As the winter season arrives it is time for the stalkers to look at the stock of their red hinds and then decide what needs to be culled to provide enough food to support the remaining heard during the long winters on the hill. As guests, you will be escorted by the stalker in two groups of two. The number of hinds shot will be governed by the stalker and the conditions on the day. A days’ hill stalking can be very exhilarating, and adrenaline fuelled. With each turn of a glen or walk over a ridge the wind can change direction in an instant.
Keeping your movements and scent hidden is what brings about successful stalking, the stalkers job is to get you into position to take a safe and clean shot. With the stalker by your side you will be gauging the wind and watching the movement of the stags and hinds ensuring that every movement goes un noticed, until the time is right to get in to position and take that ever memorable shot.
A Typical Day
The day will be run in time-honoured tradition and if the stalk results in a successful kill, the stag will be carried back to the larder by pony for preparation and collection by the venison dealer.
You will be met by the head ghille in the morning for a practice shoot at a target to ensure that you comfortable with your rifle and that the rifle is accurate, targets are positioned usually at a distance of 100 metres. There are 2 stalkers covering these Estates so any stalking will be in two groups.
Upon commencement of the hunt you will be accompanied at all times by an experienced stalker who will know where to locate your deer depending on wind direction and prevailing conditions.
When the deer are located the herd will consist of between 10 and 100 red deer, at this point your stalker will select a stag that, in his opinion, is suitable to be culled. At this point you and your stalker begin your final approach, this will usually involve crawling on the ground in order to avoid detection by the stag.
Once you have reached a suitable distance from the group the selected stag will be described to you. When the target is standing correctly a shot can be taken.
The estate has maintained the tradition of using highland ponies to retrieve stalked deer as they are both more adept than vehicles at accessing the whole hill and do less damage to the land.