Tyler Wilson is the manager of Tumbling Creek Lodge, post office: Bucksnort, Tennessee.
The town is just as bustling and metropolitan as the name suggests, with a little diner and a truckstop off I-40 the closest signs of civilization.
This particular weekend Tyler
is taking two gentlemen from North Carolina on a full-day quail hunt.
has supplied both guns and dogs.
After a couple minutes of safety talk and a sincere assurance that he
hates it when people pepper his
releases Amy and Buddy.
Buddy, an English Setter, is madly running in circles, peeing, pooping and in total bliss.
Amy the pointer is more reserved, prancing, sniffing and taking care of her
bodily functions in relative seclusion.
After a minute or so, Tyler
whistle and shouts "hunt 'em up."
"There's a point," Tyler
says over his
"Wo now," he
calmly tells her
Buddy, fifty yards past Amy, has gone into backup point, honoring his
hands, placing the hunters to either side.
knows they're not very experienced and he
reminds them of low birds and which direction to swing and not swing the shotguns.
They nod, and move slowly into the brush on his
steps past Amy and slaps the grass with a short leather whip.
offers words of encouragement and the hunters share a frustrated laugh.
Meantime, both dogs have taken up separate points on new birds.
"We'll follow up those two later," he
says, pointing toward the closest point.
Amy is starting to sneak and is 'Wo'd' back by Tyler
gestures to the hunters and they once again flank him and approach the pointer.
As soon as Tyler's boots crunch the dry brush in front of the dog, the birds flush.
Three launch away in a spread formation, offering each hunter a clear crossing shot.
A puff of feathers indicates that Pat has placed a good shot.
Buddy rushes toward the crash site as Brad's second shot rocks the bird but fails to bring it down.
in a tizzy, ordering Amy to 'hunt dead!' while telling Pat to mark his
Meanwhile Buddy has vanished in the tall stuff sniffing the trail of another covey.
congratulates both hunters on their improved shooting hoping to further raise their level of confidence.
Amy proudly emerges from the brush and passes a cock quail to Tyler's waiting hand.
After a few "atta girls" and a rub on the head, and Amy's off again.
By late morning, the shooting is hotter, the temperature warmer, and the bottled water tasting better.
has put Amy and Buddy back in the box and collared up a German shorthair and pointer named Gert and Champ respectively.
Champ is a pup and bumps a bird or two, but otherwise shows off the good training he's
received from Tyler
Hunters relax in the comfortable lodge.
Lunch means a ride back to the Tumbling Creek Lodge
for a home-cooked meal.
A staff member cleans the birds, while Tyler
goes to the kennel to swap out for the afternoon.
From the dining room a quarter mile away, the dogs can be heard shouting in their canine language, 'Take me!
It's my turn!'
To find out more about Tumbling Creek Lodge
, "Tennessee's finest wing shooting and fly fishing experience," visit www.thetumblingcreeklodge.com or call Tyler Wilson