Welcome to The Doctari Safaris Hunting Newsletter
Company owners Steve and Nicky Dougherty and hunting and fishing columnist Greg Morton have known each other for twenty years, and the following regular posts by Greg are based on his experiences hunting on Garrawaye Station over the past two decades.
Post 1: We Go Way Back: April 2019
I first meet Steve and Nicky Dougherty in 2000. I was a feature writer for The New Zealand Fishing News and was writing a Profile piece on a fairly new Central Otago Company that offered fishing and free-range hunting to clients. The Dougherty business was called Doctari Safaris, had been formed in 1997 and guides consisted of Steve and his mate Dean. Clients were mostly local, game was primarily wild pigs, wild goats, wild turkeys and nomadic red and fallow deer and hunting methods were based on ‘spot and stalk’ strategies learnt by Steve and Dean over the years. Nicky was pregnant with their first child (now 19), and in addition to guiding Steve was running the farm that doubles as part of their hunting terrain.
Though busy they had a plan.
Over two days we hunted wild pig successfully, and I gathered information for the articlewhich described at that time a fledgling company with high hopes. During that time we hit it off as hunters and blokes, I loved the Maniototo ‘big sky’ country and as the years passed both of us became more involved in the international hunting industry, him as an outfitter and me as New Zealand correspondent for the USA publication The Hunting Report. Over the years I saw the plan becoming reality and wrote articles about what I saw both nationally and internationally. Now living just down the road from the Dougherty operation I regularly visit, and am amazed at how this enterprising and enthusiastic couple have turned an idea into a thriving business. The family has grown to three children; Charlie, Tia and Billy, in addition to free-range hunting there is a hunting estate and modern Lodge, the client-base is nowmostly international, and trophy quality is high though exceptionally well priced. Bow-hunters are particularly well catered for, in terms of packages and the nature of the terrain. This first newsletter post has been written in April: an apt time, as Doctari hills will be resonating to the roar of red stags and croaking of fallow bucks. It will be going off big timein the Garrawaye valleys.