Hunting Report 2016 – La Dormida Lodge – Argentina
Hello everybody, Joaquin here again, the lodge manager and shooting guide at La Dormida Lodge. Some of you have already met me and I hope to meet those of you that have not yet been to La Dormida for our terrific dove shooting.
Let me tell you about the first six months of 2016, this is the season that we are normally moving from the hills to the flats (January and February), in those two months, we shoot in the hills. But in late February, the harvesting starts, particularly this year, we had a very wet summer, and that delayed the harvest, farmers started about the end of march, so the transition was very slow and very hard for our regular scouting people. Once all the framers harvested the beans, the doves are already flying in the fields… water holes and cropland means lots and lots of birds. From February to July we are only shooting in the flats, feed lots, and temporary roosts. Drives to the field are all around 30 min to 50 min from the lodge. As far as June and July of this 2016, normally farmers started harvesting corn, but again everything was delayed a month or more because of our weather, so this June and July was really very hard work for the scouters and guides, but thanks to the great job they did, we always shot very well, also we had some sessions that we moved to “plan B.” The dove were moving around a lot more than normal this year. In terms of weather, in January-February-March, temperatures of 50˚F average in the morning and 90˚F average in the afternoon were typical; it was also very rainy. But we didn´t have to skip even one session, so that was very good. In April-May-June-July (fall and winter) this was one of our strongest winter periods ever, very cold in the morning and then very nice sunny days in the afternoon, in the morning around 28˚F (frost) and then warm ups to 45-50˚F in the afternoon.
Normally our program is very simple, wake up call at 6:30, 7:00 breakfast and going to the field at 07:30 am and no set time to come back; that depends on the birds–and on you. But the best is in the morning (the earlier the better) and in the afternoon (the later the better) If you wish to go early you still end a morning shooting an average of 30 boxes, a bit later maybe not quite as many. Our lunch time around 12:30pm. A nice traditional argentine asado, with good wine. After lunch it is very good to have a siesta in hammocks… around 03:00 pm the afternoon shooting starts again, around 4:30 pm the big mass again comes back to the roost, and there you start burning some shells… after you finish shooting, we all return to the lodge, there you can have some very relaxing massages and a very nice hot tub, so you get ready for next day.
Here is where I want to stop a little bit, and what I have noticed during my 12 years of experience is that the big difference we have here at David Denies is family. We are a big family and we consider this is your house, so we want our guests to enjoy the house like they enjoy the shooting. We run the lodge in relaxing fashion; no strict schedules, and we want you to enjoy yourself completely.
To give you a little better idea, as soon as you arrive from the field our chef serves a nice warm soup, or if is a hot day, we serve a refreshing drink, then normally everybody is having a nice massage and a dip in the hot tub, after they all grab a drink from the bar. All our dinners have menus with 4 different options of main courses, so each of you would pick your choice of the night, before dinner time the chef will serve 3 options of appetizers at the bar, which is where we start telling a lot of nice stories and enjoying every moment with friends or family. After appetizers and dinner one of the best parts of the day begins. Around the fire pit with friends, more drinks, a sky full of stars—we see those evenings as great moments with your friends outside your regular world. Those moments are priceless.
To finish I want to give a little message “Life is good, but there is only one.”
Ok everybody, thanks for taking the time to read my report—hope to see you here very soon.
La Dormida Lodge