The Shooting Sportsman Endorsed Lodge Program and Rio Piedra Plantation Manager Sam Atchison recently reviewed some FAQs that illustrate why this Georgia quail operation is one of the most popular destinations in America.
Where is your lodge located?
We are in the South Georgia plantation belt near the town of Camilla. By car, we are slightly more than three hours south of Atlanta. Most guests fly into Albany, Georgia, which is 30 minutes from the lodge. We also have a municipal airport 15 minutes from the plantation that can accommodate large, private aircraft.
What bird species do you offer, and what is the limit?
We specialize in bobwhite quail hunting, and our season runs from late October to mid-March. We do not have a "limit," per se, but do have a 12-bird “privilege” per person, per day that is included in the base rate. Guests are welcome to bag more birds for an additional charge.
What is your hunter-to-guide ratio?
While we can accommodate up to 30 guests, in the field we pair two hunters in the same party with their own guide, jeep and dogs and have them hunt their own section of the plantation. When necessary, we can make special arrangements for an odd number of hunters.
What is the terrain and cover like?
Most hunting is done in the gently rolling pine savannas that border the Flint River. Annual prescribed burns and open longleaf pine forests enable the growth of ground cover such as wiregrass and broomsedge. It's this ground cover that provides the necessary food and protection that help sustain elevated bird populations in the region.
Do you hunt with pointing or flushing dogs? Can a hunter bring and hunt with his/her dog—and if so, where will the dog stay?
Our guides use both pointers and flushers, with English pointers and setters being the most common pointing dogs. Our flushers/retrievers are English cocker spaniels, which are constantly impressing our guests with their drive and determination. Guests are welcome to bring their own dogs with advance notice. While dogs are not allowed in guest rooms, we do have guest kennels that are available for no additional charge.
Do you welcome non-hunting spouses—and if so, what is there for them to do?
Yes, we offer a special rate for non-shooting guests. With its wonderful decor, comfortable furniture, stone fireplace and wraparound porch, our lodge is a great place in which to hang out. Guests can also accompany the hunter in the field to observe the hunt. The lodge property and nearby Flint River are great places for a stroll as well.
How is your lodging managed? Single or double occupancy? Main lodge/cabins?
We have a main lodge and surrounding cabins that add up to a total of 33 beds in 18 bedrooms. This gives guests plenty of single- and double-occupancy options, all of which include private baths.
PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF BRIAN GROSSENBACHER AND RIO PIEDRA PLANTATION