What You Need In Your Turkey Vest – 25 Essentials

Preparing your turkey vest each spring is one of life’s great joys.

This list covers 25 essential items to include in your turkey vest for a full day’s hunt.

The goal of what to pack in your turkey hunting vest is to make sure you have everything you need for a successful and comfortable turkey hunt in one simple-to-access place.

The Turkey Vest.

The good news is most of the items you need to put in your turkey vest are small and lightweight.

25 Essential Items To carry In Your Turkey Hunting Vest

Preview Product
Primos Hunting Hook-Up Magnetic Box Call, Turkey Hunting Box Call in Brown 259 Primos Hunting Hook-Up Magnetic Box Call, Turkey Hunting Box Call in Brown 259
Primos Hunting Ol' Betsy Slate Call, Multicolored Primos Hunting Ol' Betsy Slate Call, Multicolored
HUNTERS SPECIALTIES HS Strut Mega Hoot Owl Gobbler Locator Rasp Sound Long Distance Turkey Mouth Call,Brown HUNTERS SPECIALTIES HS Strut Mega Hoot Owl Gobbler Locator Rasp Sound Long Distance Turkey Mouth...
Woodhaven Calls Ninja 3 Pack Turkey Three Reed Game Call, WH091 Woodhaven Calls Ninja 3 Pack Turkey Three Reed Game Call, WH091
AVIAN-X LCD Breeder Hen Turkey Decoy | Durable Realistic Lifelike Collapsible Standing Hunting Decoy with Carry Bag & Stake, AVX8008 AVIAN-X LCD Breeder Hen Turkey Decoy | Durable Realistic Lifelike Collapsible Standing Hunting Decoy...
Scentlok Men's Savanna Lightweight Headcover, Mossy Oak Country, One Size Scentlok Men's Savanna Lightweight Headcover, Mossy Oak Country, One Size
SPIKA Camouflage Hunting Fingerless Gloves,Military Tactical Half Finger Glove for Hunting Driving Padding Climbing L-XL SPIKA Camouflage Hunting Fingerless Gloves,Military Tactical Half Finger Glove for Hunting Driving...
Walker's Game Ear GWP-RSEM-KPT Walker's Razor Slim Electronic Muff - Kryptek Camo Walker's Game Ear GWP-RSEM-KPT Walker's Razor Slim Electronic Muff - Kryptek Camo
Buck Knives 110 Folding Hunter Lock-back Knife, Brass Bolsters, Ebony Handles, 3-3/4' 420HC Blade with Leather Sheath Buck Knives 110 Folding Hunter Lock-back Knife, Brass Bolsters, Ebony Handles, 3-3/4" 420HC Blade...
Fiskars Bypass Pruning Shears 5/8” Garden Clippers - Plant Cutting Scissors with Sharp Precision-Ground Steel Blade Fiskars Bypass Pruning Shears 5/8” Garden Clippers - Plant Cutting Scissors with Sharp...
MTM 25 Round Shotshell Box (Clear Smoke), Large MTM 25 Round Shotshell Box (Clear Smoke), Large
ALPS OutdoorZ Super Elite 4.0 Camo Turkey Vest Made with Quiet Cotton Featuring Removable Fold Away Seat, Game Bag, and Pockets for Calls and Strikers, Mossy Oak Bottomland, M/L ALPS OutdoorZ Super Elite 4.0 Camo Turkey Vest Made with Quiet Cotton Featuring Removable Fold Away...
Repel Permethrin Clothing & Gear Insect Repellent, Use on Outdoor Gear, Tents and Sleeping Bags, Repels Mosquitoes, Ticks, Mites, (Aerosol Spray), 6.5 Fl Oz (Pack of 6) Repel Permethrin Clothing & Gear Insect Repellent, Use on Outdoor Gear, Tents and Sleeping Bags,...
Bushnell PowerView 10 x 50mm Porro Prism Instafocus Binoculars, Realtree AP Bushnell PowerView 10 x 50mm Porro Prism Instafocus Binoculars, Realtree AP
Energizer LED Headlamp Pro260, Rugged IPX4 Water Resistant Head Light, Ultra Bright Headlamps for Running, Camping, Outdoor, Storm Power Outage (Batteries Included) Energizer LED Headlamp Pro260, Rugged IPX4 Water Resistant Head Light, Ultra Bright Headlamps for...
Garmin Rino 750, Rugged Handheld 2-Way Radio/GPS Navigator Garmin Rino 750, Rugged Handheld 2-Way Radio/GPS Navigator

Here is a table of turkey hunting essentials you may need to purchase or update.

