On a warm December day in southern New England our hosts radioed CO each of the twelve stands, positioned like the hours on a clock around a central tiered tower, ensuring we were poised in anticipation. At 210 feet above the low, rolling terrain, the tower we now faced is the tallest of its kind in New England. At the sound of the horn, we loaded our guns, over and under, or side by side, quickly returning our focus to die skies. Even perhaps the most highly skilled, experienced, and confident gunner can-not avoid a sense of nervousness born with a new hunt on such remarkable topography as The Preserve at Boulder Hills in Rhode Island’s Wyoming Township encompasses. Bright sun had lifted above tall evergreens and thin birch. Tufts of green grasses pushed up from scrips of shallow earth somehow wedged into clefts on rough granite features. Everything seemed to glisten. A tall sign indicated our position at stand

A father and daughter moment enjoying  beautiful afternoon in the field.

Number nine, a nod to the fine English peg tradition. We waited, braced behind a wall of pine, maple, and oak logs stacked high as my shoulders. This cool morning pulled light sap from their ends, presenting a sweet scent to mix in an atmosphere of fine leather and gun oil. Curvaceous cedars, now hew into rough, split-rail fences, drew borders where fields and forest converge, providing a place for excited retrievers standing at the ready alongside their handlers. The shooter to my left and I listened, eyes to the blue sky, waiting for the sound of the hunter, horn. The gun that was provided for me was beautiful and shot true. The balance and long barrel were perfect for the high shots.

Members at The Preserve enjoy spotting clays before pheasants am it/eased from a 210 foot tower. All engaged as the fluffy of birds flew overhead. Chairman, Paul Mihailides, takes aim at his taiga during a Christmas European tower hunt.

The Preserve at Boulder Hills enjoys a unique relationship with Famars di Abbiatico and Salvinelli, renowned makers of distinctive Best guns produced in limited numbers by generations of master Italian craftsmen. Just holding a FAMARS is a special experience. Raising the gleaming, polished, exotically figured Turkish walnut stock to sit at your shoulder, letting your cyc run a line down the barrel, length CO the bead, (racing a finger over the intricate scroll-work, opening the breech, all these are great pleasures. On some, details might seem more efficient than those found on more ornate guns, no less intricate or deep, yet somehow modest in their complexity. The simple, patented, removable single trigger mechanism is fitted into several models, like the Excalibur over and under with its demiblock barrels and compact action.

Masterfully crazed into the hills, the 15th hole plays flown to a table-top green that feeds cell-hit shots into the center approaching the flag. The surrounds fall off sharply at the front and on the right. Bunkers built into the natural rock faces, behind the green, give this picture its natural frame. Wonderful cover for upland birds in the fall.

The sky filled with birds as the dogs grew more restless shifting their weight on layers of old oak-leaf skeletons, wagging their tails, happy to share in our perfect moment.

Our shots were fast and true. Thumbs pushed unlocking levers. Opened with calculated snaps, yellow and red cartridges rocketed free, charges spent, each outracing the momentary burst of nitro charge, leaving us enveloped in the favored and magical smell of gunpowder,

Us, the dogs were anxious.  We arched back just slightly to sweep our sights and cover more sky, learning timing, angles and height. The shot presentation was unlike any-thing I had experienced; the birds soared higher than I had ever seen. I am an avid wing shooter and this is the type of European hunt everyone should experience. The great sounds of shotguns firing and friends applauding, surrounded us, echoing over the high rough pitch of cackling roosters all around. For a moment it was quiet;  we took a breath, and glanced over the wall to take it all in.

On hand command and the again on a whistle, retriever of various breeds bounded through high grasses acres of duff and rocky ledge to retrieve our quarry. We walked to the next station considering the new challenges as our confidence

All of which brings to mind words by the famed writer and aristocrat, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, who wrote, “You know you have reached perfection of design not when you have nothing more to add, but when you have nothing left to take away.” The FAMIKS line of some thirteen distinct guns also inch ides models such as the Leonard, with sidekick, without cross pins and with chop-per-lump barrel, and the Venus side by side with a distinctive tapered fore-end. These guns harken back to those great driven shoots of the past, but now produced carefully with the most modern technology in their craftsmanship. PANIARS guns stand apart from a rich collection of fine arms with their patented removeable side-locks, the only such type produced in the world today, and which arc concise but elegant mechanical achievements in themselves. Some models are available for loan to enhance your shooting enjoyment at The Preserve. Paul Mihailides and his ream of experts in The Sporting Shoppe are never bereft of time to provide the world-class private customer service needed for one to appreciate and choose the finest firearm. It was clear that at The Preserve you can buy a gun that’s perfect for you.

