26th April 2017
Obvious reasons may spring straight to mind, shooting in short sleeves, sunshine, tapas, fabulous Rioja and cold beer, but there is a lot more to bring the UK sports person to Spain.
Value, quality and hospitality are second to none
With the UK`s bird pricing rising steadily, Spain offers outstanding value on a “like for like” comparison day. Admittedly the Spanish days are larger, 500 plus compared to those in the UK, the value is still exceptional and surprisingly affordable.
So what do you get for your money?
Let’s compare two similar sized days, one here in the UK and the other in Spain. The team was not identical on both days with only six from the UK present for the day in Spain. We asked a regular syndicate member whom was present on both days to give us an overall opinion of the two experiences and cost similarities.
UK, On a recent day in January we visited a fine shoot located in Devon. The day started dark and wet. After shaking the prior evening jovialities off and clearing the slight blurred vision away the day got under way. Our first and second drives were slightly marred with a stiff cold breeze sending the birds wide and a little out of reach. As the day progressed the sun shone, the laughter grew louder and the birds were both plentiful and superbly presented. Walking off the last drive at 3pm the team were more than satisfied and happy to have shot some testing, sporting birds. Dinner was a fine affair with hospitality to match. On the shared but long drive home it was whole heartedly agreed the day was an 8.5/10 experience.
Our costs to include a 400 (441) bird day, 1 night hotel accommodation with dinner, miscellaneous to include cartridges, fuel, tips etc was in total just over £3,300 per gun
Spain, Waking to warm winter sunshine in February, priceless. Anticipation and excitement for a new sporting experience was visible throughout our team. We were assured by our host of great things to come but like always, there is an underlying nervousness that nags away uncontrollably. On meeting our Spanish hosts these thoughts soon disappeared.
It was soon time to draw pegs and be ready to tackle the much anticipated days sporting quarry. Fast curving coveys from both the left and right, the olive plantations providing excellent cover for birds to appear unexpectedly, flying higher and quicker than was unimaginable. This continued throughout the day with 4 drives in total. Breaks in-between ( Tacos ) left us all wanting more and more. Unrushed and spoilt for choice makes a refreshing change from the standard UK elevenses. Although the day starts a little later than the UK the last drive was not over until gone 5pm. With hours of sunshine left the day felt perfectly planned and ran without a hitch. Overall experience 8/10, easily on par with our UK day yet a totally different experience and just, if not more enjoyable.
Our costs to include a 500 ( 576 ) bird day, 2 nights hotel accommodation , flights and tips was just over £2,800 per gun.
In summing up, Spain was a fantastic experience, we shot over 140 more birds, stayed an extra night, stayed dry, did not have to drive anywhere and we were all over £400.00 in pocket.
We will be back to Spain again next season and Devon for more thrilling sporting days.