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Armour, South Dakota 57313
Phone 605-724-2358

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RETRIEVER JOURNAL MAGAZINE ARTICLE

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Rainy on ice...


Reflections

on

Late-Season

Roosters


by Steve Smith
Photos by Bob Butz

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The Junkyard Cover...

A hunt is nothing if not a memory, a lasting image captured in your mind's eye.
     It's the friendliness of Bill and Kathy Dillon's Big Spur Lodge with its 14,000 acres of wild-bird habitat, and rooster pheasants in the hundreds made cagey by the hunters who came before us.
    It's Doug Parker's yellow Lab, Jasmine, working hard and then refueling by eating our lunches in the back of the Suburban while we chatted away sort of mindlessly.
     It was Bob Naleid's young dog, Romy, not leaving a bit of the thick cover unexplored; and Bob Ripley's black Lab Sportscaster, an AKC Master Hunter, getting his first taste of wild pheasants and finding out he liked it just fine.
     It was Mike Lardy, the five-time National Retriever Championship handler, snoozing in the warm sunshine with a sweet little Chesapeake named Glory asleep across his chest.  It was the guy who wrote all those wingshooting books missing a two-barrel sucker shot in the wide open in front of witnesses and getting hooted on.
     It was Jim English and Bob Drummond blocking the escape routes as Doug's big male Lab, Poacher, chased the runners - and then not missing their chances.
     Late-season roosters offer us more than a reason to be in the field as winter bears down.  They help us collect some memories as well.

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Mike Lardy and Glory...

 

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Steve Smith, RJ Editor and
shotgunner par average..
.

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Bill Dillon and Doug Parker's
yellow Lab Jasmine...

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Bob Ripley and Sport...

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Doug Parker...

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Big Spur Lodge hosted The Retriever Journal's First Annual Wingshooter's Getaway.  If you didn't sign up to go on this past year's hunt, keep it in mind for this fall.  We'll be announcing the times and whereabouts of the getaway in a future issue.
     We consider ourselves lucky to have had such a good group this year.  Great people. Great dogs. Special thanks go out to our hosts, Bill and Kathy Dillon, long-time friends of The Pointing Dog Journal and The Retriever Journal. Bill showed us hundreds of wild pheasants every day, while Kathy and daughter Kasey offered us great meals and that warm hospitality the Midwest is known for.
 
A full time wild pheasant-hunting operation, Big Spur Lodge can be reached at: (605) 724-2358 or at www.bigspur.com.

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Bob Drummond...

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Bob Naleid and Romy...

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Mike Lardy, Jim English and The Warden...

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