WINFIELD, Ga. --- He hails from Waynesboro, Ga., the Bird Dog Capital of the World. She is a Montana girl, accustomed to Big Sky living.
For Dave and Jamie Massey it's a marriage made in heaven -- and split into two seasons.
"When we married, we set a series of goals," Mr. Massey said. "At the time, our top goal was to own our own business and be in each place about half the year."
During the winter, they live on Keg Creek at Thurmond Lake, where they operate a nearby hospitality lodge and Cedar Gate Plantation -- a commercial shooting preserve that offers guided quail hunts.
In summer and fall, they shift gears to their other life -- operating a summer camp and hunting guide service in Gallatin Gateway, south of Bozeman, Mont. "It's a rustic vacation spot in the middle of the Gallatin National Forest," he said. "We have 320 acres with five cabins that you horseback in and out of."
The quail plantation is a relatively new venture, Mrs. Massey said. The husband-and-wife team have invested countless hours in transforming the site's rolling mixed hardwoods and pine forests into a habitat more suitable for quail -- and quail hunters.
"We're a new business, and we're very small," she said. "It's just Dave and I so we both do a lot of the work." At their side, almost constantly, are their bird dogs -- Asia, Roper, Houdini the pointer, Rookie and five others.
Mr. Massey has managed quail plantations for much of his life and met Jamie when both worked at Sea Island Company's Lodge at Cabin Bluff, which -- like their current venture -- is designed for outdoor recreation catering to single groups at a time.
"We love it in Columbia County," he said. "The property we're on has been managed for quail for over 20 years, so because of that we were able to step right in and do some work on the roads, the habitat, and get things going right away."
The area was also attractive because of good local schools for their son, 5-year-old Doc, who is already learning the sporting life in two choice parts of the country.
"He got his first shotgun for Christmas and has already been putting birds out with us," Mr. Massey said. "He loves it."
The dual businesses in different parts of the country also have wonderful benefits for a marriage and a growing family.
"We love both places, especially the times of years we're at both places," he said. "We miss the super hot here. and we miss the super cold out there."
The change of scenery also offers an opportunity to be close to both sets of relatives.
"That's probably the greatest part of it," Mr. Massey said. "We get to be around both sides of our family for half a year, and our son gets the benefits of being around both sides, and all of them hunt and fish. It's the best of both worlds."
Reach Rob Pavey at 868-1222, ext. 119, or firstname.lastname@example.org.Dave and Jamie Massey RESIDENCE: Winfield, Ga., and Gallatin Gateway, Mont. CAREER: Guided quail hunts in the East; big game hunts and fishing in the West MOTTO: "We make work our play, and play all the time." WEB SITE: www.sportingtraditions.us