“Born in Germany, Lives in Texas” could be the calling the card of the new “Blaser Discovery Program” that combines a holiday in Blaser-USA’s San Antonio hometown with a build-your-own shotgun.

Directed at Blaser F3 customers, Blaser Discovery Program also applies to the economical F16. But it’s the flagship F3 that can get you a ticket to trendy San Antonio for posh lodging, gourmet dining and a lesson with Blaser Pro clays champs such as Cory Kruse, Mike Wilgus or Bill McGuire at a nearby top-notch shooting venue.

We drove slowly up the private gravel road of Durham County Wildlife Club in Morrisville, North Carolina looking at the 3D archery target course and hearing the rhythmic pop-pop of a registered skeet competition in the background. Wes parked his Chevy Silverado and continued with his description of the club’s amenities. I was listening, but remained far more focused on the unblemished Browning box in the bed of his truck.

The West Highland White Terrier cast back and forth around the broomstraw and Johnson grass. It caught a whiff of scent and moved rapidly in a manner customary with all short-legged dogs. That Westie smelled a covey of quail as I do a morning plate of biscuits and gravy and he was looking for a way in. A gust of wind must have pushed the scent around for suddenly the pup found the entrance to a maize.  In an instant it zig zagged to the covey and the birds busted every which way into the air. His owner, the noted sporting artist Gordon Allen, took a crosser. The Westie is now immortalized in a line drawing and might reappear in an oil painting or in an etching.

There were at least two Browning Superposeds in Ernest Hemingway’s life. One of them was a very early model that may have come indirectly from Val Browning, the son of John Browning, the genius who designed the gun. However, neither its serial number nor its fate are yet known. However, the second B25 − as the Superposed is still known in Europe − is a standard–grade 12-gauge field gun, Serial No. 19532, with double triggers and 28-inch barrels (both choked Full) with a ventilated rib. It was made in Belgium and sold to Master Mart, a retailer in Fremont, Nebraska, on 26 October 1949 for $195.20. After that, we don’t know how, when or where Ernest Hemingway acquired the gun, whether new or second-hand, or what he accomplished with it, but we know where it is today and how it got there.

The mule-drawn bird wagon trundled through Chokee Plantation in Leesburg, Georgia − a 5,800-acre homage to the vanishing wild-quail hunts that for generations put meat on the table and tendered sporting birds by the good graces of the land.

The first thing we saw, through the mist and fog, were dark shapes on the hillside. In scattered bunches they huddled together, at rest, while others fed around them. A relic of a time when wild bison roamed across the great prairie with no fences to stop them.

No these doves don’t live in volcanoes, but they are thriving around them, and I’m talking the Central American country of Nicaragua. Our party was making the shotguns roar not far from Granada – a town near the shores of Lake Nicaragua – that huge body of water that has some close relationship with the volcanoes – as does the lodge where we were staying – Mombacho – that lodge named for Mombacho Volcano that looks down on this place where we stayed.

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