Every  presentation and angulation are equally as challenging at all 12 stations surrounding the tower.

Suddenly the first ringneck pheasants appeared from the east, quick dark smudges high above our heads, racing then gliding for protection in the trees. The, took full advantage of speed and height, purposeful challenges designed to test select shooters from all parts of the country.

Member, Stephanie Todd, is filled with excitement after her first live-bird hunt. Dressed in the always warm, hooded FAMARS jacket, and holding a FAMARS 28-gauge drilling. deluxe engraved by Master Marino Volpe. Ten handler and their retrievers stand proudly after The European Tower Hunt behind their collection of pheasants.

The sky filled with birds as the dogs grew more restless shifting their weight on layers of old oak-leaf skeletons, wagging their tails, happy to share in our perfect moment.

Masterfully crazed into the hills, the 15th hole plays flown to a table-top green that feeds cell-hit shots into the center approaching the flag. The surrounds fall off sharply at the front and on the right. Bunkers built into the natural rock faces, behind the green, give this picture its natural frame. Wonderful cover for upland birds in the fall.

Our shots were fast and true. Thumbs pushed unlocking levers. Opened with calculated snaps, yellow and red cartridges rocketed free, charges spent, each outracing the momentary burst of nitro charge, leaving us enveloped in the favored and magical smell of gunpowder,

Us, the dogs were anxious.  We arched back just slightly to sweep our sights and cover more sky, learning timing, angles and height. The shot presentation was unlike anything I had experienced; the birds soared higher than I had ever seen. I am an avid wing shooter and this is the type of European hunt everyone should experience. The great sounds of shotguns firing and friends applauding, surrounded us, echoing over the high rough pitch of cackling roosters all around. For a moment it was quiet;  we took a breath, and glanced over the wall to take it all in.

On hand command and the again on a whistle, retriever of various breeds bounded through high grasses acres of duff and rocky ledge to retrieve our quarry. We walked to the next station considering the new challenges as our confidence envision those small gold, slate and brown neck feathers on their vises, tied into soft hackle flies to be cast silently into one of The Preserve’s six stocked ponds. As more birds flew to the guns more were placed next to the stands, adding to the excitement. For several hours we experienced new stands and views, loading, firing, and loading again, taking in all the excitement of a perfectly orchestrated European hunt.

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This corner of Rhode Island is just a half hour from its capital city, Providence, one hour to Boston or Hartford and only a few minutes from Route 95. Most excitingly only a 2.5 hour ride for me from Manhattan. Given its place as our smallest state, it seemed almost unimaginable that such a mix of terrain, topography changes, escarpments and thick forest could be found in southern New England in a private sporting club. Paul Mihailides, chairman of The Preserve, called on his lifetime of studying the art of accommodation to create an exclusive four-season’ sporting retreat on hundreds of acres where nothing has been over The Preserve challenges the shooter throughout v landscapes to a degree rarely found elsewhere. The hundred acres have been carved, elevated, sculpted honed flat in places by giant glaciers over thousands of making the mature landscape simply remarkable. The not impediments to the wing shooter, they are ble Changes in terrain are a constant, which helps to refine shot, building your confidence.

Hundreds of pheasant took flight from the tower and some, of course, did manage to escape, providing yet another first class hunting challenge for another day. Those magnificent glacial outcroppings, rock ledges and long runs of grasses allow for unique up-land-style hunts through six fields of different vegetation  and covers for pheasant, partridge, quail, and chukars. Experienced guides and seasoned dogs will lead your group through a tremendous property where the variety of terrain is really something to behold.

