If there’s anything I’ve learned over many years of hunting longbeards, it’s that there are two kinds of people in the spring turkey woods: There are people who hunt turkeys, and then there are full-blown gobbler fanatics. My friends would likely consider me the latter.
To me, a strutting longbeard working his way into a call is on the same level as watching a rutting buck come trotting into bow range. There’s a major rush and the likelihood of being outsmarted runs high, so being on your A-game is a must. When the first signs of spring bloom in South Texas, it’s time to switch gears from bucks to strutting gobblers. I love every minute of it.
Here in Texas, we’re privileged to have the ability to start chasing birds in the middle of March, which is a couple of months sooner than some other states. In the weeks leading up to opening day, I spend a lot of time out in the field scouting roosts, sanding down friction calls, and I always find a little time to break out my shotgun, give it a cleaning and send a couple of patterns down range.
There was a time when turkey guns were nothing more than a pump gun, covered in camo and if you were lucky, you had an extra full choke screwed into the end of the barrel. For some, that’s still enough to satisfy their turkey hunting itch and to get the job done successfully. To others, having a gun that is strategically set up specifically for gobblers is a bit more appropriate. Though it’s possible to dream up and build your very own longbeard crusher from scratch, Remington has done the heavy lifting for you with the V3 Turkey Pro.
So, what sets it apart from the pack, you might ask? Here’s what makes the V3 a true tactical turkey crushing machine.
Oversized controls and loading port
At first glance, no other word comes to mind to describe the controls on the V3 other than “tactical”. The shotgun comes equipped with an extended bolt handle and an oversized bolt release button. It’s a gnarly look, but it makes it more functional when you’re wearing gloves in the field.
What I appreciate is Remington widened the underside loading port, which makes loading shells a breeze. No more getting your fingers caught in a jam, literally. The bolt release button is also oversized for easy operation and is comparable to one that you would find on a competition AR-15. These features make for a user-friendly shotgun.
The moment that turkey loads began to hold incredible patterns beyond 40 yards was the moment that having a scope of some kind mounted on your turkey rig became less of a want and more of a need. When you pair an ultra tight pattern with a full choke, the risk of missing at close range can actually increase. The V3 helps you bypass those moments and comes bore-sighted at 40 yards with a TruGlo dot. The TruGlo offers a wide field of view and is easily adjustable for both brightness and dot color (red or green). Best of all, the 5 MOA dot is easy to acquire quickly when shouldering the shotgun when those quick draw scenarios come to life.
If you’re running and gunning for a gobbler, you’ll probably find yourself sitting in a clump of brush. And that makes for a tight setup while waiting for him to close the distance. In these cases, having a short barrel can make all the difference between quickly getting on target and blanking. The Turkey Pro comes standard with a 22 inch barrel with a TruGlo Headbanger choke, to keep patterns tight. One of the biggest misconceptions in the turkey woods is that a longer barrel helps to keep patterns tight at greater distances. But all a longer barrel will do is help to foul you up when swinging on that strutting tom. Lose the weight, lose the extra barrel length, and gain a bunch of functionality.
Believe me when I say that this shotgun is very well balanced. After shooting what seems like hundreds of shotguns over the years, the balance of the V3 is among some of the best. Out of the box, the V3 Turkey Pro weighs in at 7.5 pounds (empty) even with all the bells and whistles on it.
For me, this variation of the V3 is the perfect turkey gun if you’re a serious longbeard hunter looking for a new spring setup. Out of the box, it literally comes ready to roll and just takes a quick tune after a few shots. For just over a thousand bucks, having a fully capable semi-automatic turkey gun that will be the envy of your camp is worth every penny.