For more detail on each item continue reading. Other items such as licenses, snacks, and drinks are also detailed below.

Why You Should Include These 25 Essential Items In Your Turkey Vest

1. Turkey Box Calls

Turkey Box Calls

 

You will want a variety of calls in your turkey vest to produce different sounds as the situations call for. When it comes to turkey box calls I always carry in my turkey vest the Primos Hook-Up Magnetic Box Call

Carry some spare rubber bands, sandpaper, and chalk to keep your calls in perfect working and sounding order. Check out this detailed guide and instruction videos on 9 Of The Best Box Calls For Turkey Hunting

2. Pot and Peg Calls

Pot and Peg Calls

 

Include 2 different pot calls. One slate and one glass with different strikers so you can vary the pitch and tone of your calls.

Two good options are the Primos Ol’ Betsy Slate Call and the Hunters Specialties H.S. Struth.S. Strut Sweet Suzie Snood Glass Pan Turkey Call

3. Locator Calls

Locator Calls

 

Valuable in helping you locate the gobblers.

Pack a crow, owl, and gobbler locator call into your turkey hunting vest.

In my turkey vest are the Primos Crow Call and the Hunters Specialties H.S. Strut Mega Hoot Owl Call

4. Diaphragm Calls

Diaphragm Calls

 

Bring along the diaphragm calls you are confident in using to generate a wide variety of sounds. Woodhaven makes great custom calls and this kit will cover you. Woodhaven Custom Calls Ninja Series 3-Pack Turkey Call Kit

5. Turkey Decoys (and stakes)

Turkey Decoys (and stakes)

 

An important part of setting up for a successful turkey hunt. I like the hen decoys such as the Avian-X Breeder Hen Turkey Decoy, Lifelike Collapsible Decoy With Carbon Stake and Carry Bag

They grab the attention of that big tom and will keep him distracted from you.

6. Hunting Mask

Hunting Mask

 

Packing a hunting mask in your turkey hunting vest will serve 2 important purposes.

It will help you stay camouflaged and protect you from the bugs and insects you are likely to experience during turkey hunting season.

On a sunny day, it is also worthwhile to use some camo face paint so you are not reflecting sunlight and giving away your position.

ScentlLok masks are made in the USA and do the job perfectly.

Scentlok Men’s Savanna Lightweight Headcover, Mossy Oak Country, One Size

7. Hunting Gloves

Hunting Gloves

 

Good quality hunting gloves will serve a similar purpose as the facemask. I prefer to use fingerless gloves for turkey hunting season, it makes using the turkey calls just that bit easier.

These gloves from Spika are a must have.

SPIKA Camouflage Hunting Fingerless Gloves, Military Tactical Half Finger Glove for Hunting Driving Padding Climbing L-XL

8. Ear Muffs Sound Enhancers

Ear Muffs Sound Enhancers

 

A great item to have in your turkey vest are the Walker’s Razor Slim Electronic Muff – Kryptek Camo

Electronic Hearing Protection with Sound Amplification and Suppression will help you hear those gobblers from much further out.

They will also protect your hearing when shooting. A hunter’s hearing is one of his or her’s most valuable tools. Enhance it and protect it.

9. Hunting Knife & or Multi-Tool

Hunting Knife & or Multi-Tool

 

I carry both in my turkey vest.

My trusty buck 110 folding knives and a Leatherman multi-tool.

This will ensure you have enough tools for your field dressing and any little repairs to equipment that may be required.

