Stalking Diary
Shooting Times & Country|September 29, 2021
There are some beasts that you simply cannot walk past and a redletter day on the hill with a former mentor ends with a perfect stalk
Davy Thomas

The rut has broken in the glen and it is truly one of the highlights of every hill stalker’s year. To take a particular animal, and to be able to stalk past healthier beasts in order to do so, is not something that is learned overnight. Having the right mentor early on in a stalker’s career is crucial to learning such skills.

Those of you who know Loch Shiel may have seen a lonely cottage, only accessible by boat, that sits high above the far bank. It is a place that the writer Mike Tomkies christened ‘Wildernesse’ in his book A Last Wild Place.

I had been there on an estate for some months as a trainee when an older stalker moved on to the beat. He instantly took me under his wing. One particular day, we had spotted a group of hinds high out, given the time of year, and it was beautifully clear and frosty. The seven beasts we eventually took made us suffer, with the most grueling of drags in which we had to relay them downhill. It was well after dark by the time we retrieved the final hind.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM SHOOTING TIMES & COUNTRYView All

Anyone Fancy Coney Carbonara?

Cooking rabbit well can be a real challenge but with some expert advice our aspiring chef reckons he’s cracked it

6 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

How To Make Sure The Gunline Is In The Right Place

Liam Bell offers some guidance on how to make sure the gunline is in the right place

4 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Wild greys need the ‘three-legged stool'

Successful reintroduction of our native partridge is complex and there are several things we can do to give it the best possible chance

5 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Just another bloke on the Gun bus

George Browne crunches the numbers as he tries to build up a realistic pen portrait of the ‘ordinary shooting person’

6 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Stalking Diary

There are some beasts that you simply cannot walk past and a redletter day on the hill with a former mentor ends with a perfect stalk

3 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

The ‘grey grouse' is a very fine pretender

Opportunities to take on the king of the gamebirds are few and far between, but the humble pigeon is a worthy stand-in for Blue Zulu

5 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Find a fungi for that bunny

Rabbit, brown trout or venison pair beautifully with four of our tasty native mushrooms; John Wright simply has to pick the perfect wine

6 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Terrierists at large

It would be almost unthinkable to go anywhere without the dogs but travelling with them is often a bit of a nightmare, says Petrel

5 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Nippon out to bag a monster

The Ukrainian forests contain a subspecies of sika much bigger than our own — but they can be very hard to find, says Thomas Nissen

6 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021

Scottish gamekeepers oppose ban on lead

The SGA remains unconvinced by the evidence when it comes to how humane and safe non-toxic loads are for wildlife management

2 mins read
Shooting Times & Country
September 29, 2021