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Outfitter Name Cedartree Plantation Cedartree Plantation
Gwen Smythe
270 Spackleberry Lane
Columbia, SC 29229
(803) 788-8010
Hunt Date November 2002
Quarry Quail and Pheasant
Total Cost $350 (10 quail, 4 pheasants, bird care, transportation)
Length 1 day
Terrain Woods, fields, some hills
Health Moderate.  Much walking required; some of it difficult.
Explanation The high rating is derived from the fact that this was an absolute wonderful place to hunt.  The staff was extremely knowledgeable, friendly, and worked hard to make sure that we had a great time.  The only reason that 5 stars was not given was that we had verbally contracted to enjoy "Gwen's Lunch" after the hunt, but were told that no, we had not agreed to that after the hunt was over and it was time for lunch.
How the Hunt is Conducted

The guides will take you around their lease in a modified Kawasaki Mule.  When you arrive in the hunting area, the dogs will be set free and allowed to loosen up, then the hunt will begin.  You will hunt an area, then, when all the birds are taken, you will load back up in the Mule and move to another cover.  Dogs are rotated to prevent exhaustion.  Refreshments are carried in the Mule.   

After the hunt the staff will dress and package your birds for you.  Be sure to let them know if you plan to have any of your birds mounted.


When we arrived at the plantation, Xan Smythe greeted us enthusiastically.  He told us that his brother Jason would be guiding us today, while he himself would be taking out two other hunters.  We wandered around the Cedartree house admiring the many trophies while we waited for Jason to arrive. 

Jason Smythe seemed to be really excited about taking us out on our hunt.  He was justly proud of the operation that his family runs, and was an all around pleasure to hunt with.  He didn't give up on birds that we missed.   Instead, he worked the dogs beautifully to find the lost singles, giving us shot after shot at them.  The dogs themselves were well trained and ready to hunt.  They rarely misbehaved, and were quickly corrected whenever they did.  Jason did not give up on "lost" birds, but instead worked very hard to make sure that we retrieved every bird we shot.

Although the main hunt was for quail, Ted and I had each bought the right to shoot two pheasants apiece.  Chukar are also available, but we didn't sign up to shoot any of them this time around.  Cedartree also offers deer hunting club memberships, and from what we saw, it's not a bad deal. 

The land is well kept, and at the end of the day the birds are presented to you cleaned and ready to take home in a complementary Cedartree Plantation cooler.  The resultant meat was fantastic, with my wife and I both thoroughly enjoying both the quail and the pheasant.

The only disappointment for the day was a misunderstanding about whether we would be served lunch.  I was positive that we had asked that lunch be provided, which is an option, but the staff was unaware that we were expecting it.  It would pay to clarify this point up front next time around.  We were served snacks and drinks.

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