Buck Knives 110 Famous Folding Hunter Knife with Genuine Leather Sheath

LEATHERMAN – MUT EOD Multitool with Firearm and EOD Tools for Technicians and Military, Black with MOLLE Brown Sheath

Click here for a review of 3 great multi tools.

10. Small Pruning Tools

Small Pruning Tools

 

This little tool in your turkey vest has a wide range of benefits for the turkey hunter.

Help to clear annoying sticks and brush from your shooting position, build a brush blind and set up a clear shooting lane. You may even wish to include some camo netting to help you prepare the perfect brush blind.

Fiskars Steel Bypass Pruning Shears (91095935J)

11. Shotshells

Shotshells

 

One box of shot shells should be enough for a full day turkey hunting.

12. Butt Cushion – Seat

ALPS OutdoorZ NWTF Super Elite 4.0 Turkey Vest

 

A lot of turkey vests have these in-built such as the ALPS OutdoorZ NWTF Super Elite 4.0 Turkey Vest

Alternatively you can carry them separately. Invaluable for those long sit and waits.

Your butt will thank you.

13. Bug Repellent & ThermaCell

Bug Repellent & ThermaCell

 

Spring time, particularly following a rain shower will more often than not mean mosquitoes, ticks and a range of other insects. They are all trying to distract you from focusing on those big gobblers. In your turkey hunting vest you should carry Permethrin Spray to make sure no ticks are getting into your skin.

Repel Permethrin Clothing & Gear Insect Repellent, Aerosol, 6.5-Ounce, 6-Pack

A ThermaCELL mosquito repellent unit is perfect for keeping those nasty biting mosquitoes away from you.

Thermacell MR300F Portable Mosquito Repellent (Black) with Camo Holster.

14. Binoculars / Rangefinder

Binoculars

 

As the saying goes a good pair of binoculars are a hunter’s best friend. An essential item for your turkey vest is a quality pair of binoculars will help you find those gobblers. You do not need a large pair for turkey hunting, I carry the Bushnell PowerView 10 x 50mm and wear them on a Crooked Horn harness.

Bushnell PowerView 10 x 50mm Porro Prism Instafocus Binoculars, Realtree AP

Crooked Horn Realtree APHD 1″ Strap

A good range finder will also help you judge your shooting distance better, when setting up. I must admit when it comes to turkey hunting as the distances are short compared to deer hunting I use it sparingly. One of my favorite rangefinders is the Vortex Optics Ranger 1800 Laser Rangefinder

15. Headlamp or Flashlight

Headlamp or Flashlight

 

Moving to or from your blind during the dark is sure to have you stumbling into branches and making unnecessary noise.

Having a good headlamp or flashlight in your turkey vest will solve this problem for you.

A red or green light option is less likely to announce your presence to the gobblers. The Energizer Forest Green LED Headlamp with Smart Dimming Technology will cover all your requirements.

16. Licenses

Enough said. Make sure you are legal.

Tuck these into one of the small pockets in your turkey vest. You may be interested in this article for US Hunting Seasons By state which includes links to every state hunting.authority.

17. GPS

GPS

 

A GPS is an essential item that every hunter should carry in their turkey vest. Importantly you need to know how to use it.

I never leave on a hunt without my Garmin Rino. This unit has all you need in a GPS unit, with topographic maps, camera and a 2 way radio built in.

You can even track where your hunting buddies are located.

Even more important when you are hunting in unfamiliar areas. Get to and from your hunting area with confidence. Depending on where you hunt you may even wish to include a map and compass.

Garmin Rino 755t, Rugged Handheld 2-Way Radio/GPS Navigator with Camera and Preloaded TOPO Mapping

18. Cellphone with Camera

Fully charge your phone before heading out and make sure you put it in airplane and silent mode. Great for taking photos of your hard won turkey harvest. It may also help you in an emergency.

Google maps should be loaded on so you have a good view of your hunting terrain if you are in an area of signal. I have mine in a padded case in an inner pocket of my turkey vest.