again donated its building as headquarters for the hunt. The building served as a room for all meals and sleeping quarters. Mentors and a few youth hunters were able to sleep in a Crystal Lake Resort cabin free of charge.
The weekend began at 5 p.m. April 3 with a meal of homemade turkey soup, served with ham and cheese sandwiches. Rick and Stella Adolphson prepared the meal, and for Catholics, they provided meat-free soup and toasted cheese sandwiches. Youth hunters and their mentors went into the field to scout conditions and returned just after dark to prepare for the early start Saturday.
A handful of people were up well before dawn. Garrett, Lisa, Garrett Jr. and Mark Little brought a camper down from Hawthorne to help facilitate the hunt. Both Garrett Jr. and Mark are past youth hunters. Garrett Sr. helped each morning making pancakes on an outside grill.
Jerry and Shelly Amys were also up before dawn preparing a breakfast of pancakes Saturday and Sunday, serving at 4:15 a.m.
“They were set up outside since 3:30 a.m., warming our breakfast in large cookers out on a frost-covered picnic table,” said Kevin Feind, secretary of the Gitchee Gumme Chapter and a ranger at Brule River State Forest. “They didn’t want to wake us when they arrived, so they braved the 24 degree temperatures. Sometimes there is no end to kindness.”
By 5 a.m., the young hunters were leaving with their mentors for the woods. Temperatures were below freezing to start the day but reached the 40s with sunny skies near midday.
Of the fifteen youth hunters who participated, six had opportunities at harvesting a bird on the first day. There were more opportunities on Sunday morning, but no birds were harvested.
“Everyone saw or heard turkeys and had a great time,” Feind said. “Youth hunters learned a great deal, and most want to continue turkey hunting in the future.”
Each hunter was provided a NWTF pocket knife engraved by Nummi Jewelers as a keepsake from the Learn to Hunt weekend.