Bowhunting for turkey?

I've got a nice bow I use for deer hunting, and I've spotted turkeys around Cle Elum and Ellensburg while grouse hunting. I thought I would combine the two, but I've never hunted turkey before. I'm just wondering if anyone in this forum has, and would be willing to give a few pointers to a well-meaning noob.

My understanding is that you have to scout the birds on one day, then set up an ambush (good camo or blind/decoy/call) in the morning between their roost and where they eat and drink. Clearly it's not a spot & stalk game.

Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks much!

Jim Ficklin

Genuine Montana Fossil
I don't hunt turkeys anymore, but friends who went out all said that the birds have been strangely silent this year & were not responding to calls - this from both the Blues & north of Spokane. 2 of them harvested birds via stalking, one with his shotgun, his brother with a bow.


Active Member
Its been tough this year, not very vocal. FYI Cle Elum and Ellensberg get hit pretty hard during turkey season so birds are not as visible as during the fall and tend to head to private property.

Get a slate call. Probably easiest to use. Learn out to make a few basic hen sounds. Tons of info on turkey calling techniques on youtube. Get out to areas early and start calling at day light. Listen for gobbles. Really have to limit calling and make sure that there are no obstacles between you and the Tom. They tend not to come in if there are obstacles, like fallen trees, streams, ponds really thick brush etc.

Good camo for body and face mask and hands. You can still hunt to in areas where sign is found but a tough proposition. Still fun to get out in woods and maybe even find some deer and elk sheds. And yes ticks are out early this year.

I've killed 2 with bow and hunting with shotgun this year

Alex MacDonald

that's His Lordship, to you.....
Too bad I saw this so late, but I'll second what Tom said about them being quiet. I've seen several flocks in my back yard at times, but I believe that they're all on the chartered jet the night before the season begins, flying to the South of France or somewhere! Nary a feather to be seen now (smart little devils, aren't they?).

Alex MacDonald

that's His Lordship, to you.....
I've been seeing about 15-20 birds right around my yard in the morning, so once the season begins, I'll set up the decoys, string up the recurve, and work on a decent shooting spot. They have zero pressure here, so I just might bag one! You might consider adding a few Zwickey Scorpio broadhead stoppers. Better to have the arrow lodge in the bird than to pass through completely. It interferes with his ability to fly.
The best way is to use a blind of some sort. It really hides your movement but it limits mobility and you can't move around as freely. I still had a nice long beard bust me thing spring as I was drawing the bowstring back. He seen something and quickly ran off.

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