First Birds - Long Lake Lodge

Neil and Isaiah with pheasants

Long Lake Lodge is deceptive.  It is so beautiful and refined that it conjures up images of high brow elites of English descent going out with $10,000 dogs and $20,000 guns.  Instead Long Lake Lodge features down home hospitality, affordability, and an unpretentious owner, Kent Hintermeister, whose sole purpose seems to be making sure his guests have a great time.
When we were at Long Lake Lodge in late September to shoot photos we brought the guns as well.  After all, Mark was manning the camera, so we might as well have some fun.  The "we" was my oldest son, Isaiah, my father-in-law, Loren, Mark J Harlow, and myself.  You see, Kent was kind enough to allow me to bring Isaiah along when he found out that I was having trouble getting him out turkey hunting (last year Isaiah bought me a turkey call in hopes of getting out hunting).  Isaiah then wanted to make sure Grandpa was included in the fun, so Isaiah called Grandpa and he said, "I'll go!"
We connected with a couple of other folks, one of whom was Nancy Jobe, an author, speaker, and consultant who has been featured on "Minnesota Bound" for her creative approach to leadership training.  Nancy was great company and along with Kent was eager to see Isaiah shoot his first bird. 
Having a pheasant get up right in front of you can startle anyone so I walked by Isaiah without a gun.  I was confident in his ability to hit a target because he had shot clay pigeons once before and I was also confident in his desire to be safe.  He was beyond safe; he didn't shoot at all on the first two walks, but Grandpa connected on two birds. 
From there we went to the sporting clays range.  Kent worked closely with Isaiah and his confidence began to grow.  Grandpa and I took turns as well.  There was a strong east wind and the clays coming from that direction were flying fast.  The course was both challenging and fun.
After Nancy and her friend left, Kent put out a few birds for Isaiah.  Kent and his son were committed to seeing Isaiah shoot his first bird and Isaiah did not disappoint.  Although he was hesitant on the first of the three birds, he fired his first shot of the day at the second bird and took it down.  Maggie, one of Kent's pointing labs, performed a perfect retrieve and when Isaiah shot the next bird she did so again.  We all cheered and Isaiah's joy was uncontainable as he walked back to the lodge with tail feathers sticking out of both sides of his game pouch.
Kent has made Long Lake Lodge into an amazing facility.  It is perfect for corporate outings, family reunions, or weddings (they hosted 25 weddings this year), but the best part about Kent Hintermeister and Long Lake Lodge is Kent's heart for giving kids a great experience.  In fact, Kent is eager to get anyone, young or old, involved in the shooting sports.
If you know someone who has never been hunting, take them to Long Lake Lodge.  Kent raises birds on-site so you are assured of getting the rookie a chance to shoot, not to mention yourself.:)

For more info go to - Long Lake Lodge

Photography by Mark J Harlow

 0486_LLLDG_PheasantKent Hintermeister with his labsIsaiah shooting a pheasant at Long Lake LodgeInterior of Long Lake Lodge


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