High School Senior Wins Big Gobbler Photo Contest: Patience Pays on Memorable Hunt

Kacy Noland called the only turkey hunting trip she was able to take this year her “most memorable” ever.
Kacy Noland called the only turkey hunting trip she was able to take this year her “most memorable” ever.

Alabama Black Belt Adventures AssociationMONTGOMERY, Ala.-(Ammoland.com)- Kacy Noland called the only turkey hunting trip she was able to take this year her “most memorable” ever. The late March expedition in Pickens County paid off with a big gobbler and first place in the Alabama Black Belt Adventures Association Big Gobbler Photo Contest.

Kacy’s prize for entering the photo with her trophy turkey – one that sported an 11-inch beard and 1 3/8-inch spurs – is a framed mount valued at $150 of a fan, spurs, and beard of the bird from Foster Taxidermy in Montgomery. Kacy’s entry received the most “likes” of all the entries of turkeys taken in Alabama’s Black Belt during the 2016-17 hunting season.

The 18-year-old senior at Pickens Academy in Carrollton called her late March turkey hunt with her dad, Barrett Noland, “so special to me mostly because I know that I will not be around this time next year to go hunting because I will be playing softball at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.”

In true turkey hunter fashion, Kacy and her dad displayed extreme patience on that day on family owned land in Pickens County. “Birds were gobbling from every direction all morning and that was really cool to hear, but when some hens came up less than 5 yards from me it was one of the coolest things I have witnessed,” she said.

Despite hearing lots of gobblers, none had come close enough for a shot. The Nolands were about to pack it in when Dad suggested one last try. “I gave it a ‘cut’ one more time and he gobbled,” Barrett said. “He put on a show for about 20 minutes, but he was just out of clear shooting range.”

Kacy picks up the story: “We sat in a road and watched it walk in a field and strut,” she said. “It never would come closer to us because he had hens with him. Finally, he walked in the woods and we followed him. Dad was in front of me and I saw (the turkey) cut back and start running to where he was about to come back across the road. I told my Dad to ‘Get down,’ and I shot the turkey as it was running away. He never took another breath!”

That magical morning is etched in the Nolands’ memories and while Kacy doesn’t expect to have a lot of time for hunting in the near future, her younger siblings – 15-year-old Clark and 10-year-old Lizzie – will continue the family tradition with hunting adventures in Alabama’s Black Belt with Dad.

“We love to hear so many stories of families spending quality time together in the Black Belt,” said Alabama Black Belt Adventures Association Project Director Pam Swanner. “The region is the perfect place for those who love to hunt and fish as well as enjoy so many other kinds of outdoor activities together.”

About the Alabama Black Belt Adventures Association:

The Alabama Black Belt Adventures Association is committed to promoting and enhancing outdoor recreation and tourism opportunities in the Black Belt in a manner that provides economic and ecological benefits to the region and its citizens. For information, go to www.alabamablackbeltadventures.org.