1st Osceolas

Stories of your favorite gobbler hunts.
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HunterGKS
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1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 14th, 2016, 2:56 pm

Since so many of us are suffering from EOETSW (Early Onset of End of Turkey Season Withdrawals), I thought I post this story of my 1st 2 Osceolas. I had stored the pics on the old huntingpictures.net site but it appears it's gone. I do still have the pics if anyone wants to see them.

I think my most enjoyable spring season was 1999 when I got my 1st 2 Osceolas. This was the 1st year I hunted Fisheating Creek & it was before the state took several thousand acres from Lykes Bros. who own the property & leased it to David Austin. I got to camp the afternoon of 03/17 & met all the camp folks & the other hunters. I was lucky enough to draw Austi Haecock as my guide.

We headed out about 4:30 the next morning in a swamp buggy to our assigned area, Roxanne. Those of you that haven’t been in a buggy don’t know what you’re missing. It was pretty chilly & the ride was even colder. We crossed The Creek, parked, & set up on a bird. He came part way in & hung up, finally heading away. We moved to a different spot & had 2 gobbling but they wouldn’t come in. Finally moved to a big palmetto patch & set up inside it. I had 2 small shooting lanes to work with. We had only been there maybe 10 minutes when 3 hens came in to 15-20 yards. We saw 2 gobblers maybe 150 yards off strutting & gobbling. Something spooked the hens & they high-tailed it. I figured game over. Austi & I alternated calling & managed to bring both birds in, with the boss leading. The 2nd bird had a distinctive bent beard. The boss walked right in front of me & Austi kept whispering, “SHOOT HIM!! SHOOT HIM!!” I responded, “I CAN’T SEE HIM!! I CAN’T SEE HIM!!” Finally, he stepped into a lane & I dropped him at 12 yards.

03/18/99 08:52 A.M Weight 17.4 lbs. Beard 8 3/8” Spurs 1”


We hunted the same general area the next morning & had several birds responding but not coming in. Finally, 1 came in to about 50 yards, Old Crooked Beard. He saw the dekes & got the heck outta Dodge. Must have remembered them from the day before. We decided to go back to the same spot where I killed the bird the day before. Almost immediately, we had a group of 9 jakes come in & start milling around. They would start to leave & 1 of us would cluck a little & they came right back in. One came right up the edge of the palmetto’s & dang near stuck his beak in my barrel. They finally wandered off & here came a gobbler. This tom literally walked in the steps of the tom I killed & I shot him less than a yard & just over an hour from the time I killed the 1st bird. The 2 had almost identical stats.

03/19/99 09:55 A.M Weight 17.6 lbs. Beard 8 1/8” Spurs 7/8”
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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redarrow
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by redarrow » June 14th, 2016, 3:56 pm

:thumbup:
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HunterGKS
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 14th, 2016, 4:46 pm

03/18/99 08:52 A.M Weight 17.4 lbs. Beard 8 3/8” Spurs 1”

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03/19/99 09:55 A.M Weight 17.6 lbs. Beard 8 1/8” Spurs 7/8”

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This is the palmetto patch we set up in.

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One of the great things about going to camp is the folks I get to meet.

Me on the left & Steve Simmons from a Cabela’s in WI. His bird’s stats: Weight 18.4 lbs. Beard 10 1/8” Spurs 1 1/4”

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George Quay aka Thundergut on the left with Steve & his bird.

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This is Austi Haecock on the left & David Austin.

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Austi & me with both birds.

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George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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guesswho
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by guesswho » June 14th, 2016, 7:01 pm

I like Steve and Austi's camo. Haven't seen any DK 's in a while. I always liked Fisheating Creek. I can remember when it was a WMA.
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OLE RASPY
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by OLE RASPY » June 14th, 2016, 7:28 pm

Great story George. congrats on the birds. I liked hunting them osceolas I just wish my hunt lasted longer. I wasn't hunting bout 1hr before I killed mine. But I do have to ask how do you arrive at camp on 3/17 but kill on 3/16. :dontknow: :lol:
TURKEYS
COYOTES
DEER
SQUIRRELS
(all in this order)

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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by guesswho » June 14th, 2016, 7:37 pm

Trust me, at his age it's pretty easy.
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 14th, 2016, 8:19 pm

guesswho wrote:I like Steve and Austi's camo. Haven't seen any DK 's in a while. I always liked Fisheating Creek. I can remember when it was a WMA.
Ronnie, This was Fisheating Creek Hunting Camp which ran parallel to the WMA with the WMA being on the south side of the creek. The WMA is still in existence as far as I know. Probably 10 years or so ago. Lykes yanked the lease from Lovett & David for guys with more $$s. Lovett passed 2 years ago. I have lost track of David. Austi is a Regional Director I think.

Thx.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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HunterGKS
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 14th, 2016, 8:23 pm

OLE RASPY wrote:Great story George. congrats on the birds. I liked hunting them osceolas I just wish my hunt lasted longer. I wasn't hunting bout 1hr before I killed mine. But I do have to ask how do you arrive at camp on 3/17 but kill on 3/16. :dontknow: :lol:
Would you believe: I'm faster than a speeding bullet??

