American Field

Trainers Report . . .

Sep 03, 2019
Fred Rayl

Veteran trainer Fred Rayl checked in from Wibaux, Mont., where he has had his camp for the past several seasons.

Fred said he and his wife Inday, who accompanied him, arrived there July 17.

“Country here looks good,” he informed, “there has been plenty of rain, cover is good and birds are better than last year.

“Conditions have been favorable, several very cool mornings, one of them dropping into the mid-40s.

“Inday stayed nearly a month before returning home to Georgia.

“Ralph Conner from Missouri is helping me this summer. Pat and Marilyn Lockhart of Bozeman, Mont.,  have been in camp, as were Buck and Lynn Heard of Moultrie, Ga. We’re expecting more guests before we return home in mid-September.”


Garland and Kathy Priddy have arrived in Trail City, S. D.

“As with every summer, we were excited to return once again to South Dakota this summer.

“Every year, it still amazes us — the distance we can see as we look out across this vast open country.

“This year had a different look driving up — everything was still green.

“Once we got up here, crops were running late. Fields were full of hay, and it was almost ready for a second cutting. This was due to the unusual amount of earlier rainfall this year.

“When we pulled into Mobridge, we stopped at one of all our favorite diners (Rick’s) for lunch, then headed out to The Howdy House.

“As we were getting our dogs set up, clouds and strong winds blew in, followed by a pouring rain storm. Just a ways up at the Johnson Ranch and on up past Jamie Daniels’ camp this storm brought a lot of hail. Tim Schweitzer, who, with his wife Carla, owns The Howdy House, told us people brought out snow plows — it hailed so much.  Two days later, there was still ice on the side of the road. It played havoc on the sunflowers, wheat and corn in its path.

“Cover, as expected with this year’s rainfall, is higher than usual. Even after the hail storm, and three blizzards this spring, the bird crop is adequate — down some — but adequate.  We are having bird work on almost every round.

“We are experiencing unusual mild temperatures for what we are used to up here.  It sure helps with the training and will be great for the trials.

“We always look forward to seeing all our friends up here — landowners and field trial buddies.

“We started off with a supper at our house with Lee Phillips, Luke Eisenhart, Betty Shearouse, Michelle Clark, Tommy Davis, Jamie Daniels, Judd Carlton and Burl Hicks.

“Since that first get-together, a few more friends have arrived in town and joined in — Claudia McNamee, Ray Joye and Grayson Francis.

“It seems the dish of choice at these get-togethers that we all— field trialers and landowners — enjoy so much is baby back ribs.

“At the drawing for the United States Chicken Championship, we saw Scott Jordan, Chris Mathan, who had just gotten into town, and Will Dunn.  Tracy Haines arrived early morning, bringing peaches and cantaloupe from Colorado.

“From time to time we run into others while out eating or shopping in Mobridge.

“With the first of three trials in our area beginning Saturday morning, August 24, we are reminded how close to the end of summer we are.

“The United States Chicken Championship will be followed by our trial, the Southwestern, on the Johnson Ranch, followed by the All-America Open Prairie Championship. All three trials are held within about ten miles of each other.

“Included with field trial competition will be a lot of fun and socializing and a couple of landowner banquets.”

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