By: Tink Jackson

Archery hunters have to take every advantage they can get. From camo to scent control and everything in between, we need all the help we can muster to get close enough to make our shots. One of the greatest tools placed on the market to help in recent history is the ground blind. Of course, as with every other useful tool that has come along, there are now many different variations as well. Over the next few reviews, I will be discussing some of the full size ground blinds that we used over the winter on our New Mexico deer hunt. The first full-sized blind that we reviewed was the KillZone Turret XL Hub Style Hunting Blind.

KillZone Turret XL Hunting Blind

Technical specifications:

• Hub Style / Portable Blind
• Triangle Roof Hatch with Zipper Closure
• Center Height: 66″
• Interior Hub-to-Hub: 72″ x 72″
• 4 Full Size Windows with Mesh (12” H x 21” W)
• 7 Slot Windows with Camo Removable Mesh (15” H x 9” W)
• Scent-Dampening Stealth Protection
• Black-Out Interior with Open Floor
• Includes Stakes and High Wind Tie-Downs
• Backpack Case: 42″ x 6″ x 6″
• Weight: 14 lbs.

In reviewing the blinds, we looked at the following traits of each blind:
• Window Configuration/Style/Ease of Use
• Door Configuration
• Construction
• Size and Weight
• Camo Patterns Available
• Other Components
• Costs

Windows – Let’s face it, those of us that use ground blinds know that the biggest issue with some of the blinds on the market is the windows. What size are they and how are they placed? Are they easy to open, close? Are they noisy? Can we switch which windows are open quickly and quietly? The KillZone Turret XL Hub Style Hunting Blind has four (4) full view windows with shoot through mesh (one on each side) and seven (7) slot style windows with shoot through mess (2 on each side, one on back opposite door).

The four large windows are definitely big enough to allow the hunter the ability to make a shot at many different angles and watch a large area, allowing the other windows to stay closed and keep it black inside. The slotted windows on each side give an even larger field of view, or can be used to keep an eye on the other side of the blind to make sure nothing sneaks in on you. The windows are sewn in on the lower edge, and attach at the top with hooks.

The large windows have hooks on each corner and in the middle, the slot windows have one hook in the center (the top of the flap has a solid bar across it to keep it from sagging). All in all, the design of the windows is very good. The design allows quiet changing between open windows (no Velcro or zippers), the windows give a significant amount of shooting space, and when they are closed they do not let light in.

Slot Window with Center Hook at Anti-Sagging Bar in Top

Door – The door on the Turret XL is a triangle shaped door located on the back of the blind. The door is cut out of one of the panels and has top and bottom zippers. I prefer this style of door as opposed to the doors that are along one of the back edges. The door closes all of the way and you do not have the issue of not being able to get it to zip all of the way to the bottom. The blinds that have the corner zippers when tied down always seems to not zip quite all of the way, which always leads to some light getting into the blind. It takes very little light behind you to allow an animal to see you move in the blind. The door design on the Turret XL is perfect.

V-cut Door in Back of Blind

– The Turret XL is constructed with lightweight steel hubs and fiberglass poles that provide for easy and stealthy deployment in your favorite spot. The Turret XL features a tough, scentless protected interior and weatherproof polyester fabric exterior for a durable, water-repellent finish. The seams are sewn, windows are sewn in, and the zippers are heavy weight zippers. The shoot through mesh in the windows is attached with full length Velcro on all sides providing solid hold. The construction of the blind is more than adequate to provide durability through extended use and harsh elements.

Velcro Attaches Shoot Through Mesh to All Windows

Size and Weight – The Turret XL measures 6 feet hub to hub and 7 feet corner to corner, with a squared off 62” of floor space, providing ample room for you and your gear, or, enough room for you and another hunter. The blind weighs 14 pounds, making it lightweight and easily carried from location to location on your run and gun days. The blind comes with a convenient carry bag with leather bottom, padded adjustable shoulder straps for transport, and ground stakes. The size and weight of the Turret XL are just right.

Turret XL Floor Plan

Camo Patterns – Here is the second major difference in the blinds we all consider each year. All of the blinds on the market basically are made the same way. A design of a hub style blind from one company is never really that much different from the design of another company. Window patterns and operations are different, and I discussed those above.

Camo patterns are also different. KillZone brings a couple of new and exciting patterns to the market here with their Open Woods and Zero Detect patterns. The Turret XL we reviewed was the Open Woods pattern. We found this pattern to blend in very well in the fall and winter here in the southwest, even in desert type terrain. We had deer, javelina and coyotes coming into the water hole the day we put the blind up. This is a great camo pattern, and a nice change from the same old patterns!

Open Woods Camo Pattern

Other Components – As mentioned, the Turret XL comes with a handy backpack style bag with padded straps. The Turret XL also has a zippered roof hatch which offers more shooting options. There are a series of loops sewn onto the outside of the blind for brushing it in. Each hub has a steel eye loop for tying the blind down, and each eye loop has a nylon strap attached for popping the blind up. The interior has two sewn in pockets for holding gear as well.

Zippered Roof Hatch

Brush Straps

Hub Eye and Nylon Strap

Costs – Now, let’s cut to the chase and that is exactly what KillZone does. KillZone sells their blinds directly to the customer, with no middle man. They get their blinds from the factory and sell them right out of their warehouse. Of course, this means no middle man mark-up to the buyer. The Turret XL is listed on the KillZone website for $114.99! Comparable blinds cost significantly more. It is kind of like a 365 day sale a year! In today’s economy, we all have to make the most of every penny. KillZone is helping all of us do just that!

Overall, we would highly recommend the KillZone Turret XL to any and every hunter. In all areas the blind met or exceeded our standards, and as stated, when it came to price point, they left little room for looking elsewhere for quality, affordable ground blinds. This is a great value product from KillZone!

For more please go to: KillZone Blinds