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      Turkey Season Filming Gear Guide

      Turkey Season Filming Gear Guide

      When I hear that first gobble of the year I’m not sure who is more fired up, myself or that gobbling tom. After a long winter I always love it when spring comes and turkey season is here. Filming turkey hunts can be so much fun, but it also presents some unique challenges. Turkeys have good eyeballs and keeping movement minimal while filming is super important. We’ll take a look at gear that will help you be successful filming turkey hunts this spring. Another thing I love about turkey season is taking out young hunters or people that are new to hunting. Having multiple people in the blind also can present some challenges for filming.

      #1 Run and Gun Filming Setups

      My turkey hunting strategy will often change throughout the season. Sometimes I’ll have a really good idea of where the birds are roosting and what their patterns are. In that scenario, I like to set up in a popup blind and have my decoys out in front of me. Sometimes, however, I like to be more mobile. In that case, having a lightweight camera setup is really nice.

      Monopod Stake Kit

      I love using the Monopod stake kit for self filming run and gun turkey hunts. Its so simple to use and is very light. The monopod stake kit includes a stake that threads right into the bottom of the Fourth Arrow monopod. Out in the field, you can just stake the monopod into the ground, and you are good to go. The top of the stake includes a foot plate for easily staking it into the ground. If you want a lightweight and easy to carry filming option, definitely check out the Monopod Stake kit.


      Tripod Lite

      Sometimes a monopod and stake isn’t an option. Sometimes the area where you hunt the ground is too hard or rocky for a stake to be practical. In that case, the tripod lite is a great option. The tripod light only weighs 2.6 lbs. The tripod light is super adjustable for both filming sitting on the ground and all the way to standing.

      #2 Popup Blind Setups

      Rex Arm

      Popup blinds are great for turkey hunting because turkeys don’t seem to care that they are there. They also help hide your movement while filming. One challenge in a blind, though, is you have blind spots on the corners of your blind. To get past those blind spots with a tripod setup you have to move the tripod around in the blind. That isn’t great if you have turkeys around you that could pick up that movement. That is where the Rex Arm comes in. The Rex Arm is a 10” arm that mounts directly to your tripod. That gives you 20” of movement without having to move your tripod. If you like using a tripod in the blind, a Rex Arm is the perfect compliment to make things a lot easier and helps reduce movement.


      Rex Arm Pillar Kit

      As I mentioned before, I love taking out others during turkey season. If you have a smaller blind having two people in the blind plus filming equipment can be difficult. That is where the Rex Arm Pillar Kit comes in. The Rex Arm Pillar Kit allows you to film in the blind without taking up any leg room. The Pillar kit mounts directly to a hub style popup blind. Then with the Rex Arm coming off the top of the monopod you have 20” of movement.

      rex arm pillar

      #3 Video Head

      Having a video head with an adjustable handle is really nice for filming turkey hunts. As we all know, reducing movement is key for turkey hunting. The Fourth Arrow video head allows you to adjust the angle of the head arm down to where you don’t have to reach up so high to move your camera.

      #4 Second Angle Equipment

      Turkey season is a great time to take advantage of second angle/pov cameras both outside and inside the blind. We offer both a mini tripod and mini stake that works great for holding your GoPro or Tactacam cameras. You can get some super cool pov shots with a camera right next to your decoys.

      decoy pov

      Having the right equipment can make filming turkey hunts more fun and more successful. If you haven’t filmed your turkey hunts yet, you should definitely do it because its a blast! Go out there, press record, and smash some thunder chickens.

      16 Point Buck and Filming Techniques with Michael Hunsucker

      16 Point Buck and Filming Techniques with Michael Hunsucker

      Check out this episode of the Drop Tine Report Podcast. Tracy talks with Michael Hunsucker about the 16 point buck he killed in Colorado! They also talk about Michael's filming techniques. Michael is the host of Heartland Bowhunter on the Outdoor Channel.

      Adding Supporting Footage To Your Hunting Videos

      Adding Supporting Footage To Your Hunting Videos


      Supporting footage is a giant part of story telling. Learning to shoot supporting footage will greatly increase the quality of your production irrespective of what camera you are using.

      If You Say It, Show It!

      When you watch a hunt you want to watch a hunt. You don’t just want to sit there and watch someone talk. You need to apply that when you are filming yourself or filming others. If you mention that its late October and the leaves are falling, show a video of leaves falling and pan your sounding area. If you mention that you are sitting 30 yards from a big scrape, show a video of the scrape. Its a great idea to keep a mental note of what is talked about during the pre-hunt interview so you can capture the supporting footage needed to keep things interesting.

      Dig Into the Archives

      Supporting footage is great for during interview during the hunt and for voice overs. You may want to tell a story of something that happened in the past. That is when you can dig into the archives and give people a visual to match what you are talking about. You might be talking about a particular hunting location and what it was like. You might be recalling a memory of hunting with a special individual. You might be pulling footage from a previous year of a buck you’ve been chasing for multiple years. Diving into the archives to help tell your story can really liven up your hunting video.

      You don’t have to have all the expensive gear to tell a good story. Supporting footage is a critical part of telling entertaining stories and you can get supporting footage with whatever camera you might have.

      Gear Add-ons For Adding Emotion To Your Hunting Videos

      Gear Add-ons For Adding Emotion To Your Hunting Videos

      In a prior blog we reviewed what equipment is absolutely necessary for filming hunts. Today we will be looking at two add-ons that aren’t essential but really help add emotion to your videos.

