I get married in a few weeks and when I was thinking of all the options for a “Stag Do” – pub crawl in Edinburgh, lads weekend to Alicante, quad bikes and paintballing – as a Fieldsports Photographer there really was only one option …. shooting!
Now this was pretty last minute and unplanned, days off work had to be planned, and the budget was tight – there was only 3 of us (as not all my friends shoot), but this was still not going to be easy. So there I was with the task of finding last minute shooting, accommodation, food and transport on a day we could all manage, at a price we could all deal with. There was only one place to go – Guns On Pegs. What an invaluable source Guns On Pegs is. My task would have been immense had it not been for the ease of using the website. Within a matter of a few hours I had a number of potential shoots lined up with availability for our 3 guns, accommodation found thanks to the useful links on the individual shoot pages. Before long, days off were confirmed, and we were all booked onto the Buckland Shoot in Somerset.
We had booked onto only a small 50 bird day, but the write up for Buckland looked promising, it was a fully catered day, accommodation close by, and although they officially had 2 guns left accommodating 3 of us was absolutely no problem at all. Tom Aplin (Gamekeeper) welcomed us as the regular host Phil was unavailable, and collected us from the pub where we had stayed the night before. Soon we were up in the Blackdown Hills at the newly refurbished Shoot Lodge for the meet and greet.
It was a mini-driven / walked up day with a good selection of sport – pheasant, woodcock, snipe and duck. It wasn’t a huge bag but it was a great day. A warm welcome, good organised beating, well planned drives and apart from a small incident with a wheel falling off a trailer, all went to plan! Soup, bread and cakes were laid on at the necessary time and we were all back at the Shoot Lodge, warming feet by the log burner, in time for a fantastic hearty lunch to round off the day nicely.
Thank you to the Aplins at The Buckland Shoot.
Thank you to Guns On Pegs – I would have been lost without you!
Thank you to Phillip and Matt – for making my shooting look half decent!!