How to Ambush a Hung-Up Tom

Keep a tom talking while your buddy slips into position.

ambush a turkey, turkey tactics, spring tactics, turkey hunting, hunting turkeys,

A hung-up gobbler in the woods might answer your every call but never move. The conservative thing to do would be to fall back or go look for another bird. But your best chance of killing that turkey on that day is to go for broke and slip in closer.

If you’re hunting with a buddy, you can pull it off. He should continue yelping to keep the bird hammering back, while you go silent and make a wide half circle around to the gobbler’s location. You’re not trying to stalk the bird for a shot; rather, you’re just repositioning to get within his comfort zone. So long as your buddy keeps him gobbling, you can keep tabs on him. Get as close as the terrain and your abilities allow. Ideally, it’s inside 100 yards.

Once you’re in the zone, carefully select a good spot to set up in, and then yelp yourself. Your buddy should shut up immediately and let you do the calling from there. That’s the key to getting this to work. The idea is to be so close to the gobbler that he can’t resist taking a quick look at the “new hen” when you start calling. If he suddenly gets quiet, be ready—he’s probably on his way in.

Photographs by The Voorhes