The Grand Slam: Merriam’s Hunt


1 | Locating at Daylight

Spring lingers on, and by now, the thick, green woods left behind in Osceola, Eastern and Rio Grande country are a distant memory. Now you’re in the Black Hills. At daylight, it could be 60 degrees and clear, or 20 degrees and snowing.

2 | Screaming Merriam’s

But even if it’s cold, the unmistakable “soft” sounding gobble of a Merriam’s longbeard is sure to get your blood pumping.

3 | Friction Calling

Loud calling rules in Merriam’s country. These turkeys are notorious for coming to a call from a long distance. 

4 | Gobbler Profile

The Merriam’s is about the same size as an Eastern, but with its own distinct appearance. Merriam's gobblers frequently have short beards, due in large part to cold winters and deep snow. 

5 | Long-Distance Calling

Merriam’s gobblers are among the easiest to work of the four subspecies. Finding them in the rugged mountain terrain is the challenge.

6 | Running and Gunning

Merriam’s country is usually big—millions of acres at times. To a run-and-gun hunter with strong legs, it’s pure turkey heaven.

7 | Spitt’n and Drumm’n

Spit. Drum…and there it is. A full fan with white tips, easing into shotgun range.

8 | Grand Slam Complete

And with a final pull of the trigger, your Grand Slam is complete.

9 | Dead Weight

A hefty gobbler adds a little strain when walking up a mountain—not that you mind. 

10 | The End of Spring

Take in the scenery while you’re here. The final leg of the Grand Slam also means spring is coming to an end.