True to its calling as a four season sportsman’s retreat, ponds dot the landscape, providing fly fishermen an uncommon host of options. That cycle of glacial movement left behind several kettle ponds, perfect for trout as it forced up steep hills and sheer cliffs. Browns and rainbows will rise for Giant Myflies, Duns, Olives or Black Quills as well as terrestrials. Additionally, select ponds offer large and small mouth bass ready to inhale a black wooly bugger or crayfish imitation. The luxury of private fishing affords anglers ample room to stretch, physically, while perfecting a back cast’s long soft loop or emotionally, as they seek out corner pockets and pools without accompaniment. Some ponds have stone-wall borders or graduated waterfalls to cascade oxygen into cool gin-clear waters, others arc edged tightly with trees and brush, pockmarked with white-tailed deer prints, offering great advantage to wary trout.

The Preserve’s eastern border folds into trout waters of Meadow Brook and sits in close proximity to the Beaver River, both elements of the famed Wood-Pawcatuck Watershed.

Outstanding meals were plated with equal parts artistry and exceptional de-tail as Executive Chef-Guy Gencarella created courses with lobster, filet, and delicate local fish. With his professional kitchen staff, he transformed the local and international ingredients into memorable dishes, always prepared to accommodate individual needs. The lodge incorporates 25,000 square feet of gorgeous private meeting rooms, furnished with dark hardwoods and woodland views, all prepared to host any retreat or discussion. They can serve up to 350 guests without forgetting the fun of ice carvings or a dance floor. They are never far from their classic European inspiration but with more modern needs well understood.

In addition to all its thoughtful amenities, where owners and guests can hunt, fish, snowshoe, mountain bike or hike miles of wooded trails, even glide over it all on zip lines, The Preserve also offers a world-class, championship, executive golf course. Renowned course architect Robert McNeil considered deeply those traditions of the game and such a unique landscape when he designed the course’s  flow and contours. It is an exclusive course masterfully arranged not only to provide for an outstanding game, but to embrace the arcs and turns of an untarnished topography.

In keeping with the style of an English river club a mission to overlook nothing. The Preserve includes retail store to provide options in clothing, firearms and indoor or outdoor luxuries. Services there begin with complete sporting adventure assistance. Their team can arrange the finest, most exclusive hunting adventures to please sportsman with all that they may require.

Rare is the occasion when one can enjoy the feelings of understanding and accommodation. something Paul has worked tirelessly to guarantee.

The true European driven hunts are noted nut singularly for the shooting but also for their high quality, functional clothing styles. The Preserve has everything you could ever need while at the club or at a far-off destination. Particular clothiers have earned reputations tot impeccable quality, these are the names found in Sporting Shoppe.

It is however, the highest-quality firearms from the World’s finest gun makers that are their hallmark. Paul Mihailides understands him people with differing back-, grounds, achievements, experiences and potentials :ill may require particular guns. For day shooting. Upland birds waterfowl,  personal adventure travel or as in heirloom gift, each firearm offered has a unique application.

Holland and Holland shotguns, with their 181 years of dedication to the perfection of balance and line. Are available. To run sour fingers over the checkered fore-end on their over and under is to feel the hand of the craftsman. Also for offer arc the Best gun masterpieces of Peter Hofer.

With his signature exquisite scrolling, some circular, some gilded, all midi an eve to reducing glare in the field, each gun is an individual of singular significance. A Peter Hofer firearm serves each owner with a lifetime of hunting pleasure and escalating value.

In the classic Scottish tradition the McKay Brown Round Action over and hunder are there to be held and appreciated.

 

As a craftsman and an artist, David McKay Brown see textures, modeling, and colors in the precious stock blanks. Only after years of drying do the begin to come to life. Some design work is classic in style while others models express the artistic desires of owners; as such, his word acknowledges needs while always finishing with a sleek elegant gun brightly polished, with gilded accents and case hardening color. Unique firearms, such as an owner of guest may require, should remain a functional object d’art through years of safari, sporting clays, or bird shooting, which is why Paul Mihailides and his team have carefully chosen such select makers.

The are expert who can competently fit you with what you desire from Swarosvski optics to a Purdey side by side. The Sporting Shoppe has other well established brands such as beretta, Browning, Fabarms, Zoli, Benelli, to name a few. Another specialty offered is the gateway to the finest European gunmakers where true value can be captured by purchasing direct with the international relationships fostered by Te Sporting Shoppe and its staff.

The Preserve’s vision, taken from those English huns.

 

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