Spring Fever in Oklahoma

Springtime is a special season for those of us who love the outdoors, and the Bassmaster Elite Series is jam-packed full of dedicated and accomplished outdoorsmen.

For some it’s duck season, to others its whitetails — Clifford Pirch is an accomplished elk guide and hunter and David Mullins is a hardcore whitetail bow hunter — among other pursuits in the fall.

But once winter turns to the new life of spring, and bass begin to move shallow for the annual spawn most of the Elite pros are thinking about blue trophies and making the Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year Championship in September.

A few share the obsession for chasing an old granddaddy longbeard. Unfortunately, tournament season doesn’t leave a lot of time for turkey hunting. A few find a way to fit in a couple of hunts as time allows — and a few kill some dandies.

Dustin Connell of Clanton, Ala., isn’t an experienced turkey hunter, but his brother can call a bird through a concrete wall — I know, I’ve seen it. Connell attempted to kill his first turkey this year at home, but wasn’t able to connect after several close calls.

He decided to call Bassmaster Digital Content Director Steve Bowman, a highly accomplished and veteran turkey hunter from Arkansas. Bowman took Connell out after his first turkey in the Arkansas hardwoods in advance of the Bass Pro Shops Central Open #2 at Arkansas River.

Albeit an unsuccessful trip, Connell contracted the fever and likely won't miss another turkey season.