....................................NO....................................

Would you believe: I put that in there to see who would read the whole story??

....................................NO....................................

Would you believe: I had the wrong dates on both birds?? Should have been the 18th & 19th. It's fixed.

Thx.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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MAK
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by MAK » June 15th, 2016, 7:36 am

Small dang world - I hunted Fisheating Creek with David Austin in 2001; Met Austi thru some old hunting board and then in Florida.
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 15th, 2016, 9:49 am

MAK wrote:Small dang world - I hunted Fisheating Creek with David Austin in 2001; Met Austi thru some old hunting board and then in Florida.
I was there in 2001 as well. I can't find my stories to determine what days I was there to see if we may have been there at the same time.

I really miss hunting with David & the other folks. Do you remember Charlie Tanner, the camp manager? She was a hoot.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 15th, 2016, 10:09 am

Based on a certificate I found, I was there on the weekend of 03/10/2001 - 03/11/2001.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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MAK
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by MAK » June 15th, 2016, 10:18 am

I was there @ "main lodge" - 2 trailers smacked together!!!
Tue 3/13 to Fri 3/15 -
yes I remember Charlie - she really was a hoot

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Brought this guy home with me - 19 lb 14 oz - 10 3/4" Beard - 1 3/8" Left Spur and 3/4" Right Spur; too rich for my blood to go back. Had a great time though.
Last edited by MAK on June 15th, 2016, 10:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 15th, 2016, 10:26 am

We missed each other by this much [ ]. I hunted there from 1999 thru 2011. I was at the main camp every year except for 2011. David lost the lease after the 2010 season & I hunted Gator Slough in 2011 with a couple of guys I knew that picked up that lease. Got my last Osceola & 1st coyote on that trip.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 15th, 2016, 12:05 pm

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David Austin, me, Wendel Ford, Charlie Tanner.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 15th, 2016, 5:28 pm

MAK, Didn't see the pic of your bird earlier. Congrats.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by guesswho » June 15th, 2016, 7:40 pm

HunterGKS wrote:Ronnie, This was Fisheating Creek Hunting Camp which ran parallel to the WMA with the WMA being on the south side of the creek.
I really liked that place. Hunted it a lot in the 60's and 70's. If it's still a WMA I need to check it out and make a trip just for the heck of it. I had a lot of fun in that place and Avon Park Bombing Range as a kid. It's a wonder I still have all my limbs after being turned loose in the Bombing Range .

Then a few years later in the early 80's we got hooked up with a couple brothers (actual brothers) last name of Grigsby who had like 8,000 acres that joined Fisheating creek WMA. It was mostly open land but had patches of trees here and there and was wrapped up in turkeys. As far as I know we were the only ones they let hunt, me my Mom and Dad. Man, those were the good ole days. Plenty of turkeys and not many turkey hunters even on WMA's. The Grigsby's also owned Cone Brothers ranch just North of Plant City which was 20 minutes from the house, also loaded with turkeys. They leased the deer rights out but no-one turkey hunted, so again we had access to a prime place with no people. Sure ain't like that down there now! Thanks N"WTF"
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 16th, 2016, 6:08 am

As far as I know, it is still a WMA. If you do go, take 27 & stop in Lake Placid & check out the murals. They are awesome.

I spent several weeks at the bombing range TDY when I was stationed at MacDill in the early 70s. I met a lot of the prisoners at the minimum security corrections center. They had a great woodworking shop & a big green house where they raised lilies for sale. They had also created an island by digging a moat which filled with water. They had a couple of small gators trained to come to them when they slapped a chicken against the bank. I wouldn't want to do that now!! The prisoners were real interesting to talk with.

If I remember right, Cone Ranch was on 39. If it's the same place I'm thinking of, a friend had a deer lease & I hunted there a couple of times. The 1st place I hunted down there was 2 Rivers Ranch on 302 north of Brandon. I also hunted once north of I-4 near where the jet is on display off the interstate. I don't remember the name of the place. Hog hunted a couple of times at Silver Lake 0n 74 west of Palmdale.

Good times.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by guesswho » June 16th, 2016, 10:09 am

Yep, on 39.
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Re: 1st Osceolas

Post by HunterGKS » June 16th, 2016, 11:13 am

I know we must have "talked " years back but I don't remember. The memory is the 2nd thing to go & I forget what the 1st is. I worked for Dixie Growers at the Farmers market for 3 years between stints with GTE/Verizon. Did you know any of the Plant City Lawtons? The Dad built homes & his son & cousin owned Dixie & farmed several different places, both sides of Jim Johnson Road across from where the Reds built a ball park. They actually farmed where that park is. The south end of PC on 39 (I think 39), & where the polo grounds were built. They grew produce & ran about 600 head of beef.
George

YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR BODY STILL. YOUR HEART JUST HASN'T CAUGHT ON.

.17 = NITRO OF THE RIMFIRE WORLD


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