Ledreborg Castle was build by Count Johan Ludvig Holstein-Ledreborg in the period 1740-45, and has been regarded for a long time, as one of Denmark’s finest hunting grounds.
My good friend and ranger, Thomas Nielsen had arranged a hunt for The Danish Ranger Association and CBS hunting club, and asked if i fancied coming along, to make some lunch for the hunting party.
Needless to say that it’s a great honour to be invited, and an opportunity i wouldn’t miss for the world.
As we approach Ledreborg, the sun is about to come up. The orange and pink morning light sparkles in the snow. There wasn’t a cloud in the frosty sky, a perfect day for a pheasant hunt.
We drive down the majestic avenue to the castle, and straight away we start seeing what amazing wildlife they have here.
Pheasant are running around between the trees and we spot a big group of roe deer on a nearby field.
We had arranged to meet at the hunting lodge, where the Ledreborg Castle’s gamekeeper, Michael Pedersen lives.
Michael had just been out at sunset, with a couple of clients, and there was three roe deer lying in the courtyard as we arrived.
It was my first meeting Michael. Michael was a big, loud man with a strong accent and a commanding tone in his voice.
Dressed in tweed and with his dog gathered around him, he more than lived up to my expectations of what a gamekeeper should be.
Michael bid us welcome, and invited us inside for some breakfast in the lodge.
After breakfast we all met in the courtyard for a quick briefing. where Michael explained the do’s and don’t’s of the hunt.
We headed off in the shooting brake, and you could feel the excitement, as we approached the first drive of the day.
When we arrived, Michael assigned a post for each of us, got the dog keepers and beaters in position.
He fan fared “hunt begin” on his horn.
A series of shots went off, and first pheasants of the day, fell from the sky. After a fruitful morning, with lots of beautiful pheasants, we went down to one of Ledreborg’s hunting lodge for a spot of lunch.
As i said, i was in charge of the lunch for the hunting party. I didn’t really feel like spending to much time cooking, since i had a chance for such a nice hunt.
So i had made a delicious wild boar ragu in advance. All i had to do, was to cook som pasta and make some salad. Job done!
After a lovely lunch we continued to the next drive. As the sun started setting, Michael called off the hunt. We jumped in the shooting brake, and went back to Michael’s lodge.
All the pheasants from the days hunt, where placed orderly on display in the courtyard, ready for the parade.
Michael blew “The pheasants death” on his horn, and everyone took off their hats as a mark of respect, in true tradition.
It had been a fantastic day. A day i’m not gonna forget for a while, if ever?