      Wireless / Lapel / Lav Mics

      Shotgun mics are great for picking up good overall ambient sound. They do decent for when the hunter is talking toward the camera. If you want to step the audio game up to the next level and really add in some emotion to your videos, a lapel mic is the way to go. Lapel mics are worn on the hunter and can capture so much more personal audio than a shotgun mic. A lapel can capture the hunter whispering to the camera man. A lapel can capture heavy breathing as a monster buck comes into range. Sometimes you can even capture a heartbeat on a lapel mic. A mic on the hunter can make the viewer feel like they are actually there experiencing exactly what the hunter is experiencing. Audio is so key in any film and having close up and personal audio of your hunter really ads emotion to your hunting films.

      POV / Second Angle Cameras

      Wireless mics help add emotion through audio and POV cameras add emotion through the visual. When you only have one camera pointed toward the animal you are hunting you can’t see what is going on with the hunter. You don’t know if the hunter is freaking out because they are looking at the biggest buck of their life. You don’t know when the hunter is about to shoot because you can’t see them drawing back their bow. After the shot takes place, you don’t know if the hunter is worried or is celebrating. A second angle camera pointed at the hunter allows you to much more easily tell the story of what happened. When you see the hunter do everything that leads up to the shot, you really feel like you are there. Second angle cameras dramatically increase your ability to add emotion to your hunting videos and make them so much more enjoyable to watch.

      If people are going to take the time to read or watch a story, it must have emotion and it must be relatable. Wireless mics and second angle cameras do just that when it comes to hunting films. If you are looking to step up your storytelling game, a wireless mic and second angle camera should definitely be on your list of gear add-ons for this season.

      What You Need To Get Started Filming Hunts

      What You Need To Get Started Filming Hunts

      There is so much information out there in the filming space about what you need to film hunts. To someone just getting into filming hunts, it can be hard to figure out what you really need to film a good quality hunting video. In this blog we’ll be covering the very basics of what you need to start filming.

      Budget and Expectations

      Your available budget and your expectations for your videos will be the driving force when it comes to what you actually need and what level of equipment you need. A lot of people just film their family and friends for fun so the level of equipment they need will be much different from those who are looking to be a professional producer in the outdoor space.

      Be honest to yourself about your budget. Also, make sure to consider everything you need before you blow your entire budget on a camera. A great place to start is to check out prebuilt packages like the ones available from Bedford Outdoors. Keep in mind that camera’s drive the price of the package. If you get a small/inexpensive camera you don’t need super expensive accessories to go along with it. However, if you want a more expensive camera, the accessories you’ll need to take full advantage of the camera’s capabilities will be a little more money.

      Everyone has different expectations for their hunting videos. Why you are filming dictates what you’ll really need. If you are just filming to review shot placement or show your buddies your archery hunts, sometimes just a cell phone suffices for a camera. If you want a cinematic feel to your videos to submit your films into film fests, you’ll need some better gear. If you want to become a professional, you’ll need high quality enough gear where you’ll be able to create the type of quality content TV shows will want.


      The camera is obviously the most important piece of equipment for filming. As previously mentioned, for beginner filmers sometimes their cell phone will suffice. Fourth Arrow makes some great accessories for people that just want to film with their cell phone. If you want the ability to optically zoom you will want some type of actual dedicated camera. There are a wide array of options out there for cameras. Some cameras are better for people that self film. Some cameras are better for people that want to capture a cinematic look with a shallow depth of field. If you want to figure out what camera might be the best fit for you based upon the type of videos you want to create and your budget, the guys at Bedford Outdoors specialize in helping people do just that.


      Support System

      If you want decent quality video you will need some type of support system for your camera. There are 2 pieces that are important in that support system: the actual camera support and the camera head.

      Your style of hunting will dictate what support system you will need. If you film from the ground or from blinds you’ll want a tripod or a monopod to support your camera. If you want to film hunts from a tree stand, you will need a camera arm. Fourth Arrow specializes in camera arms for any and all level of filmers. Some of us hunt both from the ground and from a tree so we need both types of support systems.

      A camera head will be needed with either a tripod or a tree arm. Make sure to select a camera head that is designed specifically for video. You want to purchase a had that pans and tilts smoothly. The great thing about most camera heads is they can be used on both your tripod and your camera arm so you don’t have to buy multiple of them.

      camera arm


      A external mic is not an absolute necessity when it comes to filming hunts. However, the quality of your content will be greatly increased with good audio. A shotgun mic is a great option for upgrading your audio game. Shotgun mics pic up audio where they are pointed so you can get some great audio of deer moving through the woods for example. External mics also do much better with wind than a built in mic. You get a lot of wind noise with built in mics but shotgun mics usually come with windscreens which greatly decrease that annoying wind noise.

      SD Card

      An SD card is necessary for filming with a camera. Sometimes guys forget to pick up and SD card when they purchase their camera. There are a lot of different speeds and sizes of SD cards. The folks at Bedford Outdoors will be able to help you pick the right SD card for your camera.

      Be Careful Where You Buy Your Gear

      Now that we’ve covered what gear you need, one final thing to note is its important to be careful where you buy your camera gear. If the deal looks too good to be true it probably is. You want to stay away from grey market cameras that won’t have a manufactures warranty. Its important to purchase your camera gear from a trusted retailer like Bedford Outdoors. If you are looking for the best camera support systems for on the ground or in a tree, make sure to check out Fourth Arrow Camera Arms.

      Bedford outdoors

      Filming your hunts is a ton of fun and is very rewarding. Now that you know what equipment you need to start filming, go out there and start creating some awesome hunting content! If you’d like to learn more about filming hunts, make sure to check out Film The Hunt. Film the Hunt offers both online and on-site video education. Their on-site courses are phenomenal if you want hands on training with everything in the outdoor production space from storytelling to running your camera to video editing.