The mountainous border between the Isle of Lewis and Isle of Harris provides the setting for some of the most remote and demanding stalking to be found anywhere in the British Isles.
The combination of breath-taking scenery, rugged terrain and the expertise of experienced stalkers are all perfect ingredients for a memorable day on the hill. Although slightly smaller on average than their mainland cousins, the Islands population of Red Deer has remained pure due to no other species of Deer having been introduced to the Islands. It is unclear as to when or indeed if, Red Deer were introduced or if they have survived and flourished since the end of the last Ice age.
Hind stalking is regarded by many sportsmen and stalkers alike as being the true art of stalking. Stags can get careless when their minds are preoccupied by the ladies. But to try and stalk into a large group of Hinds and select a beast out for culling whilst trying to evade numerous ears, eyes and noses, is where the stalker really proves his experience.
Season (Red Deer): 1st July – 20th Oct
Season (Red Deer Hinds): 21st Oct – 15th Feb
All the Stag and Hind stalking is carried out with the estate management policy in mind, which relates to the preservation and improvement of the Islands deer population. Therefore it is unlikely that a trophy head will be taken but over the course of the season some weird and wonderful heads do turn up.
During the rut which is usually the last 3 weeks of the season is an exciting time to stalk. This is when the Stags return to the hind’s home ranges and compete for access to hinds by taking part in elaborate displays of dominance. The stags roar and walk parallel and fight with great vigour and ferocity. Two rival stags sometimes walk slowly beside each other, a little apart, assessing each other’s strength. The weakest may walk away but if they seem to be evenly matched then they may begin to fight.