The joy of being outdoors comes, in part, from those new and unexpected interests found along the way. Take Ben Johnson. A former lawyer and wine merchant, he is now a beekeeper by trade. Something innate, he suspects, draws him to animal husbandry. A lifelong outdoorsman, Ben had always loved dogs but had never trained them seriously. His wife caught the bug first and passed it along to Ben on a memorable dove hunt. Since then, Ben has worked with a variety of dogs chasing quail, woodcock, and grouse around the U.S. Ben’s travels ultimately led him to a beautiful English Setter: Northwoods “Rye” Whiskey. Good bird dogs learn over time how to pursue game, and Ben revels in Rye’s development. His first few seasons in the grouse woods, Rye’s youth and intemperance produced similar results: young birds eager to flush. But with age and experience, Ben is proud of the skilled companion Rye has become: “If a dog can work grouse, it is a thing to behold.”
Ben Johnson and Northwoods "Rye" Whiskey posing for a photo op.
The pair enjoying a hunt in Bibb County, AL
Rye hard at work.
Rye taking a moment to rest in between coveys.
Rye in the tall grass.
Ben wearing the Blakely Jacket and Field Hat.