It is that time of the year again when I traveled to Herb “Bwana” Krumsick’s 2016 Review, Forecast & Hunt, held at the Flint Oak Ranch in Fall River, Kan. I have talked about Flint Oak in a prior blog or two. It is a fabulous place. I highly recommend you go there and take part in their many hunting and sporting activates. Click here to go to their website for more information. It is a great place to shoot.
I believe I attended my first forecast in 1996 and I have only missed a few in that 20-year span. I reported on this event two years ago. Click here to read that blog.
Let me recap the event and weekend for you: Herb Krumsick is a nationally recognized real estate investor, good friend, former real estate partner and A+ wine connoisseur. He refers to himself as a “Three time all American.” I only know of one of his All American awards, received for playing football at Wichita State. I am not sure what the other two awards are for.
Annually (since 1987) Herb invites a number of real estate and financial folks to a weekend of real estate talk and economic seminars all coupled with some bird hunting and maybe a glass or two of wine. It has been held at Flint Oak since the beginning.
The real estate guys who attend this event (present company excluded) are some of the top real estate specialists in the country. Over the years I have had the opportunity to meet and learn from some of the best in the fields of real estate and finance.
I was unable to attend last year’s event. So it has been since 2014 that I last saw some of the group. I found it interesting how life evolves over time. When I first started attending this event 20 years ago, the conversations were mostly about business, successful real estate deals (and some bad ones as well; although it’s funny how those don’t always get mentioned) families, kids and grandkids.
Now the conversations are still about real estate deals (only less of them), retirement, selling of people’s companies they spent a lifetime building, our families, kids and definitely grandkids. In addition to these interesting items, some tragedy has slipped into the conversations as well. This year I learned that two friend’s wives had passed away: one three months and the other three weeks ago. Another’s wife has stage 2 dementia. Two attendees, Peter Baldwin and Eddie Saig, were unable to attend any longer due to serious illnesses.
I understand that we all get older and that these types of illnesses and worse can come upon us at any time. But that doesn’t make it easier to accept your friends’ pain and suffering. Or to realize what might be ahead for yourself or own family.
Thursday, March 10, 2016
This was my travel day to Flint Oak. Several weeks prior to departure, I received a call from good friend George Cibula who said he was going out on Thursday rather than Friday and suggested that we meet up at the Wichita International Airport and then drive out to Flint Oak together. Sounded like a great plan to me. Well that was until I checked the flight schedules from Chicago and learned that I would be in Wichita four hours ahead of George. Oh well…he is a friend worth waiting for.
George was flying in from Florida. As luck would have it George’s flight was delayed and I got to spend even more time at the airport. In the end everything worked out fine and we just arrived at Flint Oak a little later than we had planned…there was still plenty of time for a glass of wine before lights out.
Friday, March 11, 2016
On Friday George and I were on our own for a good portion of the day. We arranged to shoot a round of sporting clays in the morning and after lunch we went on what is called a “Super Quail Hunt.” What a great afternoon we had. Our guide Steve, the Kennel Manager at Flint Oak, had selected four outstanding dogs for us to hunt with. The afternoon was very warm and sunny, 70-plus degrees, which affected the hunt conditions. Usually when the weather is warm, the birds have a tendency to run on the ground rather than fly…which obviously means you don’t get in as much shooting. Regardless, it was a great afternoon hunting with George.
By the time we completed our hunt and returned to the Flint Oak Lodge, a number of our group had arrived for the weekend of activities. The event was underway. The evening started with a lot of great conversation and a wine tasting followed by dinner…more about the wines later.
Saturday, March 12, 2016
Saturday was a full day of activities starting at 7:00 a.m. with a breakfast buffet which included a wonderful omelet station. It seems that one of the main activities at these things is eating.
After breakfast we loaded up and headed to the field for a European-style pheasant hunt. The European hunt at Flint Oak is a modified driven hunt, modeled after the traditional hunts of Europe. In Europe, pheasants are driven toward (usually over a hill or cliff) to hunters stationed at various locations. Shots are taken as the birds fly toward them overhead.
The Flint Oak version of the driven shoot utilizes as many as 39 shooting blinds. When the 39 blinds are used, Flint Oak refers to this as a Major European Hunt, which is what we did. The blinds are positioned around a hill in about a one-mile circle. Two shooters are stationed in each blind. The pheasants are then driven to flight at tree top level. In flight the birds can fly at speeds of 35 to 40 miles per hour. At that speed it requires a long lead to hit one. Hunters shoot for a certain period of time, usually about 3 to 5 minutes at each blind, then rotate to another one and the shoot continues again. Each shooting session is called a brace. When each brace is over, retriever dogs are used to collect the fallen birds for you. Each blind offers different shooting challenges. I always seem to end up at the blind with the big tree in front of it.
If you enjoy shooting and hunting, this is great fun. I can tell you with certainty that your shoulder will be sore at the end of the hunt. The Krumsick team of hunters shot a lot of birds.
After the European Hunt we returned to the Lodge for lunch (OMG another meal) and our afternoon educational sessions. The afternoon’s speakers were:
- Ted Jones, Ph.D., Chief Economist, Stewart Title Company, Houston, Texas
- Gabriel Silverstein, SIOR, Angelic Real Estate, New York, N.Y.
- Beau Hudson, IMA Financial Group Inc., Wichita, Kan.
The sessions focused on the current national economy and on expectations for the future. The consensus was the current generally good conditions will continue through 2016 and into 2017 with the potential of an economic slow-down in 2018 and 2019. Their predictions were optimistic for the coming months. After these sessions, another wine tasting was held, followed by dinner with way to much food.
Kevin Geenty and I were again, as in past years, handed the assignment of selecting the wines for the weekend.
Kevin, who has a great palate and vast knowledge of Old World wines, selected the following French and Italian wines:
- 2011 Cantina del Pino-Barbaresco
- 2010 Dufouler – Nuits – Saint Georges Burgundy
- 2012 Domaine Bart Fixin Burgundy
- 2009 Chateau Hermitage Mazeyres, Pomerol France – Bordeaux Red Blend
While I selected the following California wines:
- 2012 Glenwood Cellars Chardonnay
- 2009 Tiedemann Signature Series Red Wine
- 2013 Glenwood Cellars Pinot Noir
- 2012 Three Clicks Petite Sirah
- 2010 Vinoce Mt. Veeder Cabernet Franc
I also selected one Italian wine to add to the mix:
- 2009 Podere Canalino Brunello di Montalcino
I believe everyone enjoyed the fine selection of wines. It was a great mixture of Old World and New World wines. There was a flavor profile for everyone’s palate. I heard no complaints about the wine.
As is the case, most good things come to an end and so is the case with the Bwana’s 2016 Review, Forecast & Hunt. On Sunday morning George Cibula and I packed our bags, turned in our guns, said good-bye to our friends and headed to the airport and home.
Over so many years I have had the pleasure of enjoying this event. Yes, it certainly is a “guy thing” with guns, hunting, cigars and lots of B.S. On the other hand, I have gotten to meet some great folks, made some lasting friendships, learned much about my craft, had a marvelous time doing all of this, created some wonderful memories and…oh yes…I have tasted some great wine.
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Until next week,