North Carolina’s Best Winter Hunting Destinations for Small Game Season

Winter is small game season in North Carolina, and there has never been a better time to grab your hunting rifle and head into the woods. The quail, grouse, rabbit and pheasant are plentiful. The weather is temperate, the hospitality heartfelt, and the accommodations are downright, undeniably good.

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Here are my picks for some of the best winter hunting destinations the state has to offer:

George Hi Plantation

There is nothing like a Civil War-style plantation and the scent of game cooking on the spit to let you know that you've arrived in the Carolinas. That's exactly what you'll find at the George Hi Plantation in Garland. Oh, and did I mention that the surrounding farmland is stocked with fowl? Winter hunting packages start at $795 double occupancy and include guide service, six hours of hunting, accommodations, meals and a 12-quail limit.

Devil's Rib Hunting Preserve

No hunting dogs of your own? It's no problem at the Devil's Rib Hunting Preserve in Peachland. The staff can provide those as well as guide service, no bag limits, and all the hunting stories you can handle. Trip prices vary. Lodging is available nearby at the Budget Inn in Marshville. Just one hour from Charlotte, Marshville is the hometown of country singer Randy Travis and where movie mogul Steve Spielberg filmed part of "The Color Purple". You can also find lodging in nearby Monroe.

Webb Farm Quail Grounds and Lodge

The Webb Farm Quail Grounds and Lodge is located in Ellerbe. Part of what makes this lodge notable is the hunting packages. Take for instance the $1,300 per person quail and duck hunting package. You get a full day of hunting, accommodations and meals, including an old fashioned oyster roast. There are also less expensive packages that include use of specially equipped ATVs and hunting dogs. You can even request that your catch be cleaned and packaged for you. Hunting licenses may be purchased on site for $15 per person.

Tobacco Stick Hunting Preserve

The Tobacco Stick Hunting Preserve is located in Biscoe. In its previous life it was a working tobacco plantation. It now serves as a hunting preserve for those in search of mallard ducks, quails, pheasants, and chukar partridges. Overnight accommodations, hunting dogs, a skeet shooting area, guide, and catch cleaning services are provided. Prices are ala carte so you can create your own packages. You may expect to pay $50 for lodging. A full day of dog and guide services will cost you $140.

My family enjoys winter recreation and has traveled extensively.

More from this contributor:

North Carolina's Winter ATV Hot Spots

Farm Fresh Dining: Dinner with the Goat Lady in Climax, North Carolina

Best Places to Go Ice Climbing and Winter Hiking in North Carolina

Where to Go Fresh Water Fishing in North Carolina During the Winter

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Updated Thursday, Jan 26, 2012